Are People Moving to Tampa Because of Jobs or Location?

Do you think renters are moving to Tampa because they like the city? Or are they moving here only because it’s here that they got their desired jobs?

Apartment List Inc. has just made a study precisely to answer this question. And they found out that the percentage of renters moving to Tampa to pursue jobs is just about the same as the percentage of people moving here because they love to live here.

The study surveyed more than 20,000 Apartment List users who have made long-distance moves and grouped them into two: location-first movers and job-first movers. It focused on non-student renters who are currently living in a metro area where they have moved to.

Location-first movers are those that chose a city to move to before applying for jobs in that city

Job-first movers are those that applied for jobs in many cities, then chose a city based on the best job offer

Study results for Tampa:
Of renters who have moved to Tampa, 49.4% are job-first movers and 50.6% are location-first movers.
There are more location-first movers. This means that the city of Tampa is attracting more renters who choose Tampa to move to before looking for jobs.

On the other hand, if we look at the 1.2% difference between location-first movers and job-first movers as a slight difference, we can also say that people see Tampa as both a great place to live and also a great place to find job opportunities.

Of those people moving to Tampa either because of jobs or location, the percentage of those planning to settle down in Tampa is 43.4%. Of the job-first movers, 36.8% were planning to settle down in the city. Of the location-first movers, 50% were planning to settle down.

How does Tampa compare with 31 other US cities surveyed?

Top 10 Cities on the Job-First Movers List are:
Tampa is No. 8
1. San Jose, CA — 75.0%
2. Raleigh, NC — 59.4%
3. Washington, D.C. — 59.1%
4. Boston, MA — 55.1%
5. Houston, TX — 55.1%
6. Philadelphia — 53.7%
7. Seattle, WA — 51.5%
8. TAMPA, FL — 49.4%
9. Denver, CO — 49.3%
10. Columbus, OH — 48.6%

Note though that although Tampa is No. 8 on the Job-first movers list, there are more location-first movers among renters who have moved to Tampa.

Top 10 Cities on the Location-First Movers List are:
1. Las Vegas, NE — 81.8%
2. Phoenix, AZ — 68.8%
3. Portland, OR — 68.8%
4. San Diego, CA — 65.7%
5. Charlotte, NC — 63.9%
6. Minneapolis, MN — 63.1%
7. San Antonio, TX — 62.1%
8. Jacksonville, FL — 62.1%
9. Miami, FL — 60.0%
10. Austin, TX — 58.8%
TAMPA — 50.6%

The Top 10 Cities Where Renters Are Planning to Settle Down
Tampa is No. 9
1. Las Vegas — 63.0%
2. San Antonio — 62.1%
3. Charlotte — 57.6%
4. Phoenix — 48.0%
5. Dallas — 47.4%
6. Miami — 45.3%
7. Denver — 45.3%
8. Houston — 43.9%
9. TAMPA — 43.4%
10. Nashville — 34.2%

To the above Apartment List study, we add the following notes from other sources:

More Great Things About Tampa Below!

Why is Tampa No. 8 on the job-first movers list?

One major reason is Tampa’s fast-growing STEM job market. STEM means science, technology, engineering and math. Tampa ranks No. 38 in WalletHub’s Top 100 Cities for STEM jobs. The Apartment List study found that around 57.2% of renters with a bachelor’s degree were job-first movers, mostly looking for jobs in the technology sector, a fast-growing sector in Tampa.

In New Geography’s List of the Best Large Cities for Job Growth in 2018, the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metro area is No. 20, the third best Florida metro area in the ranking, behind Orlando and Jacksonville. The Miami metro area is No. 29. New Geography based its ranking on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ employment data in different industries from 2006 to 2018.

Is It Easy to Find a Job in Tampa?

If you have the skills required, yes.

In 2017, a total of 4,447 new jobs were created in Hillsborough County by 31 companies with nearly $507 million in capital investment. These direct jobs created are expected to add 1,201 indirect jobs and 1,817 induced jobs.

The most recent big-time corporate relocation to the Tampa area is by The Mosaic Company, the world’s largest integrated producer of concentrated phosphate and potash, which are vital plant nutrients. It employs more than 15,000 people in six countries and conducts all aspects of crop nutrition development.

Are Wages in Tampa competitive?

According to the Tampa Hillsborough EDC, Hillsborough County’s average annual wage of $50,768 is the second highest among counties in Florida. The county also posted the biggest increase in average annual wage from 2007 to 2016.

Why are location-first movers choosing Tampa? And why renters are planning to settle down in Tampa?

Tampa as a city has a lot to offer to renters in other states or cities looking for a place to move to. See these below:

1. Affordable housing.

Based on the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corp.’s Cost of Living Index (COLI) report, the Tampa metro area has the lowest housing costs among metro markets in Florida and other major US metro areas.

2. Lower cost of living

Tampa ranks high on affordability lists. A study by GoBankingRates determined that Tampa is the 8th most affordable city in the country. It considered median home rent, groceries, utilities and transportation and compared these to the average household income.

