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Miami Living is Best For the Young and Single

As a young person with no responsibility, Miami may prove to be a perfect place for you to live.
April 14, 2007 By Matt Meltzer in Miami: Local News  | 145 Comments


If you are young and single, there is no greater city to live in then Miami. Beautiful people, beautiful weather, nonstop nightlife and a steady flow of tourists make this the best part of the country if you are devoid of any significant responsibility. Or morals. People in your demographic are really the only sane people who should ever consider moving here.

If money is no object, I would highly suggest living on South Beach. Even if you have a “real” job your commute will not be too difficult and the only real downside is the incessant noise and traffic that make life in SoBe occasionally unpleasant. But you are walking distance from nightlife and the sand. Rent, however, may prove to be a bit of a problem as a studio will cost you at least $900 a month, and a 1-bedroom is in the $1200-$1500 range. Living with roommates will find you shelling out $800 for the right to call South Beach home. This may seem cheap if you are coming from New York or Boston, but remember that Miami is one of the worst cities in the country for cost of living keeping pace with salaries. And as a young person your salary may not allow you to live it up as much as you’d like.


If the beach is not so much your scene, the Brickell area is your next best bet. While you may have noticed one or two construction cranes as you perused the Miami skyline, do not be fooled. There is absolutely no buying boom going on in the Downtown/Brickell area. The first thing you need to learn about Miami is we put about as much effort into strategic planning as we do into learning English. So all those new buildings that are going up? Most of them have sold about six units, and those were to people who got the Spanish language brochure and couldn’t understand it. If you are in a position to buy, wait a little while as we are in a serious downward spiral. Rent somewhere older in Brickell and you will be minutes from South Beach, Coconut Grove, Downtown, and very close to I-95.


Coconut Grove is another perfect location for a young person moving to Miami. Well, SOME of Coconut Grove. The other parts are perfect for a young person if they happen to be selling crack. When shopping for an apartment in the Grove, make sure you are east of the CVS pharmacy on Grand Avenue, and by no means even look anywhere that calls itself “West Grove.” If you choose to move to this area, you will be able to walk to most bars, restaurants, the gym and Biscayne Bay. Or at least make a short drive of it. This area is popular among University of Miami students, especially at night, and you will not have too many problems meeting people if you move here. Rent is slightly cheaper than in South Beach or Brickell, but still more than you would find in the far suburbs.


Should you have slightly tighter budgetary limitations, I might also suggest the up-and-coming Design District. Of course this area has been up-and-coming for about 10 years and still has yet to arrive, but it is a very young area and still reasonably priced. It begins just North of the new Performing Arts Center and continues north to about 60th Street. Again, make sure you do not move ANYHERE west of US-1 in this section of town. Because while the apartment building by the bay are quite nice and well-located, going west of the highway puts you in a neighborhood that will vaguely remind you of scenes from “Black Hawk Down.”

If you are real short on money, consider Little Havana. Granted, you will be the only English-speaker on your block and you may run across the occasional rooster or stray dog walking down the street, but the location can’t be beaten. You are at the crossroads of two major freeways and only minutes from Downtown, Coconut Grove, South Beach, the Airport and pretty much anywhere else worth going in Miami. Rent for a 1 bedroom is rarely over $700 a month, and if you have a roommate you can get away with paying less than $500 if you’re lucky. The inherent downside is that it is not exactly the best part of town. Then again, it is far form the worst.


And on that note, you may be tempted by the $100-$150 a month cheaper rent you find in areas known as “Kendall” or “Westchester” or “Sweetwater,” but be advised: When you are sitting in unmoving traffic on Kendall Drive or US-1 trying to get back to your cheaper apartment, paying $150 to not ever have to do it again doesn’t seem so bad. These areas are prime examples of Miami’s lack of strategic planning and not only offer all the disadvantages of Suburbia (boring neighborhoods, inability to walk to anything, no nightlife) they also have all the disadvantages of Urban Life (traffic, unpleasant people, traffic). So by no means should any single person under about 35 even consider moving to this part of town. Consider it wasted youth.

As a young person with no responsibility, Miami may prove to be a perfect place for you to live. Provided you are comfortable with the aforementioned culture shock, you may find the lifestyle here perfectly suited to your social agenda. If you have money, you can get a place in South Beach or Brickell and really take advantage of the most Miami has to offer. But even if your budget is slightly smaller, you can still find a decent place to live in an exciting part of town. And those parts of town are NOT called Kendall.

Related Categories: Miami: Local News,

About the Author: Matt Meltzer is a featured columnist at Miami Beach 411.

See more articles by Matt Meltzer.

See more articles by Matt Meltzer

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145 Comments on

"Miami Living is Best For the Young and Single"

Stefan says:

Dear Matt,  thanks for the well wtitten info.
I’m heading over to Craigslist now to check out some rentals.

Posted on 11/10/2007 at 10:38 AM

Miami Nightlife says:

It is nice information.

Posted on 08/28/2008 at 7:32 AM

CH says:

Really it is great News about Miami.

Posted on 10/14/2008 at 8:01 AM

Trevor says:

Thx for all the great 411,
def helped me out…

Posted on 10/20/2008 at 5:03 PM

Crystal says:

So racist, and I’m not even Latin descent.

Posted on 12/26/2008 at 4:48 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

You don’t live here, do you? Cultural conflict is a fact of life in Miami. Pointing it out as racism basically means you can’t complain about negative traits of another culture without being labeled a racist. I never see those comments on “Stuff White People Like.” I’m just sayin…..

Posted on 12/27/2008 at 9:27 PM

Al says:

How about for a 32 year old single working in Hialeah near the Opa Locka airport? Is there a low crime area that has reasonably priced apartments?

Posted on 04/27/2009 at 11:41 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Not Hialeah or Opa Locka, that’s for sure. Perhaps Miami Lakes would be a reasonable commute for you from that area. Doral is also not bad and shouldn’t cause you too many traffic headaches.

Posted on 04/28/2009 at 7:47 PM

Al says:

Thanks Matt! So you would go with Miami Lakes over Doral? I was kind of thinking Miami Lakes, but haven’t looked into renting prices yet.

Posted on 05/01/2009 at 12:18 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

I like Miami Lakes better, because Doral to me has a lot more traffic. But take a look and see which you like better.

Posted on 05/04/2009 at 9:48 PM

djflaxer says:

I just graduated from BU and want to relocate to miami. My friend and I are looking for a two bedroom around 1600 a month. We want to be on the beach and preferably in a predominantly young/white area with good nightlife. Anywhere aside from south beach possibly a bit further up but less family oriented than surfside?

Posted on 06/09/2009 at 1:42 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

You’re not finding a white area in Miami that isn’t called “Pinecrest.” And that is a looong way from the beach, my friend.

If you want what you are looking for, I suggest Ft. Lauderdale, near the downtown area. You can find 2 BRs for just over the figure you stated, and there’s good nightlife, a more American feel, and relatively reasonable distance to the beach.

If you want to live in a beach area with nightlife, you’re going to need more like 1800-2000 for a decent 2 BR.

But that sort of young, American nightlife vibe you are looking for doesn’t really exist in Miami. Maybe in Coconut Grove, but even then, you’re not on the beach.

Where you moving from?

Posted on 06/09/2009 at 10:24 PM

Aaron in Miramar says:

“We want to be on the beach and preferably in a predominantly young/white area with good nightlife.”

First of all, if one of your main priorities is the area be “white” then you’re already starting off on the wrong foot by moving to Miami.  But being from Boston I’m assuming that you just mean “non-black” and low-crime (take that for what it’s worth). 

There are plenty of areas in Miami that have heavy caucasian populations aside from Pinecrest such as Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Aventura, The Hammocks, Sunny Isles, Key Biscayne, etc.  The issue with your criteria is wanting to be close to nightlife and the beach.  That will pretty much limit you living somewhere just north of South Beach or commuting from Coral Gables,Coconut Grove or Brickell while still enjoying the possibility of an American born neighbor with local nightlife.  In today’s market, $1600 is definitely workable in most locations and you’re really not going to see much of a dropoff by wimping out and moving to Ft. Lauderdale. 

That being said, DO NOT sacrifice proximity (i.e. moving to a Miami suburb such as Pinecrest of The Hammocks) in the hope of recreating the neighborhood you grew up in with a tropical climate.  The drivetime to the beach or bar/club is not worth living next door to Chucky from Cleveland.  Nonetheless, if you’re a junior member of the Aryan nation then maybe northern Broward county of Palm Beach would be more suitable.  Otherwise check out Key Biscayne, Brickell or Miami Beach proper to be close to the beach/nightlife and still have a chance to feel as though you’re in an American city with a dose of Latin flavor.

