Now that I’ve been in Orlando (technically Windermere which is a suburb area of Orlando) for three years, I feel like I finally have some perspective on living here. So I figured I’d take a little look back and make a list of the Pros and Cons of living in Orlando.
If you’ve just stumbled on my site, first off, hello! Please know this list is from the perspective of being a Disney fan who moved to Orlando and became a Disney blogger. Learn more about me and that move here.
Best Things About Living in Orlando Florida
- No winter weather to get you down. No snow to shovel. If you hate cold weather as I do then you get how awesome this is. Enough said.
- There is almost always sunshine with lots of green trees and big open skies. These are all things that can help lift your mood. They lift you up and make you want to get outside and do things.
- People are used to new people moving in. They were likely ones themselves at some point. And they’re overall welcoming to new people.
- Being close to Disney means you get to experience every season and event. If there’s something new happening you can be there. There is always something new, and so often we miss events that don’t match up with our vacations. But you’ll never have to miss out again.
- Visiting Disney is so much more relaxing. You don’t have the stress and pressure to cover it all. You don’t have to hang around if you don’t want to. If someone is cranky or the weather is bad, you can just leave. And know you can come back again soon.
- Being a local in an area where so many people are tourists means you get to feel like a pro often. You know what you’re doing and where you’re going. This is not just at Disney, but anywhere around Orlando. It’s nice to feel that way.
- The houses, neighborhoods and shopping centers are pretty. That sounds weird I know, but they put a lot more effort here to make things look nice. Whether it’s the entrance to a neighborhood or just the local Target, it makes living here nicer (this is not true in every Orlando neighborhood but in most of them especially in Winter Garden, Windermere, Winter Park, and many other lovely areas).
- So much to do. There are tons of things n matter what you’re in to. Beaches are one hour to the east and an hour and a half to the west coast. Outdoor rivers springs and parks mean there are so many ways to enjoy being outside. Restaurants, theaters, shows, and tours. You’ll never run out of interesting things to do.
- Florida winter is the best. From November to April it’s just so lovely. We get just a little cooler temps to enjoy them, and being able to enjoy sunshine and weather in the ’70s for so many months in a row is just incredible. You want to be outside all the time just to soak it up.
- The most incredible skies. Florida is so flat that you have an amazing view of the horizon. This means you’ll see more sky than probably you’re used to. Enjoy breathtaking sunsets and sunrises and lots more cloud watching.
Worst Things About Living in Orlando
- Summer is really hot. How much of a problem this is for you will depend on how much time you have to be outside. If you work a job that requires you to be out in the heat (like I do) then it will wear on you especially by the end. Most people just plan only water activities outside int he summer (pool, beach) and otherwise stay inside more during the worst of it. July to Sept is the worst and during that time you’ll hate the heat and complain a lot. And then you get to winter and that’s your reward and you remember why you love living here.
- Driving here is frustrating. Traffic is a real problem. You’ll deal with some forms of traffic issues no matter where you live (all though staying away from I-4 minimizes it). Living in a growing, thriving city means you have constant construction on the roads. Tourists and older retirees drive slower and tons of schools in residential areas mean increased traffic at odd times. It all means that driving is more frustrating and takes longer.
- Tourists get on your nerves. If you talk to anyone who lives in a popular tourist destination they’ll tell you the same thing. They’re the bread and butter of the industry and keep businesses and opportunity thriving. But they’re also annoying as heck when you’re just living your day-to-day life and trying to get to your next appointment.
- Bugs and critters. The wildlife is thriving here. And if you see any body of water larger than a kiddie pool is assumed to have Alligators. And you will need to treat your home for bugs. It’s required.
- Higher income level jobs may be harder to find. There are tons of entry-level jobs to be had thanks to all the theme parks and tourist spots. But depending on your industry you may have to hunt a little more here.
- Having so much stuff to do costs. That means whatever savings you had from having no state sales tax and a lower cost of living will be spent in your increased entertainment budget.
- You’ll drive more. Things are more spread out here. So expect almost everything to be at least 20 minutes away.
- You can take Disney for granted. While going often as tons of perks, it does mean that it becomes “normal”. And depending on your level of interest, you may be less excited about going. I’ve not had that issue because of making this my job. Sharing it with those that can’t be here as often is the best way I know to keep that magic alive.