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Retire in Juno Beach, Florida?
Overview: This affluent barrier island community lies along the Atlantic coastal ridge just north of West Palm Beach in southeastern Florida. Platted in 1948, Juno Beach incorporated in 1953 and today is a quiet, casual place with a white/gray sand beach.
The local civic association sponsors a speaker series and concerts. Friends of the Arts supports shows each year, and ArtFest by the Sea has been celebrated for 28 years. Juno Beach's Loggerhead Marine Life Center has exhibits, aquariums and is the heart of the yearly TurtleFest. One of world's top ranked golf courses, the Seminole Golf Club, rests near the town's southern tip. Town parks include Juno Beach Park and Fishing Pier, Kegan Park, and Loggerhead Park. Pelican Lake, adjacent to town center, has a lake walk and bike trail. Restaurants include fish houses, waterfront grilles, Italian bistros and more. The Gardens Mall, a large, nicer shopping mall, is just south of town in Palm Beach Gardens.
Housing ranges from modest condominiums to oceanfront estates. Neighborhoods are dotted with palm trees, snuggle up to the beach and have sand covered roads. Juno Ocean Walk is a low key resort with park models for sale.
Population: 3,500 (city proper - swells to 6,000 during the high season)
Age 45 or Better: 70%
Cost of Living: 41% above the national average
Median Home Price: $480,000
Climate: Summers are warm with highs in the upper 80s and low 90s. Winters stay warm as well with temperatures in the 50s, 60s and 70s. On average, the area receives 62 inches of rain per year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? No, but Jupiter Medical Center, just four miles away, accepts Medicare patients.
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No, but Jupiter Medical Center, just four miles away, is accredited by the Joint Commission. It is also a Primary Stroke Center.
Public Transit: No
Crime Rate: Below the national average
Public Library: No, but Jupiter just to the north and Palm Beach Gardens just to the south both have one.
Political Leanings: Liberal
College Educated: 54%
Is Florida Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Cons: Hurricanes are always a possibility. Homeowners' insurance is expensive.
Notes: Juno Beach has grown by 7% within the last decade but still has very little racial diversity.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Sticking out into Hurricane Alley, Florida was a land no nation seemed to want. Ruled successively by Spain, France, England, and the Confederate States of America, the state had a backwater reputation. Other than St. Augustine and Pensacola, there were few cities. The area was rural and populated by frontier farmers.
In the late-1800s, changes came when railroads began chugging down both coasts. Industrialist Henry Flagler's Florida Easy Coast Railway even made it all the way to Key West. The Great Florida Land Boom, the build-up to World War II, and the space industry also helped turn Florida into one of the nation's most populous states. In 1900, there were about 500,000 residents. Today, there are more than 20 million, almost 351 people per square mile.
Why do people keep coming? Tourism marketing is one reason. Annually, millions visit Orlando's theme parks and the state's 663 miles of white sand beaches. Taxes generated by the billion dollar vacation industry allow Florida to prosper without a personal income tax. Budget-sensitive retirees have flocked to its cities and shorelines.
If you can ignore the hurricanes, the state's climate is relatively mild. Only five other states are sunnier. Florida's system of state universities and community colleges is sizable, and its big cities are meccas for culture and the arts. Sarasota is a good example. Its Ringling Museum Complex contains internationally known art museum, a circus museum, an historic theater, and a 66-acre garden. Museums near Orlando range from a Zora Neale Hurston gallery to a Madame Tussauds.
Population - 20,612,439
Persons 65 years old and over - 20%
High school graduates, persons age 25+ - 87%
Bachelor's degree or higher, persons age 25+ - 27%
Persons of Hispanic or Latino origin - 24%
White persons, not Hispanic - 58%
Median household income - $47,525
Median home value - $159,900
Social Security taxed? No
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
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