Best Places to Start a Business in Florida

Small Business, Starting a Business
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Best Places to Start a Business in Florida

If you picture Florida, images of palm trees, beaches and Disney World might very well come to mind. Indeed, those attractions and temperatures averaging 60-81 degrees help the state draw nearly 100 million tourists a year, according to Enterprise Florida, the state’s economic development organization.

Those tourists undoubtedly support the state’s local retailers and restaurants, but Florida’s economy is more diverse. Key industries include aviation and aerospace, life sciences, manufacturing, defense, information technology, financial services, logistics, trade and clean technology. Additionally, major corporations, including Office Depot, Publix Super Markets and Carnival Cruise Line, are based in Florida.

Business growth

But small businesses thrive, too. There are nearly 2.2 million small businesses in Florida, most of which are sole proprietorships, or businesses without employees, according to a 2015 state profile by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Small-business loans in the state under the SBA’s 7(a) program grew 38% from 2014 to 2015, from $620 million to $854 million from October to May, the Sun Sentinel recently reported.

To pinpoint exactly where business owners can find success in the Sunshine State, NerdWallet analyzed 268 places with populations of 10,000 and above to find the best places to start a business in Florida. We calculated the overall score for every location based on the city’s business climate and economic health using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Learn more about our methodology at the end of this article.

Key takeaways

Small cities thrive. Size doesn’t necessarily matter when it comes to a place’s ability to attract businesses. All of the places on our top 10 list have populations less than 50,000, and eight of our top 10 cities have populations under 20,000. However, most places on our list are near large cities — like Miami and Orlando — which gives businesses in those places access to larger workforces, more customers and small-business resources.

Small-business resources are plentiful. Enterprise Florida, the state’s economic development organization, connects small businesses in the state with training and business development opportunities as well as financing options. Business advising resources are available at Florida’s over 40 Small Business Development Centers.

Best places to start a business in Florida

1. Maitland

This northern Orlando suburb tops our list because the average revenue per business, $4.5 million, is the highest of all places in our top 10. Maitland’s proximity to Orlando, less than 10 miles away, allows entrepreneurs access to the National Entrepreneur Center, which offers free one-on-one business coaching, hosts entrepreneurship seminars and facilitates small-business loans. The University of Central Florida’s Small Business Development Center in Orlando also offers free business consulting, and the university’s Business Incubation Program offers resources including coaching, workshops, access to legal experts and office space for early-stage businesses.

2. Doral

Just 15 miles inland from Miami, Doral’s economy is fueled by tourism, logistics, finance and trade due to its proximity to Miami’s port. Major employers in Doral include Perry Ellis International, the Miami Herald Media Company and Hellmann Worldwide Logistics. Entrepreneurs in Doral can go to the Florida Small Business Development Center at Florida International University in Miami for free business consulting.

3. Naples

With white sand beaches, swanky shopping streets and golf courses galore, Naples’ economy is largely based on tourism. There are 50 businesses for every 100 people — which is the highest in our top 10. The Fifth Avenue South Business Improvement District promotes local retailers and restaurants in that area, and the Small Business Development Center at Florida Gulf Coast University provides entrepreneurs with free consulting services.

4. Palatka

The northernmost place on our list, Palatka is a small city between Jacksonville and Orlando. It makes our list because it has the lowest median housing costs of all places in our top 10 at $618 a month. Major employers in Palatka include the St. Johns River Water Management District and Putnam Community Medical Center. The Small Business Development Center at the University of North Florida has an office in Palatka that offers free advising for local businesses.

5. Sebring

The economy in this city in Central Florida, on Lake Jackson, is largely based on agriculture, with citrus farming, nursery products and beef cattle as the biggest industries. In Sebring, 53% of businesses have paid employees — the highest percentage in our top 10. Local businesses will find free advising at the Small Business Development Center at South Florida State College.

6. Coral Gables

Just outside Miami, Coral Gables is the largest city on our top 10 list, and residents here earn the highest median income of all places on our list at $69,375 a year. The city is home of the University of Miami, which provides a workforce for local businesses. MasTec Inc., a public engineering, contracting and construction company, is headquartered here. A planned community with Mediterranean-style architecture, Coral Gables has many upscale restaurants, shops and bridal boutiques in the city’s downtown.