Posted on 06/10/2009 at 9:21 AM

Aaron in Miramar says:

* Pinecrest OR The Hammocks.  Pinecrest of the Hammocks was a tennis club I used to belong to in Des Moines.

Posted on 06/10/2009 at 9:44 AM

Gerry says:

Well first of all don’t forget for just $2.00 a trip back and forth you can take the Metrorail and there are buses to take you to most of Miami-Dade County if you don’t drive and its better than sitting in traffic too. So there are easier ways to traveling in the city because of Mass Transit. There are also buses in surrounding counties that take you as far as Key West and even to Palm Beach.

Posted on 06/15/2009 at 12:39 PM

emlie says:

hello, so me and 4 other girls are about to head to Southbeach in mid-August. we are desperate to know what kind of fun and trouble we Should get in to. Do you have any tips on clubs, places to eat, etc. and what some good tips to bypass any long lines..oh yeah, and of course, good places to shop on a budget. I’m talking like, outdoor markets or stores where one ridiculous shirt isn’t hundreds of dollars…PLEASE HELP!

Posted on 07/18/2009 at 2:16 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey Emlie -

That’s a realy broad question and not one that is easy to answer. I highly suggest posing that question in our forums, which you can find by following the link at the top of the page called “Discuss.” It’s at the bottom of the banner.

This way, all the good people who are on this site can help you instead of just me. I mean, I’m pretty awesome and all, but there are folks here who some some things that I don’t.

Posted on 07/20/2009 at 6:26 PM

emilie schiller says:

will do appreciate it smile

Posted on 07/21/2009 at 9:33 AM

sevscott says:

I live in Atlanta GA. I am single and 36. Where would be a safe area to live in close to zip code 33186? I am considering a job in the zip code 33186. Any advise?

Posted on 08/07/2009 at 12:46 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

33186 is West Kendall. Not my favorite part of town, but very affordable, and relatively safe. You should be able to find something there. But it’s a long way from the action, if that’s something you are looking for.

Posted on 08/07/2009 at 6:48 PM

Malisa emily says:

hello my name is Malisa Emily from Ghana,am a lady of 25 years old single never marry,and i have never travel to Miami Beach before so i would like to have a man there who like to be with a black lady like me should contact me on .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Posted on 08/24/2009 at 3:17 AM

Josie says:

Hi there,

I’m from Toronto, Ontario and me and a friend of mine were thinking about getting an appt in Miami. As well, we are both 22 years old. We both love the latin scene and would like to find something in that area. Would you be able to suggest an area for us with reasonable rent.

As well, I’m a Phyisotherapist Assistant..and looking to get a job out there in the same field. Do you think that would be possible? Thanks in advance.

Posted on 09/21/2009 at 8:30 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

If you like the Latin Scene (I’ll just warn you that in moderation a lot of people like it, when it’s inescapable a lot less do) I think Little Havana would be the right place for you. Rents are reasonable, and you are very close to the major hospital center, which would be a good place for you to work given your field.

Also, people may tell you that area is dangerous, but I’ve lived there and it really isn’t bad. Don’t go strolling around at night and you’re fine. Just make sure you lock your doors.

Posted on 09/23/2009 at 10:27 AM

Lauren says:

wow, incredibly racist.  i’ll look elsewhere for reliable advice about relocating

Posted on 10/14/2009 at 5:47 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Wow, Lauren. You’re honestly offended by my describing an rea called “Little Havana” as being prodominantly Spanish-speaking? Thicken up your skin a little, racial tension is a huuuuge part of living in Miami. Pretending it doesn’t exist is fooling yourself about the entire Dade County experience.

Posted on 10/19/2009 at 12:15 PM

Naomi says:

hey, i’m 23 female, and I am moving to miami(have not decided what part yet) i’ve been to south beach twice, and i love it. I’m on a budget, and in need of looking for an apartment or room mate. I saved up for at least 5 months of rent, i’m wondering about the job situation in this economy. I will work in a darn burger king if i have to. Ive tried reading up on the job market up there, but i keep getting 2 different sides of it. What do you think about the job market with the economy the way it is now—what are my chances?

Posted on 11/15/2009 at 2:10 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Honestly, job chances here are not good. When the economy is decent, it can take up to 6 months to find work here. More if you don’t speak Spanish. And even if you do, it can often not be in a field you want and may not pay enough for you to live in South Beach.

If you want to work at Burger King, that’s probably attainable, but you will not make enough to live here. You can try the service industry, which is always hiring but has very fluctuating money. Like if you can’t get on somewhere good, you may find yourself struggling to make rent. My advice is to not move here unless you have a job lined up.

Do you have 5 months’ rent saved up, or 5 months’ living expenses? Remember, to move in anywhere you typically need 3 months’ worth of rent, plus money for power deposits, internet setup, and the like. I recommend at least $8000 before you head here.

And might I ask why you want to move here? If it’s only becasue you went to South Beach twice and loved it, you will be very disappointed in what living here is like. It’s nothing like being here on vacation. Nothing. I mean, it ain’t bad, but it’s not at all like what you experience when you visit. It’s a real hard place to live, especially if you are not Hispanic. Good luck.

Posted on 11/15/2009 at 10:36 PM

Naomi says:

I’m in Jersey now-and the job market sucks. I’ve been laid off twice and the only jobs over here are temporary jobs or low paying jobs. The rent down there is about the same as over her (might be more expensive down here). I will work myself from the bottom up again. I need a change, hate the cold and snow- and this dirt jersey is bringing out the worst in me. I’m not trying to move to party or for a vacation. For me this is a fresh start, i enjoy the weather and the scenery and the people. Miami is a great fresh start, plus i can still continue to go to school down there.
I am spanish, and i have enough to cover rent even if i do not land a job right away. I was also looking into rooming with someone—which would be a lot cheaper. Thanks for the advice, your page is helpful.

Posted on 11/16/2009 at 12:24 AM

Eduardo says:


I just moved here and had alot of succes sfinding a job as a waiter at some higher end places. However I do have 5 years experience which I’m sure helped a lot. With that, if you are confident, outgoing, and have some experience it shouldnt be too difficult to find work in the hospitatlity industy.

Posted on 11/16/2009 at 3:10 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Thanks, Naomi. Best of luck to you and let us know how it goes.

Posted on 11/16/2009 at 9:21 PM

Naomi says:

Thanks Eduardo. I will keep you posted.

Posted on 11/17/2009 at 11:18 PM

Bobby says:

MATT !!!!! let me start off being saying MIAMI is a great place to live for any age . I lived in many cities and they are pretty much the same ok there a lot of spanish but MATT thats what makes it so fun . Me i am greek I lived in miami when i was younger now i am 39 and cant wait to move back the first of the year . People MIAMI is a great place to live ok you have good and bad there , BUT HELLO doesn’t every big city . lol lol . Just find there right people you will be fine . also it is expensive anywhere , But if you are thriffy you can do alot trust me . Good luck everyone . And god bless MIAMI is great . BOBBY

Posted on 11/23/2009 at 10:54 AM

Ki Ki says:

All this info is awesome! I stayed in South Beach for two weeks on vacation with friends and loved it. I’m relocating and it’s between NYC and Miami… I’m not really the “partying” type, although I have my moments. So, is Kendall a “GOOD” area “living wise” and just not your favorite due to the limitations to all that is “Miami”, like nightlife, beach, etc or is it just NOT a good area?

What about an in-between spot? Like in-between the beach, nightlife, and quiet when I want it? or perhaps need it? IF I could get a one bedroom for like $1000-$1100 or a 2 bedroom for like $1600-$2000 a month that would be idea.

Posted on 11/29/2009 at 12:47 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Kendall is not a bad area crime wise. It’s actually fairly clean and the houses and apartments aren’t bad. But the traffic and distance from everything makes it a pretty lousy place to live.

In that range, a place like north Coral Gables would work. South Miami is a nice city with affordable rents and is relatively convenient. I think you could probably even find something in Brickell at that range, that is near downtown. But really, you want to live near where you work. A bad commute here will ruin your experience, and public transportation is not an option.

