Palm Trees and Sunshine Aren’t the Only Things Attracting People to Tampa

By Leah Burdick

Tampa has been the talk of the country after countless reports and articles of Tampa Bay being ranked one of the best places to live. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the south attracted numerous citizens to relocate to a place where there were no restrictions against people. Tampa is also known for having more job opportunities, real estate opportunities, and affordability. Now that this city has become a hot spot, native Tampa Floridians are not happy about it.

The city has recently been known as Champa Bay because the Buccaneers and Lightning hockey team won championships resulting in boat parades that everyone wished they could be a part of. There were fewer restrictions and multiple celebrations that started grasping the attention of many.

Money Magazine ranked Tampa number 9 in the best place to live in the nation, in 2022, because of the sports, attractions and affordability. Niche ranked the city as the number 39 best place to live in America because of the schools and nightlife. Now all of this is true, but when multiple articles are being released that Tampa is the place to live it no longer makes it affordable.

With thousands of citizens wanting to relocate to the city because of the low real estate, it has started to affect the market price. It used to be cheap to live here, but the consequences of being a hotspot are making people who live here struggle. 

According to TampaBay Magazine, housing prices have soared because of high demand. Local home values rose $74,754 since 2021 which is $28,000 more than most local workers make pre-tax. The article also shares insight that at the start of 2022, 9,000 people moved here within the first few months. They also have Tampa Bay ranked number 3 on a list of the top U.S. cities people are looking to move to.

When choosing colleges during the end of the pandemic, having universities in the south not make covid vaccinations mandatory attracted my attention and a lot of others. Growing up in the North East and seeing the difference in how the pandemic was handled, Florida was the land of freedom in my eyes and others. 

Florida became a paradise in the past few years. This state used to attract people for real estate and affordability, but in the past few years, Tampa has become a city filled with freedom and spirit that many want to be a part of. 

I have a friend from Miami and she constantly says how there is no spirit there and she agrees with me that it’s a great experience to see a city be so invested and supportive of its sports team. There is now a sense of pride if you live in Tampa Bay. 

It has become frustrating seeing the cost of living rise especially when transitioning off campus. Realtors have started taking advantage of the fact that they can increase rent prices due to high demand, but with minimum wage and profits low in Tampa it makes it difficult to afford. 

The city has become so popular that even attending college here has become more difficult. The acceptance rate has decreased to attend The University of Tampa within the past few years because there have been record numbers of applications to attend a college in the heart of the city.

It is great to hear that a place you live in is flourishing and thriving, but the outcome of it being consistently announced to the country makes it unenjoyable to live in since all these benefits are now being taken advantage of. 

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