7. Longwood

Part of the Greater Orlando Area, Longwood businesses benefit from being near a major Florida city. Businesses have access to resources such as the University of Central Florida’s Business Incubation Program and an incubator kitchen for food entrepreneurs at East End Market. Longwood’s top employers include FedEx, UPS, Comprehensive Energy Services and Collis Roofing.

8. Stuart

About 40 miles north of West Palm Beach, Stuart is a small port city on the St. Lucie River. Its historic downtown hosts year-round community events and is lined with over 50 locally-owned businesses including Osceola Street Cafe and Hoffman’s Chocolates. Businesses can join the Downtown Business Association of Stuart to be listed on the group’s website.

9. Orange City

About 30 miles southwest of Daytona Beach, Orange City attracts tourists and visitors who come for the annual Daytona 500 NASCAR race. The 1876 Heritage Inn is one of the city’s oldest existing businesses, and new businesses have continued opening ever since, with the city issuing 100 new business licenses a year, according to its website. Major employers in Orange City include Florida Hospital Fish Memorial and John Knox Village, a retirement community of 650 residents.

10. Lake Mary

An Orlando suburb, Lake Mary is a family-oriented community within a technology area. Companies based here include Fiserv Inc. and SunGard, two financial service technology companies. The headquarters of Florida High Tech Corridor Council, which offers technology entrepreneurs technical assistance, research grants and access to the Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center web portal, are located nearby in Heathrow.

Best places to start a business in Florida

Scroll through the table below to see the data for all 268 places.