Posted on 11/29/2009 at 7:42 PM

Ki Ki says:

Thank you SO much!! Wow….Talk about helpful! You’re making my search SO easy. I won’t be working so, that’s not a big deal. I just want a GREAT place to live so that I can fully enjoy all that it has to offer. Seems like Brickell is for me. Not smack dab in the middle of everything, but close enough when I want it.

Thanks A LOT Matt!!!

Posted on 11/29/2009 at 8:09 PM

Bobby says:

KI KI !!! I am sure you will LOVE miami its like a new york but sunnier . lol my sister lives in NY and i go alot. But MIAMI has this kick to it that you would love . Just feels alive and its full of everything to do under the sun . kendall is cool might save more money there but brickell has its own expensive taste . You will see when you get there . I think you might want 2 try and share a room with someone get the feel of MIAMI there get a place of your own . This way you are NOT tied into anything when you get there .

Posted on 11/30/2009 at 1:33 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Not working? I’m not even going to ask…

Bobby, Miami is NOTHING like New York. I mean NOTHING. And Kendall is only “fun” when you’re leaving it.

Posted on 11/30/2009 at 11:00 PM

Kim says:

Hey..Question. Is Bonita Drive (in Miami) a good area?

Posted on 12/04/2009 at 6:50 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

If I’m correct, that’s in the northern part of Miami Beach. It’s a nice enough area, certainly not dangerous. But not glamorous either. It’s not South Beach, ya know?

Posted on 12/04/2009 at 9:39 PM

Lilly says:

Hi Matt! So glad to find this website! I am 24 and relocating to Miami from Boston. I am registered nurse currently, and will have a Masters in child and adolescent psych nursing when I finish in May. I’m interested in working as a registered nurse in Miami, while I look for supervision to work under my MA, and possibly go back for a second specialty at UMIAMI. ....Okay soo I want to be close to the “night life” and the beach, but not too in the mix of the loud noise and constant partying. I’m of Jamaican decent and not afraid of living amongst other cultures. I need to be near a hospital of course, and although I’ve heard I cant avoid the traffic, somewhere where I at least wont go totally insane. Nurses make a lot less in FL from what I’ve read which is a total bummer, but its def where I want to be, lots of family in the state itself. So I am thinking south beach may not be the best place for me if I want to be able to escape from the party life at times. Where do you think would be a good place for me?

Posted on 01/03/2010 at 9:34 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

That really depends on your budget. If you can afford it, Brickell would be an ideal location since you can take the Metrorail to hospitals and it’s got some nightlife. But you can escape it if you want. A 1 BR there will probably run you around $1000 a month, at least.

Coconut Grove isn’t bad either, and commutes won’t be horribe. Again, short-ish drive to a lot of hospitals, and close to nightlife. But again, it’s not cheap there if you want to live in a non-crime ridden area.

Go over to our discussion forums (look under the “discuss” tab up top) and pose this question in the relocation section. Be sure to say what you budget for rent is too, and you can get a wide array of answers from other people too.

Posted on 01/04/2010 at 11:48 AM

Brian says:

I currently live in Puerto Rico and have been to Miami many times.  The absence of customer service and presence of morons who can’t drive can be attributed to the population of people from Puerto/Cuba/etc.  These people have no sense of consideration of other people and how to drive like a normal human being.  PS They’re lazy…extremely lazy so just be ready…

Posted on 02/01/2010 at 3:50 AM

Marie says:


My boyfriend and I are looking to relocate to Miami from Myrtle Beach, SC. I will be working in Miramar, FL however we are 24 and 26 years old, white, college graduates and want to live near the beach and nightlife. He’s big into surfing and we are really looking forward to a new city, new culture and meeting new people. You mentioned that commuting can be a disaster. Am i naive to think that it would be possible for us to live in Miami Beach and make the 30 min commute to Miramar on a daily basis? I don’t know the highways or roads down there so if Mapquest says its a 30 minute drive, how long do you propose realistically it would take me to get to work? Thanks for all the advice!

- Marie

Posted on 03/01/2010 at 5:40 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

30 minutes??! HAHAHAHAHAH!

That drive takes about 30 minutes like late at night when there’s no traffic. But even though that is theoretically a reverse commute, you hit a bad day or an accident or don’t have a SunPass to get into the Express lanes (Which you can’t do if you come over north of the Venetian Causeway) it’s gonna be 45-50 minutes each way. Also, if you live in a part of the beach that’s not near a Causeway entrance, it can take you ten minutes just to get on the freeway. Not to mention if you hit traffic on the Causeway.

I don’t think Lauderdale Beach would be much better, since it’s a long drive to get on 595, and even then you have to drive the hwole length of 595 before heading about 10 minutes south on 75 to get to Miramar.

So, in short, no. If you’re going to be working in Miramar, I’d suggest living somewhere like Hallandale Beach or Aventura if you want to be near the water. Sunny Isles is also a bitch to get to the freeway in the morning. If you want to be near nightlife, you’re SOL if you want a short commute. It all boils down to your priorities in this case.

Also, surfing in South Florida is pretty terrible. The beach is nice to go to and lay out, but not much for recreation.

Let me know if you have any further questions.

Posted on 03/02/2010 at 12:34 AM

Marilyn says:

Hi Matt,

I am considering moving to Miami after my degree programme which is International tourism with human resource management. I currently live in the United Kingdom, London to be precise. I chose Miami because it’s a well known tourist destination but i just dont know exactly where to move to in Miami as i have little knowlegde about the city but one thing i do know is that I’d love to be close to the beach and the night life, basically a place where i can easily socialise. Any advice from you would be highly appreciated.

Marilyn 21yr old female

Posted on 03/28/2010 at 4:56 PM

Jeanne Harms says:

From reading your column I see you deal mostly in where to live.we have the where to live. 25 year old beautiful granddaughter has a condo right across from the Trump towers.It works well for her since she works for W.I.C.and her job is about 15 minutes away.BUT being a family person and all her family is in Texas she is sort of by her self.
Her job is great but the people she deals with every day are poor, married and mostly from other countrys and english is not their first language.
she joined a kick ball league but again not the right place to meet Mr, Right.thought about maybe getting her to find a part time job at some neat gathering place but where?

Any suggestions ? Grandma

Posted on 03/29/2010 at 1:19 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hi Marilyn!

I think South Beach would be the area for you that would best combine the beach and nightlife. But it is also one of the most expensive areas of the city in which to live. Also, if you find yourself with a job a long way from South Beach, the long commute to work may ruin your experience here.

The rule of thumb in Miami is to live as close to your work as possible. Because driving here sucks. It’s a lot easier to do that longer drive once or twice a week to the beach than to do it every day to work, you know?

Jess, one of our resident members, is also from the UK and moved to South Beach about a year and a half ago. She may be able to help you out too. Check out the Forums section of the site and you can pose this question there and get responses from a lot more people too.

Posted on 03/29/2010 at 7:42 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Grandma -

I actually know a lot of people who have met significant others at Kickball, myself included (it didn’t work out, but that had nothing to do with meeting at kickball). But it may not be for everyone. Miami is a hard place to meet people, and Sunny Isles (she’s at that Trump, right?) is not the best place. The demographic isn’t really hers. I think moving somewhere like South Beach or Brickell would probably help.

She is always welcome to come to one of our meetups as well. We’re all nice people and some of the more relaxed ones (and all English speakers!) you’ll find in Miami.

I also encourage you and her to pose this question in our forums section where you can get answers from more people than just me. I know a lot, but I don’t know everything. Id she has any other questions about living here, we are probably the best resource for real information from real locals on the Net.

Posted on 03/29/2010 at 8:10 PM

Marilyn says:

Thank you Matt

Posted on 03/31/2010 at 4:34 AM

Greg says:

Hey Matt,

Have read info with interest.  I’m a Brit, moving to Miami in mid July.  In all likelihood I will soon be working at the airport and the port.  I am guessing I will have about 2000USD at the most for rent and just wondered weather I would find anywhere in SoBe, from what I have read SoFi is best, for that kind of money. 

I’ve been to most parts of the world, have no racial preferences, speak a few languages including mediocre Spanish and like to party.  That said, I am not getting any younger (mid thirties) and need to be relatively serious about work.  Do you think I am on the right track with SoBe or should I be looking somewhere else?

If so do you have any recommendations for accommodation, craigslist looks like it’s full of shit.



Posted on 04/13/2010 at 3:30 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey Greg -

I mean, the Beach is fun, but if you want to be a little more serious I think Brickell might be a better option for you. Still some nightlife but it doesn’t saturate your life. And the Beach is a short drive away (you WILL need a car here, especially if you are working at the airport). If you are working at Port of Miami, you’ll be even closer to work in Brickell.

