Personally, I live in South East Florida, and I would not live anywhere else - the energy, the vibe is what I love about Miami-Dade and Broward counties.
For a single woman in mid 30s safety is very important, of course.
I suggest either a pet-friendly condo (small dogs are allowed in some, but not all condos), a townhouse (in a pet friendly community), better yet gated community. However, I would not
go for a house. Houses are a lot of maintenance, high insurance payments, and frankly are not
as safe, unless in a gated community (but those are more money).
I feel that what your mother and you'll love is the new people you meet in more urban areas,
especially in the areas with good infrastructure.
I would recommend Aventura, Sunny Isles Beach, Hallandale and Hollywood areas, Miami Beach, N. Bay Village, Coral Gables, Weston, Coral Springs, Plantation, Miramar,
Good luck with your move!
Irina Karan/Beachfront Realty, Inc. 305-904-2355 IrinaKaran@gmail.com
Realtor - Mortgage Lender
http://www.employflorida.com, http://www.indeed.com, http://www.simplyhired.com, http://www.jobfocus.com, http://www.yoursun.net, http://www.craigslist.com, http://www.careerbuilder.com.
Then you can decide on a price range that will fit within your budget. That will determine whether you can afford a home or a condo. Each have their own benefits, depending on the lifestyle you are looking for.
Tammy Hayes, Realtor
Green Lion Realty, Port Charlotte, FL
No area of Florida is completely safe from Hurricanes... then again, neither is anywhere in New Jersey, they just don't happen as frequently there.
If it happens that you're a software programmer who can work anywhere she wants, I would suggest the west coast. Low crime rates, good medical care, etc. Very popular with retirees. Unfortunately, for you it could be a bit sleepy, so try to be by a bigger city like Sarasota, Tampa or Fort Myers, so you can at least hit the town occasionally. I highly recommend the dog beach at Venice... much as though my dog is afraid of the waves.