Rank City Population Number of businesses Average revenue per business Businesses with paid employees Businesses per 100 people Unemployment rate Score
1 Maitland 16,057 3,150 $4,503,311 38.86% 19.62 4.2% 68.57
2 Doral 47,076 11,484 $3,113,948 37.85% 24.39 4.8% 60.18
3 Naples 19,990 10,093 $561,132 26.03% 50.49 2.1% 57.88
4 Palatka 10,532 1,376 $2,186,528 52.03% 13.06 8.2% 57.26
5 Sebring 10,399 1,447 $1,091,046 53.01% 13.91 6.6% 55.42
6 Coral Gables 48,093 11,013 $1,658,613 36.67% 22.90 4.7% 54.64
7 Longwood 13,753 2,791 $1,306,889 42.31% 20.29 8.1% 51.39
8 Stuart 15,741 4,501 $768,221 39.19% 28.59 8.7% 50.87
9 Orange City 10,823 1,048 $989,327 48.47% 9.68 6.5% 50.53
10 Lake Mary 14,188 2,672 $1,496,414 37.13% 18.83 6.3% 50.40
11 Winter Park 28,497 5,475 $750,477 36.93% 19.21 4.6% 50.30
12 Fruitville 13,880 1,965 $1,106,788 42.60% 14.16 6.7% 49.00
13 Jacksonville Beach 21,562 2,665 $596,174 42.59% 12.36 4.1% 48.88
14 St. Augustine 13,271 4,113 $519,864 31.27% 30.99 5.8% 48.61
15 Boca Raton 86,671 20,503 $1,260,872 29.99% 23.66 6.0% 47.99
16 Oldsmar 13,663 1,837 $1,354,853 40.77% 13.45 8.1% 47.92
17 Pinellas Park 49,443 5,153 $1,620,339 34.74% 10.42 6.2% 47.06
18 Bartow 17,570 1,408 $1,928,457 34.30% 8.01 6.7% 46.85
19 Venice 20,893 2,650 $1,074,957 31.13% 12.68 4.0% 46.43
20 Vero Beach 15,475 4,757 $534,947 27.08% 30.74 7.5% 46.26
21 Villas 10,302 1,551 $1,159,023 30.63% 15.06 5.0% 46.05
22 Glenvar Heights 17,210 3,601 $476,285 30.38% 20.92 4.5% 45.86
23 West Melbourne 18,776 1,432 $889,544 41.27% 7.63 6.6% 45.81
24 Altamonte Springs 41,795 5,947 $980,086 37.01% 14.23 7.3% 45.60
25 Ocala 56,828 9,307 $1,137,766 34.26% 16.38 8.1% 45.54
26 Cocoa Beach 11,299 1,392 $512,358 38.36% 12.32 6.1% 45.47
27 Melbourne 76,768 7,545 $1,385,776 36.75% 9.83 7.9% 45.45
28 Deerfield Beach 76,330 10,031 $1,957,715 27.43% 13.14 6.8% 44.99
29 Three Lakes 16,456 3,085 $538,257 36.76% 18.75 6.0% 44.55
30 Destin 12,623 3,132 $477,215 27.27% 24.81 5.0% 44.31
31 Fort Lauderdale 168,603 30,171 $1,255,501 30.78% 17.89 8.1% 44.18
32 Marco Island 16,702 2,359 $395,670 30.61% 14.12 2.2% 44.12
33 Lakeland 98,970 9,794 $1,995,891 27.52% 9.90 7.5% 44.03
34 Largo 77,898 6,866 $1,948,037 28.72% 8.81 7.3% 43.89
35 Panama City 36,205 4,873 $1,109,068 33.47% 13.46 7.8% 43.63
36 Daytona Beach 61,622 6,034 $1,202,676 33.74% 9.79 7.0% 43.61
37 Brent 22,174 1,651 $2,147,772 30.77% 7.45 8.8% 43.31
38 Palm Beach Gardens 49,273 8,236 $750,816 26.77% 16.72 4.3% 43.18
39 South Miami 11,839 2,325 $719,507 32.22% 19.64 8.8% 43.17
40 Tampa 343,768 38,662 $1,750,263 28.67% 11.25 8.1% 43.08
41 Fernandina Beach 11,681 2,355 $637,646 26.67% 20.16 6.0% 42.87
42 Leesburg 20,627 2,598 $864,297 37.64% 12.60 8.9% 42.73
43 Seminole 17,291 2,224 $323,668 28.60% 12.86 3.9% 42.71
44 Sarasota 52,588 9,696 $722,882 32.00% 18.44 7.8% 42.63
45 Fort Walton Beach 19,962 2,779 $878,495 32.13% 13.92 7.1% 42.49
46 Clearwater 108,551 13,312 $801,123 30.66% 12.26 5.7% 42.41
47 Pensacola 52,268 7,986 $928,174 28.00% 15.28 6.5% 42.40
