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Renter's Guide to West Palm Beach
When outsiders think of West Palm Beach, they think tourism but the Orchid City is a hub for international trade and for import and export as well as a vibrant financial and banking center. West Palm Beach is active, busy and home to many affluent residents.
West Palm Beach is approximately 68 miles from downtown Miami via I-95 and about 284 miles from Jacksonville. The Orchid City is 1,222 miles from New York City, NY. Busy Palm Beach International Airport (PBIA) is three miles west of West Palm Beach and services about 6 million travelers every year.
Residents flock to West Palm Beach for the climate which is tropical with an average annual low temperature of 67.8 degrees F and an average temperature of 75.35 degrees. Average annual precipitation is 62.42 inches. Hurricane season begins in August and rarely runs past September.
West Palm Beach, FL Demographics
- Total Population106,805
Female 51,473Male 55,332
- Median Age39.6
Cost of Living in West Palm Beach, FL
The PalmTran is a popular and convenient mode of public transport in West Palm. The 2006 Urban Community Transportation of the Year award winner carries nearly 35,000 passengers a year. The Tri-Rail connects with Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Boca Raton. One way fare is $5.50. Typical taxi fares in West Palm Beach begin at $1.25 and rise by $2.00 per mile.
Dining is more expensive than in Tampa and about equal to Naples. A three-course dinner for two in a mid-range West Palm Beach restaurant costs about $50.00. At an inexpensive restaurant, an individual meal will cost about $15.00. Imported beer costs about $6.00 per bottle.
Average utility costs for a 915-square-foot apartment in West Palm Beach will cost $172, significantly higher than Jacksonville or Tampa. The average price for Internet service in West Palm Beach runs about $47 per month.
Average Rent in West Palm Beach, FL
- West Palm Beach, FL Average Rental Price, December 2019 $1,484 /mo
West Palm Beach, FL Apartment Rent Ranges
- > $2,0008%
West Palm Beach, FL Rent Trends
|Nov / 2016||Mar / 2017||Jul / 2017||Nov / 2017||Mar / 2018||Jul / 2018||Nov / 2018||Mar / 2019||Jul / 2019||Nov / 2019||Dec / 2019|
Average rent is projected to grow by 2% in 2019 compared to 2018.
Please note that projected rent growth is calculated at city level.
Living in West Palm Beach
In addition to being an active economic and financial center, West Palm Beach has some of the most striking residences in the state as well as many cultural centers. Moreover, the area is known as one of the top retirement destinations in the US, with high-end complexes such as Century Village West Palm Beach providing the best in condo living.
West Palm Beach residents are active as LA Fitness West Palm Beach is busy around the clock. The city’s wealth is apparent in the number of successful spas in West Palm Beach, including Fleur de Paris Skin Care and Wellness, Crystal Spa & Nails, Anushka Spa, Salon & Cosmedical Centre, and others.
The median age in Orchid City is 38.8 years. Average commute times are just 23.01 minutes. These are definite pluses but residents usually say the greatest strengths of the city are its lively entertainment scene, its cultural diversity, its mesmerizing beaches and the access it provides to year round water recreation. However, high hurricane risk and expensive homeowners insurance are two of the legitimate cons to living in West Palm Beach.
West Palm Beach has a definite Latin American feel and influence. At the same time, the city has been recognized as a retirement center for the rich and famous since the 1920s, a reputation that has carried forward into the 21st century.
Over time, West Palm Beach has increased its reputation as a center of wealthy living, spectacular homes, and international trade. Residents expect and enjoy fabulous shopping and dynamic cultural attractions in a clean, progressive environment.
Things to do in West Palm Beach
Sparkling beaches, the Atlantic Ocean, exciting entertainment, upscale shopping, and mansions galore are trademarks of West Palm Beach.
As might be expected, the list of West Palm Beach attractions is lengthy. At the core of local entertainment is CityPlace West Palm Beach FL, a unique environment that includes restaurants, more than 100 shops, condos, offices, rental units, and the highly regarded Improv Comedy Club and Dinner Theatre. The Blue Martini features international fare and a trendy martini and champagne bar. The Cheesecake Factory, hibachi-happy Crazy Buffet, and Pollo Tropical have served grateful guests for years; and stylish Off the Hookah keep sociability going late into the night.
