30 Pros and Cons of Living in Cape Coral, FL Right Now

Important Things To Know Before Moving To Cape Coral, Florida

If you are wondering what the pros and cons of living in Cape Coral are. Then you have come to the right place.

Because that’s exactly what I have for you next…

Pros and Cons of Living in Cape Coral, Florida

Starting with the optimistic view. Here are the pros of living in Cape Coral:

  • An abundance of waterfront property
  • A tranquil city with a community feel
  • Great weather most of the time
  • Plenty of outdoor activities
  • Access to arts and culture
  • Tasty fresh seafood
  • A variety of housing options
  • Fewer restrictive homeowners associations
  • Moderate cost of living
  • No state taxes
  • Excellent retirement destination
  • Multiple options for school-age children
  • Accessible colleges and universities
  • Fewer tourists
  • Very little violent crime

And to examine the flip side of this discussion. Here are the cons of living in Cape Coral:

  • Mostly residential property
  • Extreme summer heat and humidity
  • Lots of snowbirds
  • Threat of hurricanes
  • Higher costs for waterfront property
  • Specific items are more expensive
  • Limited public transportation
  • Automobiles are required
  • Tricky to navigate the area
  • Bad traffic
  • Mostly older residents
  • Limited nightlife
  • Pollution in the canals
  • Lots of pesky bugs and critters
  • Presence of property crime
pros and cons of living in Cape Coral, FL

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

We will review each of these positive and negative things about Cape Coral living in just a moment. But first, I want to alert you to all of our…

Strategic City Living Guides

Just in case you find there are too many reasons not to move to Cape Coral…

We cover other great places to live in southwest Florida. In addition to guides about living in every state in the country.

On the other hand, you are welcome to stick with me here. As we turn to the pros of living in Cape Coral

An Abundance Of Waterfront Property

Cape Coral living means there is convenient access to water almost everywhere.

First, there is the Gulf of Mexico coastline.

Furthermore, there are several islands off the mainland to explore. Such as Pine Island and Sanibel Island.

Finally, the city is known for its nearly 400 miles of man-made canals. The most of any city in the world.

Next, for anyone searching for their inner peace. This is one of the great advantages of living in Cape Coral…

A Tranquil City With A Community Feel

You will find Cape Coral living to be quite peaceful. Since it is composed mainly of residential neighborhoods.

Furthermore, it is set off and away from the bustling Tampa metropolitan area.

This is mainly due to the lack of direct and immediate access to the interstate highway system.

Tampa metro is about a 2-hour drive depending on traffic. It is a busy urban location with nearly 3 million residents when including residents of St. Petersburg and the other nearby communities.

Next, adding to serenity, the town does not have a major tourist attraction. Keeping short-term visitors to a minimum.

Finally, for a variety of reasons. Relatively few businesses have located within the city limits.

Great Weather Most Of The Time

Many people move to southwest Florida for the weather. Because the period from November into May is very pleasant.

With temperatures rising daily into the 70s and 80s. There is no snow shovel. Or icy streets and sidewalks to deal with.

Plenty Of Outdoor Activities

And what makes the nice weather so great? It is the area’s many outdoor activities. Both things to do and places to see.


  • Strolling the beach
  • Boating
  • Farmers Markets
  • Fishing
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Jogging
  • Nature parks
  • Walking

Much of which is accessible through the town’s beautiful park system.

Okay. We are just getting warmed up.

As the living in Cape Coral pros and cons continue

Access To Arts And Culture

After enjoying the outdoors, you can nourish your creative and cultural side. Since the Cape Coral lifestyle in this respect will not disappoint.

Consider these events and destinations. When you want a little more from the finer side of life…

  • Cape Coral Museum of History
  • Harbour View Art Gallery
  • Art Festival & MarketPlace (January)
  • The Sounds of Jazz & Blues Festival (March)

Next, one of my favorite benefits of living in Cape Coral…

Tasty Fresh Seafood

After moving to Cape Coral, you will have access to some of the best seafood you can find. Caught fresh daily from the Gulf of Mexico. Then brought to shore.

For example…

  • Pink shrimp
  • Stone crab
  • Spiny lobster

…are some of the local catches.

However, My favorite is fresh-caught grouper. Grilled to perfection!

Variety Of Housing Options

reasons to move to Cape Coral

Dating back to its initial development in the late 1950s. Cape Coral is a planned and well-designed community.

This means the land development was organized from the beginning. With an emphasis on residential housing. In contrast, most cities evolved more randomly than Cape Coral.

As a result, there are a variety of housing options to choose from. That meet varying tastes and a range of budgets.

Fewer Restrictive Homeowners Associations

Furthermore, some cities in Florida have neighborhoods that are governed by Home Owners Associations (HOAs).

Whereas, HOAs can charge hefty fees. And place rules and restrictions on residents.

Living in the southwest Florida city of Naples, for example, you will find many HOAs. You will find them n Tampa too.

Conversely, this is not the case in Cape Coral. Where there are a relatively fewer number of Home Owners Associations to deal with.

