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Best Places to Retire in Florida - A St. Petersburg Review

Updated on April 5, 2015
St. Petersburg FL Sunset
St. Petersburg FL Sunset | Source

Relocation for Retirement and Employment

A lot is written about St. Petersburg, Tampa, and the other communities that make up this metropolitan area. It is one to which many Ohioans have moved in the late 2000s and early 2010s and at one point, state analysts felt that people were leaving the Midwestern state in droves to relocate to this part of Florida. While we don't have negative population growth, Ohioans are still moving to Florida and St. Petersburg is a good reason to do so.

Warmer weather is, of course, a great reason to move to St. Petersburg from northern states and Canada, either permanently or for winter seasons. With El Nina creating colder and snowier winters in recent years, this is a top stimulus to retirees to move south. The advancing job market is another reason, because many retirees continue to work. Even younger workers are moving to Tampa - St. Petersburg.

A markerSt. Petersburg, Florida -
St Petersburg, FL, USA
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The US Census defines St. Petersburg as a part of the larger Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).

Retirement Considerations for Safety and Thrift

Several Hubs have been written about the travel opportunities around Tampa-St. Petersburg and a selection are offered to you in the links below. A less well addressed subject is safety in retirement (age 60s+) and how to choose the best home in which to simultaneously minimize safety risks and to save some money. These suggestions may help you are a friend that is ready to retire.

Large numbers of new homeowners desire houses that have two or even three stories and a basement, lots of big windows, but also lots of stairways. Preparing for retirement, These individuals or couples find that the house is now too large and to hard to navigate. Even younger Baby Boomers have undergone knee and hip replacements that make stair climbing even more difficult. Multiple large windows in a home that are not sealed, not double paned, and not covered in curtains can make a home hotter in summer and colder in winter, raise utility bills past payment ability, and be a general nuisance. The bathtub and shower can be another hazard and nuisance. Basements can full up with junk.

Large families with several children require larger homes, but smaller families may thrive in a house that is a bit smaller, with fewer windows, and fewer stairs. One solution is the single level or ranch style home often available in Florida and built on a slab since the high water table often eliminates basement possibilities. A laundry room at the back of the house is usually better for retirees than a basement setup.In addition, low-threshold step-in showers with an installed seat, grab bars, and non-slip traction surfaces on the floor can be ideal. One option in parts of China includes a comparatively smaller bathroom that is also a shower, equipped with sinks and a toilet. Spigots and sprays are installed in the walls and ceiling.

When considering an apartment for retirement, some experts suggest a first floor unit to prevent falls on stairways, while others encourage the use of an upper floor to more fully prevent any break-ins. Some other possible situations to consider is slippery staircase in rainy weather and non-working elevators during power outages. My choice would be a first floor apartment, although upper floors may offer a better view.

Retire to Florida

The Florida Move Guide: The Unofficial Moving to Florida Warning, Decision and Help Guide
The Florida Move Guide: The Unofficial Moving to Florida Warning, Decision and Help Guide

This book discusses a large array of pluses and minuses of moving to Florida and can help you make the decision to move or not, and if moving, to what section of the state.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
The Dali MuseumChihuly GlassSpa BeachSt. Petersburg Pier
The Dali Museum
The Dali Museum | Source
Chihuly Glass
Chihuly Glass | Source
Spa Beach
Spa Beach | Source
St. Petersburg Pier
St. Petersburg Pier | Source

A Selection of Museums, Arts and Other Venues

Distances from St. Petersburg to Other Great Florida Cities

(click column header to sort results)
Distance to St. Petersburg  
Pinnelas Park
8.3 miles
St Petersburg-Clearwater Intl, FL
12.5 miles
Seminole, FL
13.8 miles
Largo FL
16.6 miles
Tampa FL
23.3 miles
Clearwater, FL
29.9 miles
Orlando FL
106.0 miles

Working In Florida

Education and Training

  • Eckerd College. 4200 54th Avenue South, St. Petersburg - (800) 456-9009
  • Keiser Career College. 11208 Blue Heron Blvd N # 100, St. Petersburg
  • Stetson Law School. 1401 61st Street South, Gulfport - (727) 562-7806
  • St. Petersburg College. 244 2nd Avenue North, St. Petersburg - (727) 341-4246
  • University of South Florida St. Petersburg. 140 7th Ave South, St. Petersburg - (727) 873-4873

Economy/Jobs: Recovery and Marked Growth

Shown below is an unusual growth curve for St. Petersburg area job listings across all Internet Sources for a period of 18 months. wioth a follow-up through mid-2014.

