30 Safest Affordable Towns in Florida 2020

Not only is Florida a popular choice of address for families and individuals hoping for year-round summer and easy access to world-class beaches, it’s also a haven for retirees looking to live well for a reasonable price. Of course, great weather and white-sand beaches aren’t Florida’s only draws. The state is also home to myriad cities and towns that are both affordable and, perhaps most important, safe.

Methodology:
To come up with our list of the 30 safest affordable towns in Florida, we consulted Sperling’s Best Places to figure out which Florida cities and towns have the lowest amount of crime. Because it is often the case that the safest places are the most expensive, we limited our search, and ultimately our list, to only those places with a median home price under $350,000. Finally, we considered both violent crime (murder and non-negligent manslaughter, robbery, aggravated assault, and forcible rape) and petty crime (burglary, theft, vehicle theft, and property crime).

1. Jennings

96% lower than the national average
Jennings is a small town located in Hamilton County, just eight miles from the state’s border with Georgia. In the past year, only one crime was reported, an assault. Statistically, this means that only .31 daily crimes occur in Jennings per 100,000 people, making it safer than 86% of cities in the U.S. Jennings residents have a slim 1 in 873 chance of becoming the victim of a crime.

2. Center Hill

92% lower than the national average
Home to approximately 1,050 residents, the town of Center Hill is perhaps best known as a center for agriculture. Located in Sumter County in the central part of the state, Center Hill was once known as the “Green Bean Capital of the World” in recognition of its excellent soil. Today, Center Hill’s leading industry is cattle. According to the most recent records, crime in Center Hill is a whopping 92% lower than the national average. Citizens have a mere 1 in 475 chance of falling victim to any crime, which is statistically limited to just 211 crimes per 100,000 people per year.

3. Lawtey

75% lower than the national average
Home to just under 1,100 people, Lawtey boasts a median home value of $77,600, and a crime rate 75% lower than the national average. Only 1.91 daily crimes occur per 100,000 people in Lawtey, and residents have a 1 in 144 chance of falling victim to a crime. In the past year, three violent crimes have been reported, all three of which were cases of assault. There were also two non-violent crimes reported last year — one burglary and one theft.

4. South Palm Beach

70% lower than the national average
Not to be confused with Palm Beach or West Palm Beach, South Palm Beach is located on a barrier island between the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. The median home price here is $223,600, partly due to the large number of condominiums. Home to approximately 1,300 people, South Palm Beach has a crime rate which currently averages 2.27 daily crimes per 100,000 people. This means residents have a 1 in 121 chance of falling victim to a crime at any given time.

5. (tie) Bay Harbor Islands

66% lower than the national average
Bay Harbor Islands is exactly as its name suggests — a small town spanning two little islands in Miami-Dade County, in southern Florida. In the last year, a grand total of 57 crimes were reported in this town of approximately 5,900, 49 of which were non-violent crimes (theft, mainly). This means residents of Bay Harbor Islands have a mere 1 in 107 chance of becoming the victim of a crime, making the city far safer than 75% of the United States.

5. (tie) Indian Shores

66% lower than the national average
Idyllic Indian Shores is a small town located on a barrier island situated just west of the larger town of Seminole. Indian Shores’ overall crime rate is 66% lower than the national average, which makes it safer than 82% of U.S. cities. Specifically, there are 2.55 daily crimes per 100,000 people in Indian Shores each year, and residents have a slim 1 in 108 chance of falling victim to any crime. The most common crime in Indian Shores is petty theft, which accounted for 26 of the town’s 35 total crimes reported last year.

5. (tie) Satellite Beach

66% lower than the national average
Satellite Beach’s overall crime rate is lower than 66% of the United States. It currently boasts a rate of 2.55 daily crimes per 100,000 people. This means that Satellite Beach residents have a 1 in 108 chance of falling victim to a crime. Of the 102 crimes reported last year, all but eight were cases of property crime (the most common being theft).

8. Winter Springs

60% lower than the national average
The city of Winter Springs has been ranked by Money Magazine as one of the top 100 places in the U.S. While there are certainly many reasons that Winter Springs would make such a list, we are willing to bet one such reason is its low crime rate. Indeed, Winter Springs’s overall crime rate is an impressive 60% lower than the national average. This means Winter Springs residents have a slim 1 in 92 chance of becoming victim to any crime at any given time.

9. North Palm Beach

58% lower than the national average
Like its neighbor, South Palm Beach, North Palm Beach is both an affordable and safe place to live. The overall crime rate in North Palm Beach is 58% lower than the national average. This makes the town safer than 73% of cities in the United States and 87% of cities in Florida. North Palm Beach residents have a 1 in 87 chance of falling victim to any crime, a 1 in 97 chance of falling victim to a property crime, and a 1 in 775 chance of falling victim to a violent crime. In the last year, 136 property crimes were reported in this town of approximately 13,000, the most common being petty theft. In the same time period, 17 violent crimes were reported, 11 of which were cases of assault.

