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Old 11-09-2021, 07:32 AM   #101
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We live in AZ most of the year ( Scottsdale ) and the border issues are what we see on tv. The weather is desert vs more tropical in Florida. I like it better but biggest difference to those in Nh is distance
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Old 11-09-2021, 07:39 AM   #102
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Default Vote for SWFL

Just arrived in Bonita Springs for the first ever full snow bird season for us. After a couple of years of research this is where we landed. In a golf community but easy ride and access to the beaches. Anything north of Tampa (we're 2 hrs south) is not guaranteed warm weather. We like to visit the Carolinas but would not spend the winters there - too iffy temperature wise
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Old 11-09-2021, 07:40 AM   #103
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"The biggest negative I see is Florida drivers. No signals, and tailgating constantly."

This practice is often seen in a state close by...
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Old 11-09-2021, 09:42 AM   #104
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I have had a winter home in Southwest Florida for many years. Although I occasionally go the the Miami area, the Fort Myers/Naples is much quieter and more "civilized". One thing that stands out as different than the lake area is more convenient access to any type of retail store you could want. Within 10 miles there is everything from car dealers to Publix, Target, Marshalls, and Costco. The biggest negative I see is Florida drivers. No signals, and tailgating constantly. A Florida Sheriff told me that over 90% of the car accidents are rear-end collisions.

In my opinion, if you are going to move because of weather there is no sense stopping in the Carolina's, you may as well continue south. It seems as if every day in Florida, from November through April, is sunny and in the 80's. Almost every day is a good boating day!

I am glad to have given up the snow shovel! I have friends who winter in Alabama and it looks like it is raining 50% of the time.
I’m with you. I’ve had a place on Marco for 4 years but capitalized on the boom and sold for a great price. Now building in a community just east of Jolly Bridge. Get all the amenities without being too far from Marco and our beach club is on Marco. Best of both worlds.


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Old 11-09-2021, 10:52 AM   #105
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Default Rental?

Enlighten me, please. I'm under the impression that there is a better summer rental market on the NC/SC coast. South Florida is great in the winter, but who wants to vacation there in the summer? So, if I want warmer(than NH) for the winter, and want to rent out my place in the summer, isn't NC/SC the place to be? I don't need to be able to spend time sitting on the beach in January.
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Old 11-09-2021, 11:38 AM   #106
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Enlighten me, please. I'm under the impression that there is a better summer rental market on the NC/SC coast. South Florida is great in the winter, but who wants to vacation there in the summer? So, if I want warmer(than NH) for the winter, and want to rent out my place in the summer, isn't NC/SC the place to be? I don't need to be able to spend time sitting on the beach in January.
It's a crossroads. Yes the rental market in SC/NC in the summer is excellent but if you're looking for warm weather in the winter the Carolina's are no bargain. No snow but a lot of rain and temps depending on the location really dont go above 65. Check out the weather history for the areas in SC/NC you are interested in and you will see.


I can tell you that I had my home on Marco for 5 summers and was able to rent the home every year in the "off" season
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:38 PM   #107
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"The biggest negative I see is Florida drivers. No signals, and tailgating constantly."

This practice is often seen in a state close by...
Although most locals attribute this to Mass drivers, my wife has noted, and commented, consistently lately that Maine drivers are even more erratic.

Mainiacs!
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Old 11-09-2021, 03:01 PM   #108
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"The biggest negative I see is Florida drivers. No signals, and tailgating constantly."

This practice is often seen in a state close by...
Not to the extent that they do in Floriduh.

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Old 11-09-2021, 04:36 PM   #109
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Enlighten me, please. I'm under the impression that there is a better summer rental market on the NC/SC coast. South Florida is great in the winter, but who wants to vacation there in the summer? So, if I want warmer(than NH) for the winter, and want to rent out my place in the summer, isn't NC/SC the place to be? I don't need to be able to spend time sitting on the beach in January.
Central Florida is busy in the summer. Only quiet times are September and January.


