The first thing that comes to mind when many think of Miami, Florida is the fact that it is a spectacular vacation destination. With great beaches, history, weather, culture, and entertainment, you surely won’t find anything less than a great time. But, what if you are looking at Miami as a more permanent living option? What is it like to live in Miami as a resident versus visiting as a tourist?

Luckily, there’s much more than fun, nightlife, parks, and beaches in Miami. Ask yourself what the city looks like in terms of the real estate market, weather, cost of living, and much more.

So, are you considering moving to Miami? Here is an excellent moving to Miami guide with the pros and cons to weigh out before making any big decisions.

Pros of Moving to Miami

No state income taxes

One of the biggest perks of living in Florida is that there are no income taxes. All residents need to pay are federal taxes. This means that those living in Miami can save thousands of dollars if they have a fixed income. There are no taxes to Social Security or retirement benefits either.

However, you’ll still have to pay sales and property taxes. But what you’ll pay is not a lot compared to what other people are paying to live in other cities. Property taxes vary by area, but residents typically receive a discount if they pay early. If you watch your spending, you can save much more money living in Miami. This is a big reason why many retirees relocate to Miami.

Great culture, entertainment, and nightlife

Miami is a true cultural melting pot consisting of a large population of residents from Cuba, Haiti, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Their art, food, music, observances, and other cultural aspects are tightly infused within the city's character.

Miami is also filled with entertainment options. The city is blooming with a spectacular art scene where you can access a wide variety of theaters, galleries, museums, and performing-arts conservatories. For those looking to get active outdoors, Miami offers several lush parks perfect for jogging, playing sports, working out, doing yoga, boating, surfing. and much more.

The nightlife in Miami is one to be mentioned. Miami's nightlife rivals any big city in the U.S. in terms of opportunities for nigh time fun. The city offers an impressive selection of oceanfront clubs, live music setting, dance venues to enjoy. No matter where you go, you are guaranteed to have a good time.

The food scene is fabulous

As a result of its great cultural diversity and influence, Miami is home to fantastic food scene. The city boasts many authentic restaurants, including Brazilian, Puerto Rican, Cuban, and Colombian cuisine. If you haven’t tried tostones, empanadas or a classic Cuban sandwich, you can try them for the first time in Miami. Be careful if you don’t like getting fat.

Miami transportation is affordable and easily accessible

Although you need a car in Miami to access the neighborhoods outside downtown, people in downtown can move quickly without them. There is plenty of public transportation that ensures you reach your destination.

You can travel using the Metrobus, which accesses up to 100 routes. Don’t worry because you won’t be missing a bus as the bus operates nearly 1000 buses across Southern Florida. You can travel to Fort Lauderdale, Key Biscayne, and the Florida Keys with ease. There’s also the Metrorail that gives you a 25-mile tour in an elevated system, as well as the Metromover which takes you around downtown areas of Miami at a very cheap cost.

Is Miami a Good Place to Live?

When most people think of Miami, they think of Miami Beach or South Beach. But locals know that Miami is better characterized as a region - the region of South Florida which stretches across three counties and almost 100 miles of coastline.

But in short, yes - Miami is a fantastic place to live! We are big fans of the areas around the "city" of Miami, including top neighborhoods in Broward County such as Weston and Ft Lauderdale.

The Cons of Moving to Miami

High cost of living

Miami is one of the cities in Florida with a high cost of living. Due to the dense population, finding affordable housing in many neighborhoods is not easy. The cost of living in Miami is up 60% higher than the national average. Therefore, if you plan to move to Miami after retirement, you must ensure you can afford to live there. If you’re moving to work, better be sure that your salary can handle the expenses that comes with living in the city. Apart from an increase in housing costs, you will also notice your auto insurance bill increase, as Miami is one of the most expensive cities in the country to insure your car.

Luckily, among the best places to live in Miami, there are a several affordable areas in South Florida and throughout Dade County.

Miami weather is hot and humid

If you're trying to escape miserable winters in the Northeast, Miami might be perfect for you. But this also comes with another downside. Miami is extremely hot and humid. This is especially true in the summer months. Fall and Spring are really just slightly less hot versions of Summer.

To combat the Miami heat, you may have to pay high electricity bills than you're accustomed to, but luckily there's not much of a gas bill like you'd see in other parts of the US.

