Last Updated on August 19, 2022 by Filip Poutintsev
Vero Beach has many luxurious beaches and community attractions while still keeping its whole small town, laid-back vibe.
These might be excellent reasons for you to move there, but we’re doing an honest review of the place to decide for yourself what the pros and cons are.
Pros and cons of living in Vero Beach, Florida at a glance
- Cost of living: housing is affordable, but not the rest
- Economy and job market
- Real Estate: strongest in the country – a good investment
- Lifestyle: not overcrowded and city-like
- Connecting to other cities
- Dining and entertainment
- Small current population
- Summer all year round
- Lots of law enforcement
- No state taxes
- Cost of living: tourism hikes the price of everything
- Real estate: “Hamptons” to the Miami affluent
- Lifestyle: popular retirement destination for rich and famous
- Crime rate
- No youthful nightlife
- The population is rapidly growing
- Hot and humid
- Hurricane central
- Mainly old, white people
- Drug labs everywhere
- High housing tax and insurance
- Bad traffic and transportation
Pros of living in Vero Beach, Florida
Cost of living
The living costs in Vero Beach are lower than the national average compared to other areas in the US. It comes in pretty high.
Economy & job market
Piper Aircraft, the Indian County’s largest private company employer, is in Vero Beach, while the other main economic contributor is tourism, which includes service sector activities and the citrus industry.
The cost of the average home is $230,000, and Vero Beach ranks as 2nd strongest real estate in the country. So, buying here is an excellent investment, if you can afford it.
Vero Beach is famous for retirees and families wanting warmth and sunshine. You might even bump into a celebrity, which means that you can expect that housing is in high demand!
The nature and wildlife are unique at Vero Beach. You have your pick of nature trails, nature refuges, Indian River Lagoon, marshes and swamps, and of course, the miles and miles of beautiful, sparkling beaches.
Vero Beach has an active outdoor lifestyle. There’s always something fun to do. These fun sports activities include and are not limited to boating, fishing, fossil hunting, canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling, surfing, and golf.
Vero Beach is unique in that it is the very opposite of the overcrowded and overdeveloped cities in Florida. Buildings are restricted to being only four stories high, so you can actually see the beach from where you might live!
The schools and quality of education in Vero Beach have a C+ rating, which is good on a state and national level and is above the average.
Vero Beach has reasonable graduation rates at most schooling levels and good enrollment rates, student/teacher ratio (17/1), and extra programs.
High school graduation and attainment rates are higher than the state average.
College enrollment is lower than the state average.
Connecting to other cities
The closest cities that are near Vero Beach are Sebastian, Fellsmere, and Fort Pierce, which are all within a 25-mile radius of the town.
These are all within a 30-minute drive.
Dining and entertainment
The cultural arts, food, and historic abundance will not let you down. There are live music events (at one of the best theaters in the whole state) and art & wine festivals to attend.
You can explore the plethora of historical landmarks, or you also have the beach with many cocktail and pub-style places for you to kick back and relax.
Vero Beach is a very historic town. There’s a ton of museums that you’ll never get bored of visiting.
A small population
The population is currently 16,558 strong, with a growth rate of 1.7% in the last year and 10.2% in the previous five years.
Summer all year long
The average high in the winter months is 73 degrees Fahrenheit, and you have roughly 232 sunny days in the year. This comes at a price because water and heat equal humidity.
Safety: great police force
Vero Beach has 73 full-time law enforcement professionals who work out to almost 3 per 1000 residents, which is higher than the state average in other cities.
SmartAsset named Vero Beach as one of the best places to retire in Florida. This probably has to do with the many options of excellent retirement communities and independent living facilities for people aged 55+.
These have also been recorded as costing less than the state average and are close to local hospitals and medical facilities for easy access to healthcare.
No State taxes
A serious pro for living in Vero Beach is the NO state income tax! You’ll just have federal taxes to worry about.