Insofar as looking for places, I’d recommend you contact a realtor in the area with your price range and where you want to live. Craigslist is shit, and especially here because we have soooo many scam artists. Definitely go through a professional, they’re free for renters and a big help.

I can’t recommend any specifically, but if you go into our discussion forums section and post this question under “Relocation and Living” you can get answers from all sorts of people in the city.

Hope this helps. Hit me up if you require any further assistance.


Posted on 04/13/2010 at 8:19 PM

Jeff says:

Hi Matt,

I’m considering a job in Miami Beach (the jobsite is along Pinetree Dr. just north of 25th St.) and am wondering if there is any chance of finding something decent and affordable (around $1000/mo. for a 1 bedroom) with a commute of 30 minutes or less. 



Posted on 04/15/2010 at 7:32 AM

Greg says:

Thanks Matt,

I’ll look into that, I’ll have a car so it shouldn’t be a problem.

Thanks again,


Posted on 04/15/2010 at 1:45 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Very easily, yes. If you look up in the Mid-to-North Miami Beach area, you’re looking at a 10-15 minute commute and you can find 1 BRs there in the $800-900 range. Not the nicest places, but not dumps either. That’s probably your shortest commute too, as you don’t have to deal with South Beach traffic.

FYI Mid-Beach starts around 41st street. Look for numbers higher than that and the rents are cheaper.

Posted on 04/15/2010 at 7:14 PM

Jeff says:

Great - thanks for the info!


Posted on 04/15/2010 at 7:47 PM

Niko says:

Hey, I’m looking to move to either South Beach or the Brickell area within a year. I do love these areas, but I’m wondering if by living in the Brickell area if I’ll miss out on the social aspect of south beach. I don’t know anyone in miami and I’m a single 27 yr old woman. Brickell apts are really nice and I don’t think I would mind living there, but is it necessary to be on Ocean, collins to meet people and have a good time?

Posted on 04/18/2010 at 2:45 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Niko -

No it is not. Brickell, actually, has a lot of nightlife and a lot of people and a lot going on. And, it’s more like a normal city. Living in South Beach is like Neverland and extremely transient. So if you want to meet people who will be around for a while, Brickell is a much better bet.

Also, you can drive to South Beach in under 15 minutes from there. So if you want somethign different it’s not too tough.

Posted on 04/18/2010 at 3:12 PM

Niko says:

Matt- Thank you for your advice.

Posted on 04/18/2010 at 3:26 PM

John says:

You Said “It’s nothing like being here on vacation. Nothing. I mean, it ain’t bad, but it’s not at all like what you experience when you visit. It’s a real hard place to live, especially if you are not Hispanic.”
Can you explain what you mean by this.
Thanks, John

Posted on 05/09/2010 at 1:04 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

I mean the culture is hard to handle if you are not used to it. Americans are used to being the dominant culture in this country, and in Miami if you are not from a Hispanic background you will find life difficult. People don’t arrive on time, nobody is in much of a rush to do anything, business is conducted with handshakes and lunches and croneyism more than the straight-forward way most Americans are used to. People live at home for, like, ever. There’s a lot of Machismo and traditional gender role expectations. People don’t speak Enlgish, or even attempt to learn. And let’s not even start with the drivers.

My point is, when assessing whether or not Miami is a place you can live, what you really have to ask yourself is if you are comfortable living in another country. Because that’s really what it is.

On vacation, well, it’s just fun and vacation. People don’t get that real life here is a LOT harder.

Posted on 05/10/2010 at 1:10 AM

Nick Selvaggio says:

hey iam 18 years old and iam moving to miami from detroit with my family cause we r opening a fruitmarket here and i was wondering where can an 18 year old go and party

Posted on 06/30/2010 at 10:33 AM

J says:

I can’t stop laughing at some of this…...  So Miami

Posted on 07/17/2010 at 9:50 PM

Cara says:

Hey, I’m female, 25, newly single, self employed & from California moving to Miami within the next month or so. and I would like to know your opinion on living in North Bay Village. Is that too far from the excitment of South Beach or is it a pretty decent area? What could you suggest? Oh yeah & I don’t speak spainsh.. smile Thanks

Posted on 09/02/2010 at 12:17 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

North Bay Village isn’t a bad area, and not a bad drive from South Beach. If you don’t hit traffic on Collins, like 15-20 minutes. It’s also reasonably priced and you get some nice buildings with nice views there. I wouldn’t take a cab to the Beach from there or anything, though. It’s prob like $25-30 each way. Why so many people here drink and drive.

You don’t speak Spanish? I mean, I don’t really either and I survive. But it’s a tough world. Hope you really like Latin Culture and, more importantly, Latin guys.

Posted on 09/06/2010 at 11:55 AM

Mizceo says:

Hi Matt i would like to say thanks for the Info ive been so Confused on were to move to im Currently in Manhattan Ny & im so over Living in this Ice Box…im 27 I Model and im also an Models Agent/Manager…I have my mind stuck on either South Beach Miami because its right in the middle of all the Excitement but might be way too Pricey for single Person who’s looking to launch her Own Business… I thought about Downtown Forth Fort Lauderdale since its like a 30 Mins drive to South beach Miami… i just want live to pick somewhere to live that’s not boring and somewhere my Career will continue Booming and i just do not know were that would be…any Advice will be Appreciated thank you…

Posted on 11/26/2010 at 2:31 PM

Mizceo says:

Also i would like to know your thoughts on what area in Aventura is best to live…

Posted on 11/26/2010 at 6:36 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

If you are currently living in New York, South Beach will seem like the cheapest place in the world. That being said, I would recommend looking just over the bridge in Brickell if you want a short commute to any possible modeling business in South Beach, but with cheaper rent and nicer amenities. Lauderdale is nice, but if you want to focus on fashion modeling and that industry, it’s gonna be a TON of driving around from up there.

Aventura is ok. There’s a lot of nice condo complexes up there off Country Club Drive, but it’s a LOT of old people. I mean like probably the last place in Miami that’s full of seniors. Probably not what you’re looking for. Feel free to PM me or start a thread in our forums section if you have any further questions.

Posted on 11/28/2010 at 5:38 PM

Patty says:

I’m a single female-mid-thirties relocating for a downtown Miami job. I’m not aware of the reliability of the metro-rail, but a train stop is very close to the job and would like the option of taking the metro to work. South Beach seemed close enough. I like the shops and restaurants, but I’m not into the party scene that appears to be predominant. What neighborhood would you recommend that is convenient to work (I have an adverse reaction to driving in traffic…I know it’s Miami grin), has a bit of a city feel, would be easy to meet people, and preferably but not necessarily have nice places to go to by walking distance. My range in $850 to $1050.  Thank you in advance for your help.

Posted on 12/07/2010 at 9:54 PM

Margarita says:


Your comments about Miami have been extremely helpful.  I’m living in buffalo now and the weather terrifies me. Really have to think twice about moving after reading some of your blogs but south beach can be quite addicting.

Great insight though, thanks!!

Posted on 01/09/2011 at 3:16 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Margartie, just remember that visiting South Beach, as I’m sure you have, is 180 degrees from what living here is like. I mean, the weather is the same. But the day-to-day BS is worse here when you’re a resident.

Posted on 01/09/2011 at 3:59 PM

miami resident says:

I disagree with much of this article. There are plenty of other parts of suburbia in Miami (including certain parts of Kendall) that are great, and a short drive to night life, museums, beautiful parks, the ocean, and everything else. Living in the design district or the grove can be awful, with more traffic and less of a neighborhood feel. Gas stations won’t even let you in to use the rest room in those areas.

Posted on 01/21/2011 at 1:09 AM

Angela says:

Hi I’m 19 yrs old thinking of relocating to Miami from New York. I want to move to south beach but I’m not sure about the commute into the rest of Miami. Is traffic really that bad?

Posted on 01/23/2011 at 11:34 AM

Angela says:

Also I was wondering whether I necessarily needed a job before getting an apt because I have around 9,000 to move and I planned on finding work down there. What is the eviction process like?

Posted on 01/24/2011 at 1:53 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey Angela -

To answer your first question, the traffic going from South Beach into downtown Miami isn’t that bad. But once you get into the city, it really depends on where you’re going and at what time. So you can live in South Beach pretty easily and commute as long as you’re not doing it during peak times to a far-away location.

