Moving to St. Augustine Florida: Your Guide to a Smooth Transition

St. Augustine, Florida is a charming and historic city located on the east coast of the Sunshine State. Known for its beautiful beaches, rich history, and charming downtown area, it’s no wonder why more and more people are choosing to make St. Augustine their new home.

If you’re considering a move to this vibrant city, here’s your guide to making a smooth transition.

Welcome to St. Augustine

Your journey to St. Augustine ushers you into an ancient city that wears its historical significance like a proud emblem. You’re about to set foot into the oldest continually inhabited city in the United States, rich with Spanish influences and historical landmarks.

Historical Significance

St. Augustine isn’t just another spot on the map; it’s a living museum reflecting over four centuries of history. Founded in 1565 by Spanish explorers, the city is home to numerous well-preserved historical sites.

Castillo de San Marcos, a 17th-century fortress, stands as a monument to the city’s Spanish heritage and military past. Nearby, stories of the elusive Fountain of Youth, long sought by explorers like Ponce de León, swirl around the eponymous park, adding to the city’s mystique.

The Colonial Quarter offers a glimpse into a past era, exhibiting the lifestyle and architecture of 16th-century St. Augustine.

Geographical Overview

Nestled along Florida’s northeastern coast, St. Augustine’s geographical setting combines the charm of a small town with the allure of the seaside. Despite its historical layout dating back to the late 1500s, the city has a vibrant community that embraces both its rich past and its dynamic present.

The Ancient City sits comfortably in St. Johns County and offers residents and visitors alike subtropical climate, sandy beaches, and a variety of natural landscapes. Whether you’re taking a stroll downtown or exploring the coastal areas, each corner of St. Augustine invites you into its unique story.

Living in St. Augustine

When considering a move to St. Augustine, Florida, you’ll find a welcoming community rich in history with a unique housing market, diverse neighborhoods, and a cost of living that balances well with the quality of life in the area.

Housing Market

In St. Augustine, the housing market offers a mix of historical homes and modern developments. St. Johns County, where St. Augustine is located, is known for its strong real estate market thanks to a combination of its scenic beauty, quality public schools, and proximity to Ponte Vedra beaches.

You might find the homes here to be reasonably priced compared to larger metropolitan areas, with options ranging from cozy downtown cottages to sprawling oceanfront estates

Cost of Living

While St. Augustine’s charm and history might suggest a premium cost of living, the truth is pleasantly surprising. The overall cost of living in this quaint city is slightly above the national average but remains competitive, especially when considering its location and amenities.

Neighborhoods and Community

St. Augustine’s neighborhoods are as vibrant and varied as its history. Whether you’re looking for the family-friendly atmosphere of a master-planned community or the quaint, artful vibe of the historic district, you’ll find a place to call home. The sense of community in St. Augustine is palpable, with locals often gathering for events or supporting local businesses.

Some favorite areas include:

  • Historic Downtown: For a lively environment steeped in colonial Spanish architecture.
  • Anastasia Island: A laid-back beach town feel with a mix of residents.
  • Ponte Vedra: Upscale living with pristine beaches and luxurious amenities.

Each neighborhood offers a unique lifestyle, so you’ll want to explore each one to find the perfect fit for your family and lifestyle.

Education System

When you move to St. Augustine, you’ll find an impressive education system waiting for your family. St. Johns County School District is renowned for its academic excellence and provides a variety of schools to fit educational needs at every level.

Public Schools

St. Johns County School District serves as the backbone of public education in St. Augustine. Here’s a snapshot:

  • Timberlin Creek Elementary School is one of the many schools where you can enroll your children, known for its strong academic foundation.
  • Switzerland Point Middle School represents the district’s commitment to quality education during the transitional years from elementary to high school.
  • Bartram Trail High School is one of the notable institutions in the area, offering rigorous academic programs and a variety of extracurricular activities.

You’ll be pleased to know that the district looks to accommodate growth and maintain high standards by adding necessary facilities like relocatable units to handle the increasing student population.

Colleges and Universities

Flagler College stands out with its picturesque campus and a strong emphasis on liberal arts education. The college offers a range of bachelor’s degree programs and is known for its historic architecture and small class sizes, fostering a tight-knit community feel.

Attractions and Lifestyles

When you move to St. Augustine, you’ll find a perfect blend of cultural history and vibrant outdoor living. You can enjoy the charm of the historic downtown, access to beautiful beaches, and an array of recreational opportunities suited for every lifestyle.

Cultural Highlights

St. Augustine is a treasure trove of historical sites and cultural venues. As the oldest city in the United States, your days can be filled with tours of significant landmarks and exploring museums that tell the tales of the city’s past. From the Castillo de San Marcos to the Lightner Museum, there is always something new and interesting to discover.

Recreational Activities

Whether you prefer to spend your free time on the water, in nature, or exploring local events and festivals, St. Augustine has something for everyone. You can take a leisurely stroll along the beaches, go fishing in one of the many nearby lakes or rivers, or attend one of the city’s numerous festivals celebrating art, music, and food.

Work and Economy

When considering your move to St. Augustine, Florida, you’ll find a vibrant job market and a diverse array of local businesses and retail options that contribute to the city’s economy.

Job Market

St. Augustine’s job market is noteworthy, with an unemployment rate historically lower than both the Florida and national averages. As of March 2021, St. Johns County had an unemployment rate of 3.6%, contrasting with Florida’s 4.7% and the nation’s 6%. This indicates a robust local economy where you might find better employment opportunities.

Local Businesses and Retail

You can expect a thriving variety of local businesses in St. Augustine, from boutique shops to essential services. Retail plays a significant role in the city’s economy, and the presence of independent retailers adds to the charm of the area. When walking through the city’s streets, you’ll encounter an assortment of shops that cater to both residents and tourists—ensuring a lively retail scene that supports the local economy.

Climate and Weather

When you move to St. Augustine, FL, you’re settling in a region with a humid subtropical climate characteristic of the Sunshine State. This means you can enjoy a generous amount of sunshine throughout the year.

Summer tends to be your warm and humid season, spanning from May to October. During this period, temperatures often soar, making it essential to have some form of air conditioning or fans to stay comfortable. Don’t be surprised if the mercury hits around 87°F (30°C) on a typical summer day.

Spring, on the other hand, brings a mix of warmth and moderate humidity, offering a great balance for enjoying outdoor activities without the intense heat of summer.

Come winter, which lasts from November to April, the weather cools down pleasantly. You’ll experience mild temperatures averaging around 61°F (16°C). It’s generally drier during these months, too, though you can expect some rain.

Neighborhood Highlights in St. Augustine

Lincolnville, a historic neighborhood known for its charming Victorian homes and rich history, is a must-visit when in St. Augustine. It’s home to many local restaurants serving up delicious dishes influenced by the area’s diverse cultures.

Another popular spot is Anastasia Island, located just across the Bridge of Lions from downtown St. Augustine. Here you can enjoy some of the city’s most beautiful beaches, go fishing or birdwatching at Anastasia State Park, and explore the historic St. Augustine Lighthouse.

If you’re looking for a more modern vibe, head over to Uptown San Marco Avenue. This area boasts lively bars, trendy boutiques, and delicious eateries that are sure to satisfy any palate.

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I’m Nicole Mickle, a real estate agent in Orlando, Florida. I’m here to assist you in making the most out of your Florida lifestyle.

In addition, I’m the author behind¬†Florida Homes and Living, a blog dedicated to sharing valuable content about Orlando, interior design, remodeling, and the Florida lifestyle.

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