Are you moving to Florida and trying to choose between West Palm Beach and Palm Beach? Considering they both have lovely areas, fun local activities, and excellent weather– we don’t blame you if you’re having a hard time making the decision.
When trying to determine which city is the right fit based on the benefits and drawbacks, it’s important to consider factors such as the cost of living, crime rate, population, and weather before making the move. That’s why we’ve made this highly-detailed West Palm Beach and Palm Beach pros and cons list!
Table of Contents
Living in West Palm Beach Pros
Full of Entertainment & Live Events
West Palm Beach is highly attractive for those looking for a city near-endless big events. West Palm Beach is known for bustling nightlife, entertainment, and numerous cultural events and attractions. For example, the Sunfest takes place every year in West Palm Beach and features great music appreciated throughout the whole south of Florida.
Apart from entertainment, West Palm Beach is a popular spot for tourists being that it’s home to several top-rated golf courses, excellent restaurants, and shopping like at the Palm Beach Outlets.
West Palm Beach’s Affordable Cost of Living
The cost of living in West Palm Beach is only around 6% higher than the state average– which is an advantage when compared to other cities in Florida (like Palm Beach) with similar characteristics. If you’re looking for a beautiful and popular city in Florida that doesn’t turn your wallets upside down, West Palm Beach is the place to be.
The current median house price in West Palm Beach comes in at $350,000– that’s $40,000 below the state median! If you’re hoping to settle down here, you can try looking online for homes for sale in West Palm Beach, Florida.
West Palm Beach has a Beautiful Natural Environment
It’s no secret that West Palm Beach ranks high when it comes to natural beauty. This charming city is also packed with natural areas and outdoor activities for everyone to enjoy. A few of the most notable outdoor amenities in West Palm Beach are the Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society, Dyer Park, and Grassy Waters Preserve.
Living in West Palm Beach Cons
West Palm Beach has a High Rate of Crime
Unfortunately, the city of West Palm Beach experiences a high rate of crime compared to the state and national averages– nearly 2x more dangerous! According to the FBI, living in West Palm gives you a 1 in 22 chance of becoming a victim of crime whereas the state of Florida and the U.S. have a shared average of 1 in 40.
Surprisingly, No Beaches!
Despite the name, West Palm Beach is not actually situated on any beaches within its borders which is a drawback. Although it’s along the Intracoastal Waterway, the waterfronts here aren’t exactly desirable for swimmers and beach-goers. If you want to spend a day out on the warm sand and cool water, you’ll have to head on over to Palm Beach which is across the three bridges.
A Mix of Good and Not-So-Good Neighborhoods
Of course, beauty is within the eye of the beholder– but from a general standpoint, there are some areas in West Palm Beach that are rather unattractive. When compared to Palm Beach, West Palm residents report there is a higher rate of “rundown” and “dirty” areas that you’ll want to avoid due to the high rate of crime. These areas are also more prone to lower-paying jobs and poor wages which is seen as a weakness of the city.
Living in Palm Beach Pros
Palm Beach is Home to an Exquisite Community
If you’re looking for class, luxury, and tropical paradise, look no further than Palm Beach. The island of Palm Beach is known for its charming estates and popular beaches. Here, you’ll also find an array of luxury hotels, fine shops, fancy restaurants, wealthy residents, and beautiful mansions– many of which are owned by famous billionaires including former U.S. presidents.
Palm Beach is also home to several historic landmarks like the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum– the former residence of Henry Flagler. If you’re looking to stay at one of the legendary resorts, The Breakers Palm Beach is a 5-star and incredibly luxurious resort in Palm Beach with roots that trace all the way back to the late 19th century.
Palm Beach is Very Safe
Low crime is a major highlight in Palm Beach. With just a 1 in 85 chance of being a victim of crime in Palm Beach, you can walk down the street at night with no worries other than what beach you’re going to visit the next day. This ratio is over twice as high as the state and national average which means that you’re twice as safe as most of the country. Additionally, the positive crime rate in Palm Beach is 1,182 per 100,000 residents which is certainly better than the Florida state average of 2,524.