I suggest everyone get a job before they move here, as it is hard to get an apartment without a verifiable employer. That being said, $9000 is enough to get yourself started as long as you don’t get too caught up in the party scene. You will, however, have to move into some sort of short term, month-to-month type place if you don’t have a job when you get here. Landlords will check your income verification for leases and whatnot.

If you want a greater variety of answers, please post these questions in our relocation forums. We have a bunch of people on this site who can give you even more info than I have here….

Posted on 01/24/2011 at 2:13 PM

Cris says:

Matt ,

I am considering moving here in about 3 months.  I am 24 from Pennsylvania and have some family members down here.  I would love to live as close to South Beach as possible but not pay over 900 a month in rent. 

Any suggestions


Posted on 02/13/2011 at 4:32 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Cris, you looking for a 1 BR? you can get a scrappy little studio in South Beach for around $900 a month. But it will be crappy. And it will be little. However, for $900 you can get a pretty nice 1 BR in Little Havana, which is about a 10-15 drive from South Beach and super convenient to all of South Florida. Not more than half an hour to anywhere you’d want to do. And it’s fairly safe. Like your car may get broken into, but that’s about the worst crime you’d be a victim of.

If you want more in depth answers, post the question in our relocation forums…

Posted on 02/14/2011 at 3:47 PM

Lauren says:

Dear Matt,

My fiancee and I are relocating to Miami in August so that I can complete a PhD program; we are a young couple (mid 20s) who are not looking for a club scene—rather, we want a nice, relatively quiet and safe neighborhood. We are not looking for nightlife or attractions—we mostly go to the movies, or some such thing on weekends: no bar hopping, except occasionally to watch a pay-per-view event. The catch: we are looking for a 1 bedroom for less than 950 if possible—and we will be operating using one car, so I need to be able to get to the U Miami Coral Gables campus by foot or public transportation. Any suggestions in terms of areas? We love coral gables itself, but are concerned we may not be able to find something in this price range there (we also have a dog). Thanks in advance—and the guide was wonderful!

Posted on 04/03/2011 at 10:23 PM

Patricia Z. says:

my husband & i are thinking about possibly moving to the miami beach area.  we are both early 30’s & in real estate here in san antonio, tx.  we definitley want to be on the beach and close to cafes, nightlife & such…just not sure what is the best area for us.  i have read a lot about crime in the south beach area…what is your take?  also, with all of the action, how realistic is it to get a good nights sleep in south beach?

Posted on 04/05/2011 at 12:02 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Thanks, Lauren. I’d suggest looking at South Miami, which is just southwest of Coral Gables. There’s a big movie theater there, cool shopping,m and God forbid some bars if you ever feel like venturing out. But it’s not the party capital of the city or anything. Rents there are also a lot cheaper than they are in the Gables and it’s still a relatively nice area. Just make sure you stay Eat (or South) of US-1. The area just West of UM on Red Road is also South Miami, but the crackhead ghetto part of it.

Posted on 04/05/2011 at 5:31 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Patricia Z, as long as you live west of about Drexel Ave. or South of 5th street, it’s not hard to get a good night’s sleep at all. Most of the action is on Washington, Collins and Ocean Drive. If you’re in the residential areas it ain’t bad. I live just to the north of South Beach, and have no noise problems at all.

Crime? Yeah, your car will probably get broken into from time to time if you have to park on the street. And you may find your apartment robbed if you live on a ground floor and leave a window or door open or something. Otherwise? It’s pretty safe here. Not much violent crime at all, and what violent crime there is usually stems from the nightlife. So if you don’t live near that, you’re ok.

Posted on 04/05/2011 at 5:34 PM

Patricia Z. says:

Thanks Matt…so, if you are going to partake in the fun nightlife from time to time, are there any good rules of thumb to follow to avoid crime?
I am also assuming that certain times of year may be more crime prone…spring break, etc…
Everyone talks about the heat there in the summer…we get pretty hot here in san antonio, so i think we will be fine smile

Posted on 04/05/2011 at 7:23 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

The only guidelines I’d tell you are park in well lit areas and don’t go on the beach and leave your shit unattended. Past that, you’re really very safe here. I mean, it ain’t Utah or anything, but if you have common sense you’re fine.

And no, no part of the year is more crime-ridden. Maybe Memorial Day and Winter Music Conference, but that’s just because of the sheer numbers of people here, more crimes happen.

Posted on 04/06/2011 at 9:03 PM

ian says:

I am going to be attending fiu starting next spring and wanted to know where a good area to rent would be

Posted on 04/13/2011 at 3:54 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Ian, if you’re going to FIU Main Campus I’d look in Sweetwater, Westchester, Flagami and those areas. Cuts your commute to a minimum.

Posted on 04/13/2011 at 11:14 PM

ian says:

No its the biscayne bay campus

Posted on 04/14/2011 at 3:40 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Oh, well shit that opens things up a lot.

Sunny Isles is a nice area not far from there. Aventura isn’t bad either, but kinda full of old people. You could even do Miami Shores, though that’s a pretty family-oriented area.

Avoid North Miami and North Miami Beach. At least the areas of those cities west of Biscayne Boulevard. Very ghetto. East of Biscayne (also called US-1 up there) isn’t bad.

Posted on 04/15/2011 at 3:39 PM

CoCo says:

i have been wondering about sunny isles…i know it is just up the road from miami beach.  is there much going on there?  or do you have to make your way down to miami beach to find shops, cafes, etc…?  is there a lot withing walking distance?  i like the idea of it being a little removed from the craziness…but still close enough to enjoy all that sobe has to offer!

Posted on 04/16/2011 at 10:42 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

CoCo, Sunny Isles is a loooong way from South Beach. Like, if you live up there, you’re not gonna be hanging out down in South Beach a lot. It[‘s a decent area, and there are some things there, but it’s not really a nightlife/cafe kinda place. It’s more like a suburb on the beach. Probably a half hour dirve to South Beach on average.

Posted on 04/18/2011 at 1:46 PM

CoCO says:

Thankks for the insight…what do you thing about surfside?

Posted on 04/18/2011 at 6:20 PM

Carmen says:

Thanks for all this info! I am considering moving to Miami when I turn 18 next summer. I currently live in the Philly area.  Since I will only be 18 I don’t care to live on Miami beach because I have heard the majority of the clubs are 21+.  I was considering Coconut Grove.  Do alot of people my age live here? Will I meet people easily?  Making friends is something very important to me.  I will be going to cosmetology school to become a makeup artist and nail technician.  Should I have a roommate?  Any info helps, Thanks! Also I speak spanish pretty well & am still learning.

Posted on 04/19/2011 at 10:13 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

CoCO - Surfside is nice. But a serious pain to get to. Like it’s probably 25 minutes of street driving to even get to the freeway, and probably 20 minutes on the streets (on the weekend more like 45) to get to South Beach. nice once you’re there. But to me too far from the Freeway to be worth living in.

Carmen - Yeah, you should def. have a roommate. In Miami, you meet VERY few people under 22 living on their won. Matter of fact, you meet very few people under 25 living on their own. Latin culture, people live at home for freaking ever. So no, you will not be meeting many people your age anywhere other than near UM or FIU. College students, basically. The Grove offers more nightlife for people under 21, but not officially. Like a lot of the places there are very lax on IDs, but don’t assume you’re getting in anywhere. It’s not like “18 to party, 21 to drink.” You want that, go to a college town. Where is this school you’re going to?

Posted on 04/19/2011 at 4:29 PM

Carmen says:

I’m not sure yet, Do you know of any reputable Cosmetology schools?

Posted on 04/23/2011 at 10:55 AM

Ricardo says:

Hey guys! I’m moving in to miami (if I manage to find a job, of course) after August. Will probably stay for a year or so. I’ve been reading a lot about miami and found out there are certain places where you should NOT go NOR try to go. I have been looking at some houses and sometimes the price and house is good and I’ve got the feeling the area isn’t safe because it’s what they say: when it is too good to be true, then it’s because it is. eh eh

What do you guys advice? I’m from Portugal and from what I’ve been reading coconut grove is kind of safe (and near to the beach, not walking distance though).

I’m from Portugal so spanish is’t difficult for me to understand or talk which I think is a plus on a city like Miami with so much cultural diversity.

Thank you for your time guys


Posted on 05/01/2011 at 12:29 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey Ricardo -

The Grove isn’t really “near” the Beach. Probably a 20-25 minute drive on most days. Certain areas are safe, but you probably need to visit apartments you are looking at to get an idea if they are in decent areas or now.