You have really good and some sketchy neighborhoods, which also determine your safety. With that said, though, Vero Beach as a whole is considered fantastic to live in with its 26 miles of beaches so that everyone gets in on the permanent holiday vibe.
There are dedicated retirement communities and family communities where the safety of the residents is not an issue, and people live relatively worry-free.
Vero Beach has a mostly suburban feel, which is excellent for families needing more space, and the opportunity to work and raise children in good areas.
Cons of living in Vero Beach, Florida
Cost of living
The housing itself seems to be more affordable, but with tourism being the primary income for the city, general expenses, including gas prices, transportation, and health care, cost more money than most.
The “affluent” from Miami and Palm Beach see Vero Beach as their very own “Hamptons”, and with the median age being 53, you know that the most common person buying property there is someone who has made their bucks.
A popular retirement destination where the billionaires and working-class rub shoulders like old pals, especially with the relaxed pace of life.
Vero Beach’s crime rates have seen a steady decrease over the past five years. Unfortunately, though, their crime rate is still higher than about 54% of other US cities.
The violent crime at Vero Beach is 2 per 1000 inhabitants, which is above average for all communities and population sizes across the US. Your chances of being a victim of violent crime are 1 in every 481.
Their analysis also reveals that Vero Beach’s rate for property crime is 15 per 1000 inhabitants, making this type of crime above the average of all other American communities. Your chance of being a victim of property crime is 1 in every 65.
One hundred eighty registered sex offenders live there, making the ratio of 1 sex offender per every 92 residents.
The nightlife is not the kind you’re hoping to get if you’re 21 and have a boundless capacity for partying and bar-hopping all night long.
Rapid population growth
Vero Beach is a small city but has consistently grown new residents over the past five years. It is ranked as one of the fastest-growing in the US.
Hot and humid
During the summer months, the temperature is up in the high 80’s, sometimes even 100’s. Hot and humid means the need for aircon, which escalates electricity bills.
The average relative humidity falls between 57% and 83% throughout the year. Hello, bad hair day. Every day. And say goodbye to a white Christmas, unless you go up North for that.
You can say goodbye to a change in seasons also.
Extremely high risk for seasonal hurricanes. What fun. Since 1930, they have had 73 hurricanes, of which the largest was Hurricane Frances in 2004, then more recently Hurricane Ana in 2015, and again Hurricane Irma in 2017.
While hurricanes are not an everyday occurrence, and it’s mostly sunny, there are year-round storms, intermittent, casual rains, or even torrential rains that can go on for hours.
Hurricanes mean damage to varying degrees, like flooding, broken roofs, and destroyed electrics and other resources. This means high insurance and maybe temporary relocation.
It’s risking that or living in an underground bunker. Living underground is not such a great way to enjoy paradise.
Seventeen thousand two hundred thirty-six people are living in Vero Beach. 81.4% of the community are White, followed by 9.4% Hispanic and 3.8% Black.
So, in terms of their diversity, on a national level, Vero Beach ranks as number 11400, which is below the national average and ranks 276 on the state level, which is also below theirs.
The median age of residents is about 54 years old, so it’s understandable also that the city has one of the highest mortality rates in the country.
Safety: lots of drug labs
Read the section on crime for more details, but there are several drug laboratories in Vero Beach, having been chiefly imported from South America.
High property tax and insurance
While housing may be more affordable, you’ll be paying more in property taxes and insurance rates here than in other cities.
Family-friendly for alligators
You’ll need to look out for alligators, as there are over 1 million in the entire state of Florida. They’re primarily found in swampy areas, but they have been spotted in many residential areas.
Traffic and transportation
As a whole, most surveys say that Florida tends to have some of the worst drivers in the country. This fact might be exaggerated by the average person in Vero Beach being 53 years old, retired, and in no real hurry to get anywhere fast.
Also, the tourists could make for exciting driving styles and a high probability of accidents. Not to mention that the weather also negatively affects the state of the roads.
There is also very little public transport which offers minimal service in most places. So you have to drive everywhere yourself. On the plus side, there is free parking right throughout the city.
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