These Are The 10 Worst Small Towns In Florida For 2018


Using science and data, we can tell you which teeny specks in FL are the pits.

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Most Americans have never been to Florida. However, as the people who live there know, Florida is an awesome state.

But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, Florida has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Sunshine State. Don’t shoot the messenger, this is all using data.

After analyzing more than 124 of Florida’s smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in Florida where you’d never want to live:

  1. Westville
  2. Caryville
  3. Jennings
  4. Lemon Grove
  5. Jacob City
  6. Raleigh
  7. Medley
  8. Sumatra
  9. Lake Mack-Forest Hills
  10. Hampton

Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since Florida has its stuff figured out.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers, or scroll to the bottom to see how your town ranked.

And if you already know about the small towns, check out the best places to live in Florida or the worst places to live in Florida.

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How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?

In order to rank the worst small towns to live in Florida, we had to determine what criteria people like or dislike about a place. It isn’t a stretch to assume that people like low crime, solid education, things to do and a stable economy.

So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.

How we crunched the numbers

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data, the Census’s 2010-2014 American Community Survey, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (The lower the worse)
  • Highest Unemployment Rates
  • Low housing costs (meaning there’s no demand)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Median income adjusted for the cost of living)
  • Education (Number of high school dropouts)
  • High Crime

We looked at cities with populations between 100 and 1,000 people, of which, there were a lot – 124 to be exact.

Additional note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the cities themselves. Dropout numbers are based on the adult population, not just the current graduation rates of teenagers.

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1. Westville


Population: 333
Median Income: $24,464
Median Home Value: $62,500

2. Caryville


Population: 221
Median Income: $23,750
Median Home Value: $57,900

3. Jennings


Population: 590
Median Income: $26,528
Median Home Value: $49,500

4. Lemon Grove


Population: 730
Median Income: $25,735
Median Home Value: $100,600

5. Jacob City

Source: Public Domain

Population: 342
Median Income: $23,047
Median Home Value: $46,100

6. Raleigh


Population: 285
Median Income: $14,643
Median Home Value: $76,400

7. Medley


Population: 898
Median Income: $30,272
Median Home Value: $33,100

8. Sumatra


Population: 204
Median Income: $33,162
Median Home Value: $45,900

9. Lake Mack-Forest Hills


Population: 541
Median Income: $23,618
Median Home Value: $66,300

10. Hampton


Population: 452
Median Income: $27,143
Median Home Value: $57,200

There You Have It – The Worst Small Towns In Florida

If you’re analyzing teeny places in the Sunshine State with the worst economic situations, where there’s high crime and there’s not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious enough, here are the best small towns to live in Florida, according to science.

  1. Best: Hillsboro Pines
  2. 2nd Best: Jupiter Inlet Colony
  3. 3rd Best: Sea Ranch Lakes

For more reading, check out:

  • These Are The 10 Most Dangerous Places In Florida
  • These Are The 10 Most Boring Places In Florida
  • These Are The 10 Most Ghetto Cities In Florida
  • Ranking Of The 100 Worst Small Towns In Florida