BTW, Miami does not have much cultural diversity. It is pretty much predominantly Latin American. So you won’t find much of anything else. Not like, say, New York.

Posted on 05/02/2011 at 6:29 PM

encaustic says:

Hey: I just got a job at Florida International University and am looking to rent a one bedroom. Colleagues told me the area around FIU is not so great; they recommended Coral Gables. A realtor showed me around yesterday and I saw some nice condos for about $1300/month. For that amount of money do you think I could get a better deal someplace else? Finally, I was hoping to spend somewhere closer to $800-$1000—is that a pipe dream when looking for an apartment that is of the quality of a condo? Any condos to stay away from in the CG area?

Posted on 07/19/2011 at 9:09 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

If you wanna live around FIU, or South of it in Kendall, yeah you can get something fairly nice (not as nice as what you saw in CG, but decent) in that range. $1300 for a 1 BR is on the high side, even for the Gables. But I’m guessing you were probably looking at some kind of “luxury” apartment. if you drop your standards, you can find a 1 BR in the Gables for $1000. It just may not be super nice.

The area around FIU ain’t BAD, per se, it’s just not particularly nice. Take some time to look around and you can find something for sure.

Posted on 07/20/2011 at 3:44 PM

Lonnie says:

Hello. Im a 22 year old male.I plan on moving to Miami next summer from ohio. I am so ready to go. Have visited a few times but not enough to really explore or see how living would be. Im a certified personal trainer. How is that job market there? what area would be the best for that field? What city would be best to live in? Also is the income for trainers good enough?

Posted on 07/23/2011 at 1:53 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hi Lonnie -

The job market here is absolutely terrible. We’re still hovering around 11-14% unemployment, and a lot of people here have been looking for work for over a year. Tough times indeed.

Trainers can get work in almost any part of Miami (I was one for a while) as there are gyms everywhere. You may want to look at gyms in like Coral Gables or Pinecrest as this is where the real money is. Avoid trying it is South Beach, as, yeah, there’s money there but that’s also where every trainer who moves here knowing nothing about the city goes to try and work.

The money is ok, but it takes a LONG time to build a client base. So if you end up working at a Bally’s or an LA Fitness or something, it’s a lot of salesmanship and a lot of hours. You can make it, but cost of living here is very high. And salaries don’t reflect it. So you may find it a difficult proposition.

Posted on 07/23/2011 at 9:28 PM

minecraft data values says:

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Posted on 07/24/2011 at 11:19 AM

Ricardo says:

Hi Matt,

I’ll be moving to Miami on October for an internship at the spanish consulate (so to speak) which lies in the Coral Gables area. I’m 24 and would share the apartment with one or two other interns. I have a buddy that has been on the same program during the year and has been living near Flamingo Park with other interns. I love partying but just as much dive bars,etc and would definitely like to have water near. Chances are I’ll “inherit” the apartment from him, but would like to have a second opinion.

Basic problem for renting would be my lack of knowledge and being a Spanish citizen (as in Spain, Europe. It’s quite surprising how many Americans get that wrong wink ), on the upturn I would get letter of employment from an official source. I will stay there for a year, and could easily afford the 900 $ area for a shared apartment, although would prefer to spend my money in tipping bartenders if you know what I mean..

Thanks in advance

Posted on 07/25/2011 at 4:37 AM

Lonnie says:

Thank you. I really appreciate it. Because i have been looking at other places as well if i didnt want to go to florida. I started off looking into Arizona, and Cali Because i also wanted to go there. But also cost of living and how far west it is kinda changed my mind but didnt completely rule it out yet. suggestions? and I have been hearing alot about Dallas Texas and there economy and how the city makes alot of money. If you ever been how do you think training would do there? think it would do better than florida? im just really aiming for bigger cities, where there is great money along with nice weather, nice people, things to do on a daily, people care about their appearence and body (where the training will come into play), nice job market, and cost of living isnt extreme to where i have to struggle for my first years because of it.

Posted on 07/25/2011 at 2:15 PM

Andy says:

I’ll be moving to Miami from New York in a month and will be working at the FIU campus near Sweetwater.  I am looking for places to live around 1500-1700 for a 2-bedroom preferablly.  I was wondering if the commute from and to Miami Lakes is doable, since that area looks safer and more residential than other parts of Miami.  I am unsure about Coral Gables and Kendall though.  I was even contemplating Broward County (even Ft. Lauderdale) but I guess the commute would be atrocious to and from FIU.  What are your thoughts about Miami Lakes?


Posted on 07/25/2011 at 10:33 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Ricardo - what is your question exactly? Like should you do it? Yeah, sounds like you have a job and a place to live lined up. And the drive from South Beach to the Gables isn’t bad since it’s an opposite commute. Maybe 30-35 minutes each way. You WILL need a car, though. Just FYI.

Andy - MIami Lakes is a super easy commute to FIU’s main campus. No problem at all. Kendall, if you live near the Turnpike, wouldn’t be bad either. Though Kendall sucks. True Story. I’d take Miami Lakes over Kendall any day. You’re right, commuting from Broward is NOT a good idea. Stick to Dade as long as you’re at FIU Main. FIU north might be a different story.

Posted on 07/27/2011 at 2:38 PM

13bravo says:

Racist my ass it is what it is. If that honesty offends your sensitive soul you should be living in the SF Bay area you’ll fit right in. The no english is part of the funky charm of Miami. You walk around and find it hard to believe your in the states you drive out to the burbs and it’s redneck!!!! He ain’t sayin nothing bad or dishonest. so get over it

Posted on 09/20/2011 at 6:16 PM

khan says:

I am a muslim .. 24 .. moving to miami in december .. in the institute of Art and Design ... can u help me with a good safe area to live ? where i don’t have to go through racism and i can focus on building my career ..

Posted on 10/19/2011 at 5:50 PM

Matt Meltzer says:


There’s not a lot of racism in the more-urban parts of Miami. I’d recommend midtown to you for a shorter commute. But it depends on a lot of factors. What is your price range?

Posted on 10/19/2011 at 5:55 PM

Mujtaba khan says:

My range is 800-1000.. and if the place is near the Art institute of Miami , it would be easier .. Is that area worth going for education ? ... I would have to stay there for more then 3 - years .. So i guess it won’t be that short… I seek a place , a bit peaceful and crime free.. Do u have any idea of the rooms at the university itself.. As there is not much on their website to look at .. Do u recommend staying on campus or should i get a place for myself… ?

Posted on 10/20/2011 at 6:13 PM

Jeallop says:

I had lived in Doral, Brickell and now in Aventura. Matt is right in many things but sounds he hates Miami. If your looking business RUN to other cities like NY, Houston, Chicago, Dallas, etc, but if you would like to enjoy the beach, restaurants, events, good shopping, nice people, you could live here for a long time. I am doing ok, in real estate and other business to south america, but cost me a lot of money to get this point. Like every other big city the traffic is heavy, but if you prefer the subway go to NY or Boston. The best areas to live are Brickell (good night live and close to everything), Aventura (very nice plays and nice views, family oriented), South Beach (if you like partying all the time), Coral Gables (very nice and upscale area), Coconut Grove (nice), Doral (Family oriented and great area for Latin American mid and high scale). Fell free to contact me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) in order to let you know more details for pricing. This is a city to love it or hate it because is hard to understand the way to live here. J Lopez

Posted on 10/23/2011 at 1:42 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Mujataba, in your price range it’ll be hard to find a 1 BR or studio in midtown. You’d have to find a roommate. If you have a car (and you NEED a car if you’re going to live in Miami) Litlle Havana might be a good option for you. It’s much cheaper and a short drive away. Crime isn’t bad. like break-ins and that, but if you’re careful it’s not a problem.

the housing at AI I have no idea about. At all. I didn’t even know they had housing on campus. Sorry.

Posted on 10/24/2011 at 10:51 AM

VLI says:

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Posted on 10/29/2011 at 12:15 AM

RJ says:

Hey Matt,
Really great article. I am a 22 year old self-employed person thinking about moving to south beach. I do not want a car and I hate driving. People are telling me that public transportation is a complete disaster. I won’t have to commute to work, but I would still like access to downtown miami as I am an avid sports fan and would like to frequent heat and marlins games. Is this reasonably possible? I am thinking about living in the upper part of south beach (20s)

Also is it easy to get to fort lauderdale airport through public transportation? I may have to make a trip every other month.

