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Damon Duvall

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Move To Florida and Move to Orlando

Thu, Aug 03, 2017 at 9:45AM

Move To Florida and Move to Orlando

Moving to The Orlando Area  

So, you have decided to move to Florida even move to Orlando. We can't wait for you to get here. Florida is an awesome place to live, not to mention we have no state income tax. What you can expect to find is a new hometown rich with history and having a wide variety of cultures living side by side. Let's address some of Florida's finer points.

There is much more to Florida than Miami Vice. I loved Miami Vice and watched every episode. There is a great nightlife available to you if that is your interest. You can also live your life and never even know that night life exists. Every major city in Florida has tourists visit and many stay. A large part of what tourist are looking for is a nightlife and different forms of entertainment. So some smart investors have provided an extremely diverse nightlife, daytime adult and family entertainment. Do not get stuck thinking Florida is just bars,dance clubs and beaches. A smart tourist and locals know there is much more. Many of the tropical paradise scenes that you see on popular television shows and movies can be bested right here in Florida. We have the Florida springs for example. Beautiful blue holes with clear water coming out of them that make for quite a site and daylong visits.

Some opt for saltier water and of course Florida has all of that you could possibly want. Beaches galore,fishing from the beaches, people watching at the beaches or offshore fishing opportunities are everywhere. One of my favorite things about Orlando is you can be on either coast in a very short time. If you make a trip over to the Cape as in Cape Canaveral make sure you swing by Yachtmasters. It's boaters heaven and well worth driving by if you have an interest in any kind of boating or offshore fishing. Speaking of offshore fishing. Have you ever been? Did you know that Florida also has offshore fishing at night? That is right. It is very common to go fishing at night now. Not only does it get you out of the sun but some species namely Swordfish are best targeted at night. I personally have been on my boat many times fishing the reefs for snapper,grouper etc. Florida's fishing will spoil you if you like catching large fish. Your Northern friends will be bragging about their exploits and you will just chuckle and think to yourself,"Bait".
Don't get me wrong there is a lot of great freshwater fishing and fishing the mangroves here in Florida. There are many lakes in the Orlando area that have great fishing. I live in Windermere Florida about 15-20 minutes SW of downtown Orlando. The Butler Chain of lakes is the most famous of the freshwater lakes in the area. But there are many many more lakes here. Lakes large enough for skiing, lakes designed just for skiing and lakes you could have a regular fishing tournament on. Many communities in this area have private boat ramps but there are also fishing clubs, marinas and public ramps to choose from. You can even rent a boat and have them meet you at the boat ramp and you just pay them and they take it back when you are finished. No storage or cleanup to deal with.A lot of people opt for that choice.
I have lived in Florida for decades. So I consider myself somewhat of a self taught expert. I have lived in Destin Florida, South of Miami Florida, Jacksonville Florida and Windermere Florida. Which is actually in greater Orlando Fl.  I drive into Orlando for work more often than I would like to admit. It is only 20 minutes to downtown. You will definitely want to invest in a Florida Sunpass for the turnpike and the Daniel Webster 429 if you live West of Orlando.
If you decide to move to Florida and Move to Orlando you will find the winter time is actually very nice. Not cold but definitely cooler. I like to say that Orlando is to winter what Minnesota is to summer. That is why we have so many people from the Northeast spend their winters here. My wife and I love the winter holidays in the Orlando area. Disney has a fantastic Christmas Parade and light show. Since the temperatures are so mild our family goes fairly often. The crowds are lighter and you can even ride the rides without the need to purchase the Fast Pass. I highly recommend visiting Disney in December. My summertime visits are to Universal,The Islands of Adventure and Volcano Bay.
 The education system in Orlando is typical for Florida. There are some school zones and schools that are rated higher than others. That after all is why we rate them. Because some schools simply outperform others. If the school zones are important to you no worries. We know the area well enough to help you find your dream home in the school zone you prefer. As far as colleges go. Most of the top 10 colleges are East of Orlando. Our High schools are better but the Eastern side simply has more colleges available. SW of Orlando will just have to settle for all of the best lakes,theme parks and higher end real estate. We have 2 colleges in/near the Windermere area. We have Disney University and Valencia which are numbers 2 and number 3 out of the top 10. UCF or the University of Central Florida is 15-20 minutes away and it is number 4. I think Windermere will be fine for me.
The two largest employers in the Orlando area are the public school system and Disney. Disney is probably not located where most people think that it is. It takes up a lot of real estate. So it is actually SW of Orlando. Not to worry because of the highways and toll roads here it is easily accessible. Universal is also next to a major highway. Both are probably equal in that regard, it's a Small World :-). There are many other employers here with great paying jobs. However for sheer numbers of employees the education system and Disney are at the top each have over 53,000 employees. If you are wondering Universal has 12,000 and is actually #8 on the list.
  1.  Walt Disney World-53,000+
  2. Orange County Public Schools-53,000+
  3. State of Florida -17,000+
  4. Adventist Health System-17,000
  5. Florida Hospital-14,000+
  6. Walmart-13,000+
  7. Orlando Regional Healthcare-12,500+
  8. Universal Studios 12,000 (not including Volcano Bay)
  9. Federal Government-11,000
  10. Publix-10,000+
  11. Good Luck !