    City Rank Population Home Price
    Westville 1 333 $62,500
    Caryville 2 221 $57,900
    Jennings 3 590 $49,500
    Lemon Grove 4 730 $100,600
    Jacob City 5 342 $46,100
    Raleigh 6 285 $76,400
    Medley 7 898 $33,100
    Sumatra 8 204 $45,900
    Lake Mack-Forest Hills 9 541 $66,300
    Hampton 10 452 $57,200
    Bradley Junction 11 377 $63,500
    Greenville 12 919 $34,600
    Reddick 13 733 $71,700
    Alford 14 636 $65,200
    Branford 15 796 $65,000
    Ponce De Leon 16 551 $87,100
    Esto 17 338 $90,600
    Cottondale 18 753 $81,000
    Webster 19 862 $53,100
    Welaka 20 614 $90,200
    Lee 21 478 $77,900
    Noma 22 224 $47,000
    Ebro 23 263 $75,600
    Crystal Springs 24 982 $86,400
    White Springs 25 871 $97,100
    Yeehaw Junction 26 229 $129,000
    Raiford 27 170 $88,200
    Bell 28 486 $59,200
    Worthington Springs 29 550 $141,400
    Pine Lakes 30 623 $69,800
    Canal Point 31 585 $77,800
    Campbellton 32 196 $76,000
    Vernon 33 760 $72,800
    Captiva 34 207 $788,500
    Greenwood 35 875 $69,800
    Deland Southwest 36 841 $77,600
    Glen St. Mary 37 566 $87,500
    Wausau 38 515 $77,100
    Andrews 39 638 $77,200
    Altha 40 724 $103,900
    Bronson 41 857 $80,800
    Limestone 42 112 $52,900
    Panacea 43 933 $89,200
    Waldo 44 846 $87,900
    Masaryktown 45 936 $63,800
    Juno Ridge 46 817 $180,400
    Brooker 47 463 $80,000
    Paradise Heights 48 632 $77,900
    Trilby 49 301 $102,200
    Wiscon 50 559 $52,200
    Grand Ridge 51 824 $82,200
    Hastings 52 752 $101,200
    Page Park 53 473 $107,300
    Ocean Breeze Park 54 214 $13,500
    Coleman 55 508 $82,500
    Yanke 56 569 $180,500
    Jay 57 399 $60,700
    St. Marks 58 237 $122,100
    Laurel Hill 59 626 $92,200
    Aripeka 60 117 $134,900
    Greensboro 61 648 $93,600
    Solana 62 577 $89,800
    Sopchoppy 63 422 $70,000
    Paxton 64 638 $98,300
    Penney Farms 65 618 $116,700
    Fort Green Springs 66 390 $10,000
    Dixonville 67 148 $93,000
    Bascom 68 116 $92,500
    La Crosse 69 259 $111,900
    Hosford 70 816 $93,300
    Avalon 71 541 $118,900
    Whitfield Cdp (Santa Rosa County) 72 203 $121,200
    Gardner 73 288 $83,100
    Lake Mystic 74 399 $68,400
    Spring Ridge 75 421 $98,900
    Lisbon 76 341 $131,500
    Micanopy 77 636 $118,300
    Glen Ridge 78 196 $262,500
    Duck Key 79 716 $586,300
    Harold 80 922 $115,800
    Horseshoe Beach 81 118 $142,600
    Mount Carmel 82 180 $108,900
    Berrydale 83 314 $252,100
    Highland Park 84 235 $85,000
    Everglades 85 232 $253,800
    Wabasso 86 590 $435,900
    Pine Level 87 216 $76,100
    Fort White 88 817 $166,300
    Rio 89 983 $166,500
    Brownsdale 90 544 $152,100
    Waukeenah 91 204 $256,300
    Bradenton Beach 92 907 $265,500
    Beverly Beach 93 407 $120,200
    Spring Lake 94 442 $174,300
    Cedar Key 95 677 $172,000
    Cinco Bayou 96 374 $220,800
    Melbourne Village 97 769 $175,700
    Mcintosh 98 373 $116,300
    St. Lucie Village 99 639 $277,300
    Matlacha Isles-Matlacha Shores 100 309 $374,500

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    9 thoughts on “These Are The 10 Worst Small Towns In Florida For 2018

    1. Stupid, stupid, STUPID!!!! What the article fails to mention is that there are larger nearby towns and many people purposely CHOOSE to live in small communities such as many of these… and they commute to work. Some of these small towns are great places to live! And… I say the more churches the better. Whoever wrote this article needs to find a more worthwhile subject to write about instead of tearing down and maligning smaller communities… Statistics are just numbers… and numbers don’t always tell the story…they can certainly be skewed to elaborate or degenerate a fact(s).

    2. I know this is just their opinion but there are lots of things to do in these places. Even though these are small towns they have a lot to offer. I bet this was the opinion of some big shot up north.

    3. Cottondale (#10) is my hometown (tho’ I was born in GA) and I LOVED living there! Everyone knew everyone and it was like the whole town was family. The school was good when I attended there. We had some excellent teachers. And, it is certainly a church-going community. If that is the 10th worst place to live now, it wasn’t when I lived there.

    4. Ok, you will have your “bad areas” no matter. I live in Pine Lakes, am not unemployed, choose to live away from all the city rucas! By the way, we ALSO have Pine lakes Superette, and Pine Lakes grill…..if your writing is based on facts, please, get them right! Lol!

    5. you fail to understand that Cottondale is not far from larger cities, 20-30 min drive to work and there is no traffic. City folks spend more time in traffic getting to work, pay more for their homes and probably work more hours, Small town folks actually pay off their homes faster than city folks too. I live in the next town over, am 54 and have NO MORTGAGE.

    6. You blew it, you just went to towns on the Florida map!
      You never went to LA (Lower Alabama, the part of Florida, that Florida does not want to claim, just collect taxes from-like the UK)
      We won the Worse County, City, Roads, 4-cent gas tax and the Worse wait at the most redlights that are sinked, so you catch every redlights!
      We won the privilege of receiving all the refugees from the flooded 9th Ward, New Orleans. We made them feel at home, so they are still living in the FEMA trailers.
      So keep keep going West until you get to eSCAMbia, talk to Jack Brown, to see how he does it, if you really want to steal the only title we feel worthy of (THE WORSE PLACE LIVE, BEST PLACE TO SEE IN YOUR REARVIEW MIRROR, IF YOU LUCKY ENOUGH TO HAVE ONE).

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