48 Ferry Pass 29,090 2,428 $1,028,902 29.08% 8.35 4.3% 42.39
49 Lake Wales 14,480 1,262 $1,457,758 34.71% 8.72 9.3% 42.29
50 Orlando 244,931 30,564 $1,569,353 29.51% 12.48 8.4% 42.24
51 New Port Richey 14,985 2,391 $526,970 32.08% 15.96 7.1% 42.23
52 Fort Myers 64,488 9,938 $1,075,742 32.02% 15.41 9.2% 42.17
53 Ormond Beach 38,345 5,173 $479,820 25.96% 13.49 4.0% 42.00
54 Doctor Phillips 11,523 2,006 $474,716 26.12% 17.41 3.7% 41.85
55 Atlantic Beach 12,783 1,993 $232,692 27.20% 15.59 2.9% 41.84
56 West Palm Beach 100,778 15,657 $1,114,721 27.64% 15.54 7.1% 41.77
57 Jupiter 56,219 8,438 $546,642 26.80% 15.01 4.5% 41.37
58 Satellite Beach 10,241 1,022 $318,069 31.12% 9.98 3.6% 41.37
59 Winter Haven 34,561 4,088 $1,463,713 24.39% 11.83 6.9% 41.37
60 Gainesville 125,845 10,976 $955,469 29.33% 8.72 5.4% 41.35
61 Englewood 14,966 1,807 $341,399 32.65% 12.07 6.8% 41.34
62 Miami Lakes 29,866 5,841 $892,421 22.44% 19.56 4.5% 41.21
63 Tarpon Springs 23,564 2,880 $518,146 32.05% 12.22 7.4% 41.15
64 Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace 13,648 1,526 $906,421 37.02% 11.18 10.6% 40.91
65 Jacksonville 829,721 64,101 $1,706,789 27.26% 7.73 7.8% 40.82
66 Key Biscayne 12,560 1,941 $415,049 21.43% 15.45 3.1% 40.72
67 Auburndale 13,814 1,628 $1,659,810 23.96% 11.79 8.4% 40.42
68 Pompano Beach 101,749 14,467 $1,098,470 29.23% 14.22 8.5% 40.34
69 Key West 24,934 5,020 $388,256 26.06% 20.13 4.0% 40.32
70 Pinecrest 18,619 3,103 $381,439 24.85% 16.67 4.1% 40.22
71 Holly Hill 11,665 993 $696,304 34.94% 8.51 8.1% 40.15
72 Safety Harbor 16,937 2,205 $489,534 23.31% 13.02 4.1% 40.09
73 Aventura 36,307 7,165 $562,983 21.47% 19.73 5.1% 40.01
74 Palm Harbor 59,147 6,846 $379,854 27.58% 11.57 5.2% 39.93
75 Lake Magdalene 29,167 3,560 $807,001 25.65% 12.21 6.1% 39.93
76 Mount Dora 12,514 1,907 $567,293 27.11% 15.24 6.6% 39.75
77 Casselberry 26,376 2,840 $541,557 33.13% 10.77 7.7% 39.72
78 New Smyrna Beach 22,775 3,197 $296,098 23.71% 14.04 3.4% 39.68
79 Merritt Island 34,731 4,145 $385,100 28.13% 11.93 6.2% 39.62
80 Iona 13,784 1,421 $320,892 24.98% 10.31 3.4% 39.60
81 Lighthouse Point 10,550 2,141 $270,624 21.67% 20.29 6.5% 39.57
82 Cypress Lake 11,674 1,151 $388,990 29.80% 9.86 6.2% 39.54
83 Bradenton 50,329 5,641 $786,788 30.69% 11.21 7.8% 39.53
84 Panama City Beach 11,750 1,710 $567,851 26.49% 14.55 5.9% 39.51
85 Estero 23,011 2,417 $434,674 23.54% 10.50 3.7% 39.50
86 Punta Gorda 16,796 2,351 $414,742 22.54% 14.00 4.0% 39.37
87 Plantation 86,999 12,512 $678,630 24.70% 14.38 5.8% 39.09
88 Bonita Springs 45,243 5,340 $578,661 26.16% 11.80 4.8% 39.01
89 Tavares 14,133 1,279 $473,661 26.43% 9.05 5.2% 38.96
90 Tallahassee 183,638 15,791 $819,007 31.40% 8.60 8.5% 38.85
91 Wright 24,892 1,592 $444,624 33.73% 6.40 6.6% 38.81
92 Callaway 14,491 564 $484,787 35.99% 3.89 6.6% 38.55
93 Lynn Haven 18,743 1,214 $1,103,301 23.15% 6.48 4.3% 38.55
94 Opa-locka 15,529 2,741 $653,695 22.40% 17.65 5.8% 38.46
95 Lakeside 32,100 2,549 $466,519 33.35% 7.94 7.7% 38.39