Also, how much rent should I expect to pay for a one bedroom? Lastly, I here crime is an issue in South beach. How concerned should I be? Are any areas safer in south beach others. Great postings and warm regards.

Posted on 11/20/2011 at 11:50 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey RJ -

Thanks for the compliments….

If you EVER plan on leaving the beach, yes, you will need a car. Bottom line. I live in the 20s (technically not South Beach) and getting buses from here is even more of a joke. Because you then have to ride the bus through ALL of South Beach to even GET to the Casueway. Then if there’s traffic on that, it can be 45 minutes to an hour to get from door to door anywhere downtown.

The new Marlins stadium will be even worse, since you’ll then need to take ANOTHER bus once you get down there. Let’s not even discuss coming back.

And a cab ride is in the $30 range each way.

Don’t even think about public transportation to FLL. Then you’re looking at a good 2 hours each way. And that’s if you have a flight at a normal time. Arrive or depart at an odd hour and it’s literally not an option. And a cab is $85 or so each way. Assuming you don’t have to go during rush hour.

So basically, yeah, you will need a car here if you want to do anything but stay in the Beach. You CAN do it without, but you become a burden to your friends and “that guy” who always needs a ride.

Posted on 11/21/2011 at 10:40 PM

RJ says:

Hey Matt,
Thanks for the response. I did some research, and it looks like there is a shuttle service for $21 from FLL to South Beach. ( Thats probably my best option, though I read it is possible to connect from the Trirail to the Metrorail just to get into dowtown miami.

I can see why the Marlins Ballpark may be tough. Common sense though would tell me that there would probably be a bunch of people from the beach looking to pickup cabs after games, but who knows if such an organized operation would exist.

I feel like American Airlines is so close to the beach that there must be a way. It looked from the bus map that are quite a few buses that go over the causeway that it should be relatively easy to pick one up. I would even venture that it is possible to bike across the venetian causeway and the arena is right there, but for some reason, finding a place to stick my bike for four hours might not be easiest or best idea. Also wondering what you think I should expect to pay in rent for a 1BR? Anyways again great website and thanks for the feedback.

Posted on 11/21/2011 at 11:37 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Those shuttles are shared ride deals. So, yeah, it won’t cost you as much, but you’ll have to leave like 12 hours before your flight.

Tri-Rail to Metrorail to downtown, at least for now, would actually be a bus from FLL to a train that runs roughly once every two hours to a Metrorail stop half an hour from downtown. All BEFORE you begin the 30 minute bus ride to South Beach. And you may have to wait for the bus too. Seriously, dude, this place is NOT doable without a car unless you don’t plan to leave the beach.

People in the Beach aren’t really baseball people. Or sports people at all really. So, no, I haven’t heard any demand for people headed to the Beach after Marlins games.

You COULD bike to the AAA, but the odds of your bike being there when you get back are slim and none. Could prob do it with a bus once in a while. But again, you’re talking a half hour bus ride.

Posted on 11/22/2011 at 3:22 PM

Ramius says:

Hi Matt,

My current monthly income is around 25-40k. Do not have to commute anywhere as all my work is on a laptop. What area would you recommend? What type of lifestyle can I expect in Miami? Is it tolerable during the summer weather wise? Or better to head back up north?

Posted on 11/29/2011 at 8:28 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Your MONTHLY income is 40k? I mean with that much you can live wherever you want. I’d say South Beach, since you don’t need to go anywhere and have as much money as you need. If that’s your ANNUAL income, well, then I’d look more at Little Havana.

If you’re making big bucks, this place will be easy. You can pay enough to avoid the awful parts of living here. If you’re not, it may be tough. The summer weather isn’t that bad. But the people are.

Posted on 11/29/2011 at 8:40 PM

Lindsey says:

Hi Matt,

What’s up? I just came across this article and I guess it was written a few years ago, but that’s okay.  I’m currently living in Nashville, TN, but I was living in Hollywood about 2 years ago for 6 months.  I was living with Grandma rent free and it was great.  The only downside, I was working in Coral Gables, and the commute was a nightmare.  Plus, if I wanted to go back out, definately a 35 minute night drive to SB.  Downtown Hollywood has a cute night scene, but I want to be in Miami! Maybe not forever, like 6 months-1 yr would probably be satisfying.

I’ve finished up a Masters in TEaching ESL, and I’ve been checking job listings and Florida and from what I’ve seen, the demand is much higher there than here in TN.  Plus, TN is really boring for me.  I lived in Spain for two years after college, I speak Spanish and I thrive in a multi-culti environment. 

I still have Grandma’s house, but I really like Miami and the commute is too far for gma’s.  So I thought about moving to southbeach and I am willing to live with roommates. Actually I prefer this, I do not like to live alone.  I’ve been checking out to find places and actually the rent is more affordable there than where I live here in TN.  Anyway, do you know any specific streets/apartments/ places in SB that are nice?  I’m thinking south south beach.  I like the Espanola way area, of course…. but I’m not really an expert on the area. 

Any ideas would be great, and if you have any idea on ESL job market, let me know smile Muchas Gracias!!

Posted on 12/12/2011 at 6:41 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hi Lindsey -

I’m not sure at all about the ESL job market. I teach, but it’s like college stuff. Totally different. Insofar as South Beach, yeah it’s a fun area to live. A lot of hassle and the commute may be brutal if you end up working in the wrong part of town. I’d suggest figuring out where you’re working first, then see where you want to live. Commuting from here to South Dade, for example, could be brutal.

Posted on 12/12/2011 at 7:45 PM

Lindsey says:

Good ideas smile Thanks for your response!

Posted on 12/15/2011 at 12:52 AM

Patrick says:

Hi Matt,
I’m looking into possibly moving to South Beach in a couple of months and found this article.  Great read!  Thank you for sharing so much info! Since you wrote this article before the financial crisis, would you say that the rent for a 1 BR is still in the 1200-1500 range?  I’ve done some research online and most of the prices I could find are for tourists or people looking for month to month leases.

Posted on 05/18/2012 at 2:29 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Yeah I think you can find something in that range pretty easily. I mean it depends how nice you want, but 12-15 sounds about right.

Posted on 05/19/2012 at 11:23 AM

Hayden says:

Good Monday Evening Matt,

I am set to start working in Miami Lakes soon.  Heard it’s a nice area, but seems a little far from beach/downtown life.  Was curious to approximately how long the commute w/ traffic would be like from say, Coral Gables?  Just wanted some suggestions on fun places I could live and their relative commute.

Posted on 06/11/2012 at 8:52 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

The commute from the Gables, especially North Gables which is where the nightlife and condos are, isn’t bad to Miami Lakes. It’s against traffic and if you live near the freeway it shouldn’t be much more than 25 minutes.

Past that, the commute from Coconut Grove or Midtown wouldn’t be too bad either. Both of thsoe are fun areas and you’d be looking at about 30-40 minutes each way. The only issue with the Grove is you’d have to deal with US-1 traffic for a couple miles, then it would be smooth sailing. You could try the Beach, although that may be more towards the 40-45 minute commute. Brickell wouldn’t be a bad drive, but personally I think it’s a crappy place to live.

Posted on 06/12/2012 at 10:01 PM

jason says:

Jason here, x navy seal from denver, i am thinking about moving to south beach, i am 29 years old, work from home and do not need a car, south beach appeals to me because I’m single and can walk everywhere by foot. I’m am hesitant though because i am not really good-looking by south beach standards and wondering if i will fit in with all the beautiful people there?


Posted on 06/14/2012 at 12:00 PM

Keith says:

Hey this is really great information about Miami thanks for posting. When I visit to Miami for vacation I prefer Miami Vacation Rentals for renting apartments. They are leading group in providing well furnished apartments for rent with affordable price.

Posted on 06/15/2012 at 1:19 AM

Phillip says:

Hey I lived overseas and several states. I plan to move to south beach and i can afford it just fine Matt. How is south beach for a cool brother. I dont mind latin people at all. give me the real deal sir


Posted on 07/08/2012 at 8:24 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

If you can afford it? Sure, I mean it’s fun. It’s not really REAL ( I wrote an article about this a couple of years ago). Very transient and a lot of BS. But a lot of fun. It’s not really Miami either, it’s South Beach. A completely different culture and experience than living in the city. I"d say if you live there make a point to get off the island at least once a day. Otherwise it gets to be a little silly.