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Old 11-09-2021, 06:50 PM   #110
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....perhaps some of you that have been there before, or have played the Harbour Town golf course know this already, but....

For many years, I've watched the golf tournament, (I can't remember the name of it), on TV that is played at the Harbour Town golf course. The broadcast always shows the iconic Harbour Town lighthouse as the players walk up to the 18th green. We went to Harbour Town for lunch on one of the days and I was shocked to find that the lighthouse is in an area of tourist shops and not on the golf course itself. When I saw the lighthouse, I said to my wife, "where the hell is the 18th green?" And there it was...several hundred yards across the water and marina!

Now I know what Dorothy felt like when she learned that the Wizard of Oz was some old guy behind a curtain....
Not even a " real " lighthouse...pretty though! The tournament is the Heritage.



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Old 11-10-2021, 07:46 AM   #111
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Default Roots

Roots is another consideration in the snowbird vs year round decision. You will grow deeper roots if you are year round. Summers are fun and crazy but community activities ramp up off season. Your circle of friends will likely increase when you get to know others that are year-round residents. Snowbirds can be out of sight, out of mind in the winter. Roots aren't everything, especially if you don't like Lakes Region winters, but being a deeper part of a community has value when weighing the options.
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Old 11-10-2021, 07:59 AM   #112
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Default NH Vs FL drivers

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"The biggest negative I see is Florida drivers. No signals, and tailgating constantly."

This practice is often seen in a state close by...
As a cyclist I think I can speak with some authority on this subject. Live on Long Island here and Naples in FL. FL drivers are consistently more rude and in considerate-especially with cyclists. Vast majority up here the opposite. Of course there is the occasional ass who feels like it's his right to scare the crap out of you by passing within a foot but fortunately quite rare.

FL has a combination of "older" drivers who are oblivious and younger drivers who are pissed off by the older ones!
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Old 11-10-2021, 12:56 PM   #113
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As a fifty year resident of Florida and an 18 year summer resident of NH I can speak with authority. Also no moving violation in 60 years.

No question that NH drivers are generally courteous and civil.

But you Snowbirds just don’t seem to understand the different traffic rules in FL or, more specifically, South Florida.

First, as a South Florida resident, we resent the Snowbirds who invade us each year and attempt to bring their NH rules to our state. We love their money, just don’t like them and the driving civility they attempt to impose on our residents. They refuse to accept our rules in our state.

Specifically, in Florida we stop at red lights. We make right turns after stopping. BUT, if the light is red and no one seems around, then it is permissible to make a left,right, or go straight if you can get away with it. Speed limits are suggestions not rules and no one pays attention. There are express lanes costing money to use unless you can squeeze through the flimsy dividers without getting broadsided. It usually works. FL drivers do not tailgate…they are super friendly…just getting up close and personal.

There are no Florida residents who are old and drive too slowly…these are all from northern states or Canada.

Just remember don’t come to OUR state and try to make it yours. Keep civility in NH where it belongs. Just bring your cash.

I do hope you take the above in the manner in which it was intended. And do drive safely wherever you are.
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Old 11-10-2021, 05:28 PM   #114
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This has been a test of the ESHS (Emergency Sarcastic Humor System).

Had this been a real emergency...
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Old 11-11-2021, 02:32 PM   #115
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At a minimum I am surprised with the negativity and the tales of how bad Florida is.

I am in the next town north of Bonita Springs, Estero, and after 14 years I have not experienced the negatives that people have mentioned. Fleas? Haven't seen any. Smelly water? My tap water is great and it makes excellent ice cubes for cocktails!

Strip malls? Yes, there are areas with a concentration of commercial activity and most anything I need can be found within 10 miles of the house. At the Gilford house, the lake makes up for the fact that there is limited shopping for some items and a drive to Concord or Manchester may be necessary when I need something.

