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A Laid Back Barrier Island Town, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea is Popular with Divers and Maintains a Prosperous, Bohemian Vibe
Overview: Laid back Lauderdale-by-the-Sea sits on a barrier island just east of Fort Lauderdale on Florida's southeastern coast. It dates from the 1920s and is home to coral reefs and strips of sparkling sand.
The community has worked to limit high rise hotels and condominium developments and maintains a bohemian but prosperous vibe. Palm trees line the streets, and one story, white and pink buildings glisten in the sun. Vacationers come in droves to snorkel, swim, jet ski and SCUBA dive (a favorite dive spot is the SS Copenhagen, a 19th century cargo steamer in 25 feet of water just 100 yards offshore). The beaches are long and clean, usually crowded and home to Loggerhead sea turtles' nesting grounds. Open-air thatch-roof beach bars do a steady business. A Christmas boat parade and a craft festival are a couple of the town's fun events. Residents also take part in dune restoration projects and beach clean up days.
Neighborhoods are neatly laid out, and homes, many of which back to a canal, are a mix of Florida cracker style, concrete block style and Mediterranean style. Apartments and condos are in good supply, too. Busy North Ocean Drive (Highway A1A) and Commercial Boulevard are lined with banks, stores, gas stations, shopping centers and much more.
Population: 6,500 (city proper)
Age 45 or Better: 55%
Cost of Living: 28% above the national average
Median Home Price: $398,000
Climate: Summer temperatures reach into the 90s, and winters stay warm with temperatures in the 50s to 60s. On average, the area receives 60 inches of rain per year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? No, but Imperial Medical Center is one mile away and accepts Medicare patients.
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No, but Imperial Medical Center is one mile away and is accredited.
Public Transit: Yes, the Pelican Hopper, a free bus/van, makes a 45 minute loop around town and stops at a grocery, the hospital and more.
Crime Rate: Below the national average
Public Library: No
Political Leanings: Liberal
College Educated: 50%
Is Florida Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Notes: Spring Breakers arrive in March and April.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Named Pascua Florida by Juan Ponce De Leon, the Sunshine State did not enter the Union until March 3, 1845. Balmy mild winters began attracting snowbirds to the state in the late 19th century. Retirees continue to flock to the state. It's not hard to see why tourism has become the leading industry.
International trade and citrus are also major contributors to the state's economy. Eighty percent of the nation's oranges and grapefruits are grown here, and 40 percent of all U.S. exports to Latin America flow through Florida.
Florida's landscape includes uplands and coastal plains. It contains more than 11,000 miles of waterways and about 4,500 islands spread across 10 acres.
The state has 1,250 golf courses, more than any other state in the Union. The 47 mile Pinellas Trail is the longest urban trail on the east coast. Orlando theme parks attract more visitors than any other theme parks in the U.S. The only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles co-exist is in National Everglades Park.
Florida, particularly the Keys and the Gulf Coast, were struck by Category 4 Hurricane Irma in early September, 2017. Towns will rebuild, perhaps this time with climate change in mind, making them safer and better equipped to handle major hurricanes going forward.
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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