Apr 4, 2024 - News

These out-of-staters found out how metal it is to live in Florida

Illustration of a Florida vanity license plate with symbols implying a swear word.

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

An NBC News story making the rounds this week made us wonder if a come-to-Jesus moment about Florida is in order β€” if Jesus is termites and swamp a**.

The big picture: Among Florida's massive influx of new residents were at least a few who gave up on their Sunshine State dreams, per the report, pointing to issues including hurricanes, polarizing politics and high insurance costs.

  • Longtime residents who've departed cited similar struggles, plus discomfort over Florida's increasingly conservative policies, such as the six-week abortion ban going into effect next month.

Yes, but: Some of the critiques were less … urgent.

Case in point: "One of the first signs Barb Carter's move to Florida wasn't the postcard life she'd envisioned was the armadillo infestation in her home that caused $9,000 in damages," the piece begins.

Yes, and: "I thought the pace would be a little bit quieter, I thought it would be warmer," a Connecticut transplant told NBC. "I didn't expect it to be literally 100 degrees at night."

  • Florida has a winter: It's summer. Temperatures don't climb to desert levels, but the humidity brings a knife-twist that makes going outside from May through much of October a regrettable decision β€” yes, even at night.
  • Here in Tampa Bay, even the Gulf becomes a hot tub, and those white sandy beaches y'all love so much become moot.

A few more issues to note: Sinkholes, sinking land and that time St. Petersburg had to clean up literal tons of dead fish killed by red tide.

The bottom line: Everyone has their reasons to leave (and reasons to stay!), but let's be clear-eyed about it. Leave your visions of utopia in Connecticut.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Tampa Bay.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Tampa Bay stories

No stories could be found

Tampa Baypostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Tampa Bay.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more