5 Best Places to Live in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Imagine a place where the sun kisses your skin nearly every day of the year, where the ocean’s tranquility meets urban vibrancy, and where cultural richness and community spirit flourish. Welcome to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, a city that not only boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the country but also offers a lifestyle that combines the laid-back atmosphere of a coastal town with the dynamic pulse of a bustling city.

This lovely region on Florida’s southeastern coast is gaining acclaim as a premier destination for families looking to plant roots in a locale that promises a high quality of life, economic prosperity, and a warm, inclusive community.

But what truly sets Fort Lauderdale apart from other American cities? Is it the endless summer climate, the mosaic of cultural experiences, or perhaps the plethora of opportunities that beckon families to its shores? And, amidst the city’s allure, where can one find neighborhoods that strike the perfect balance between affordability and the dream of living in paradise?

As we peel back the layers of Fort Lauderdale’s charm, we uncover the myriad reasons that make it an attractive place to move to, alongside hidden residential jewels that offer a sanctuary for families and individuals seeking value and vibrancy in their new homes. Let’s take a road trip through the reasons why Fort Lauderdale is not just a wonderful place to visit but a place to call home.

Why Move to Fort Lauderdale?

  1. A.Year-Round Sunshine and Pristine BeachesFort Lauderdale is the epitome of the eternal summer lifestyle, boasting warm temperatures and over 23 miles of golden sandy beaches year-round. The city’s coast is a haven for swimming, boating, and a plethora of water sports, ensuring outdoor enthusiasts and sun-seekers are always entertained.
  2. B. A Thriving Cultural HubFrom the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival to the NSU Art Museum, the city is bursting with cultural activities. Families can enjoy many educational and entertaining experiences that foster a love for arts, history, and science among all ages.
  3. C. Booming Economy and Educational OpportunitiesThe economic landscape in Fort Lauderdale is flourishing, with sectors like tourism, marine, technology, and finance providing ample employment opportunities. Paired with diverse quality educational institutions, the city is a place to live, grow, and thrive.
  4. D. A Welcoming CommunityThis region’s community feeling is as warm as its balmy climate. The city prides itself on inclusivity and diversity, making it easy for newcomers of all kinds to feel right at home. Its various neighborhoods each carry a unique vibe and sense of community, ensuring every family can find their perfect fit.

Affordability Compared to Other Florida Cities

When it comes to affordability, Fort Lauderdale’s cost of living is higher than the national average, largely due to housing costs. However, when compared to other popular cities in Florida, the picture varies:

  • Compared to Miami Fort Lauderdale is generally considered more affordable than Miami, especially in terms of housing. Miami has a higher overall cost of living.
  • Compared to Tampa Tampa might be more affordable than Fort Lauderdale, particularly regarding housing prices and overall cost of living.
  • Compared to Orlando Fort Lauderdale and Orlando have comparable living costs, but Orlando may offer more affordable housing options.
  • Compared to Jacksonville Jacksonville is among the more affordable large cities in Florida, with a lower cost of living than Fort Lauderdale.

It’s important to note that “affordability” is a subjective term, and one’s perspective depends on one’s income, lifestyle, and priorities. While Fort Lauderdale may offer a higher quality of life and amenities that justify its cost, for some families, the higher cost of living might stretch their budgets, particularly in terms of housing.

Additionally, Florida has no state income tax, which can make a significant difference in overall affordability and is a point worth considering for anyone thinking of moving to the state.

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Fort Lauderdale’s Best Affordable Neighborhoods

While Fort Lauderdale is known for its luxury waterfront homes, the city also offers a variety of affordable neighborhoods that don’t compromise on quality of life.

  1. 1. Riverside ParkNestled quietly in the heart of the sprawling city, Riverside Park stands out as a serene retreat that offers families an affordable slice of paradise without straying far from all the urban conveniences you might need. This neighborhood, often described as Fort Lauderdale’s best-kept secret, is a testament to the idea that tranquility and accessibility can coexist harmoniously.With its lush, mature trees and winding streets leading to picturesque parks, Riverside Park embodies a peaceful living environment that caters to those who cherish a close-knit community vibe. It’s a place where the hustle and bustle of city life seem to melt away, replaced by the gentle sounds of nature and the laughter of playing children. Here, affordable housing options abound, offering a range of styles from charming, historic homes to more modern dwellings, all nestled within a verdant landscape that invites relaxation and outdoor enjoyment.