While the ones that operate. Tend to be less restrictive and more resident-friendly.

Making finding your perfect home. Just a little easier. Regardless, make sure you read the fine print. Whenever moving to a location governed by an HOA.

Moderate Cost Of Living

This city won’t make the list of most budget-friendly places to live in Florida. On the other hand, the cost of living in Cape Coral is quite reasonable. When compared to other coastal cities.

For example, BestPlaces.net scores the living costs in Cape Coral only 4% higher than the United States national average.

So, if you have your heart set on living near the water in South Florida. This may be one of the few nice places remaining. That hasn’t priced the majority of potential new residents out of the market.

No State Taxes

Another helpful item as it relates to your budget is income taxes. Since you can live anywhere in the state of Florida income tax-free. However, do note that federal income taxes still apply.

Nevertheless, depending on your income. Also, what state you are moving from. The tax savings can easily add up to thousands of dollars per year.

Finally, and while we are still on the topic of money. We use the free online tool from Personal Capital.

Personal Capital is a great resource to manage your budget, spending, and investment all in one place.

You can learn more about Personal Capital here.

Next, some thoughts about Cape Coral retirement living…

pros and cons of retiring in Cape Coral

Excellent Retirement Destination

Perhaps you are starting to see that retiring in Cape Coral is a good idea. Because this Florida location has a lot of features that today’s retirees are searching for.

Such as…

Benefits Of Retirement Living In Cape Coral

  • Peaceful neighborhoods
  • Warm winters
  • Reasonable cost living
  • No state taxes
  • Fun things to do outdoors and in

On the other hand, not everyone is retired. And many of us have kids to educate.

Leading us to another one of the great things about living in Cape Coral…

Multiple Options For School-Age Children

Fortunately, the city has multiple options for school-age children.

First, there are the public schools. They are part of the Lee County school district. It consists of several high schools, middle schools, and elementary schools.

Second, the public school system also has charter schools. That also serves grades K-12.

The area charter schools are unique. Having more freedom to design specific programs to meet the needs of their students.

Third, there are private schools. That provides another excellent educational option for your children.

Just be sure to include the additional cost in your budget. If you choose the private school option.

Accessible Colleges And Universities

When it’s time to send the kids off to college. Or, you want to brush up on your skills.

Know that within less than hour commute there are many higher education options to choose from.

For example…

  • Barry University
  • Hodges University
  • Keiser University
  • Florida Southwestern State College
  • Florida Gulf Coast University

Next, when compared to other coastal cities in Florida. Here I have another one of the best things about Cape Coral living…

Fewer Tourists

Because Cape Coral isn’t a major tourist destination.

First, there are no island resorts like living in the Florida Keys.

Furthermore, you won’t find highly sought-after beaches to visit. Like if you choose to move to Sarasota or Marco Island.

Finally, there are no popular theme parks. Unlike when deciding to relocate to Orlando.

As a result, residents here do not have to put up with as many tourists. That routinely descend on other destinations within the state of Florida.

Very Little Violent Crime

As we know, Cape Coral is comprised of mostly peaceful residential neighborhoods. As a result, it has very little violent crime.

Specifically, the annual violent crime rate per thousand residents is quite low. Much less than the state of Florida has a whole. And significantly lower than the larger cities in the state like Miami.

Okay. That concludes our list of reasons to move to Cape Coral.

Next, it’s time to discuss the cons of living in Cape Coral

pros and cons of moving to Cape Coral

Mostly Residential Property

If you want to live in a mixed-use urban development in Florida. With housing, retail, businesses, and light industry brought together in one space. You may not like living here.

Because, as we have discussed, Cape Coral is a planned community. And it was planned to be residential. Thus, nearly 90% of the development is housing.

Extreme Summer Heat And Humidity

As nice as November though April can be from a weather perspective. June through September can be the opposite extreme.

Because temperatures consistently rise into the 90s. Combined with high humidity levels. Making for a very uncomfortable climate if you can’t take the heat.

Lots Of Snowbirds

Furthermore, the weather extremes create an environment that has attracted part-time residents. Known as snowbirds.

They fly down for the winter months. To escape the colder climates they come from in the north.

Then disappear during the summer. To avoid the heat and humidity.

This next point is a big one. So, as you consider these 30 moving to Cape Coral pros and cons, don’t forget this…

Threat Of Hurricanes

It is a fact of life for residents in southwest Florida. That hurricanes are an annual possibility.

They are violent storms that can create massive property damage from high winds, rain, and flooding.

So, don’t move here if the June through November hurricane season puts you off. Perhaps consider moving to Jacksonville.

Where you can enjoy the benefits of living in Florida. With a much lower risk of hurricanes disrupting your life.

Higher Costs For Waterfront Property

In Cape Coral, you can find a housing option to meet almost any budget.

But you may not be able to afford waterfront living. Since the best homes on the water and in the best locations can run up into the millions.

Pricing most of us out of that market.

Specific Items Are More Expensive

Even though the average cost of living in Cape Coral is near the national average. Some items cost more.

