All You Need to Know About Moving to Hillsborough County, Florida

Located in the Sunshine State of America, Hillsborough County, Florida, offers a compelling blend of rich history, diverse economic opportunities, bustling residential life, top-notch education, robust health facilities, and an array of recreational activities. As Florida’s fourth most populated county, Hillsborough is adored by both its locals and immigrants for its quality of life and promising prospects. It amalgamates the best of both worlds – the fast-paced metropolitan lifestyle represented by Tampa and a serene suburban life in various idyllic neighborhoods. This article aims to provide an impartial and comprehensive view of what life in Hillsborough County really looks like, focusing on its historical and geographical uniqueness, economic developments, residential situations, education and health provisions, and social and recreational potential. With all these factors, one can legitimately evaluate whether moving to Hillsborough County is the right decision for them or not.

Understanding Hillsborough County: History and Geography

Hillsborough County: A Snapshot of History

Hillsborough County, located on the west coast of Florida, offers fascinating insights into both Native American and Spanish colonial history. It was originally inhabited by indigenous people including the Tocobaga and the Calusa. Spain claimed the area in the 16th century with the arrival of Hernando De Soto, a Spanish explorer. Over time, it transitioned from Spanish rule to British and then finally, as part of Florida, was ceded to the United States. Reflecting this rich history, Hillsborough County offers several historical sites and museums that can transport one back to the different eras of its past.

Geographical Features of Hillsborough County

The geographical uniqueness of Hillsborough County is one of its main draws. With a total acreage of approximately 750,000, it is a diverse landscape that provides a city-side view with an option of a countryside haven. The county includes vast stretches of bay and gulf waters, rivers, and agricultural lands.

The terrain includes both suburban and rural areas covering crystal-clear waters, muddy rivers, flat plains, and lush greenery. There’s Tampa Bay on the west, providing picturesque sunsets, water sports, and boating opportunities. The Hillsborough River flows through the county as well, offering a serene ambiance that is ideal for canoeing, birdwatching, and picnics.

Climate: A Balance of Sun and Rain

The county experiences a tropical climate, which renders it an almost year-round warm and sunny disposition. The average temperature during the summer hits a high of around 90 degrees F, and winter temperatures seldom dip below 50 degrees F. The months from June to September can be heavy on rainfall, making this period ideal for those who enjoy watching storms or taking advantage of the cooler weather for outdoor activities.

Historical Landmarks and Attractions

Several landmarks dot the Hillsborough County. The Fort Foster Historic Site offers a chance to step back in time and learn about the Second Seminole War. Through reenactments and original artifacts, one can truly appreciate the rich history of the area.

Ybor City, located in Hillsborough County, is a unique historic neighborhood that was once a center for cigar manufacturing. Today, it’s a vibrant area filled with vintage shops, art galleries, and restaurants.

The county is also home to several modern amenities such as Busch Gardens, an African-themed amusement park, and the Florida Aquarium. These features make Hillsborough County a family-friendly location with diverse offerings for recreation and leisure activities.

The Allure of Hillsborough County

Featuring a rich tapestry of history, diverse geography, and an amiable climate, Hillsborough County in Florida presents a unique appeal for a broad spectrum of individuals and families. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, nature lover or a homeowner on the lookout for a temperate and peaceful setting, you might find Hillsborough County to be your perfect habitat.

Economic Overview: Job Opportunities and Cost of Living in Hillsborough County

The Economic Landscape of Hillsborough County, Florida

Situated on Florida’s west coast, Hillsborough County takes pride in its robust economy that entices entrepreneurs, job seekers, and families with its sunny coastlines. The economic canvas of the county is colored with a range of sectors like finance, healthcare, insurance, retail trade, and education, thereby offering a plethora of employment prospects.

Job Market and Opportunities in Hillsborough County

The job market in Hillsborough County presents substantial opportunities across various industry segments. The county is home to many significant national and international corporations, contributing to the area’s economic development and providing plenty of job opportunities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate of Hillsborough County was 2.7% as of January 2023, lower than the national average of 3.8%.

The ongoing economic upswing has resulted in positive job growth numbers. Hillsborough County’s job growth rate was 2.9% in 2022, and it is projected to grow by 44.9% over the next decade, significantly outpacing the expected U.S. average of 33.5%.

One of the county’s key employment sectors is Healthcare and Social Assistance, followed by Retail Trade and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services. Some top employers in the region include the School District of Hillsborough County, Publix Super Markets, and BayCare Health System – all offering a broad array of job opportunities.

