Why millennials are moving to Tampa

Part 1 in a series.

As 2021 rolled around, COVID left a substantial number of people stuck at home working remotely. Many individuals, specifically millennials, took this opportunity to relocate to their dream destination.

So where are they going? 

In a list compiled by Abbie Martin Greenbaum, an author at Dandelion Chandelier, Tampa ranks 4th out of the top five cities that are attracting the most millennials. 

CNBC reports that for every one person moving out of Tampa within the last year, 1.48 have moved in. 

World Population Review reports that, as of the start of 2021, the median age in Tampa is 35.7 years with its population growing at around 2%, bypassing the national average of 1.5%. 

It should come as no surprise then that the city’s growth is expected to increase urbanization and make neighborhoods literally get more youthful. Statistics also show that only 42.23% of Tampa’s residents that were born in the United States (82.77%) were born in Florida, further showing that people from all over the world are gravitating toward Tampa as a growing destination to live, work, play, and stay.

A growing hub of creativity 

Tampa is what Cody Parks, Compliance Risk Management Officer at Citi and a new home buying millennial, calls “a growing hub of creativity.”

With several great educational institutions within Tampa's city limits and throughout the region, many graduate students drawn into the Tampa Bay Area for schooling decide to settle down here.

University of Tampa 2020 graduate Haley Nowowiejski, for example, moved from Ohio to Tampa to further her degree in biology with a focus in marine biology. “After finishing college, I wanted to stay down here as I not only fell in love with the area but there are ample opportunities to further my career path,” Nowowiejski says.

Nowowiejski landed a job teaching high school biology in the Hillsborough County public school system after an internship at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. 

Millennials grew up with an exponentially shorter and more selective attention span than generations before, as the norm of scrolling in our tech-savvy world began. This generation is known for always being on the go with many claiming they often feel “bored with life.” This is a huge reason why the Tampa Bay Area is so enticing to this generation. On top of the vibrant, growing city, the surrounding area’s undeniable beauty and an abundance of outdoor activities leave residents with so many options for how they want to spend their downtime. 

“We love the idea that Tampa has the outdoors to offer but then we can stop on the way home to a local brewery or local restaurant that is trying to bring something new to the area,” Parks says. “There’s always something I can do, or we can find something to do on the weekend because there are so many events always being hosted year-round because of the weather.”

You’re in an urban setting surrounded by successful businesses bursting of opportunity, but you’re also just a short drive away from a bunch of beaches, including Clearwater Beach, which is often ranked the best beach in the U.S.A. by Tripadvisor. In addition to all the beaches along the Gulf, there are plenty of state parks and freshwater springs inland. Plus there’s The Tampa Riverwalk, paddle boarding, boating, kayaking, jet skis, biking trails, etc.

All the tools needed for success  

Known for being one of the hippest cities in America, Tampa is home to a substantial number of bars, restaurants, events, and activities to choose from depending on any vibe you’re looking for. From lively, crowded clubs and music festivals to many laid-back and relaxed local breweries, there’s something that’ll match what almost anyone wants. All of these things being available year-round either inside, or within close proximity to city limits, gives millennials the opportunity to easily live that lifestyle of being on the go.

On top of all its evident, exterior glamour, Tampa’s urban growth is creating boundless opportunities, casting a large net for success within a variety of career paths. Millennials say they get the dream lifestyle and all the tools they need in order to be successful in their field. 

“A lot of it has to do with the relocation of corporations from states where taxation and regulation are prohibiting profitability,” says Justin Ricke of Lombardo Realty. “That’s one reason, workforce relocation, corporate relocation, and along with that comes people that have just graduated from college that are coming into the workforce.” 

Next up? What’s the Tampa lifestyle like?

Learn more here: the top 5 cities attracting millennials on the move in 2021

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Read more articles by Lauren Wong.

Lauren Wong is a graduate of the University of Tampa with a degree in journalism who is freelancing while she looks for a full-time job. Originally from the Chicago area, she enjoys travel and aspires to be a travel photojournalist. During the summer of 2019, she worked for Premier Travel Media in Chicago and as a correspondent for Input Fort Wayne, another Issue Media group online magazine based in Indiana. She loves spending time outdoors camping, kayaking, and taking pictures.