96 Miami Beach 89,412 15,971 $434,606 18.72% 17.86 4.0% 38.35
97 Niceville 13,217 1,540 $490,391 23.25% 11.65 4.2% 38.32
98 Plant City 35,398 3,344 $1,081,701 24.94% 9.45 7.3% 38.13
99 Kendall 77,018 12,126 $723,759 22.83% 15.74 6.1% 38.12
100 Lakeland Highlands 11,389 1,237 $292,005 28.78% 10.86 6.9% 37.99
101 Cocoa 17,196 1,935 $996,990 28.68% 11.25 10.1% 37.99
102 St. Petersburg 246,642 25,605 $1,129,849 23.26% 10.38 7.4% 37.91
103 Palmetto Bay 23,863 3,046 $762,598 26.30% 12.76 6.1% 37.91
104 Westview 10,333 888 $2,143,870 16.78% 8.59 6.9% 37.77
105 Brandon 105,020 8,748 $514,617 26.14% 8.33 4.8% 37.74
106 Zephyrhills 13,693 1,090 $969,568 22.84% 7.96 6.1% 37.73
107 Oakland Park 42,217 6,904 $580,319 31.00% 16.35 10.9% 37.69
108 Town ‘n’ Country 80,221 8,131 $1,506,802 22.30% 10.14 8.3% 37.68
109 Haines City 20,844 1,767 $538,826 27.33% 8.48 5.3% 37.62
110 Upper Grand Lagoon 14,272 1,207 $414,925 26.84% 8.46 5.3% 37.37
111 Oviedo 34,595 3,498 $346,489 30.59% 10.11 6.2% 37.24
112 Palm Valley 20,147 2,380 $344,934 21.68% 11.81 4.5% 37.23
113 Ensley 19,931 1,673 $659,522 30.60% 8.39 8.8% 37.08
114 Sanford 54,170 5,117 $944,349 28.73% 9.45 9.4% 36.96
115 Riviera Beach 32,814 2,964 $1,448,881 30.03% 9.03 11.6% 36.94
116 Palm River-Clair Mel 21,605 1,613 $2,303,147 20.71% 7.47 10.5% 36.94
117 Key Largo 10,959 2,187 $250,437 18.66% 19.96 5.0% 36.93
118 Delray Beach 61,875 9,294 $668,467 25.56% 15.02 8.4% 36.90
119 Davie 93,842 12,341 $651,156 23.43% 13.15 6.7% 36.83
120 Wilton Manors 11,868 1,862 $477,258 24.65% 15.69 8.4% 36.83
121 Sunrise 86,834 11,394 $1,058,873 21.39% 13.12 7.1% 36.81
122 Titusville 43,902 3,327 $447,595 27.80% 7.58 7.0% 36.75
123 Gulf Gate Estates 10,962 1,412 $518,475 23.16% 12.88 6.1% 36.73
124 Clermont 29,048 3,610 $563,401 22.96% 12.43 6.4% 36.72
125 Dania Beach 30,076 3,778 $680,384 28.59% 12.56 9.8% 36.68
126 Lockhart 13,889 1,059 $669,556 30.03% 7.62 8.7% 36.66
127 Palm City 23,466 3,358 $358,046 20.10% 14.31 6.0% 36.66
128 Temple Terrace 24,889 2,067 $942,818 24.77% 8.30 7.6% 36.65
129 Ocoee 37,084 3,555 $1,354,097 23.43% 9.59 8.0% 36.56
130 Jensen Beach 11,819 1,776 $341,581 21.62% 15.03 7.0% 36.52
131 Dunedin 35,421 3,618 $317,621 21.86% 10.21 4.9% 36.44
132 Sunset 17,618 2,540 $252,395 25.91% 14.42 5.8% 36.23
133 Apopka 43,137 3,541 $861,651 23.84% 8.21 6.6% 36.08
134 Miami 407,526 85,143 $772,006 17.77% 20.89 8.1% 36.04
135 Weston 66,435 10,226 $697,885 20.10% 15.39 6.3% 35.85
136 The Villages 57,120 2,047 $611,295 15.00% 3.58 1.7% 35.84
137 Keystone 22,335 2,749 $267,491 19.50% 12.31 3.8% 35.84
138 Elfers 13,700 1,258 $434,035 25.83% 9.18 6.9% 35.79
139 Eustis 18,820 1,718 $429,106 25.49% 9.13 7.2% 35.71
140 Port Orange 56,585 4,686 $453,599 20.21% 8.28 4.7% 35.69
141 Lake City 12,111 3,580 $666,469 26.56% 29.56 17.1% 35.64
142 Lady Lake 14,047 1,029 $482,512 22.16% 7.33 5.4% 35.64
143 Middleburg 12,375 1,131 $287,553 25.55% 9.14 6.5% 35.50
144 South Daytona 12,277 1,190 $407,855 24.71% 9.69 7.4% 35.45
