That’s no joke about the sinkholes. This community originally started out as farmland, and there’s still quite a bit of agriculture going on in these parts. Unfortunately, past farming techniques led to excess water seepage, which led to sinkholes. Eek. But no matter, Plant City is also the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World. From late February to early March every year, hardcore, strawberry-lovin Floridians converge on Plant City to savor the fruits of the farmhands labors and enjoy parades, contests, exhibits and the crowning of the Queen and her court. That means, by the way, youll definitely need a car. And hopefully a middling liking of strawberries.
What you dont need, wonderfully, is a long lead-time to find a place to live. Rents are low and vacancies are high, which is great news for apartment hunters. Some areas boast of vacancy rates as high as 17 percent, so feel free to swoop down last minute or be extra picky about your wants and needs. One more thing, a lot of apartment buildings are old school, so if youre looking for a sweet 2-bedroom rental close to downtown, you may have to actually go downtown and search on foot. Websites for complexes are few and far between.
Pretty much all of Floridas weather can be summed up with the three Hs: hot, humid, hurricanes. It’s wet and wild out here, especially since Plant City isn’t far from the ocean. It has seen its share of destructive hurricanes, so having solid living accommodations or aplace to retreat to is a sensible plan. Still, people tend to have a pretty laid-back attitude towards tropical storms, so maybe you should gauge your reaction based on your neighbors rather than the news crew desperate for viewers.
The weather also tells you what you should look for in a home rental. You’ll want something sturdy, sure, but also something with a screened porch. Hot and humid summers bring not only torrential rainfall midday, but they also attract mosquitoes at dawn and dusk, and dengue fever doesn’t go with your guayabera shirt.
There are oodles of neighborhoods in Plant City, but there are some main areas to consider. Inexpensive rents are great, but research thoroughly before settling in, there’s no rush (unless theres a rush).
Moriczville:Particularly diverse, which means awesome food at the minimum. But it also has plenty of mobile homes, which is good news if you want that but not so enticing if you don’t.
Midway/Mount Eton:Midway has some of the lowest rents for studios and 1- and 2-bedroom apartments. The vacancy rate is a comfy, cozy 13 percent. Take that abundance and find something special. Also, this is a popular final spot for retirees, so get accustomed to shuffle board.
Coronet/Youmans:Like corned beef? You'll be in the right place here.
Turkey Creek:Turkey Creek has moderate rents for condos, town homes, houses and apartments, but its mostly owner-occupied.
Hopewell:With the lowest rents, the highest vacancy rate, and scads of mobile homes, this is a grungier area. Carpooling is popular here, which is great for the Earth, but it’s probably best to stay clear of this area unless money is the single determinant.
City Center:Why not be close to all the action, the chain stores, shopping, and hot dining spots? Oh, maybe because City Center is the most expensive district in PC, at least for rentals. It is walkable, quiet and older, but convenience is the main draw.
Plant City is big on character, even if its small on rents. The poverty rate is a little noticeable depending on the area and education levels, unsurprisingly, are on the lower end, but there’s one very important, highly essential, and unforgettable detail that makes living here worthwhile. Dinosaur World! It features over 150 life-sized dinosaurs. Jurassic Park ain't got nothing on this place. Everything else just can’t compete. Plant City has highs and lows, but it has the potential to be an amazing place for those who want more land and a rural lifestyle that’s still close to a big city. It’s struggling, but its improving day by day. Getting in now ensures low rents and a great, welcoming community. Hang in there, and one day this will be one of the best places to live in the state.