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Pros & Cons: Is Jacksonville, Florida a Good Place to Live [2024]

Updated on:
March 27, 2024
Is Jacksonville, Florida a Good Place to Live

Image by 12019 from Pixabay

Jacksonville, Florida, is also known as the "Bold New City of the South" for many reasons. The rich culture and booming economy have earned the city a favorite spot in the hearts of travelers. More remarkable is the diverse lifestyles that attract visitors and potential residents alike.

Being one of the largest cities in the United States by land area, it has many breathtaking views luring people in. But this begs the question, is Jacksonville a good place to live? 

Like any big city, Jacksonville has its pros and cons. In this article, you'll explore various aspects of life in Jacksonville you should consider before making the move.

Pros of Living in Jacksonville

Typical of many big cities, living in Jacksonville FL has many merits. Its vast geographical location presents incredible scenery and economic opportunities for residents. 

Here are a few pros of living in Jacksonville:

Cost of Living

Jacksonville's cost of living is 5% less than the state average and 7% lower than the national average. For a big city, this relative affordability is a great advantage. The jacked-up prices typical of similar cities like Miami are not reflected in its housing market. 

Housing cost in Jacksonville is a whopping 10% less than it is in both the state and national average. Also, when it comes to rent, it averages at $1,504 for an average 974 sq. ft. apartment size. 

The great beauty of this city is there are a host of options that won't break the bank. These options range from cozy downtown apartments to spacious suburban homes.

Tax Environment

Moving to Jacksonville, FL, has the advantage of no personal income tax! 

With no state income tax in Florida, residents enjoy keeping more of their earnings. However, the favorable tax environment does not stretch to sales and corporate taxes. Businesses in Jacksonville must file a corporate income tax return

Moreover, the sales tax rate in Florida is 6%, raising its combined sales tax rate in Jacksonville to 7.5%. Regardless, property taxes in Jacksonville are reasonable compared to other major areas in Florida.

Outdoor Activities

Know what else is great alongside the sunny days in Jacksonville? Local beaches! Jacksonville has the most shoreline of any city in the U.S., spanning over 80,000 acres.


Since the city lines the Atlantic coast, Jacksonville's beaches are not only perfect for sunbathing but also great for surfing and beach volleyball. Some popular beaches include Neptune Beach, Ponte Vedra, and Atlantic beaches.

For hikers and bird watchers who love to picnic and explore natural trails, the city has various parks including the Dutton Island Preserve and Talbot Island State Parks, which both offer a myriad of activities. 

There is also an extensive river system providing opportunities for kayaking and fishing, making it a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. 

Economic Opportunities

Another perk of calling Jacksonville home is the diverse economic opportunities it offers. Moving to Jacksonville is a gateway to diverse industries; from finance to technology and logistics, the city has many offerings. 

There are opportunities for career growth and financial stability. Jacksonville's median household income may seem lower than the state average at $58,263 but it balances out by the relatively affordable cost of living.

Moving to Jacksonville can be daunting, financially and otherwise. The logistical challenges of packing and transportation may be overbearing. However, local movers in Jacksonville, Florida, can be invaluable in simplifying this process. 

These professionals assist in transporting belongings. They also offer guidance in navigating the local terrain. With their help, the transition becomes smoother.

Education System

Jacksonville offers various school options, from public to private and charter to magnet schools. However, the quality of education can vary among districts and individual schools. 

The city has a district school quality better than 47% of all U.S. school districts. With ratings suggesting a mid or average standing in terms of nationwide comparisons. While this indicates room for improvement, it also highlights areas of strength within the education system.

Cons of Living in Jacksonville

Before moving to Jacksonville, questions such as “Is Jacksonville, Florida safe?” require answers. 

You should consider factors such as crime rates and infrastructure. Proximity to amenities is also important when evaluating potential areas in which to live.

Crime Rates

Although Jacksonville offers many attractions, it has a higher-than-average violent crime rate. With a total crime index of 1, Jacksonville is in the bottom percentile, safer than only 1% of U.S. neighborhoods. 

The violent crime rate is a staggering 12.43 in 1,000, way above the state median of 2.59 and the national median of 4.

The rampant property crime, including burglary and vandalism, adds to the unease,  becoming another concern in Jacksonville. The property crime rate stands at a sobering 51.56 in 1,000, making it one of the highest in the state. 

For residents, safeguarding their homes and possessions is imperative. Living in Jacksonville calls for vigilance about their surroundings.

Traffic and Infrastructure

Traffic in Jacksonville can lead to serious gridlock during rush hours. 

Jacksonville ranks as the second-worst place to drive in the U.S. with a global traffic scorecard of 5.69 on a scale of 1 to 10. The implication is that commuters may experience delays and longer travel times. 

Moreover, the traffic situation is a further testament to Jacksonville's infrastructure. Some of the roads and bridges require maintenance and improvements in certain areas.

Extreme weather conditions

Another thing to have in mind when considering a move here is its extreme weather conditions. Indeed, Jacksonville is sunny, but its summers can get unbearably hot. 

Of course, indoors, you can mitigate the heat with efficient air conditioning systems. But this can run up your energy bills, especially in expensive neighborhoods like Ortega Forest and Isle of Palms. 

Even during the rainy seasons, you might still experience a few challenges. For instance, thunderstorms are equally a frequent occurrence in Jacksonville.


Jacksonville has a large landmass accommodating 971,319 people, according to the last population census in 2022. 

Owning a car is essential in Jacksonville due to the widespread proximity of various amenities and poorly developed road transportation networks. Although there is a bus system, it is only sometimes reliable or convenient to use.


Is Jacksonville a good place to live? While there may be no finite answer, the decision is yours to make.

Depending on who you ask, the answers you get will vary; however, knowing the pros and cons of living in Jacksonville can help you with this decision. 

Get professionals to help with your move, then explore local attractions. Also, connect with neighbors to make Jacksonville feel like home.

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