Palm Beach has Some of the Best Clubs in the State
Palm Beach is home to a handful of clubs for tennis, beach, fishing, swimming, and other exclusive country clubs that many residents can take advantage of. Some of the most notable clubs in Palm Beach are the Sailfish Club of Florida and the Palm Beach Country Club.
Living in Palm Beach Cons
Very High Cost of Living in Palm Beach
Now for the reality check, the cost of living in Palm Beach is around 96% higher than the state average and is among one of the most expensive cities in the country. If your income doesn’t meet the cost of living here, the expenses can be a major obstacle and disadvantage while living in Palm Beach. Whether it’s heading out for supper or going shopping with your friends, you can expect to pay more than what the majority of the country would be paying.
Palm Beach Housing Prices are Through the Roof
It’s not just the small price tags that’ll catch your attention– the big ones are even more dramatic. If you’re looking to purchase property, keep in mind that the current median house price in Palm Beach comes in at a staggering $1,503,454. It’s no wonder why some of the wealthiest people in the world call Palm Beach home!
It Gets Crowded in Winter
If you’re not a fan of big crowds and busy beaches, then Palm Beach in the wintertime may be something you want to avoid. Between October and April, the population in Palm Beach doubles in size due to the migration of Florida residents from more seasonal areas.
The Cost of Living in West Palm Beach vs Palm Beach
Nearly all factors on the cost of living index state that West Palm Beach is considerably more affordable than Palm Beach. Below is a list of typical living expenses that show how West Palm Beach vs Palm Beach has a huge distinction when it comes to prices.
- The Overall Cost of Living in West Palm Beach is 114.5% lower than in Palm Beach
- The Housing Market in West Palm Beach is 385.1% lower than in Palm Beach
- Food and Grocery Prices in West Palm Beach are 10.9% lower than in Palm Beach
- Home Costs in West Palm Beach are 329.1% lower than in Palm Beach
- Basic Utilities are 1.2% more in West Palm Beach
- Transportation costs are 1.4% less in Palm Beach
- Commute Time to Work is 7.2% faster in West Palm Beach
Despite the massive difference in costs, the median household income in Palm Beach sits at $169,033 whereas the median household income in West Palm Beach is $54,603 which is 209.7% lower. All things considered, the cost of living in Palm Beach is indeed higher but so are the incomes of the residents who live there.
Additional Things to Consider Between West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach
Along with a significantly larger land area, there are over 100,000 more people living in West Palm Beach than in Palm Beach. West Palm Beach is currently 117,415 and the city covers 57.98 square miles which give it a population density of about 2025 people per mile. The Palm Beach population of 9,245 spans 7.8 square miles. In case you’re wondering about closeness, the distance from West Palm Beach to Palm Beach is about a mile east.
Crime Rate in West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach
Curious about the differentiation between the crime rate in West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach? Palm Beach is among the top safest cities in Florida whereas West Palm Beach is nearly twice as dangerous as the average U.S city.
As you already know, there are in fact no named beaches in West Palm Beach which is a disadvantage. Palm Beach– unlike West Palm Beach– boasts several lovely beaches with white sands and clear waters that you’ll have the opportunity to visit. Some of the most notable beaches in Palm Beach are listed below:
West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach Climate
You won’t find anything too noticeable about the weather differences between the West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach climate. Both areas have highs of around 90°F in summer and lows of around 56°F in winter. The comfortable weather is a major highlight of living in West Palm Beach and Palm Beach. Each city experiences 238 days of sunshine and annual rainfall of 63 inches.
West Palm Beach to Palm Beach Distance
When you’re commuting from city to city, the distance from West Palm Beach to Palm Beach is less than 2 miles which will take you east on the road and across a bridge for five to nine minutes.
West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach: Where Are You Moving?
Now that you know more of the West Palm Beach vs. Palm Beach pros & cons, ins and outs, it’s ultimately up to you to decide if West Palm Beach or Palm Beach is right for you based on your preferred lifestyle.
If moving to Palm Beach is more where you’re headed, Meehan’s Family Moving would love to help give you a smooth relocation! Our professional crew of Palm Beach movers is more than ready to ensure your moving experience is stress-free!
Reach out to us today at 561-904-6000 or complete the Request A Quote form for a Palm Beach moving estimate!