As active as West Palm’s social scene is, the city has dazzling museums, including the Norton Museum of Art, the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium, the Norton Ann Sculpture Gardens, and historic Flagler Museum. However, the Downtown West Palm Beach Arts & Entertainment District is recognized by residents and tourists as the hottest destination in town.
West Palm Beach’s recreation staff promotes a “Business, Life, Balance” theme in the city’s 54 parks. Noted parks include: Alice Mickens Park, Blum Park, Flagler Waterfront Park, Jose Marti Park, Palm Beach Post Centennial Park, and the remarkable Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Park. Add spectacular beaches and there truly is something for everyone in the Orchid City.
Besides the popular restaurants and clubs listed above, check out Rhythm Café, Agora Mediterranean, fine Cuban food at Havana and the ambiance at City Cellar Wine Bar and Grill. So many restaurants, so many clubs, so much to do!
Families and couples will love the museum and park scene in West Palm Beach. Paddle Boarding Palm Beach, EAU Palm Beach Resort & Spa, and the Kravis Center for Performing Arts offer everything from water recreation to Broadway shows. At Clematis Street, free, fun-loving activities are available daily. Centennial Square comes alive on Thursday nights.
Plus, the NBA, NHL and NFL are 68 miles away in Miami. University athletics and high school sports are avidly supported by fans in WPB.
The Great Escapist Grand Opening in West Palm Beach is a prominent annual event but the annual slate of events is full with diverse events like the South Florida Boat Show, and Art After Dark at the Norton Museum. Every month offers something creative and stimulating!
Employment & Economy in West Palm Beach
Job growth in West Palm Beach is projected at 3.93% per year. Currently, the unemployment rate is 5% and has been stable.
According to West Palm Beach labor statistics, 13.78% of the local workforce works in business, management or finance. More than 25% of the workforce works in office administration, sales or clerical work. About 8.65% of West Palm Beach laborers are active in transportation, moving or production. Construction only accounts for about 6.92% of jobs in West Palm Beach.
The healthcare industry is a major employment field in West Palm Beach. The Cleveland Clinic West Palm Beach, Pratt & Whitney, Sikorsky Aircraft, Florida Crystal and Palm Beach Newspapers have deep roots in the community.
West Palm Beach, FL Households
- Total Number of Households41,355
Family 22,044Non-family 19,311
Children 9,663No Children 31,692
- Average People Per Household2.51
- Median Household Income$49,054
- Median Housing Costs Per Month$1,173
Education in West Palm Beach
From preschool to adult continuing education programs, West Pam Beach offers exciting educational opportunities. The public school system is not rated as highly as charter schools or the city’s outstanding private school system. Top-rated schools include Alexander W Dreyfoos Junior School of Arts, Western Pines Community Middle School, and South Olive Elementary School.
Kaiser University West Palm Beach offers spacious classrooms and computer workstations, an auditorium and other amenities. 3,800 students attend privately owned and operated Palm Beach Atlantic University.
West Palm Beach, FL Education Statistics
- No High School7%
- Some High School33%
- Some College22%
- Associate Degree8%
- Bachelor Degree19%
- Graduate Degree11%
Tips for Renting in West Palm Beach
Landlord responsibilities depend on the type of the rental unit but generally they must comply with the requirements of applicable building, housing, and health codes in West Palm Beach. Landlords have to make sure that the housing unit, including all plumbing and electrical systems, are in reasonably good condition.
A tip for tenants in West Palm Beach is to read your lease carefully and pay extra attention to clauses that might turn problematic such as a landlord’s right to set automatic lease renewals or increase rent when taxes, utilities, and operating costs increase.
Also good to know: when your lease ends and you move out, your landlord has 15 days to return your security deposit - unless the landlord decides to make a claim against your deposit. The deposit may go towards such purposes as cleaning and trash removal, painting and plaster repair, roof repairs, plumbing repairs, and failure to pay rent after moving out.
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