The gorgeous weather makes one want a cheeseburger, or maybe a margarita. Maybe you should ask Jimmy Buffett what is best. He'll probably say both. Before you can chill with a meal and drink beside Bay Lake, you have to find yourself a home in this Florida town. Lucky for you, this task is going to be much easier than in nearby Orlando. Yet the process won't be as fun as Disney World; that's a shame! Anyway, you'll find out some good news first. Good news is good.
A Market for Renters
You won't run into any major issues landing a suitable home for rent. Over 55% of the city rents, which is much higher than the state's average. Have another sip of your cocktail, if you happen to be drinking one. Knowing that the Pine Castle market is built for renters makes that drink much sweeter tasting.
A Host of Housing Choices
Detached houses (over 49%), apartments and condos (over 38%), town homes (almost 8%), and mobile homes (5%) form a nice mix of housing options here. With choices spanning from studio apartments for rent at Cypress Landing Apartments to large houses near Lake Mary Jess, finding something that matches what you have pictured as your home in Pine Castle is very possible. Take a bite of that burger. It's probably making your taste buds hum with joy.
Sometimes the Sun Is Too Strong
That's why it's advised to not search for rental houses in Pine Castle during the summer. Additionally, like many places in Florida, folks come and go, at all times of the year. That creates a lot of rental turnover and house searching traffic. Winter and summer are two busy periods for the housing market, and some landlords like to rent month to month to attract short-term renters. That's an advantage if you don't plan to stay long. If you are looking for a longer contract, spring and fall are the best times to look for a place, when you take into account all of the above. The climate is better, there are less people looking, and you have more selection. If you must come during the winter or summer, don't panic. The market here features a good deal of available pads every month -- it's just that you are less likely to land your ideal home.
A Note about Hurricanes
Hurricanes occasionally hit the area and do cause a small amount of damage to properties in this Central Florida town. Note that this is not a common occurrence at all. If one does come, it usually isn't a concern. Over 25% of homes were built prior to 1959. If you do rent an older home and are worried about hurricanes you can always get disaster insurance. The city also has well-defined evacuation plans and you will get plenty of notice. You should always be prepared. You never know what Mother Nature will bring, though most often it's sunshine and blue skies in Pine Castle.
Completing the Deal
The attractions of the greater Orlando area are calling, so quickly grab one month's rent along with the security deposit and hand it over to the landlord or staff. Additionally, most landlords and staff want proof of income and a credit score. Some complexes may have you fill out an application, but it's not really too much exercise for your brain. It's rare, but you may run into a very strict landlord who runs a background check and asks for references from previous landlords; you probably won't encounter this, but just be aware of it. Also, most rental apartments and houses in Pine Castle only include some utility bills. For a lot of rental homes, all the utilities are paid entirely separately. Understand what the rent price entails, and don't be afraid to negotiate for a better deal. In Pine Castle, landlords like to feel confident that they are going to get their rent for the duration of the lease agreement; paying three months upfront or more can reduce costs in other places.
Occupying 2.8 square miles, the city can be divided into three geographical sections: north, central, and south. Pine Castle may not seem large, and it's not, but where you choose to live within the city can make a huge difference in your daily life. Living in the north puts you in close proximity to Orlando. Living in the central area puts you in the midst of the action. Living in the south puts you in proximity to attractions like Sea World.
Big Oak: This neighborhood occupies the north section of town. Big Oak Park, Lake Jessamine, and Lake Mary Jess make this area quite beautiful. Bus lines along Oak Ridge Road, the Oakridge Tap Room, and Mama Mia's Pizzeria make this area convenient for transit, partying, and eating.
Lancaster: This is the central part of town. Lancaster features Bay Lake, Dixie Belle's Cafe, and shops along South Orange Avenue. This area is a popular choice to live in and it offers easy access to bus lines.
Winegard: Located in the south side of the city, Winegard offers apartments for rent as well as houses. The area showcases Bear Head Lake and plenty of eateries. Bus lines on Sand Lake Road make getting to the greater area simple if you don't have a car.
Once you've moved in and you've had your fill of Jimmy Buffett, it's time to get out and explore what Pine Castle has to offer. And that often means what Orlando has to offer. Pine Castle is very much a part of Orlando, but it still exudes its own unique charm, which can be seen at spots like The Gnarly Barley and Victoriany's Pizza. The craft beer is rather good here as well. Locals here like to have a blast both inside Pine Castle and around the larger area. On any day, you'll find folks hopping on the bus or driving in their car towards hot spots like the Orlando Museum of Art, Wet 'n Wild Orlando, and Discovery Cove. Join them in all that fun.
You will also realize that the city does have an affection of water, and that's partly because it is surrounded by lakes. Fish, snorkel with dolphins, and swim on any given day. Take a peaceful walk along Bay Lake or water ski on Lake Conway. When you feel a little tired, head back to your humble Pine Castle abode and hydrate. Plug in the radio and turn on Jimmy Buffett. Once you've had enough, set out and see what else the region has to offer. Do you notice the rinse and repeat theme going on here? Indulge in that, and you'll find that Pine Castle indeed does offer better days, every day.