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St. Petersburg County Moving Guide

April 15, 2022

Everything you Need to Know when Moving to St. Petersburg, FL

Are you thinking of relocating to St. Petersburg? The Sunshine City has a low cost of living, great weather, some of the best beaches in America, and a strong job market. St Petersburg, is located in the Pinellas County of West Central Florida. According to the 2020 census, St. Petersburg has a population of 271,842 with a population density of 4,318 people/Sq. Mile, ranking fifth among Florida's most populated cities. St Petersburg boasts warm weather and a humid subtropical climate. It is well known for golfing, sailing, fishing, and all kinds of water sports.

St. Petersburg has plenty of character, charm, and options to unwind, have fun, and do business. Few American cities have achieved the kind of full-scale rebirth that St. Petersburg has had in recent decades. Once brushed aside as a sleepy retirement town, the city is now a thriving arts center, commercial hub, recreational paradise, and shining beacon of what can be achieved with vision and meaningful, strategic planning.

Here are a few essential facts about living in St. Petersburg.

What St. Petersburg Offers

Affordable Living in the Tampa Bay Area

Most people would assume that living in a warm, beach town is costly. This is, however, not the case in St. Petersburg. The living costs in St. Petersburg is equivalent to the national average, and the property market in the city is relatively affordable. The average household income in the city is $55,134. The median property price is rated at $154,800, 7% below the Florida average and 16% lower than the national average. The median rental price in St. Petersburg is $1,676, slightly higher than the United States national average of $1, 124. Furthermore, living in Florida exempts you from paying personal income tax.

Strong Job Market

Are you looking to work in St. Petersburg? You've come to the right place! With an 4.7% unemployment rate, St. Petersburg is not only one of the best places to work in Florida, but also in the entire country. The city has an average of 91.4% post-high school literacy and 35.7% post-graduate literacy. The Tampa Bay area is home to several Fortune 500 firms, like Jabil, Raymond James, and Tech Data. Work opportunities are also available in the healthcare industry at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital, Baycare, and Tampa General Hospital.

Sustainable Environment

When you relocate to St. Petersburg, you'll be joining a city that values environmental protection. Because of its programs committed to water conservation, ecological restoration, recycling, fuel-efficient technologies, and more, St. Petersburg was named Florida's first green city. In early 2017, the city made the complete transition to clean and renewable energy. St. Petersburg is also home to over 250,000 trees, becoming a pioneer Tree City in the USA. St. Petersburg is now a standard for the rest of the state regarding sustainability.

Impressive Outdoor Experience

With so much sunshine, you'll have lots of opportunities to visit the numerous beachfronts in St. Petersburg! Tourists and residents alike frequent St. Petersburg Beach, widely regarded as one of the nation's best beaches. Here you will find a relaxed ambiance, stretches of white sand, a diversity of water sports, and intimate beach bars such as Harry's Beach Bar and The Drunken Clam. You can also visit Fort De Soto Park for a beautiful beach day with the family, replete with dolphin watching off Gulf Pier, bike rides along nature trails, and indulgence in snow cones from the snack bar. If you are a beach enthusiast, St. Petersburg goes the whole nine yards.

The coastlines in St. Petersburg are fantastic, but they're far from the only things to do and see in the outdoors. With over 150 parks, miles of kayaking and canoeing courses, and numerous nature reserves, there are lots of opportunities to enjoy the balmy weather in St. Petersburg. You can paddle around the mangrove islets at Weedon Island Preserve, catch trout and redfish and enjoy the sights of great blue herons while at it. A tour around the Sunken Gardens introduces you to exotic flora, cascading waterfalls, and elegant flamingos.

Bike riding has become a popular hobby for many St. Petersburg locals, thanks to the city's over 40 miles of bike trails and great weather. The city has also established Coast Bike Share to ensure that people always have a bike when they require one. The League of American Bicyclists designated St. Petersburg as a Silver-Level Bicycle Friendly Community due to the city's efforts toward promoting bicycles, advocacy programs, and the construction of 130 miles of cycling lanes. The St. Petersburg Cycling Club welcomes serious cyclists, while more casual cyclists can participate in rides such as Open Streets St. Petersburg

Easy to Get Around

St. Petersburg is planned in a grid pattern, with streets running north to south and avenues running east to west, making the city's layout simple to grasp and navigate. I-275 connects Downtown St. Petersburg to most portions of the city, and I-75 connects the city to the rest of the Gulf Coast. Driving is the ideal way to get around because parking is cheap and easy to locate. The average one-way commute in St. Petersburg takes 23.6 minutes. That's significantly lower than the U.S average of 26.4 minutes. There is plenty of street parking in the downtown area, and parking along the beaches often costs less than $10 per day.

If you are not driving, St. Petersburg boasts a reliable public transit system. The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority operates approximately 40 bus and trolley lines, with the Looper Trolley being particularly convenient when getting around downtown. The Looper Trolley's fare is only 50 cents. PSTA buses are available around the city for $2 each way. You can also buy a GO card for unlimited bus rides for $4.50 per day or $20 for a 7-day card.