Average salary in Hillsborough County

Along with the promising job market, the average salary in Hillsborough County tends to be favorable. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual wage for all occupations in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater (which includes Hillsborough County) metro area was approximately $51,840 in 2022. However, salaries can vary widely based on the specific industry, experience, skill level and job role.

Cost of Living Comparison to Other Regions

While job opportunities and salaries are essential aspects to consider while contemplating a move, it’s equally important to factor in the cost of living. Hillsborough County’s cost of living is rated at 102.7, based on the U.S. average of 100, according to Best Places. This indicates that the cost of living is slightly higher than the U.S. average but still lower compared to other metropolitan areas like Miami and New York City.

The housing factor contributes significantly to the cost of living in Hillsborough County. The median home cost in the county is approximately $263,100, which is relatively more affordable than many other major metropolitan areas in the country.

In terms of everyday expenses such as groceries, health, transportation, and utilities, Hillsborough County is generally on par with the national average, if not slightly lower. For instance, a gallon of milk typically costs around $3.50, and a regular doctor’s visit runs about $115. In comparison, nationwide averages for the same are $3.88 and $125 respectively.

Final Thoughts

Deciding to move to a new place like Hillsborough County can depend on a variety of individual circumstances. However, it’s important to note that Hillsborough County offers a thriving job market, excellent salary packages, and a cost of living that is still within reason. With the plethora of job opportunities and an optimistic economic viewpoint, Hillsborough County becomes an inviting prospect for professionals, families, and individuals alike.

Residential Life: Housing and Neighborhoods

The Real Estate Picture in Hillsborough County

Positioned on Florida’s beautiful west coast, Hillsborough County is recognized for its stable and buoyant housing market. As we entered into 2022, the average home value in the County was noted around $350,000, showing a notable rise in property prices over the last ten years. The factors that contribute to this growth are a burgeoning population, a robust local economy and its geographic desirability.

Furthermore, the rental costs in Hillsborough County tend to outdo the national average. The midpoint monthly rent in the county is about $1,600, but this figure can fluctuate based on which specific neighborhood you’re in and the kind of property you’re renting.

Best Neighborhoods in Hillsborough County

Hillsborough County is home to a number of top-rated neighborhoods, each with its own unique appeal. For families, FishHawk is often recommended due to its excellent schools and family-friendly amenities. It has a suburban feel with lots of parks, trails, and recreational activities.

For young professionals, Hyde Park and Downtown Tampa offer a more urban lifestyle with abundant entertainment options, restaurants, and career opportunities. These areas are also known for their walkability and access to public transportation.

Those seeking a more luxurious lifestyle may consider Davis Islands, a Tampa neighborhood known for its high-end real estate, yacht club, and private airport.

Amenities in Hillsborough County Neighborhoods

Hillsborough County provides its residents with a host of amenities. Many neighborhoods have access to outdoor recreational facilities like parks, biking trails, and public beaches. The county is also home to a number of highly-rated public and private schools, making it a good choice for families.

There are a wealth of shopping and dining options throughout the county, ranging from farmers markets and local boutiques to high-end department stores and gourmet restaurants. Hillsborough County also boasts a vibrant arts and culture scene, with numerous museums, art galleries, and theaters.

In terms of healthcare, Hillsborough County houses some of the top medical facilities in the state, including Tampa General Hospital and Brandon Regional Hospital. Public transportation options are also comprehensive, with a network of bus, trolley, and cab services throughout the county.


If you’re considering a move to the Tampa Bay area, Hillsborough County may offer just what you’re looking for in terms of residential life. It’s a thriving county with a strong housing market and a wide array of different neighborhoods, catering perfectly to the diverse needs and lifestyles of potential new residents.

Education and Health Facilities

Life and Learning in Hillsborough County

Located in the heart of Florida, Hillsborough County boasts a thriving educational sector. Offering both public and private institutions across all levels from primary to advanced education, Hillsborough County Public School System is the 7th largest in the nation. It offers a broad curriculum to more than 200,000 students via its network of 250 schools. Many institutions in the county have won awards for academic excellence, particularly those situated in the top-rated school zones.

Those looking for more focused programs can choose from a range of charter and private schools, all offering bespoke curriculums. Hillsborough County is also rich in magnet and International Baccalaureate programs offerings.

In terms of higher education, Hillsborough County is home to the University of South Florida, a highly-regarded public university reported by U.S News and World to be among the nation’s best. It offers a plethora of undergraduate, graduate, and research programs. Hillsborough Community College also contributes to the educational fabric of the area by offering a variety of associate degree and certificate courses while accommodating transfer students on their paths toward four-year university degrees.