145 Port Charlotte 55,204 3,509 $748,974 24.74% 6.36 7.3% 35.44
146 Vero Beach South 22,373 2,260 $443,837 25.80% 10.10 8.9% 35.43
147 Fort Pierce 42,395 3,651 $766,221 29.06% 8.61 10.0% 35.42
148 Hudson 11,738 1,426 $398,523 20.06% 12.15 6.5% 35.40
149 Bayshore Gardens 17,231 1,059 $366,045 25.97% 6.15 5.9% 35.27
150 Egypt Lake-Leto 37,179 3,713 $831,016 23.43% 9.99 7.9% 35.20
151 Westchase 22,410 1,870 $299,467 23.80% 8.34 6.5% 35.09
152 Wekiwa Springs 22,779 3,032 $219,092 20.55% 13.31 6.1% 35.05
153 North Fort Myers 39,283 3,325 $310,740 20.24% 8.46 5.5% 34.99
154 Rockledge 25,202 2,610 $423,148 21.88% 10.36 6.7% 34.98
155 Crestview 21,659 2,265 $405,489 23.00% 10.46 5.7% 34.90
156 East Lake 32,227 3,208 $291,231 18.45% 9.95 5.0% 34.84
157 West Pensacola 19,818 1,010 $937,541 35.05% 5.10 13.4% 34.67
158 Holiday 20,600 1,846 $1,084,642 19.23% 8.96 8.2% 34.62
159 Port Salerno 10,079 1,089 $204,885 20.39% 10.80 6.1% 34.55
160 Yulee 11,459 845 $406,873 23.55% 7.37 6.4% 34.51
161 Boynton Beach 69,257 8,843 $526,582 24.08% 12.77 9.2% 34.46
162 Hollywood 143,273 21,022 $528,182 21.69% 14.67 8.8% 34.24
163 Lutz 20,052 2,742 $250,587 17.76% 13.67 6.1% 34.14
164 Wellington 57,713 7,372 $278,624 22.52% 12.77 6.2% 34.02
165 Lake Butler 16,555 1,322 $235,942 23.90% 7.99 3.5% 33.89
166 Cooper City 30,717 3,354 $314,023 21.97% 10.92 6.0% 33.76
167 Winter Garden 35,750 3,542 $450,643 22.02% 9.91 6.6% 33.63
168 Jasmine Estates 18,377 1,088 $339,922 29.50% 5.92 9.0% 33.57
169 Wesley Chapel 44,982 1,754 $319,883 24.29% 3.90 5.5% 33.47
170 Coral Springs 123,476 16,961 $436,584 23.67% 13.74 8.8% 33.37
171 Pace 20,333 756 $287,968 22.62% 3.72 5.1% 33.15
172 Sunny Isles Beach 21,167 3,287 $196,639 12.29% 15.53 3.4% 33.04
173 Land O’ Lakes 32,831 4,882 $195,332 15.81% 14.87 5.8% 32.90
174 San Carlos Park 18,459 1,458 $492,038 24.28% 7.90 8.3% 32.89
175 Kissimmee 61,889 9,103 $421,926 19.96% 14.71 8.3% 32.71
176 Coconut Creek 54,213 4,947 $788,502 16.70% 9.13 6.7% 32.71
177 Palm Coast 76,455 7,093 $371,823 18.82% 9.28 6.0% 32.66
178 Ruskin 17,311 1,264 $379,813 17.72% 7.30 4.6% 32.57
179 Gulfport 12,079 1,206 $154,122 18.24% 9.98 5.8% 32.50
180 University Park 25,301 3,958 $170,430 14.35% 15.64 4.3% 32.42
181 Hallandale Beach 37,758 5,964 $257,932 18.68% 15.80 8.5% 32.40
182 Oak Ridge 20,500 1,466 $1,387,948 18.01% 7.15 8.6% 32.16
183 Lantana 10,669 1,273 $398,010 23.57% 11.93 9.4% 32.07
184 Sebastian 22,154 2,048 $281,495 19.04% 9.24 7.3% 32.00
185 South Venice 14,545 1,446 $188,514 18.33% 9.94 6.4% 31.84
186 Conway 15,480 1,466 $130,853 18.08% 9.47 5.4% 31.78
187 Margate 54,281 6,354 $382,090 20.27% 11.71 8.6% 31.76
188 Coral Terrace 24,629 4,094 $268,246 14.63% 16.62 6.5% 31.74
189 Ojus 18,685 2,444 $125,204 15.06% 13.08 5.1% 31.69
190 Tamarac 61,586 7,046 $440,713 15.64% 11.44 7.0% 31.59
191 Bayonet Point 25,901 1,851 $157,147 18.53% 7.15 6.0% 31.46
192 Pembroke Pines 157,324 18,865 $372,839 17.32% 11.99 6.9% 31.38
193 Fruit Cove 29,647 1,607 $178,271 19.23% 5.42 4.4% 31.34
