Texas vs Florida (Choosing the Best State to Live)

For Anyone Thinking About Moving To Florida Vs Texas

Let’s discuss the pros and cons of living in Texas vs Florida. Then, anyone that is asking the question…

Should I move to Texas or Florida?

…can make an informed decision.

Because where you choose to live has a huge impact on your finances and quality of life.

So, let’s get started…

Texas vs Florida: The choice is yours
Choosing between Texas & Florida

Disclosure: At no cost to you, I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Summary Findings: Texas Vs Florida Living

This is how we went about choosing the best state to live in. By comparing Texas vs Florida using the following 10 criteria.

Table 1: Texas Versus Florida Evaluation Criteria

Quality of Life CriteriaBest State to Live In
EconomyTexas
Cost of livingTexas
TaxesFlorida
EducationFlorida
RecreationFlorida
TransportationTexas
WeatherTie
Natural DisastersTie
Crime RatesFlorida
Health CareTie

As you can see, it’s a very close contest.

While the advantages of Florida living won out in the end. Texas is certainly no slouch.

To better explain the results, we will dive into each of these elements in greater detail. And do so in just a moment.

But first, I want to alert you to our best of where to live archives.

Just in case either Florida or Texas does not end up being your right place to move. In the archives, you will find:

Dozens of articles about the best states and cities to live in.

Otherwise, stick with me here. As we compare Texas vs Florida…

Economy

Looking at each state’s economic output. Also known as the gross domestic product (GDP).

Both Texas and Florida are ranked in the top 5 in the United States.

Thus, their economies are massive. Bigger than many countries in the world.

But the Texas economy wins on size. Being about two-thirds larger than Florida.

Although Florida has a slightly lower unemployment rate. At the time this article went to press.

Furthermore, each state’s economy is diverse. With broad industry representation.

Tourism and agriculture are big parts of the Florida economy. While Texas is a leader in oil and gas production.

Also, each is considered to be business-friendly. For anyone looking to start or relocate their business.

Finally, according to the U.S Census Bureau. The median household income in Texas is about 8% higher versus Florida.

Thus, Texas gets the edge for its economy. Based on its immense size. And the higher income levels of its residents.

But there are other ways to balance a budget. Beyond working and making money.

So, let’s look at the expense side of the ledger. And examine the cost of living in Texas vs Florida…

Cost Of Living

Using data sourced from BestPlaces.net. Table 2 shows a cost-of-living comparison.

A score of 100 represents the national average. With a lower score being better for saving money. And vice versa.

Table 2: Texas Vs Florida Cost Of Living

Cost of Living CategoryTexasFlorida
Overall94103
Grocery94103
Health Care9598
Median Home Prices84101
Utilities99101
Transportation103113

So, you can see that Texas has a lower cost of living.

But remember that home prices and other costs will be heavily influenced by your exact location. And the lifestyle that you choose.

For example, a modern, luxury condominium with an ocean view when living in Miami. Is going to be much more expensive than many of Florida’s affordable small towns.

In addition, each state has many rural areas to choose from. Partly due to their large sizes. Of course, Texas is much bigger based on land area.

But, in any event, if you are looking for some space. And want to settle on some farmland in either Florida or Texas.

Then check out the opportunities from AcreTrader. Beyond finding a great place to live. Real estate can be an excellent investment option too.

To sum up, you can find inexpensive places to live in Florida and Texas. But on an overall comparison, the edge goes to Texas.

Taxes

Both states are known for their low overall tax burden. Let’s look at the different types of taxes to sort it out.

Individual income taxes. Neither state has a personal income tax. They are 2 of only a few states not to charge residents an income tax.

Property tax. According to WalletHub, Texas has one of the highest effective real estate tax rates in the country. While Florida falls in the middle of the pack.

Sales tax. The average state and local combined sales tax rate is more than 1% higher in Texas vs Florida.

With no individual income tax in either Florida or Texas. It’s hard to go wrong.

But Florida wins on taxes. Based on its lower property tax and sales tax rates.

Okay. We have covered the big things that can impact your financial life. No matter where you choose to live. Specifically, the economy, cost of living, and taxes.

Moving to either Texas or Florida is a big deal and can get expensive. So I urge you to get a handle on your finances before you move.

To do so, check out Personal Capital. It is an excellent and free tool. For pulling all your expenses, investments, and budget together in one place online.

Now, let’s talk about some other topics. As we continue our comparison of life in Texas and Florida.

Education

According to U.S. News, Florida is a top state for education.

With a solid showing for its K-12 programs. And ranking especially well for higher education.

On the other hand, Texas is ranked in the lower one-third of all states in the country. For its educational systems and programs.

And by looking at metrics like:

  • High school graduation rates
  • Public school spending per student
  • Math and reading proficiency scores
  • Adults with at least a bachelor’s degree

…USA Today confirmed the U.S News findings. Leading me to conclude that Florida has the edge as it relates to education.

But there is more to life than money, taxes, work, and school. So, let’s see how Texas and Florida compare as it relates to having a little fun…

Recreation

When I think of fun. Florida comes more readily to mind. Here’s why…

For beach lovers in the audience. Both states have plenty to choose from. Given their many miles of coastline.