Healthcare in Hillsborough County

Alongside its education infrastructure, Hillsborough County boasts a comprehensive heath care landscape with globally recognized healthcare facilities. The county is home to Tampa General Hospital, a nationally ranked hospital in six adult medical specialties and four pediatric specialties. Recognized as one of America’s Best Hospitals by U.S News and World Report, Tampa General Hospital provides unparalleled healthcare services in the region.

The healthcare landscape in Hillsborough County extends beyond hospital care. Specialized medical institutions such as Moffitt Cancer Center, Shriners Hospitals for Children, and St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital serve residents with specialized care needs. For those seeking mental health or substance abuse services, Gracepoint Wellness offers a variety of outpatient and inpatient services.

There’s also a variety of urgent care clinics, private practices, pediatric centers, and elderly care facilities throughout the county. Hillsborough County’s public and community health services ensure that residents receive quality health services, regardless of their socioeconomic status.

There are numerous healthcare industry job opportunities for those seeking employment or career advancement in this sector.

In conclusion, Hillsborough County presents prospective diners with its exceptional education system and efficient health facilities. Regardless of whether you’re a student aiming for higher education in internationally acclaimed institutions, a parent intending to provide your children with quality schooling, or someone desirous of top-notch healthcare facilities, this Floridian County has the potential to meet your expectations.

Recreational Activities and Social Life

Hillsborough County’s Outdoor Attractions

Not just quality education and healthcare, Hillsborough County is also the place to be for those who thrive outdoors. It is adorned with an array of parks and recreational terrains, all designed to cater to different interests. From exploring preserved landscapes to engaging in physical activities like walking, biking, or hiking on picturesque trails at Lettuce Lake Park or E.G. Simmons Regional Park, Hillsborough County leaves nothing to be desired. Additionally, the presence of lovely beaches along with rivers makes it the perfect spot for various water sports like kayaking, fishing, and boating which keeps its residents as well visitors thoroughly entertained.

Florida’s Hillsborough County Cultural Centers

There’s a broad spectrum of cultural experiences to be had in Hillsborough County. The Tampa Museum of Art and the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts offer exhibits showcasing local and international works. Theater and music aficionados have a range of venues to choose from, such as The Straz Center for the Performing Arts, which hosts Broadway shows, concerts, and dance performances. Additionally, the county hosts a number of cultural festivals throughout the year, such as the Gasparilla Festival of Arts and the Florida State Fair, providing a vibrant and diverse cultural scene.

Restaurants and Dining Options in Hillsborough County

Dining in Hillsborough County is a culinary adventure, with a restaurant scene as diverse as its population. The city offers a blend of traditional favorites and inventive new concepts. An array of seafood restaurants take advantage of the county’s coastal location, while cuisines from around the world can be sampled in eateries across the city. The gastronomy scene is further enhanced by food festivals such as the Taste of Tampa and Food & Wine Festival.

Sporting Events in Hillsborough County

For sports lovers, Hillsborough County is an ideal location. It’s home to several professional sports teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (NFL), Tampa Bay Lightning (NHL), and Tampa Bay Rowdies (USL). The county also boasts state-of-the-art sports facilities like the Amalie Arena and Raymond James Stadium where these games are hosted. For active residents, there are numerous recreational leagues that cater to all ages and skill levels.

Nightlife Options in Hillsborough County

Nightlife in Hillsborough County ranges from low-key lounges to high-energy nightclubs. The city of Tampa, which is located in Hillsborough County, is renowned for its vibrant nightlife scene and is home to numerous bars, pubs, and music venues. Ybor City, Tampa’s historic district, is renowned for its active nightlife scene, with venues offering live music, DJ sets, and a variety of themed nights. For those who prefer a quieter evening, there are wine bars and breweries scattered throughout the county, offering a more relaxed atmosphere.

Overall, the recreational activities and social life in Hillsborough County, Florida caters to a wide range of age groups, interests, and lifestyles. This makes it a fantastic place to live for those seeking an active, fun-filled life.

Indeed, Hillsborough County, Florida, stands as a fitting testament to the quintessential Floridian lifestyle – sunny, dynamic, opportunistic, and vibrant. It presents a compelling case for those looking to thrive in an environment that celebrates multiculturalism, historical richness, economic growth, quality education, exceptional health care, and abundant recreation options. Whether you’re a career-driven professional, a potential student, a retiring senior, or a family person searching for a well-rounded community for your kids, Hillsborough County turns out to be an imperious contender to consider for relocation. Remember, the essence of life in Hillsborough County is fascinatingly diverse, ensuring that there’s always something for everyone!

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