Worst Miami Suburbs For 2020


We used science to determine which Miami burbs are the real pits.

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Editor’s Note: This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out we updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the worst suburbs around Miami.

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Not everyone is cut out for city life. Some people would prefer to live in the cities and towns that surround Miami.

So the question arises, do the suburbs maintain a semblance of the larger-than-life appeal of their more famous neighbor?

Today, we'll use science and data to determine which Miami 'burbs need a little tender loving care - the sore thumbs of the Miami area if you will. Realistically, you can't expect all the suburbs to live up to Miami proper, although Key Biscayne certainly tries.

Of course, not all suburbs of Miami are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado...

We examined the 48 biggest suburbs of Miami to find out the worst places to live. And while you won't necessarily find them on the worst places to live in florida lists, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Miami in terms of quality of life.

What's the worst suburb of Miami? Florida City ranks as the worst suburb of Miami for 2020 based on the most recent Census and FBI data.

Read on to see how we determined the places around Miami that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don't blame the messenger.

Or, if you're thinking of moving to elsewhere in florida check out the best places in florida overall or the worst.

And remember, there are some good places to live around Miami too.

Editor's Note: If you see a slight difference between the worst in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it's because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.

For more Florida reading, check out:

The 10 Worst Miami Suburbs To Live For 2020

Florida City, FL

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 12,096
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $35,794 (4th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 17.3% (1st highest)
Median Home Value: $143,400 (5th lowest)
More on Florida City:  Data | Photos

We'll get the ball rolling with Florida City, the absolute worst place to live around Miami according to the data.

And in the world of worst rankings, Florida City beat the competition pretty handily thanks to scoring in the bottom 15% in three major categories. Income is the 4th worst in the Miami area, and to make matters worse, the city ranks 5th worst when it comes to home values.

But hey, at least it's cheap to live there. But there's a reason for that... it's Florida City.

You won't feel bad about not having a great income for the area, there aren't a bunch of places to spend your money anyway.

Opa Locka, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 16,420
Rank Last Year: -
Median Income: $17,908 (1st lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 12.6% (2nd highest)
Median Home Value: $114,300 (3rd lowest)
More on Opa Locka:  Data | Photos

Welcome to Opa Locka. Home to KMart, Big Lots, and a lot of gas stations.

This city is 9.1 miles to Miami. Income levels here are the 1st lowest in the metro area, where families bring in about $17,908 a year, which doesn't go a long ways even on a shoestring budget.

But on the bright side, there are a lot of fast food joints in the area.

Homestead, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 68,424
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Median Income: $43,568 (13th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 7.8% (11th highest)
Median Home Value: $195,300 (16th lowest)
More on Homestead:  Data | Photos

Back up the highway we go for the third worst Miami suburb you can live in. You might have expected to see Homestead on here. While the cost of living is low, your entertainment and work options are limited. And that's an understatement.

In terms of numbers, it's in the worst 15% for insurance, and the adult high school drop out rate is poor compared to other Miami suburbs.

But at least there are nice parks to bring the kids during the day.

Lauderdale Lakes, FL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 35,254
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Income: $36,372 (6th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 10.2% (3rd highest)
Median Home Value: $109,600 (2nd lowest)
More on Lauderdale Lakes:  Data | Photos

If you live in Lauderdale Lakes, most likely you struggle to make ends meet every month. It ranks as the 6th lowest Miami suburb when it comes to residents making money.

Not only that, but this is the 3rd worst unemployed suburb you can live in if you choose to live near Miami. Remember, we looked at 48 cities for this study.

Lauderdale Lakes is about 27.1 miles to downtown.

Miami Gardens, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 112,913
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Median Income: $42,398 (11th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 10.1% (4th highest)
Median Home Value: $170,900 (9th lowest)
More on Miami Gardens:  Data | Photos

Miami Gardens has the distinction of being a Miami suburb. Which means that's about all it has going for it.

All snarkiness aside, Miami Gardens has the 9th lowest home values in the metro Miami area, where the median price is $170,900. To put that into perspective, in Key Biscayne, the median income is $153,417, which is the best in the area.

Miami Gardens has an unemployment rate of 10.07% which ranks 4th worst.

North Miami, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 61,435
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 1)
Median Income: $40,661 (8th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 9.0% (8th highest)
Median Home Value: $183,200 (13th lowest)
More on North Miami:  Data | Photos

North Miami has 61,435 residents that probably know it's a pretty crummy place to live when you look at the data. (Or, if you've ever been there, you don't need to look at the data.)

Incomes are towards the bottom and the poverty rate sits at 21.53460414452709%.

Pembroke Park, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 6,625
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Median Income: $35,236 (3rd lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 3.1% (45th highest)
Median Home Value: $84,500 (1st lowest)
More on Pembroke Park:  Data | Photos

Ah, Pembroke Park. You rank as the 7th worst place to live around Miami.

It's the place with the 45th most out of work residents in the Miami metro area (3.1%).