But when looking at any one of the places on Florida’s Gulf Coast. For a direct comparison of Florida and Texas.

The Sunshine State has some of the most pristine and beautiful beaches in the world. Especially considering the Naples area, near Marco Island.

Plus, Florida’s west coast is exposed to the Atlantic Ocean. For a different kind of beach experience.

For golfers, Florida boasts the most golf courses of any state in the country.

Finally, looking at fun for the whole family. Florida has a large number of amusement and theme parks.

So, Florida is the hands-down winner here. Since the state boasts so many of these fun places to visit.

To sum up, Texas is a great place to live. And you can have plenty of fun there.

But I’ve got to give the edge in recreation to Florida. Because of its robust array of options.

Okay. We are making progress. But let’s keep moving along…

pros and cons of living in Texas vs Florida
Deciding between Texas and Florida

Transportation

Both Texas and Florida have become popular places to move to. And popularity sometimes comes at a cost.

First, both states have encountered the negative impacts of urbanization. Specifically, heavy traffic in and around their major metropolitan areas.

Plus, public transportation systems are limited in scope. So, unless you plan on living, working, socializing, and shopping in a confined area. Which is entirely possible in both states.

Most people should plan on having a car.

But driving across either state can be time-consuming. Especially when considering a move to Texas. Given its large size.

However, note that both states have adequate interstate highway systems. As well as international airports for getting out of town.

Finally, there is a significant difference between these two states. As it relates to getting around.

It is due to Texas being centrally located. Versus Florida being isolated in a far-reaching corner of the country.

As a result, from South Florida, it’s a six-plus hour drive just to reach another state. And that will just get you to Georgia.

Furthermore, if you travel for business. Or have family in other parts of the country. Air travel from Florida can be time-consuming too.

For example, air time on a flight to the west coast when traveling from and living in the Florida city of Miami can be up to 7 hours.

To sum up, this one is close. But, because of its central location. I say Texas has the edge in transportation.

Weather

Both states have mild winters. Making either Texas or Florida for retirement living pretty good. Although in northern Texas winters can be a bit on the cold side.

Warm summers are also typical in both areas. With a good dose of humidity in many locations.

Although more rainfall and humidity in Florida are common. Given its tropical and sub-tropical climate systems throughout the state.

On the other hand, if you need a lot of sunshine to feel your best. Florida wins out. After all, it’s called “The Sunshine State” for a reason.

So, there are a lot of “puts and takes” when it comes to the weather. Overall, I say the Texas vs Florida weather is a draw when deciding where to live.

And as long as we are talking about the outdoors, here’s another weather-related topic.

Natural Disasters

Because both states are prone to dangerous and damaging weather systems.

First, Florida is the most hurricane-prone state in the country. Followed by Texas.

On the other hand, Texas is hit by the most tornadoes on an annual basis. While Florida is routinely in the top 5 of most tornado-prone states.

Even though, Florida’s tornadoes tend to be less severe. When compared to Texas and other parts of the mid-western United States.

So, each state has a history of severe weather events. Thus, I will call the risk of falling victim to a natural disaster a draw between Texas and Florida.

Crime Rates

In the Safewise State of Safety in America Report, you will find that residents have a lesser chance of falling victim to crime in Florida vs Texas.

Specifically, there is a 10.5% higher violent crime rate in Texas vs Florida per 1,000 people. And 11.2% higher property crime rate.

So, the statistics make this category straightforward. The edge goes to Florida as the safer state to live in.

And as long as we are talking about personal well-being. Let’s take it one step further…

Health Care

Since we already know that health care costs a little more in Florida. But do patients get anything for that extra cost?

To see, I reviewed WalletHub’s “Best and Worst States for Health Care Analysis”. It ranked all state health care systems based on cost, access, and outcomes.

What they found was the health care systems in these two states are virtually identical. Both ranked neck and neck. But unfortunately, in the bottom one-third of all states in the country.

So, we end our last category. With health care being a tie between Texas and Florida. Leading me to a few concluding thoughts…

Wrapping Up: Choosing Between Texas Vs Florida

Deciding where to move is a tough choice. You can see these 2 states are very evenly matched.

In our independent review, Florida came out the winner in a close contest.

But is Texas better than Florida to live in some cases?

The answer is yes.

Because you may place more weight in certain categories than others. When deciding where to live. Doing so may swing the vote to Texas in your circumstances.

Either way, in my opinion, you can’t go wrong. Whether you want to retire in Florida or Texas. Or move for new opportunities and a fresh start in life.

Because Texas and Florida are both great states to live in.

Find Your Best Place To Live

I mentioned it early on. But would like to do so again.

Be sure to visit our archives…

For the best articles about: Where to live and why!

conclusions about Texas vs Florida living
Conclusion is written on a whiteboard

Disclosure & Disclaimer: I am not a licensed investment adviser, financial adviser, or tax professional. And I am not providing you with individual investment advice, financial guidance, or tax counsel. Furthermore, this website’s only purpose is information & entertainment. And we are not liable for any losses suffered by any party because of information published on this blog.

Texas Vs Florida Living Explained