    The appeal of Riverside Park extends beyond its tranquil ambiance and accessible home prices. The neighborhood is a hub of community engagement, where neighbors come together to enhance their living experience. Whether through organized clean-up days, community garden projects, or neighborhood watch programs, residents of Riverside Park take pride in their community, making it not only a place to live but a place to belong.

    The area’s parks serve as communal gathering spots where families can enjoy picnics, children can play freely, and community events bring everyone together. Despite its serene setting, Riverside Park benefits from its proximity to downtown Fort Lauderdale, offering residents easy access to the city’s array of shopping, dining, and cultural amenities. It’s a neighborhood that proves you don’t have to compromise on convenience for a peaceful, affordable living space in Fort Lauderdale.

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  3. 2. Progresso VillageProgresso Village stands as a beacon of creativity and transformation within Fort Lauderdale, a neighborhood where the arts, innovation, and community converge to create a vibrant tapestry of urban life. This once-overlooked area is swiftly becoming a canvas for artists, entrepreneurs, and visionaries, drawing in a diverse population eager to partake in its renaissance.Affordable housing options juxtapose with emerging galleries, studios, and eclectic small businesses, making Progresso Village an attractive option for families, young professionals, and creatives. The neighborhood’s growing appeal is not just in its real estate market but in the palpable sense of momentum and possibility that permeates its streets. Here, the promise of growth and the spirit of reinvention are as accessible as the tangible benefits of its central location, offering a unique blend of opportunity and affordability.

    As Progresso Village evolves, so does its community fabric, knitting together a diverse mix of residents committed to fostering a neighborhood that reflects their collective vision and energy. Initiatives aimed at beautifying the area and supporting local talent have sparked a sense of pride and ownership among inhabitants, further enriching the neighborhood’s cultural landscape.

    Monthly art walks, pop-up markets, and community workshops provide platforms for local artisans and entrepreneurs and create gathering spaces that encourage neighborly connections and cultural exchange. This sense of community, coupled with the neighborhood’s affordability and strategic location near downtown Fort Lauderdale, makes Progresso Village a compelling choice for those seeking an urban lifestyle infused with creativity, diversity, and dynamism.

    As it continues to grow and redefine itself, Progresso Village promises to be a cornerstone of affordable living and cultural richness in Fort Lauderdale, beckoning to all who wish to be part of its unfolding story.

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  5. 3. EdgewoodEdgewood emerges as a neighborhood where convenience and affordability find common ground, offering a compelling option for families and individuals looking to enjoy the benefits of Fort Lauderdale without the hefty price tag often associated with city living. Situated with strategic access to major highways and the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, Edgewood is a dream for commuters and frequent travelers, providing ease of movement that is unmatched in many other parts of the city.This accessibility is complemented by an array of affordable housing options, ranging from single-family homes to more compact townhouses and apartments, catering to a variety of lifestyles and budgets. The neighborhood’s appeal is further enhanced by its proximity to essential amenities, including shopping centers, schools, and parks, ensuring that residents have everything they need within a short drive or even a walk.

    Beyond its logistical advantages, Edgewood is a neighborhood in transition, steadily attracting attention from investors and homebuyers drawn to its potential for growth and development. This evolving dynamic has sparked a wave of revitalization efforts to enhance its residents’ quality of life. New local businesses and eateries are beginning to dot the landscape, bringing fresh energy and convenience to the community.

    Meanwhile, the neighborhood maintains a peaceful, family-friendly atmosphere, with parks and green spaces offering residents a place to unwind and connect with nature. Community initiatives and events foster a sense of belonging and collaboration among neighbors, making Edgewood a community to be a part of. As Edgewood continues to grow and develop, it stands out as a testament to an achievable balance between affordability, convenience, and the promise of an evolving community character in Fort Lauderdale.

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  7. 4. Tarpon RiverTarpon River, a picturesque neighborhood nestled along the waterways of Fort Lauderdale, offers residents the charm of a suburban lifestyle with the added beauty of waterfront living. This community strikes a harmonious balance between serene residential streets and the lively pulse of Fort Lauderdale’s urban core. Known for its affordable housing options, Tarpon River attracts a diverse mix of individuals and families, all drawn to its scenic views, proximity to downtown, and the tranquil atmosphere that waterfront living provides.The neighborhood boasts an array of home styles, from quaint, historic cottages to modern townhomes, ensuring that there’s something to suit every taste and budget. Its accessibility to major thoroughfares and public transportation options makes it a convenient choice for commuters, while the waterfront parks and community boat ramps appeal to those who love the outdoors and aquatic activities.