So be prepared to pay higher costs for property and casualty insurance, summer energy costs to cool your home, and your health care needs.

Here’s a tip we use to cut our costs a little. Specifically, by using the cashback app from Rakuten.

It’s easy to sign up. And Rakuten gives you $10 for doing so. Then you earn money back from all of your online purchases.

Because every little bit helps! When it comes to making ends meet.

You can learn more about Rakuten here.

Next, a few points on getting around town. Unfortunately, they all add up to some bad things about living in Cape Coral…

Limited Public Transportation

Aside from some bus routes and a trolley system, there isn’t much of a public transportation network in Cape Coral.

Furthermore, since the city is mostly residential. Residents find themselves traveling out for shopping, dining, and working.

Thus, more than likely, public transportation won’t get you where you need to go.

Automobiles Are Required

As a result, most residents own one or more cars. And you will probably find you need a car too.

Since living, working, and recreating in a confined area. Isn’t possible in Cape Coral.

Tricky To Navigate The Area

Making matters worse, this isn’t an easy area to drive around. While the roadways are laid out in a grid system like many cities.

They are interrupted by the hundreds of miles of canals. That flow almost everywhere though out the city.

Think about it this way. Cape Coral is about 120 square miles. And there are about 400 miles of canals running through it.

This leads to a lot of dead-end streets. In isolated micro-neighborhoods.

Bad Traffic

Put together these last few reasons not to live in Cape Coral. Specifically…

  • Limited public transportation
  • Car dependency
  • The need to travel in and out of town
  • Confusing roads

…and it all adds up to bad traffic congestion. So, plan on spending more time in your car.

Mostly Older Residents

There is no age restriction for living here. Since anyone of any age can move to Cape Coral. Unlike some other communities in Florida where minimum age restrictions apply.

However, you will find that a majority of the residents are seniors. Of retirement age.

Not that there is anything wrong with this. But, it’s good to know if you are young, single, and want to live around others in your same demographic.

Limited Nightlife

Then, put together that this is a mostly residential community. Made up of older residents and some families.

Then you can see why your Cape Coral lifestyle won’t offer a ton of nightlife, shopping, bars, or restaurants.

As a result, most residents choose to head over to nearby Fort Myers. To enjoy its vibrant downtown area. And partake in these kinds of places and activities.

Pollution In The Canals

Due to the investments in farmland and other development around nearby Lake Okeechobee. The lake has become quite polluted.

Further, because of rising lake waters, and to relieve pressure on dikes and damns. Water is periodically released into the Caloosahatchee River.

Which ultimately, feeds and pollutes the canals of Cape Coral.

Lots Of Pesky Bugs And Critters

South Florida is known for plenty of slightly annoying to plenty dangerous bugs and critters.

Mosquitos, palmetto bugs, spiders, snakes, and lizards all enjoy living in and around Cape Coral too.

And lest I forget, alligators enjoy swimming the canals.

They aren’t usually aggressive to humans. But, I wouldn’t sneak up on one by accident if I were you. Just sayin’!

Presence Of Property Crime

Overall, there is a low crime rate in Cape Coral. And, as we already know, violent crime is fairly rare.

On the other hand, property crime is more prevalent. However, it is still below the property crime rate of Florida as a whole.

Good neighborly relations and home and car security system. Should go a long way to solving this minor problem with Cape Coral living.

Okay. That’s all I have for today. Let me wrap with a few parting thoughts…

Pros and Cons of Living in Cape Coral, Florida

Certainly, you can see Cape Coral is a good place to live. But, like anywhere, it may not be for everyone.

Hopefully, this discussion has helped you answer some important questions. Such as…

  • How is living in Cape Coral?
  • Should I move to Cape Coral?
  • Is Cape Coral a good place to retire?

Finally, to summarize, here’s our list of 30 living in Cape Coral pros and cons for you to consider before you move…

  • An abundance of waterfront property
  • A tranquil city with a community feel
  • Great weather most of the time
  • Plenty of outdoor activities
  • Access to arts and culture
  • Tasty fresh seafood
  • A variety of housing options
  • Fewer restrictive homeowners associations
  • Moderate cost of living
  • No state taxes
  • Excellent retirement destination
  • Multiple options for school-age children
  • Accessible colleges and universities
  • Fewer tourists
  • Very little violent crime
  • Mostly residential property
  • Extreme summer heat and humidity
  • Lots of snowbirds
  • Threat of hurricanes
  • Higher costs for waterfront property
  • Specific items are more expensive
  • Limited public transportation
  • Automobiles are required
  • Tricky to navigate the area
  • Bad traffic
  • Mostly older residents
  • Limited nightlife
  • Pollution in the canals
  • Lots of pesky bugs and critters
  • Presence of property crime

More Reading About Living In Cape Coral And Beyond

In case you are still trying to decide on your best place to live. Check out all of our…

State and City Living Guides

conclusions about moving to southwest Florida
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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.

The Pros And Cons Of Living In Cape Coral Explained