Crime can be an issue in some parts of Miami

Before you decide to move to Miami, it’s a good idea to view the crime statistics. Make sure the neighborhood crime rate is not too high to turn you away. While some neighborhoods have crime issues, plenty of areas are safe to raise a family.

Although quite expensive, areas like Coconut Grove, Pinecrest, and The Islands are among the safest places to live in Florida, otherwise, there are sections of Dade County that experience a bit more crime. Palm Beach County tends to have the least crime, as well as most suburbs of Broward County. Between the three counties, there are plenty of safe communities.

Housing costs are high

Housing costs in Miami are also pretty higher than average for most families. The average cost of living for a four-person family in Miami-Dade goes for $3,700 per month. If you’re buying a home in Miami, you can find a decent one for around $396,659. Additionally, the closing costs for sellers and buyers are also high compared to other large U.S. cities.

Despite this, Miami is currently has a pretty balanced real estate market. This means there is a healthy balance of buyers and sellers in the market. This also means the Miami housing market is much closer to a steady position than on a decline. So, if you are looking to buy or sell a home in Miami, it's a fairly good market to get into.

View homes in Miami, FL

Other Considerations

Miami is a beautiful place for those who want to explore the culture and live their life to the fullest. The mix of cultures and ethnicity makes Miami an incredible place for both the residents and tourists alike. If you’re looking to move to Miami, it's important to consider the pros and cons of the things that can come with living there.

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Embracing the Lifestyle and Diversity in Miami

The Miami area is renowned for its status as an international city, boasting a vibrant culture that is reflected in its diverse population and artistic scenes. From the historic streets of Coral Gables to the contemporary art exhibits found throughout the city, Miami offers a unique blend of old-world charm and modern innovation. Not everyone might be aware that the Miami population is one of the most cosmopolitan in the United States, making it a melting pot of cultures, languages, and traditions. This diversity is celebrated in numerous festivals, events, and everyday interactions, giving residents and visitors alike a chance to immerse themselves in a truly global experience.

In terms of education and artistic exposure, Miami does not disappoint. The city is home to prestigious institutions like the New World School of the Arts, which fosters talent in music, dance, theater, and visual arts. This commitment to nurturing creative minds contributes to the city's reputation as a hub for contemporary art and innovation. Moreover, the warm weather and beautiful city landscape provide a conducive environment for both learning and leisure, ensuring that residents have access to a balanced lifestyle. However, it’s important to note that the tropical monsoon climate, while appealing to many, may present challenges such as high humidity and frequent rain during certain periods of the year.

For nature enthusiasts, the Miami area is a treasure trove of natural beauty. Biscayne National Park, located just a short drive from the city, offers a stunning display of coral reefs, mangrove forests, and crystal-clear waters, providing ample opportunities for snorkeling, boating, and wildlife watching. This proximity to nature, combined with the city’s cultural offerings, makes Miami a unique and attractive destination for those considering a move. However, it is crucial for potential residents to weigh the pros and cons carefully, as the vibrant lifestyle and beautiful surroundings may not be the perfect fit for everyone, underscoring the importance of thorough research and consideration.


In wrapping up our exploration of the Magic City, Miami offers an enticing blend of year-round sunshine, pristine sandy beaches, and a vibrant cultural scene. Downtown Miami and South Miami are bustling centers of the job market, all while Miami Dade County benefits from the absence of state and corporate income taxes.

On the leisure side, from attending the globally-acclaimed Art Basel and the electrifying Ultra Music Festival during the Miami Music Week, to relaxing days at North Beach Oceanside Park or sunny isles beach, there's no shortage of activities. Don't forget the allure of the nearby Everglades National Park, one of several national parks offering boundless outdoor recreation. Deep sea fishing rivals experiences you might find in Costa Rica, while the Florida Grand Opera and countless art galleries enhance Miami's rich cultural fabric.

However, Miami life isn't without its challenges. The threat of tropical storms remains a perennial concern for residents. And while walk-up windows serving delectable bites are a gastronomic delight, one cannot overlook the implications of a rising sea level for this coastal paradise. But like any major city, Miami has its pros and cons. Whether you're drawn to the pulsating beats of the Ultra Music Festival, the majesty of the Everglades, or the allure of no state income tax, the decision to move here requires a thorough assessment. But for many, the allure of Miami's sunny disposition proves too irresistible to resist.