It's not just the balmy climate and the sandy coastline that attracts residents to the Sunshine State. As the fourth largest economy in the country and one of the largest job creators, Florida has cultivated the reputation of also being one of the best states to raise children, according to an analysis by WalletHub that compared 183 Florida cities across 21 key metrics to identify those that offered the best combination of family-friendly factors.
They included factors such as housing affordability, school system, general affordability, and income.
While Oviedo, was ranked No.1 with an overall score of 75.47, Fruit Cove with a score of 72.43 came a close second. Horizon West (72.15); Parkland (71.54); and Palm Valley (71.47) rounded off the top 5 cities, according to the analysis.
Cities in the Miami metropolitan area, however, were among the bottom-ranked on this list. At 183 South Miami Heights languished at the bottom with a score of 28.27. North Miami fared slightly better with a score of 28.67 and a ranking of 182. West Little River (29.91); Leisure City (29.91); and Tamiami with a score of 30.66 made up the bottom five cities.
Florida cities that boasted the most affordable housing included West Pensacola, Bellview, North Fort Myers, Brent, and Pace. On the other hand, the most expensive cities for housing were also some of Florida's largest cities. They included Miami, Miami Beach, Coral Gables, University Park, and Westchester.
Interestingly, Miami was also among the cities with the lowest median family income along with University, Oak Ridge, Hialeah, and Immokalee.
Palm Valley, Fleming Island, Winter Park, Fruit Cove, and Jacksonville Beach were among the cities that boasted the highest median family income.
In terms of overall affordability, Palm Valley was ranked first (ranked five overall), while Fruit Cove came in second followed by Fleming Island. Despite being ranked 39th overall, Jacksonville Beach came in fourth in the affordability rankings, followed by Lutz which was ranked 19th overall on the list of Florida's cities.