10. (tie) Bonifay

57% lower than the national average
Another panhandle city to make our list of the safest affordable towns in Florida is Bonifay. Bonifay is considered safer than 46% of cities in the United States. This is despite a year-over-year crime comparison that reveals crime has actually increased by 11%. Of course, this isn’t quite as scary as it may initially sound. In the past year, only nine violent crimes were reported in this town of 6,700 people, eight of which were cases of assault. Of the 23 reported property crimes, 14 were cases of theft, three were burglaries, and six were cases of vehicle theft.

10. (tie) Howey-in-the-Hills

57% lower than the national average
Perhaps the only thing better than this town’s name is its low crime rate. Howey-in-the-Hills, a town of approximately 1,200 people located in the greater Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford area, boasts an overall crime rate that is 57% lower than the national average. Residents have a slim 1 in 86 chance of becoming victim to any crime. In fact, only 14 crimes were reported last year, all but two of which were non-violent.

10. (tie) Lake Alfred

57% lower than the national average
Located in central Florida in the greater Lakeland-Winter Haven area, the small town of Lake Alfred ranks as another safe and affordable place to live in Florida. Residents of Lake Alfred have a 1 in 85 chance of falling victim to any crime. In the last year, only one violent crime was reported, an incident of assault. Of the 69 reported property crimes, there were 18 burglaries and 51 cases of theft.

10. (tie) Valparaiso

57% lower than the national average
Valparaiso, a small town of about 5,200, is located in Okaloosa County, in the panhandle. The town has a crime rate that is 57% lower than the national average. There are 3.24 daily crimes per 100,000 people in Valparaiso, which means residents have only a 1 in 85 chance of falling victim to any crime. Of the 60 reported crimes last year, only eight were violent (all cases of assault), while the others were petty theft (27 reported cases), vehicle theft (seven reported cases), and burglary (18 cases).

10. (tie) Welaka

57% lower than the national average
Located about 90 miles south of Jacksonville is the small town of Welaka. Of the eight reported incidents of the last year, only one was a violent crime. The other seven were cases of non-violent theft and burglary. Welaka residents have a 1 in 86 chance of falling victim to a crime.

15. (tie) Carrabelle

56% lower than the national average
Located along Florida’s panhandle, the town of Carrabelle is home to around 2,800 people. A typical coastal town, Carrabelle is perhaps best known as the home of the “World’s Smallest Police Station” — that is, a phone booth holding a police phone to deter tourists from making unauthorized long-distance calls. Residents of Carrabelle have a slim 1 in 84 chance of falling victim to a crime. Of the 33 total incidents reported last year, none were violent. All 33 cases were non-violent, and consisted of one vehicle theft, 16 thefts, and 16 burglaries.

15. (tie) Oviedo

56% lower than the national average
Approximately 38,000 people call Oviedo home. Located in the greater Orlando-Kissimmee area, Oviedo boasts a crime rate which is 56% lower than the national average. There are 3.3 daily crimes per 100,000 people in Oviedo, which means residents have only a 1 in 83 chance of falling victim to any crime. There were 79 violent crimes reported in Oviedo last year, as well as 408 non-violent crimes which are known to have taken place. Of these, 303 were cases of theft, 97 were burglaries, and eight were instances of vehicle theft.

17. Port St. Lucie

55% lower than the national average
Located in St. Lucie County and within the greater Miami-Fort Lauderdale area, the city of Port St. Lucie is home to approximately 176,000 people. According to last year’s data, Port St. Lucie is safer than 75% of cities in the United States. Statistically speaking, there are 3.36 daily crimes per 100,000 people here, an impressive number for such a large place. Residents of Port St. Lucie have a 1 in 82 chance of falling victim to any crime, a 1 in 89 chance of becoming the victim of a non-violent crime, and a 1 in 1,015 chance of experiencing a violent crime.

18. Melbourne Beach

52% lower than the national average
Melbourne Beach is a small coastal town of about 3,200 full-time residents. Statistics show it is one of the safest addresses in Brevard County. Those living in Melbourne Beach have a 1 in 76 chance of falling victim to any crime. The number of crimes reported here daily averages only 3.65 per 100,000 people. Forty-four crimes were reported in Melbourne Beach last year, all but three of which were non-violent.

19. Minneola

51% lower than the national average
Considered a suburb of Orlando, the city of Minneola boasts a population of just over 10,000 residents. Minneola’s overall crime rate is only half that of the national norm, and averages 3.69 daily crimes per 100,000 people. Residents have a 1 in 75 chance of falling victim to a crime, and a slim 1 in 422 chance of experiencing a violent crime.