Based on the COLI report, the Tampa metro area’s COLI is more than 5% lower than the national average. Its COLI is lower than that of other major metro areas like Orlando, Atlanta, Phoenix, Nashville, Dallas, Austin and Denver.

3. Plenty of masterplanned communities in and around Tampa

Masterplanned communities offer lots of amenities so that families and children do not have to go out of the community for their recreation needs, like nature parks, playgrounds, swimming pools, tennis and basketball courts, clubhouses, arts and crafts centers, and fitness centers with spas and gyms. They are often gated and often have water or nature preserves all around. Some have A-rated schools within. Waterfront communities have boating and fishing areas and docks.

View here listings of available homes  in masterplanned communities in the Tampa Bay area.

4. Plenty of world-class attractions

The list is long. Tampa has theme parks: Busch Gardens, Florida Aquarium, Adventure Island,
Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, Big Cat Rescue, Florida State Fairgrounds. Nearby in Plant City is Dinosaur World.

There are lots of museums:  Museum of Science and Industry, Henry B. Plant Museum, Glazer Children’s Museum, Tampa Museum of Art, Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, Tampa Bay History Center, SS American Victory Memorial Museum, Cracker Country Museum, Ybor City State Museum

Historic places: Ybor City (Historic District, El Centro Español de Tampa, Columbia Restaurant, Jose Marti Park).
Ybor City was established in 1990 by the National Park Service as a National Historic Landmark District in recognition of its 1,000 historic buildings.

The Tampa Theatre was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978, is a Tampa City Landmark, and is a proud member of the League of Historic American Theatres and the Art House Convergence.

State Parks and other Parks: Hillsborough River State Park, Ybor City Museum State Park, Lettuce Lake Park, Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park, Hyde Park

Other popular places: Tampa Riverwalk, Manatee Viewing Center, Bayshore Boulevard, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Amalie Arena, Raymond James Stadium, George M. Steinbrenner Field (formerly known as Legends Field), Tampa International Airport, University of South Florida & Sun Dome, University of Tampa, Hillsborough Community College

If your family wants Walt Disney World Resort and Universal Orlando Resort, the city of Orlando is just a quick drive from Tampa .

Beaches within Tampa: Ben T Davis Beach and Picnic Island Beach  Some waterways even connect to the Gulf of Mexico.

Tampa is near top-rated and award-winning Gulf beaches: Honeymoon Island State Park, Caladesi Island State Park, Clearwater Beach, Sand Key Park, Belleair Beach, Indian Shores and Indian Rocks Beach, North Redington Beach and Redington Shores, Madeira Beach, Treasure Island, Sunset Beach, St. Pete Beach, Pass-a-Grille Beach, Shell Key Preserve, Fort De Soto Park, Egmont Key, Siesta Key Beach, Turtle Beach, Crescent Beach, Lido Key Beach and other Sarasota beaches. Get info on these beaches from the Visit the St. Pete Clearwater website.

Here’s a wonderful private-public-partnership-run website that offers guides on places to go and things to do in the Tampa Bay area: Visit Tampa Bay

Here’s the City of Tampa’s List and Quick Map to Popular Places

Park Finder web app

Use this city web app to find a park by zip code or by what the park offers:
Find Tampa Parks

4. Lovely weather

Tampa enjoys sunshine most of the year with an average temperature of 73 degrees.

Residents don’t have to shovel snow or travel on ice during the winter. This is specially a great thing for retirees who no longer enjoy doing these tiring activities.

There are also studies that tout the benefits of sunshine for people prone to depression. Certain studies about seasonal affective disorder (SAD) found that the less sunlight during fall and winter reduces the production of serotonin, a chemical linked to brain pathways that regulate mood, and that darkness increases the production of melatonin, which can make people with SAD sleepier and more lethargic.

5. Water Street Tampa 

Water Street Tampa is a $3 billion redevelopment project that will transform the skyline and image of Tampa. It will convert more than 50 acres in downtown Tampa into a live, work, study, play and visit community. Residences, hotels, office spaces, new and enhanced public areas, and new retail, cultural, educational and entertainment spaces will be integrated with existing anchors such as the Amalie Arena, the Tampa Convention Center and Tampa Bay History Center and Florida Aquarium. It will become the world’s first WELL-certified community under the WELL Community Standard.
It is being developed by Strategic Property Partners LLC, a partnership of Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and Cascade Investment LLC, owned by Bill Gates.

How Many People Have Been Moving to Tampa?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area Totals Dataset, there were 54,321 people who migrated to the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metro area in 2017. Of this number, 40,596 came from other parts of the U.S. and 13,725 came from other countries. Compared to other U.S. metro areas, the Tampa Bay metro area was 10th in population increase over the one year period from 2016.

Estimated Population in 2017 Total Migration in 2017 Domestic Migration International Migration
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater 3,091,399 54,321 40,596 13,725
Hillsborough County 1,408,566 20,603 11,347 9,256
Pinellas County 970,637 12,321 9,147 3,174
Pasco County 525,643 15,975 14,901 1,074
Hernando County 186,553 5,422 5,201 221