    The sense of community in Tarpon River is palpable, fostered by active neighborhood associations and the shared appreciation for the area’s natural beauty and recreational opportunities. Residents often gather at local parks for community events, picnics, and weekend farmers’ markets, creating a tight-knit atmosphere that’s increasingly rare in urban settings. The neighborhood’s commitment to maintaining its green spaces and supporting local businesses adds to its appeal, making it a place where community well-being and environmental consciousness go hand in hand.

    As Fort Lauderdale continues to grow, Tarpon River remains a gem within the city, offering an affordable, community-oriented lifestyle without sacrificing the convenience and amenities of city living. For those seeking a balance between the hustle of the city and the calm of suburban life, Tarpon River presents an ideal locale to call home.

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  9. 5. South Middle RiverSouth Middle River stands as a testament to Fort Lauderdale’s dynamic evolution, a neighborhood amid transformation that offers affordable living close to the heart of the city. This up-and-coming area attracts attention for its improving infrastructure, community revitalization efforts, and an increasingly vibrant local scene. With its diverse array of housing options, from mid-century single-family homes to newer condominiums and townhouses, South Middle River appeals to a broad spectrum of residents.This includes young professionals, families, and retirees, all drawn by the promise of value in a city known for its higher cost of living. The neighborhood’s affordability is matched by its convenience, situated just minutes from downtown Fort Lauderdale’s employment hubs, entertainment, and well-maintained beaches, making it an attractive option for those seeking the South Florida lifestyle without the premium price tag.

    Community initiatives and neighborhood pride are significant in South Middle River’s rising appeal. Residents actively participate in beautification projects, crime watch programs, and social events that foster a sense of belonging and security. The area’s parks and public spaces are seeing enhancements, contributing to the overall quality of life and community well-being.

    Furthermore, with plans for continued development and investment in the area, South Middle River is poised for growth that promises to enhance its attractiveness while maintaining its character. This neighborhood exemplifies the balance between affordability and accessibility, offering a genuine opportunity for individuals and families to be part of Fort Lauderdale’s vibrant community. As South Middle River evolves, it remains a symbol of the city’s capacity for renewal and the potential for homeowners to invest in a flourishing community.


Fort Lauderdale embodies a lifestyle where urban amenities, natural beauty, and community spirit flourish. For families considering a move or a vacation, this city promises a backdrop of endless summer and cultural richness and presents a variety of neighborhoods where affordability meets quality of life. Whether you’re drawn to the tranquil streets of Riverside Park or the evolving vibrancy of Progresso Village, Fort Lauderdale welcomes you to start your next chapter in a place that feels like paradise every day.

Amber C. Lee Porrazzo is not only an accomplished writer and instructional designer with over 20 years of experience in higher education, but also an esteemed expert on all things Florida, a state she has called home for thirty years. Currently, Amber thrives in her role as a project-based technical writer and curriculum designer, where she blends her expertise in writing with innovative instructional strategies.

Holding a Master’s degree in Instructional Technology and a Bachelor’s degree in Professional and Technical Writing from the University of South Florida, Amber has a solid foundation in her field. This academic background has equipped her with a deep understanding of the principles of effective communication and educational technology, which she skillfully applies to her work.

Amber’s research interests are as dynamic as her career with interests in immersive environments, AI, virtual worlds, mixed and augmented reality, learner motivation, games, and 21st-century skills, all crucial elements in today’s fast-paced educational landscape. This focus highlights both her commitment to staying ahead in her field and a dedication to enhancing the user’s experience through innovative methods.

Outside of her professional life, Amber is a devoted family person who cherishes spending quality time with her loved ones. She has a zest for life, often found enjoying the great Florida outdoors and embarking on new learning adventures. Her hobbies reflect her inquisitive nature and desire to continuously grow, both personally and professionally.

Amber Porrazzo’s career is a testament to her dedication to learning and her ability to adapt and thrive in an ever-evolving field. Her blend of practical experience, academic prowess, and personal interests make her a unique and valuable asset in the realms of technical writing and instructional design.