20. (tie) Punta Gorda

50% lower than the national average
About 18,000 people live in Punta Gorda, a small town located in the greater Sarasota-Bradenton area. Punta Gorda’s overall crime rate is half of the national average. This means Punta Gorda residents have a 1 in 74 chance of falling victim to any crime, a 1 in 78 chance of falling victim to a property crime, and a 1 in 1,199 chance of falling victim to a violent crime. Indeed, of the 262 crimes reported in Punta Gorda last year, only 16 were incidents of violent crime.

20. (tie) St. Cloud

50% lower than the national average
Home to about 44,000 people, St. Cloud is located in the greater Orlando-Kissimmee area. Interestingly, the city was founded as a retirement community for Civil War union veterans, and as such, St. Cloud is still known as “The Friendly Soldier City.” Statistically, there are 3.73 daily crimes that occur in St. Cloud per 100,000 people. In other words, St. Cloud residents have a 1 in 74 chance of becoming the victim of a crime. In the last year, the city has reported 678 crimes — a 36% decrease from the year before — all but 86 of which were non-violent property crimes.

22. Cooper City

45% lower than the national average
A small city located in the Miami metropolitan area in Broward County, Cooper City is home to approximately 34,400 people. Cooper City boasts an overall crime rate that is 45% lower than the national average. Residents have a 1 in 66 chance of becoming the victim of a crime, the most common of which is non-violent theft. Last year, 421 petty thefts were reported, along with 49 vehicle thefts, 67 burglaries, and 22 violent crimes.

23. Sebastian

38% lower than the national average
This picturesque town of approximately 24,000 people is located on the Treasure Coast of eastern Florida. Sebastian’s crime rate makes it safer than 58% of cities in the U.S. People who live here have a 1 in 59 chance of falling victim to a crime. Of the 429 total incidents reported last year, only 48 were violent crimes (37 assaults, eight robberies, and three rapes).

24. Lake Mary

33% lower than the national average
Located in the shadows of Orlando in central Florida, Lake Mary is a small city of about 15,500 people. Lake Mary’s current crime rate is 33% lower than the national average, which makes it safer than 42% of the cities in the U.S. The most common property crime in Lake Mary is petty theft, and residents have a 1 in 66 chance of falling victim. Meanwhile, the most common violent crime is assault, of which there were 39 incidents last year.

25. Margate

28% lower than the national average
Margate is a picturesque city of approximately 56,000 people. Located in Broward County, just 15 miles from Fort Lauderdale, Margate boasts a crime rate that makes it safer than 53% of cities in America. In the past year, 1,165 total crimes were reported. Of these, only 119 were violent crimes, the vast majority of which were incidents of rape. The other 1,046 reported crimes were non-violent property crimes. Margate residents have a 1 in 51 chance of falling victim to any crime.

26. (tie) Jupiter

27% lower than the national average
Jupiter has about 61,000 people. Located in Palm Beach County, Jupiter is considered the northernmost community in the Miami metro. Jupiter is no stranger to “best of” lists. In 2012, Coastal Living ranked it the 9th Happiest Seaside Town in America, while WalletHub included it on its list of the Best Beach Towns in America (ranked 12th). Residents of Jupiter have a 1 in 50 chance of falling victim to any crime, 1 in 54 chance of falling victim to a property crime, and a slim 1 in 635 chance of falling victim to a violent crime.

26. (tie) Rockledge

27% lower than the national average
Founded in 1887, Rockledge is the oldest city in Brevard County. The city is home to just over 26,000 people, and is located within the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville metropolitan area. In terms of crime, Rockledge is safer than 58% of cities in Florida, and 43% of cities in the country. Residents’ chance of falling victim to a violent crime in Rockledge is 1 in 339, as last year, 81 violent crimes were reported to have occurred (the majority of which were incidents of assault).

28. Coconut Creek

26% lower than the national average
Located within the greater Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach metro, and famous as the home of the world’s largest butterfly aviary, the city of Coconut Creek boasts a crime rate that is 26% lower than the national average. This means Coconut Creek is safer than 59% of towns in America. Based on the number of reported crimes in the last year (1,234, only 81 of which were violent crimes), Coconut Creek residents have a 1 in 50 chance of falling victim to any crime.

29. (tie) Hialeah Gardens

20% lower than the national average
Located in Miami-Dade County, the city of Hialeah Gardens ranks as the 29th safest affordable town in the Sunshine State. Residents of Hialeah Gardens have a 1 in 46 chance of falling victim to any crime. In the last year, only 33 violent crimes were reported, 21 of which were incidents of assault. Of the 495 reported property crimes, 371 were cases of petty theft.

29. (tie) Milton

20% lower than the national average
Home to approximately 9,500 people, Milton is perhaps best known as the home of Naval Air Station Whiting Field. Being a largely military town, perhaps it isn’t too surprising that Milton boasts a crime rate that is 20% lower than the national average. This makes Milton safer than 47% of cities in the United States. Crime here decreased 23% in the last year, and Milton residents have a 1 in 46 chance of falling victim to any crime, and an even slimmer 1 in 418 chance of falling victim to a violent crime.