 There are many choices for shopping in Orlando. Some of the best are outside of Disney and Universal Resort. The higher end items can be found at the Mall at Millenia. Your next stop would be the Florida Mall and then the Orlando Premium outlets. The Mall at Millenia is not that large but has all of the higher end stores. Sometimes window shopping is the best kind of shopping. 

Downtown Orlando is what most people would call hip and trendy. I would recommend seeing it on foot. Yes if you can it is the best way to "take it all in". Especially on a beautiful fall day. In Orlando we have the See Art Walking Tour. It is great. Most of the art is centered around Lake Eola and Lake Eola Park if you want to see it on Google Earth. Which is also a great choice. If art is a favorite thing of yours then you will find no shortage of it in Orlando.While you take the See Art Walking Tour you will be passing by 4 or 5 of the city's art galleries.The Gallery at Avalon Island is going to be the closest.

This is going to be a surprise for some who have not been here. Do not underestimate restaurants in Disney. A little know secret is there are many million dollar homes around Disney and Universal. You will not see them in the typical traffic flow areas. Would you build a million dollar home around a high traffic flow area? Me neither. Just within a couple of miles of Universal and Disney are some of the nicest homes and best golf courses in the world. With great golf courses you will always find fine dining and really nice homes. No matter if you like sushi, pizza or traditional food you will be satisfied in Disney. Or you can venture up to Dr. Phillips and Restaurant Row. Dr Phillips is an area of Orlando nearest Universal Resort. There are many restaurants there. If you do not see one you like then you are to picky.

If you are staying or living downtown Orlando or up on the Northern Side you of course still have some great choices. I happen to love steak so I would recommend Kres Restaurant LLC on Church Street. It just so happens to be just South of The Art Museums and Lake Eola.

You may have noticed Florida has some professional sports teams. I won't waste your time talking about our Soccer or Basketball but did you know we had professional Lacrosse,Hockey and Volleyball? Yes we do. If you like sports maybe even baseball, you can find a game in Orlando. Our high school sports are awesome and the weather is beautiful. Now that my children are grown I miss having trips to watch the high school teams. However Windermere High was just built near my home and I intend on watching their sports closely this year. No way I do not see  a couple of high school games this year. 

Earlier in the article I threw out a golf teaser. Most people know that Florida is the best state in the US for golf. Although the Golf Hall Of Fame is up nearer St Augustine we have far better and more famous courses here in Southern Orlando. They probably would be ranked in this order. Isleworth, Keene's Pointe, The Bay Hill Club and Lake Nona. A Lot of people would not like Lake Nona being mentioned in that list. But it's my list. Lake Nona is really turning into a great area and the Lake Nona Golf and Country Club course is beautiful. However when you consider having the surrounding lakes and alternative courses Windermere Florida and the first three courses are a step ahead.