194 Westchester 30,113 5,592 $180,659 13.43% 18.57 6.6% 31.20
195 Gibsonton 15,795 1,106 $481,839 16.18% 7.00 5.8% 31.08
196 Florida Ridge 17,283 1,213 $497,858 20.36% 7.02 9.0% 31.07
197 Sarasota Springs 15,296 2,080 $165,662 16.35% 13.60 7.6% 30.99
198 Palm Bay 103,602 8,020 $598,029 18.30% 7.74 8.0% 30.84
199 Warrington 13,424 898 $193,455 24.39% 6.69 8.9% 30.79
200 Winter Springs 33,438 3,195 $151,370 19.19% 9.55 8.1% 30.61
201 Edgewater 20,799 2,406 $228,685 15.42% 11.57 7.1% 30.46
202 Bloomingdale 22,096 2,153 $189,131 16.63% 9.74 6.3% 30.20
203 Miami Springs 14,061 2,190 $236,395 13.61% 15.57 8.1% 30.06
204 Parkland 24,888 2,891 $163,225 17.78% 11.62 4.7% 29.84
205 Cape Coral 158,415 18,476 $255,031 18.22% 11.66 9.0% 29.79
206 North Miami Beach 42,349 7,182 $362,505 18.14% 16.96 10.8% 29.71
207 Royal Palm Beach 34,699 3,670 $379,471 16.65% 10.58 7.5% 29.70
208 Hialeah 228,943 44,336 $205,400 11.65% 19.37 7.9% 29.41
209 Riverview 73,767 2,902 $718,882 14.96% 3.93 6.3% 29.27
210 Goldenrod 12,479 907 $477,723 20.29% 7.27 9.4% 29.26
211 Greenacres 37,940 2,878 $277,029 20.71% 7.59 8.5% 29.23
212 Citrus Park 24,915 2,452 $391,573 17.70% 9.84 8.4% 29.12
213 Forest City 15,670 1,426 $242,788 18.65% 9.10 8.1% 29.05
214 Gonzalez 14,198 1,076 $198,987 15.06% 7.58 6.5% 29.03
215 Spring Hill 99,779 7,604 $223,069 19.33% 7.62 9.3% 28.83
216 St. Cloud 37,905 2,713 $382,173 19.24% 7.16 9.0% 28.60
217 Fountainebleau 52,528 9,376 $516,669 8.47% 17.85 7.6% 28.60
218 Apollo Beach 15,348 1,167 $207,130 14.65% 7.60 6.5% 28.55
219 Palm Springs 20,248 2,073 $207,861 23.30% 10.24 11.9% 28.52
220 Miami Shores 10,529 1,551 $277,184 14.38% 14.73 7.3% 28.52
221 Hialeah Gardens 22,136 3,467 $388,563 13.12% 15.66 8.8% 28.45
222 Florida City 11,594 661 $670,203 29.80% 5.70 14.4% 28.39
223 North Miami 59,952 7,829 $283,888 16.91% 13.06 9.4% 28.31
224 Myrtle Grove 17,367 1,118 $195,287 13.77% 6.44 6.0% 28.19
225 Union Park 10,297 1,076 $238,764 18.31% 10.45 9.4% 28.05
226 Azalea Park 13,310 1,247 $537,395 19.97% 9.37 11.5% 27.96
227 North Port 57,554 4,913 $170,471 14.61% 8.54 7.6% 27.93
228 Tamiami 55,897 8,673 $104,159 11.22% 15.52 6.3% 27.71
229 Homosassa Springs 13,605 1,070 $242,872 18.13% 7.86 10.8% 27.46
230 Cheval 10,736 879 $143,562 7.28% 8.19 5.0% 27.37
231 Valrico 36,043 1,330 $125,975 13.01% 3.69 4.8% 27.31
232 Immokalee 22,747 1,320 $464,260 15.98% 5.8 8.9% 27.24
233 Lake Worth 35,401 5,395 $356,360 19.98% 15.24 13.8% 27.14
234 Bellview 22,976 1,281 $169,048 15.69% 5.58 7.8% 27.13
235 Lakewood Park 10,939 663 $78,021 8.45% 6.06 5.3% 26.87
236 The Crossings 23,865 3,049 $144,665 10.50% 12.78 7.4% 26.84
237 Gladeview 11,038 1,365 $995,584 19.19% 12.37 16.3% 26.71
238 Hunters Creek 22,385 1,101 $173,002 15.26% 4.92 6.3% 26.68
239 Country Walk 16,185 1,587 $291,919 17.90% 9.81 7.8% 26.64
240 Port St. John 11,873 756 $148,786 13.36% 6.37 7.6% 26.44
241 Port St. Lucie 166,641 15,752 $348,481 14.61% 9.45 9.7% 26.37
242 West Park 14,415 1,403 $577,399 19.60% 9.73 12.1% 26.31