From November through February 2010, very few jobs were listed for this metro area, but an increase began the end of February. This increase continued overall through the remainder of 2011, with some ups and downs logged - all totals at any point being much higher than for autumn and winter of 2010, however. The year 2014 was a high point in job advertisement.

Job Advertising Trends:

  • 37,400 jobs available in late October 2011
  • 54,100 jobs by mid-August 2014
  • 34,000 jobs in April 2015.

St. Petersburg Trends: Spike in 2014

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Year 2010 was unusual for high increases in jobs, which began a new surge in 2012, 2013, 2014 and in 2015
Year 2010 was unusual for high increases in jobs, which began a new surge in 2012, 2013, 2014 and in 2015
Year 2010 was unusual for high increases in jobs, which began a new surge in 2012, 2013, 2014 and in 2015 | Source

Top Hiring Companies in Tampa - St. Petersburg

  1. BayCare Health System – 1,600+ jobs in March 2015.
  2. Winn Dixie Groceries
  3. Citigroup
  4. CVS/Pharmacy
  5. University of South Florida
  6. HCA/HCA Healthcare
  7. Family Dollar
  8. School District of Manatee County
  9. Home Depot
  10. Kelly Engineering Resources
  11. Randstad
  12. Lockheed Martin
  13. Florida Hospital, Tampa
  14. Brookdale Senior Living
  15. United Health Group
  16. Aerotek
  17. Swedish Medical Center

High Demand Jobs in St. Petersburg

  1. Registered Nurses – Licensed RNs
  2. Physical Therapists and Assistants
  3. Occupational Therapists and Assistants
  4. Assistant Mangers – Various businesses.
  5. Retail Salespeople
  6. Pharmacy Technicians
  7. Dental Assistants and Medical Support Staff
  8. Project Managers – IT
  9. Speech Therapists and Diagnosticians
  10. Business Analysts
  11. Dental Hygienists
  12. Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants
  13. Account Executives
  14. Restaurant Managers
  15. Financial Advisors

© 2011 Patty Inglish


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    • profile image

      Barbara in Ct 5 years ago

      Love your site, have lived in St. Petersburg in the 80's, planning on moving there next winter, taking early retirement, but continuing pt work as an RN, lots of job opportunities there.

    • Matt in Jax profile image

      Matt in Jax 6 years ago from Jacksonville, FL

      I absolutely love the St. Pete area. Some of nicest beaches in Florida on the west coast. Great detailed writing and research went into this Hub.

    • ivantsoft profile image

      ivantsoft 6 years ago from US

      Looks like a nice place to retire. Calm and cheap!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Jobs are increasing Over 37,000 job vacancies are posted online for a 25-mile radius from the center of St. Petersburg at this time, many in higher-paying jobs. However, many need licensing.

    • gryphin423 profile image

      gryphin423 6 years ago from Florida

      As a long time resident of St Petersburg I'd have to say the job market here is very limited with a lot of supply and little demand. The economy has hit us hard. The graph is very interesting. I hope the demand is on the up tick. Good hub! Downtown is beautiful.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Earth Angel - At least in Florida, you'd be closer to me in Ohio. :) Hope your friends like the hub too.

      Cadisa - Your locale is beautiful as well, but I agree the sunset at the top of the page is great to see. Thanks for posting.

      Pop - You could publish a book of breakfast recipes and tour Florida with it!

      stephaniedas - That's a great idea to test out a new city for a few months. Good luck!

      randomcreative - There is so much to do and see there that one page is not enough to describe it all!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I have a great-aunt and uncle who have lived in the St. Petersburg area for most of their retirement and love it. Thanks for the information!

    • stephaniedas profile image

      Stephanie Das 6 years ago from Miami, US

      I am actually considering moving to the St. Petersburg area for a few months to test it out. This hub came with perfect timing for me. I'm young, just graduated from college, and I'm attracted by the weather and the job market.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 6 years ago

      I have never been to this part of Florida. Maybe I should take a look.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Here I am reading but my eyes keep glancing at that photo. It's absolutely beautiful. I had no idea there was a St. Petersburg in the US. Thanks.

    • profile image

      Earth Angel 6 years ago

      GREAT Hub Patty! I have some friends coming to visit me in California that live in St. P. and LOVE it! I think they should move here; they think I should move there! Thanks to your Hub, I see why they are so happy!! I will forward your Hub to them! GREAT Hub Ms. Travels! Blessings, Earth Angel!!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 6 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Thanks! It has a lot going on.

    • Keith Matyi profile image

      Keith Matyi 6 years ago from Denton, TX

      This is a good hub. I used to live in Lakeland about 35 miles or so from St. Pete. I used to go there on weekends because it was so beautiful. Keep up the good work!