North Miami Beach, FL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 45,069
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 3)
Median Income: $40,952 (10th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 10.1% (5th highest)
Median Home Value: $180,500 (12th lowest)
More on North Miami Beach:  Data | Photos

North Miami Beach is a city about 11.0 miles from Miami, but Miami probably wishes it was further away. It ranks as the 8th worst burb for 2018.

You'd be hard pressed to find a worse place to live. North Miami Beach has the 2nd most uninsured people, 10th worst incomes, and has the 5th highest unemployment rate (10.05%) in the entire Miami metro area.

Homes only cost $180,500 for a reason. That's cheap for Miami standards.

Dania Beach, FL

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 31,810
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 1)
Median Income: $46,137 (14th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 9.2% (7th highest)
Median Home Value: $183,500 (14th lowest)
More on Dania Beach:  Data | Photos

If you absolutely have to live near Miami, then Dania Beach might be a place for you to consider as it's only the 9th worst Miami suburb.

About 9.22% of residents are out of work.

Lauderhill, FL

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 71,328
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 3)
Median Income: $40,737 (9th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 9.0% (9th highest)
Median Home Value: $124,400 (4th lowest)
More on Lauderhill:  Data | Photos

Rounding out the ten worst Miami suburbs to call home is Lauderhill.

Located 26.7 miles outside the city, Lauderhills is a real pit when you look at the data. Its residents have the 9th highest unemployment rate (8.97%), and poverty is far above the area average.

Determining The Worst Suburbs Around Miami for 2020

To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what cities have the least amount of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent American Community Survey data from 2014-2018, this is the criteria we used:

  • High unemployment rate
  • Low median household incomes
  • Low population density (no things to do)
  • Low home values
  • A lot of high school drop outs
  • High poverty
  • High rate of uninsured families

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Miami.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 48 suburbs to evaluate around Miami.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 48 in each category, where 1 was the "worst".

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the worst quality of life index the "Worst Suburb near Miami." We're lookin' at you, Florida City. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the worst of the worst. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from worst to best.

The areas around Miami where the dream is more of a nightmare for 2020

Well there you have it -- the worst of the 'burbs surrounding Miami with Florida City casting itself ahead of the pack.

As we mentioned earlier, the suburbs around Miami aren't all bad. Key Biscayne takes the cake as the best place to live around Miami.

  • Key Biscayne
  • Surfside
  • Pinecrest

For more Florida reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Miami Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Values
1 Florida City 12,096 $35,794 $143,400
2 Opa Locka 16,420 $17,908 $114,300
3 Homestead 68,424 $43,568 $195,300
4 Lauderdale Lakes 35,254 $36,372 $109,600
5 Miami Gardens 112,913 $42,398 $170,900
6 North Miami 61,435 $40,661 $183,200
7 Pembroke Park 6,625 $35,236 $84,500
8 North Miami Beach 45,069 $40,952 $180,500
9 Dania Beach 31,810 $46,137 $183,500
10 Lauderhill 71,328 $40,737 $124,400
11 West Park 14,924 $42,500 $162,800
12 Hialeah 237,285 $33,161 $203,700
13 Oakland Park 44,339 $50,380 $195,300
14 Sweetwater 21,027 $36,133 $155,200
15 Hallandale Beach 39,472 $38,319 $209,700
16 Hollywood 151,056 $51,917 $236,400
17 Hialeah Gardens 23,959 $48,026 $173,000
18 Fort Lauderdale 178,783 $55,269 $318,200
19 Biscayne Park 3,175 $64,712 $405,700
20 Sunrise 93,199 $55,043 $179,200
21 Virginia Gardens 2,504 $47,465 $297,900
22 Tamarac 64,748 $49,423 $156,200
23 West Miami 7,373 $48,418 $303,800
24 Davie 103,132 $66,951 $275,200
25 Miramar 138,168 $70,005 $279,900
26 South Miami 12,202 $60,591 $528,400
27 El Portal 2,143 $74,643 $368,300
28 Miami Beach 91,826 $53,348 $443,400
29 Cutler Bay 44,801 $72,226 $262,400
30 Miami Springs 14,375 $59,335 $387,100
31 Pembroke Pines 168,260 $66,816 $264,700
32 Doral 58,265 $77,418 $374,700
33 Wilton Manors 12,534 $64,531 $319,100
34 Islandia 3,345 $95,379 $317,400
35 Southwest Ranches 7,880 $104,083 $627,700
36 Florida 2,836 $89,022 $251,500
37 Weston 70,220 $100,110 $469,000
38 Palmetto Bay 24,564 $115,709 $527,200
39 Sunny Isles Beach 22,171 $55,209 $340,700
40 Aventura 37,780 $63,131 $345,000
41 Miami Lakes 31,050 $73,527 $364,800
42 Bay Harbor Islands 5,938 $73,639 $390,100
43 Miami Shores 10,676 $110,536 $512,100
44 Bal Harbour 3,000 $71,961 $1,017,400
45 Coral Gables 50,931 $100,000 $795,600
46 Pinecrest 19,446 $153,417 $919,800
47 Surfside 5,817 $86,088 $581,800
48 Key Biscayne 13,054 $133,958 $1,218,200

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