243 Four Corners 28,580 1,080 $798,093 11.02% 3.78 7.3% 26.15
244 Golden Gate 28,250 1,737 $146,512 17.90% 6.15 8.4% 26.09
245 Country Club 46,575 4,475 $152,703 8.38% 9.61 5.2% 25.95
246 Homestead 61,714 6,340 $346,216 12.10% 10.27 8.7% 25.9
247 The Hammocks 53,541 6,337 $167,651 9.48% 11.84 7.0% 25.31
248 Miramar 124,900 14,500 $543,595 9.95% 11.61 8.5% 25.31
249 Deltona 85,415 6,291 $116,768 11.00% 7.37 7.2% 25.12
250 Kendale Lakes 58,573 8,716 $98,881 8.58% 14.88 7.8% 24.98
251 Sweetwater 19,005 2,763 $44,137 6.66% 14.54 6.3% 24.95
252 South Miami Heights 37,573 4,739 $329,109 4.43% 12.61 7.0% 24.55
253 Miami Gardens 109,150 11,518 $468,188 10.74% 10.55 10.5% 23.9
254 West Perrine 11,070 1,001 $123,003 14.19% 9.04 10.2% 23.85
255 North Lauderdale 41,778 4,985 $158,985 10.73% 11.93 9.1% 23.83
256 Kendall West 36,691 5,489 $60,176 3.53% 14.96 6.4% 23.65
257 Lauderhill 68,216 6,888 $206,391 12.70% 10.1 11.3% 23.4
258 Golden Glades 32,909 3,393 $275,190 11.41% 10.31 10.9% 22.99
259 Pine Hills 63,924 2,679 $132,855 19.67% 4.19 12.1% 22.78
260 Lehigh Acres 102,127 5,742 $222,670 12.80% 5.62 10.9% 22.61
261 West Little River 31,476 4,379 $178,746 8.15% 13.91 11.6% 22.1
262 Richmond West 34,119 3,964 $45,052 6.51% 11.62 7.2% 21.74
263 Palmetto Estates 14,939 2,095 $75,818 2.96% 14.02 7.9% 21.58
264 Pinewood 16,624 1,666 $246,070 10.68% 10.02 12.0% 21.48
265 Leisure City 23,420 2,272 $105,165 8.14% 9.7 10.2% 20.82
266 Princeton 25,160 1,674 $182,243 8.18% 6.65 9.7% 19.81
267 Meadow Woods 25,269 1,796 $111,152 7.46% 7.11 9.4% 19.63
268 Poinciana 56,898 1,725 $112,230 4.99% 3.03 11.2% 15.54

 

Methodology


We analyzed 268 places in Florida with populations of 10,000 and above. We didn’t include two places with fewer than 500 businesses and 37 places without business survey data. NerdWallet calculated the score for each location using the following criteria:

Business climate, 65% of the overall score, is based on three metrics from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners.

  • Average revenue of businesses is 20% of the score. A higher average contributed to a higher score.
  • Percentage of businesses with paid employees is 25% of the score. A higher percentage contributed to a higher score.
  • Businesses per 100 people is 20% of the score. A higher number contributed to a higher score.

Local economic health, 35% of the overall score, is based on three metrics from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.

  • Median annual income is 10% of the score. A higher median income contributed to a higher score.
  • Median annual housing costs are 10% of the score. Lower median costs contributed to a higher score.
  • Unemployment rate for residents over 16 years old is 15% of the score. A lower rate contributed to a higher score.

Insider tips: Sign up for our monthly small-business newsletter.

NerdWallet staff writer Teddy Nykiel contributed to this article.

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Coral Gables, Florida, image via iStock.