When I have company in Florida I take them to waterfront restaurants in Sanibel, Marco Island, and Fort Myers Beach. Many great places to go all within 20 to 40 minutes of the house. There are numerous beaches that are not too crowded, especially when you go by boat.

That is just what I have found in the winters I have spent in Florida, and any negatives are minimal.

I will stop writing now. It is 7:30, still light out, and the solar has the pool water temperature at 88 degrees. Time for a swim!

FL is all about where you are in FL.
I lived there 30 years and, if you’re in the right area, it’s a great and free state, has minimal systemic issues and it’s not a hassle to live there.

The only thing that sucks is the absolutely relentless heat and humidity. I can tolerate the climate from Dec-early March, then I have to get the hell out of there.

I moved to NH full time, but will probably get a 2nd place back in FL for the 3 months that suck here.


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Old 11-11-2021, 07:08 PM   #116
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Just arrived in Bonita Springs for the first ever full snow bird season for us. After a couple of years of research this is where we landed. In a golf community but easy ride and access to the beaches. Anything north of Tampa (we're 2 hrs south) is not guaranteed warm weather. We like to visit the Carolinas but would not spend the winters there - too iffy temperature wise
My wife's family has a condo in the Bonita Beach Club on Big Hickory Island...doesn't matter what time of year ( winter months only ) I've been down there, the weather's been beautiful. Went down for Thanksgiving a few years ago...80s and beautiful...i love it there!

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Old 11-11-2021, 07:31 PM   #117
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It's not perfect. Look: A chance of a stray shower on Saturday. No problem, we will go boating on Sunday! The struggle is real!
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Old 11-11-2021, 07:34 PM   #118
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It's not perfect. Look: A chance of a stray shower on Saturday. No problem, we will go boating on Sunday! The struggle is real!
Big deal...I will be boating as well!

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Old 11-11-2021, 10:48 PM   #119
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Big deal...I will be boating as well!

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First person I thought of on this response

After living in FL year round, but also spending significant time here, I actually prefer seasonal activities. You end up doing the activities more when it’s perceived in short supply:

I boat more here than I EVER did in FL.
In FL, it was always there, never short in supply and went less appreciated . I ended up boating far less days per year than I do here.
Not to mention, we don’t have gators or brain-eating amoeba: You can just jump in the water and get out without smelling like a frog.


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Old 11-13-2021, 11:16 AM   #120
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It's not perfect. Look: A chance of a stray shower on Saturday. No problem, we will go boating on Sunday! The struggle is real!
I'm sure the Florida boating is equally as picturesque!



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Old 11-13-2021, 12:49 PM   #121
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I'm sure the Florida boating is equally as picturesque!
Indeed it is!

see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1W0wx0pM8pM&t=148s
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Old 11-13-2021, 01:29 PM   #122
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My wife's family has a condo in the Bonita Beach Club on Big Hickory Island...doesn't matter what time of year ( winter months only ) I've been down there, the weather's been beautiful. Went down for Thanksgiving a few years ago...80s and beautiful...i love it there!

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Looks like a nice area. But that would be Little Hickory Island, right?
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Old 11-13-2021, 01:39 PM   #123
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Pretty sure it's Big Hickory...right across the waterway from Lovers Key state park in Estero.

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Old 11-13-2021, 03:50 PM   #124
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I'm sure the Florida boating is equally as picturesque!

The only hills in FL are overpasses.
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Old 11-13-2021, 04:32 PM   #125
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And " over the hills "!

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Old 11-14-2021, 06:31 AM   #126
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Default Best of Both Worlds

Took this yesterday after lunch on Marco Island. We boated past the beach at Keewaydin Island heading into Naples and the water color was pretty nice. No mountains, but other scenery to be appreciated!
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Old 11-14-2021, 08:09 AM   #127
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Interesting idea, though I'm not sure how much driving I'd like to do on the back end. For the early part of retirement, the idea of different places is an interesting one.