Posted on 07/09/2012 at 7:34 PM

Mia says:

Hi Matt!,
Ill be moving to Miami soon, I got a job in the Design District and would like to know wheres the best place to live.  Im a 25 year old girl from Buenos Aires, have a bachelors degree in business adm and would love to meet new people (even though i speak spanish I am more into english speakers) .
I like to go out on weekends.. 
Im am not gonna have a car, so i would like to be in a place where i can walk everywhere and feel safe.. 
Is the area of West Av and the 16st in South Beach a nice place? Would it be brutal to go to work every day?
What about the design destrict? is that a nice place to live with young people.. ?
thanks for your help!

Posted on 07/28/2012 at 10:40 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hi Mia -

Getting fro mWest Ave. to the Design District is no easy trip. Two busses at the very least, which in Miami can mean an hour or more commute time. Public transportation here is not really an option unless you live and work in South Beach. Given where you’re working, I’d recommend Midtown. A lot of young professionals live there, it’s very walkable, and a very short walk to the design district. If it’s raining or brutally hot it’s only a couple of stops on the bus.

South Beach is fun but completely impractical given where you are working and you not having a car. If there’s any way you can bring one I strongly suggest it as Miami is a very difficult place to live without a car.

Posted on 07/30/2012 at 12:18 PM


hey matt i have a car n im from atl im looking to move there on march where and what area would you recommend to live thats not fancy or anything really expensive but economic n resoanble distance to south beach to drive without any traffic if I was to work there as a server. looking for 1 bed room with price ranges from 500-700 could be 30-40 minutes away from south beach(ocean drive). o n another question are jobs very hard to get in the restaurant business even if i speak spanish, n if u could tell me what area do u live n how much is it there, just to compare distance n prices. fill me out on details as much as possible. My NAME IS RICARDO THNKS

Posted on 08/16/2012 at 10:47 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

In that rent range I don’t know that you’ll find ANYTHING in Miami. You might find something really dumpy in Little Havana. Which is not a terrible neighborhood and a 15 minute drive from the beach. But believe me for under $700 whatever you find there will be pretty awful. Maybe you can find a roommate? Even then your options are limited. You’re going to need to look to spend between 800-1000 a month in rent if you want a place to yourself. And even then you’re gonna be in Little Havana.

Posted on 08/16/2012 at 9:39 PM

Alex says:

Hi Matt,

I’m just starting my career and the HQ is based in Miami, about an 8 minute drive from FIU’s main campus (50k - 60k salary). I’m 22 years old, African American & Puerto Rican (Can’t speak Spanish but understand enough when spoken to) from Pennsylvania and plan on moving down to Florida by January 2013. I’m looking for my age group, nightlife, parties etc. (Ethnicity doesn’t really matter too much, went to Penn State). The twist is A) I don’t necessarily ever have to go into the actual HQ Site in Miami, but wanted to be in a reasonable distance just in case (let’s say maybe once every 2 weeks) and B) The job requires me to travel Monday through Thursday about 50%-75% of the time (so I need to be relatively close to an airport) so the only time I would be home is the weekends. Basically I’ve been contemplating between living expense, my desires in social life, location, whether or not to get a car etc. I know this is can be a broad question, but what would you advise?  Thanks.

Posted on 09/30/2012 at 4:51 AM

LM says:

Hi Matt
We are currently living in Plantation, FL and will need to move to an area closer to Tamiami Airport. We are White Americans, speak only English in our 30s and have no kids (none in our future). We want to purchase in an area that is not a crazy commute from work but will fit our “not into nightlife” more daytime outdoor (walk in the preserve) lifestyle.  Any neighborhoods or areas that might be good to suggest?

Posted on 10/12/2012 at 8:55 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hi LM - Yes, I"d recommend PInecrest or Palmetto Bay if you can afford it. It’s far enough south that your commute to Tamiami airport won’t be too bad, and it’s like the only white, English speaking part of Miami that’s sizable. Check it out, if prcies are too high look at Cutler Bay and Saga Bay.

Posted on 10/14/2012 at 8:30 PM

Joyce Ardesch says:

We moved to Aventura not to long ago, it is a bit costly, but that is definately worth it. We have a lot of malls around us, and the beach is just 5 minutes drive away. From here to Miami international airport is about a half hour drive, so that is not too bad…...

Posted on 11/02/2012 at 10:19 PM

Kristine says:

I just accepted a job in Coral Gables and will be moving from Minneapolis, MN in the next couple months. Any suggestions on where to live? I am a 31 year old single white female. Fluent in Spanish. My company will set me up with a realtor, but I need to be able to provide them where I would like to live.

Posted on 02/24/2013 at 2:35 AM

Greg says:

Hello Matt,

Nice to meet you and great articles, and replies, and Ha, are you sure your from Miami!  Well I’m from Miami, and I’ve been living here since I was born.  I’ve been thinking to move just as soon as “Miami’s economic bubble bursts”.  I’m tired of all the crime, and not being able to find a job, and especially the language barrier. 

The Government, Governor, and all of its politicians could care less about its people, and how they are living, but when did they ever?  The Crooked real-estate monopoly / market here in Miami is targeting un-knowledgeable foreigners.  Most are fleeing from South America, buying up 75% of all the properties, paying cash only “thinking they are getting a great deal” on Real-estate while the economy is sinking like the stock market did.

The Public Miami News channels, channel 10, 7, 6, 4 aren’t reporting anything of value, or newsworthy about all of these important issues, and if you ask, they will act dumb, and pretending nothing is wrong.

Most the people I grew up with as a teenager, all left Miami, and most all moved to California, now I’m regretting not doing the same thing after 30+ years.  Its a very foreign new breed of people in Miami, “with a lot of baggage”, and Matt your right about the people being racist / discriminating, in Miami.

I personally will not learn Spanish because I know in the end what it comes down to. It comes down to the color of my skin, and if I look like an American, and if I Speak Spanish.  There are some good People here but the overwhelming majority outweighs the good.  Yes, I agree Matt, Miami Florida is as close to foreign as it gets!

Posted on 04/05/2013 at 10:54 PM

Phillip says:

Greg I like what you wrote and I love your honesty sir. I was thinking about south beach but that life isnt for me. And I Hate racist people and I been down there and they are not to friendly. Plus no offense to any one but there are just to many Queers in Miami!!

Posted on 04/08/2013 at 6:56 PM

Tiddo Virtue Tiddo says:

Looking for a place to share with cooL other’s doesen’t matter age w/ awesome me for 100 doLLARs a month must be gay friendly Tiddo Virtue Tiddo called on face.

Posted on 06/06/2013 at 3:33 PM

Paul says:

Hi I just moved kissimmee florida from New Jersey with my mother, father, and 95 year old grandmother. We want to move Miami but since I don’t know Miami to well I want to make sure we don’t move to a bad area. Our budget is 1000 to 1300 a month and we need at least a 3 bedroom is that even possible for Miami. Somewhere that’s safe for my parants and grandmother but is not to far from south beach night life for myself. Oh and I own a food truck so I would problaby need to find a good place to park it. Lol

Posted on 09/17/2013 at 2:55 PM

Matt Meltzer says:

You cannot find a 3 bedroom anything in Miami in that price range. Even in far-flung Kendall or deep South Dade. It might be possible in a really bad neighborhood, but you don’t want to move to a really bad neighborhood. I can’t really think of anywhere in South Florida you could find anything in that range, maybe Homestead/FL City? At that point, you might as well stay in Kissimmee. Why do you want to move down here?

Posted on 09/19/2013 at 10:50 AM

trish says:

Hi Matthew! .

My boyfriend and I are moving to Miami in a month, and are looking for something not in the ghetto, thats safe and not that far from airport, where he will be working. A 2 bedroom under 1300…any suggestions or apartments you know are good?....we’ll even take somewhere a bit farther as long as the commutes not bad…thanks dear!!!

Posted on 12/27/2013 at 2:33 AM

Matt Meltzer says:

Hey Trish - In that price range it’s gonna be a tough time to find a 2 BR. MAYBE in Little Havana, which isn’t too ghetto and a short drive to MIA. You can find stuff there, but a 2 BR at that price is rare in any are you’d want to live, or that would be a decent commute to MIA. Now if you wanna look at 1 BRs, there are a lot more options.

Posted on 12/28/2013 at 6:17 PM

Phillip says:

Hope you had a great Christmas Matt. And a Soon to be Happy New Year

Posted on 12/28/2013 at 6:25 PM

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