Vibrant Culture

With activities throughout the year, there's bound to be an event or festival in St. Petersburg that suits your interests. You can sample the best of St. Petersburg's eateries, distilleries, galleries, artisan crafts, and more while listening to live concerts at Localtopia. St. Pete Taco & Beer Fiesta offers tacos and beer from over twenty food trucks on the Albert Whitted Park lawn.

The Saturday Morning Market offers a variety of fresh bread, greens, baked products, and locally manufactured clothes and crafts. You can also soak in the coastal scenery and listen to soothing music at the Tampa Bay Blues Festival. The arts are a big deal in St. Petersburg. You can visit the Dali Museum and stare at the picturesque sculptures and paintings of Salvador Dali.

St. Petersburg's nightlife scene is vibrant.  Every month on the First Friday, the street is transformed into a massive block party with live music performances and roaming food and drink vendors. The Mandarin Hide's test kitchen creates unique cocktails, including the Last Supper and Triple Elvis.

Neighborhood Highlights

St. Petersburg's neighborhoods have enough variety to appease every taste. Take a look at our compilation below, including a few that aren't considered St. Petersburg proper but are very popular among locals.


Driftwood is home to about 50 residences nested under majestic live oaks, with residents describing it as a "tucked-away fairyland" and an "enchanted forest." The community's first 19 residences were designed by local artist Mark Dodd, who included one of his artworks in each home, commonly hung above the fireplace.

Today, the Mediterranean and Italian-style enclave provide convenient access to all of downtown's conveniences, which are only a short drive away. Salt Creek and Bartlett Parks are adjacent, with the Frank W. Pierce Recreation Center, sporting fields, and courts for locals to enjoy. As you might expect, the housing market in Driftwood is competitive, with prices ranging from $300,000s to several million dollars for beachfront mansions.


Jungle Prada is a diverse neighborhood with brick-lined streets, thick hardwood trees, and multiple green spaces. Home designs range from humble bungalows to cinder block dwellings and waterfront villas.  Real estate values in the neighborhood have risen by more than 14% in the last year, with a standard price of $262,000 - but if you're looking for a luxury mansion, expect to pay in the millions. You will have convenient access to Azalea Elementary and Middle school and Boca Ciega High School. Commuters can drive to downtown St. Petersburg in 15 minutes and about 45 minutes to downtown Tampa.


Historic Kenwood, only a mile west of downtown St. Petersburg, has one of Florida's most significant accumulations of Craftsman-style bungalows. Kenwood is lined with brick streets, spacious walkways, and magnificent blossoming trees. Kenwood is close enough to downtown St. Petersburg for quick and convenient access to all the dining, music, art, and festivities. Still, it's also close enough to the beachfront, being only five miles from the Gulf of Mexico.

The neighborhood attracts a lot of young families and professionals because of the adjacent nightlife, sports, and leisure, plus the easy commute to Tampa. Kenwood properties are typically priced in the mid-$200,000s, and like Jungle Prada, costs have risen by more than 17% in the last year. A 3-bedroom, 1,100-square-foot rental starts at around $2,400.

Largo and Seminole

These two small neighborhoods in Pinellas County's core provide the benefits of affordability and higher elevation. There are numerous rental options. Several family-friendly properties have single-family homes in tree-lined coves just minutes away from the Gulf shorelines. Home prices span from $200,000s to $600,000s, with rentals ranging from $1,200 to $2,200.

St. Petersburg Schools

Pinellas County Schools, the eighth-largest district in Florida and the 28th largest statewide, has 235 schools in St. Petersburg, comprising 185 private and 46 public institutions. In addition to the IB curriculum at St. Petersburg High, the district offers over 75 magnet programs, including STEM, performing and fine arts, media, and more. Magnet Schools of America recently awarded Merit Awards to six magnet schools in the city for their outstanding initiatives.

Considerations for people moving into St. Petersburg

The following are some measures to take once you've made your relocating decision:

Apply for a driver's license or identification card in Florida. You won't have to take a driving test if you already have another state driver's license. You'll require your current driver's license and one additional proof of identity, such as a passport, when you go to the DMV. A social security card and two documents confirming your Florida address, such as a utility bill, are required.

Register your automobile and update your auto insurance to indicate your new address. Contact your auto insurance company and the local tax office to update your insurance and registration.

Pros and Cons of St. Petersburg Life

Pros of St. Petersburg Living

  • No state income tax.
  • Relatively lower housing costs compared to the rest of the country.
  • World-class beaches and outdoor adventures.
  • Constant warm weather and no snowing. 
  • Resident discounts on local attractions.
  • A slew of retirement and snowbird communities to choose from.

Cons of St. Petersburg Life

  • Hurricanes and excessive heat and humidity.
  • Extremely Flat terrain.
  • Higher insurance costs.
  • Plenty of bugs, snakes, and alligators.

Ready for your move to St. Petersburg?

St. Petersburg offers unlimited opportunities to craft the best life for you and your family. While it comes with a few challenges, none of them beat the value the city offers. If you are ready to make the move, you can reach out to us at College Hunks Junk and Moving to facilitate your entire relocation. With localized tips to go off course