What Are The Pros And Cons Of Living In Fort Myers?

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ah, Fort Myers. It’s a city that has become one of the hottest parts of Florida’s already hot market. As a sunny, warm, and friendly city, the appeal of living in Fort Myers is easy to see. It feels like the kind of place where you could waste away in Margaritaville for the rest of your life. But, is it really it’s all cracked up to be? The pros and cons might make you think otherwise.

Living in Fort eyers means that you will be able to enjoy good entertainment, affordability, and a low crime rate. Unfortunately, the extreme weather, low incomes, and tourist “invasions” have a tendency of detracting from all the fun in the sun. Moreover, low wages can be a bit of a drag.

Packing your bags for Florida might seem like a great idea right off the bat, but you still need to brace yourselves for the pitfalls, too. We suggest that you read up on the subject before you assume it’s the right place for you.

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What Are The Pros Of Living In Fort Myers, FL?

Did you know that Fort Myers is considered to be one of the better places for people in need of a retirement home in Florida? It’s true. So, move over Boca! It’s time to look at all the popular perks people love Fort Myers for.

Great Entertainment Options

Fort Myers is first and foremost a tourist location. That doesn’t come without prerequisites, ya know! Along with the (obvious) access to beautiful clean beaches year-round, Fort Myers is known for having tons of cool entertainment venues. You can bike through the streets, enjoy quick shopping trips, catch a concert, or even find a nice club to kick back in.

Since Fort Myers is pretty popular among tourists, you can also expect a booming restaurant industry. Excellent seafood, key lime pie, and fine dining are all within driving distance. While tourist season can make major venues a hassle to reach, the truth is that this is a place that is all about year-round fun.


Most areas that grab tourists are fairly expensive, the truth is that Fort Myers is pretty affordable. The cost of living index placed Fort Myers at a solid 96. This makes it 4 percent less expensive than the national median, which means that most of the stuff that you will buy will have an average price. Even so, a person with a $100,000 per year salary will be able to save $4,000 per year on daily goods by moving here.

In terms of housing, the median home value is $187,000. This puts Fort Myers well below the national average and well within grasp of locals. With that said, there is a good chance that home values will skyrocket.

This town has been getting a lot of attention from the affluent, and you know what that means! Find out if Delray beach is a good place to live.

Low Crime Rate

Admittedly, low is in the eye of the beholder. For Florida, Fort Myers has a fairly low crime rate. For a national scale, it’s slightly more crime-ridden than normal. The overall crime for violent crimes is 589 per 100,000 residents. For property crime, the rate hovers around 2297 per every 100,000.

Violent crime is slightly below the national average, but property crimes are slightly above. Having a security system installed in your home can help reduce the chances of being a victim, if you’re worried. However, most people who live here agree that the majority of the crime is due to tourists who get rowdy after a drink. So, it’s more of an issue during the summer than a year-round problem.

On a similar upswing, it’s worth noting that crime has dropped steadily in the past couple of years. The local police force is on the hunt for crime, and they have every intention of tamping down on it. That’s why it’s far from one of the most dangerous cities in Florida.

What Are The Pitfalls Of Living In Fort Myers, FL?

Fort Myers is a place that will remain popular among temporary visitors, but is it actually a good place to live? Well, it’s definitely got its problems. Most people would turn down a home in Fort Myers because of these major issues below…

Extreme Weather

With the uptick in climate change-related weather problems, there is much reason to give the side-eye to a home in Fort Myers. This is directly in the path of hurricane trails and major tidal changes. As the ocean levels rise and the temperature averages increase, the chances of having devastating weather hitting this area are bound to skyrocket.

Even today, blistering heat and tropical storms are fairly commonplace. In the future, it’s very likely that a portion of this city will end up underwater. This means that flood insurance and storm insurance are virtually mandatory throughout the city. Even then, you might not be able to keep your belongings or your family safe.

Low Incomes

While the Fort Myers area has started to get a lot of affluent people interested in the real estate here, the truth is that a typical family in Fort Myers isn’t very well off. The median income for a household here is only $37,360 a year according to BestPlaces.net, though other sources put it a bit higher at around $49,000.

The truth is that either way, the numbers we dug up showed that a typical person earned less than $30,000 a year doing full-time work. To a point, this is to be expected since many jobs are based in retail or food. However, it’s still not a good look and it’s not very promising in terms of opportunity. So, while the unemployment rate is lower than the national average, this region still has a rough time with money.

Bottom line? Do not move down here unless you have a good job lined up. Ideally, that job will be remote, too.

Tourist-Related Issues

Finally, there is something to be said about the drawbacks of living in a tourist town. Sure, you might have entertainment. Sure, you also might have low home prices. However, all those cute perks come at a massive price. The tourist season here is absolutely nuts, and turns a normally sleepy little town into a jungle.

Tourists, at the very least, cause massive traffic jams. This causes bumper-to-bumper traffic throughout the area at typical rush hours during the summer. At the worst, tourists can become destructive when they get drunk or even actively bring in crime from other areas. It’s not unusual to hear of barfights or drunk drivers who decided to drop by from out of state.

Many people in the Fort Myers area find tourists to be pretty rude from time to time. This is especially true when you’re talking about the tourist industry. If you have ever seen people who decide to trash a hotel room or cause a stink in the middle of a restaurant, you already know what I’m talking about.

Additionally, there’s also the fact that having tourists also means that your town goes from crazily crowded to sleepy and eerily quiet. Many times, this means that local kids end up befriending tourists, only to be disappointed when they find out that their new friends aren’t going to be classmates of theirs.

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Related Questions

Is climate change already causing problems in Florida?

Absolutely. Climate change has already been linked to more flooding throughout the Floridian coasts, not to mention problems in the panhandle too. The biggest way that climate change has been harming Florida’s real estate is by increasing the risk of having major tropical storms and hurricanes.As our climate’s temperature increases, so does the intensity and frequency of the hurricanes that hit Florida’s shores. This leads to rampant flooding and potentially lethal outcomes becoming a regular occurrence. Many investors, therefore, are avoiding coastal properties as a result.What are Fort Myers’ beaches good for?Along with a classic swim along the coastline, Fort Myers has a bunch of amenities that make their beaches top-rated. These include nature trails for hikers and bikers, fishing locations, as well as birding hotspots. The ecosystem that the beach offers is nothing short of amazing, so if you want to take a look at the local wildlife, then this is a great place to do it.Oh, and by the way, this area has tons of beach-related tourist hotspots. They include a boardwalk and true-to-life surf shops that let you bring home the beach.Is Fort Myers a diverse city?It’s fairly diverse, yes. Around 49 percent of all locals are white, another 23 percent are black, and the majority of the rest of the people are Latinx, Asian, and Pacific Islander. In terms of socioeconomic backgrounds, it’s also possible to find people from every corner of the population.This is also income-diverse, too. There are extremely wealthy people who call it home, as well as people who are fairly low income. This makes Fort Myers a remarkably good place for people who want to feel at home among people that they relate to, regardless of the background they come from.

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Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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