"That's the big guy ... Quite a paintbrush he's got." From the movie The Truman Show
The Truman Show is one claim to fame for Lynn Haven, FL -- residents remember when the Old Bailey Bridge was closed for filming, so Jim Carrey's character could make his brave escape. In fact, lots of movies are filmed in the area, thanks to the beautiful tropical scenery. And while Panama City is great for spring break, insiders know that for year-round living, you need to go 15 minutes north to Lynn Haven. You get all the benefits of the Florida Panhandle -- like gorgeous weather and easy beach access -- but you don't have to trip over tourists on your way to the grocery store. Just maybe a few movie stars.
Moving to Lynn Haven
Like a well-kept secret, Lynn Haven is nestled against the North Bay, a warm stretch of water that flows into the Gulf of Mexico. Summers are hot, averaging 90 degrees, and winters are still a balmy 60 or so. Most residents rave about Lynn Haven life in the spring and summer, when days bring a perfect 75 degrees from dawn until dusk. If you're looking to make a move to this town with an incredible climate, plan your move-in date accordingly.
What You Need to Move In
Once you find your perfect place, the next step is coming up with all the paperwork necessary to move in. Most individual property owners request an application and references, and all of the property management companies require them. Many want a basic background check, and the common practice is to collect first month's rent, last month's rent, and a security deposit before handing over the keys.
Lynn Haven Neighborhoods
Downtown: Lynn Haven's cost of living is average when compared with the rest of the country, but it costs a little more to live downtown. Fortunately, you shouldn't have any trouble finding an apartment or house to rent. There is a nice mix of real estate, from small apartment buildings with two or three units each to large, single-family homes. You will love this area for its close proximity to recreational activities on the water, along with great restaurants just a short walk from your front door.
Right across the street from city hall is the Sharon J. Sheffield Park, which is an official Tree Species Identification Park, particularly attractive to tree huggers. Most of the city's main events take place here, including the annual Fourth of July Celebration, the Fishing Rodeo, the Halloween Carnival, and a weekly summer concert series.
Brannonville: The Brannonville neighborhood is a little more affordable than downtown, and it is a great choice if you are looking for larger places to rent in Lynn Haven. Most of the real estate consists of single-family houses with three to five bedrooms, but you can find smaller mobile homes if you prefer. The very luckiest Brannonville residents are close to the Evergreen Memorial Gardens.
Hiland Park: Route 75 cuts right through the Hiland Park neighborhood, so folks who want to come and go in a hurry like this area best. It's a great place to find whatever sort of rental you are looking for, including luxury apartments, furnished apartments, and houses in every shape and size -- well, almost.
North Lynn Haven: If you want to be close to the water, North Lynn Haven is your solution. The very top is surrounded by the Grand Lagoon, and the Lynn Haven Bayou runs along the west side. Rental properties run from efficiency and 1 bedroom apartments in small buildings to small and medium-sized single-family houses.
West Lynn Haven: Many of the folks in West Lynn Haven enjoy the gorgeous scenery and wildlife of the Upper Goose Bayou. Lots of properties in this neighborhood are right on the water. High-rise apartment fans will find their home here, since this area contains many larger apartment buildings.
Living in Lynn Haven
With just under 19,000 residents, the city boasts a nice small-town atmosphere while still big enough to offer plenty of things to do. The great weather makes outdoor activities -- like visiting the Lynn Haven Farmers Market -- popular almost any time of year.
One downside is that there isn't much in the way of public transportation. However, Lynn Haven has a high walkability score, so you can move around on your own two feet. If you don't like walking, you can always use a bike, skateboard, roller skates, or jet pack. On the plus side, your visitors will have an easy time getting to you. Thank goodness, since your move to Lynn Haven will make you very popular with long-lost friends and relatives. The Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport is an easy drive, and there are plenty of affordable flights in and out every day.
The Lynn Haven Sports Complex offers much more than a sports venue. You can certainly play ball on the baseball fields, tennis courts, football fields, and soccer fields, but balls aren't the only attraction. An 800-foot wilderness boardwalk makes for a peaceful reintroduction to nature, and the Panhandle Florida Birding Trail offers a serene place where more than 40 unusual bird species can be spotted.
One of the city's highlights is the Leslie Porter Wayside Park, which is popular year-round. The saltwater beach is a favorite, along with a half-mile fishing bridge and plenty of picnic areas. Are you a fan of beach volleyball? You'll find stiff competition here -- players that use the court in this park play hard.
If your version of paradise includes nice weather and plenty of recreational opportunities, look no further than Lynn Haven.