I gotta say that I'm also romantically moved by the Great Loop talk that's been here and seeing sandbars in the south/Caribbean in winter.

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Ping me if you want to discuss boat living and great loop stuff. We live on our boat from Early May to Late October and will be doing a great loop as well as Wintering in the Bahamas/Caribbean once retired (early ). We also plan to spend an entire Summer in 1000 Islands, an entire Summer on Lake Champlain, an entire Summer on the Trent/Severn/Georgian Bay, etc.

You need to understand that boat living is often really just boat repair in exotic places, but we are having the time of our lives.
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Old 11-14-2021, 09:03 AM   #128
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Looks like a nice area. But that would be Little Hickory Island, right?
you're right...Little Hickory...Big Hickory is over the bridge!
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Old 11-14-2021, 04:51 PM   #129
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Default Our thoughts...

We’ve been retired for a decade or so. Here are a few thoughts on the OP’s topic. (1) after retiring, we moved to the Lake, which remains our primary residence. We have family in MA and it was important for us to stay close to them. (2) originally, we were planning to use the proceeds from selling our MA house to buy something in coastal FL. But my practical wife talked me out of that. She pointed out that then we would then have to worry about weather problems in two properties when living at the other. So we are in NH about 10 months a year and rent in FL for the other two. It has worked well for us. (3) if you’re looking for warmth, the weather between northern FL and southern FL varies quite a bit. We’ve seen freezing temps when visiting friends in Jacksonville. We rent near Sarasota, and the highs can be in the upper fifties in late January. We have relatives on Sanibel and they’re usually about 10 degrees warmer. (4) Look at the Interstate Highway map. I-95 draws most folks from the Northeast, and they tend to go to the Atlantic side of FL. I-75, on the other hand, draws snowbirds from the Midwest and Canada, so they mostly go to the Gulf Coast. These are generalities of course. But we think that this results in the Gulf Coast being a bit more laid back (or sleepy, depending on your preference).
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Old 11-15-2021, 10:41 AM   #130
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We’ve been retired for a decade or so. Here are a few thoughts on the OP’s topic. (1) after retiring, we moved to the Lake, which remains our primary residence. We have family in MA and it was important for us to stay close to them. (2) originally, we were planning to use the proceeds from selling our MA house to buy something in coastal FL. But my practical wife talked me out of that. She pointed out that then we would then have to worry about weather problems in two properties when living at the other. So we are in NH about 10 months a year and rent in FL for the other two. It has worked well for us. (3) if you’re looking for warmth, the weather between northern FL and southern FL varies quite a bit. We’ve seen freezing temps when visiting friends in Jacksonville. We rent near Sarasota, and the highs can be in the upper fifties in late January. We have relatives on Sanibel and they’re usually about 10 degrees warmer. (4) Look at the Interstate Highway map. I-95 draws most folks from the Northeast, and they tend to go to the Atlantic side of FL. I-75, on the other hand, draws snowbirds from the Midwest and Canada, so they mostly go to the Gulf Coast. These are generalities of course. But we think that this results in the Gulf Coast being a bit more laid back (or sleepy, depending on your preference).
Point #2 is exactly why I sold my seasonal place in Glendale. I spent this summer in MA helping mom, but worrying about what the tropics were going to spit out that could impact my primary residence in FL. Not planning on anything longer than a two week visit back north.


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Old 11-15-2021, 11:51 AM   #131
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Point #2 is exactly why I sold my seasonal place in Glendale. I spent this summer in MA helping mom, but worrying about what the tropics were going to spit out that could impact my primary residence in FL. Not planning on anything longer than a two week visit back north.


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any loose cat trapping opportunities in Florida?? ;-)
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Old 11-15-2021, 02:06 PM   #132
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any loose cat trapping opportunities in Florida?? ;-)
Oy vey, there’s dozens a month. Dogs, too. Last year I took a stray in and posted to several social media outlets, and connected with the owner’s daughter the next day. But that’s been my only opportunity in my community.


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