 So you still want to move to Florida and move to Orlando.The Question remaining is where to move to? What part? This is where I am going to show both my bias and my expertise. To be truthful I am not that familiar with Northern Orlando. However I do have all of the tools that I need to find  out anything I need to know in minutes at the most. I am a Realtor in Windermere Florida and help clients buy and sell within a 20 mile radius of my home. I will go even further if I feel like it is necessary and I have the right understanding with my client. 

Here are some facts about the Orlando area. If you do not like the downtown lifestyle then Southern Orlando is nicer. Period. Actually if you look at a map of the city of Orlando much of it is South of what people think of as Orlando. There are 4 areas that I recommend unless you need to live North because of work or family. Any of the areas I recommend have access to toll roads that can get you to where you need to be quite quickly.

If living out East near the airport is attractive to you then I recommend anywhere in Lake Nona. It is growing there, the communities are all nice and most of them come with nice amenities. You do not have to live in a gated community to have a nice home there. There are many nice homes with trails and lakes etc in Lake Nona. If you want a modern home that is just awesome and have $700,000 to $1,000,000 to spend on a home you have several great choices there.

Let's move West. Universal Resort is my favorite theme park. About 1-3 miles away are some great neighborhoods. Prices for any buyer, townhomes, condos and million dollar gated communities. The area from Conroy Road to South of Big Sand Lake is known as Dr Phillips. Dr Phillips consist of around 90 communities. Dr Phillips has great schools and an awesome YMCA. It is highly thought of in this area. 

 Windermere Florida is much bigger than what you see on the map. Although technically the map is correct with only Windermere Town and Lake Butler Sound being included in the Windermere. All of 34786 is generally referred to as Windermere. I doubt that changes soon because of the value that the name carries. Windermere has the highest average home price in central Florida. Although the median priced home is $400,000 the average is nearer to $900,000. The reason is there are so many million dollar homes here. Shaq owns a monster of a house on Lake Butler, Tiger Woods has a home here and it is not uncommon to see exotic cars driving down our brick paved streets. I do not think you can currently buy a home in Isleworth for under $1,000,000. Keene's Pointe does afford you this opportunity. It has many more homes. But do not make the mistake of thinking Keene's Pointe Doesn't have some mansions.

The Map to the above/left is Windermere Town. If you click here you can learn about Windermere history and watch a great video of the town from ent to end.

The next town I would recommend is Winter Garden Florida. What a great little city and fantastic area to live in. Winter Garden Fl has a great downtown district known as Centennial Park and Clark Gable and the celebrities of his day used to walk those streets. The town was born on the foundation of cedar lumber from Lake Apopka and having a convenient rail road station. There are two railroad museums there today but Winter Garden has changed for the better. Having some very modern communities like Hickory Hammock, Waterside and Twinwaters just to name a few on John's Lake. However the history of Winter Garden stays alive. There is much to do there. I recently walked the the West Orange Trail around Southern Lake Apopka and picked some wild grapes to snack on while I walked. Winter Garden is generally thought of as zip code 34787. It stretches quite far South. Horizons West is the keyword there. Hundreds of homes have recently been built around its' beautiful lakes.Shopping,dining and entertainment ar following. A Movie theater with a restaurant are being constructed as I write this article. The Growth and modernization are definitely SW of Orlando.

Thank you for reading and feel free to post this article or share it. If I can assist you in any way reach out to me and let me know. I would love to assist you in finding your dream home here in the Orlando area. I am glad you have decided to move to Florida and move to Orlando.

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Damon Duvall


Wendy Morris LLC
DBA Wendy Morris Realty
Licensed in the State of Florida
BK 3146762
14832 Speer Lake Drive
Winter Garden, FL 34787

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