Live the Good Life in Greater Daytona

Affordable homes, a robust economy and outdoor amenities draw newcomers to Greater Daytona.

By
Brittany Anas
On Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 16:55
Greater Daytona

After becoming new parents, Melissa Frankel and her husband moved from a suburb of Orlando to Greater Daytona so they could be closer to family.

Since then, Frankel has discovered the region is perfect for raising her kids. She takes sunrise strolls on the beach with her young daughters, Adeline, 5, and Marlowe, 3, and they're regulars at the Ormond Memorial Art Museum & Gardens, where her girls love to spot turtles and study the flowers. On the weekends, the family zips up to Donnie's Donuts in their golf cart and spends time together swimming and playing tennis at the country club.

"Ormond Beach has this lovely small-town charm, scenic beaches, and a great variety of natural, cultural and historical attractions close by," says Frankel, who, with a friend, runs Daytona Beach Mom, a parenting resource for the Greater Daytona area.

As one of Florida's fastest-growing regions, Greater Daytona delivers a number of lifestyle advantages. A favorable climate and the sandy beaches that stretch along Florida's central Atlantic coast help promote an active lifestyle. Plus, the area is affordable and has a vibrant economy with ample career opportunities.

Greater Daytona
Jeff Adkins

Close to Big-City Amenities

Greater Daytona is close to other markets, which means residents here have access to big-city amenities, like an international airport, without the hassles of living in a major metro. Orlando is just an hour away, which means weekend trips to Disney are easy. Jacksonville can be reached in 1.5 hours.

"When we relocated to Greater Daytona, life just felt more manageable, and we had the gift of time," says Frankel, who lives within walking distance of the region's famed beaches.

She said her family appreciates the tight-knit community amenities in Ormond Beach, including a drive-in movie theater and holiday events, like the annual Fourth of July parade. Plus, there are plenty of nearby cultural attractions, like the Museum of Arts & Sciences in Daytona Beach.

Greater Daytona
MainStreet DeLand Assocation

Affordable Living and a Healthy Economy

Those who move to Greater Daytona also enjoy an affordable housing market. The median selling price in Greater Daytona is $250,000, a price tag that's $60,000 less than in Orlando and more than $63,000 less than the nationwide median home price.

The region is a bustling economic hub and has added more than 35,000 jobs between 2010 and 2019, which provides ample opportunities, whether you're looking to launch your career or take it to the next level.

"There's so much activity in the community so, whatever your interests, you'll find your crew."

David Welch, Greater Daytona Resident

Key industries built into the Greater Daytona economy including life sciences, aerospace, advanced manufacturing, boat building and food production. But, the region's affordability — coupled with no state income tax and an outstanding quality of life — makes it a desirable location for remote work, becoming a new norm for many industries.

Families here also have access to high-quality public education through Volusia County Schools, which serves all 16 cities in the region. The district offers distance learning programs and dual enrollment programs with several colleges, including Daytona State College. 

Greater Daytona
Jeff Adkins

Plenty of Weekend Activities

The outdoor amenities in Greater Daytona were a major draw for David Welch and his wife, who moved to New Smyrna Beach from Tallahassee.

"Greater Daytona is home to a wide variety of activities from amazing golfing and fishing spots to hot spots for foodies," says Welch, a self-employed sports consultant who also runs Rugged Sports Blog.

With moderate temperatures that average 81 degrees in the summer and 61 degrees in the winter, residents can enjoy the outdoors almost year-round. For Welch, that means hitting the links.

The region's cultural diversity influences its cuisine scene, with food from around the globe on the menu, some of the world's best seafood and a slate of quality restaurants.

The region, Welch says, offers a little something for everyone.

"People are friendly here," he says. "They are excited for you to be here and love to talk about their favorite spots. There's so much activity in the community so, whatever your interests, you'll find your crew."

If you'd like to learn more about the Greater Daytona region, check out the latest edition of Greater Daytona Region/Volusia County.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brittany Anas is a former newspaper reporter who accidentally became a federal background investigator before quickly retreating back to journalism.