Pasco County, Florida, is a relatively quiet place to live, situated below Orlando and above Tampa. It’s home to several cities and towns, many of which could prove to be the ideal retirement destination.
If you’re considering moving to Pasco County, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the area’s climate, cost of living, attractions, and neighborhoods. You can discover everything you need to know about this central Florida area by reading this article.
Pasco County, Florida: General Information
Pasco County is sandwiched between Hillsborough County (to the south) and Hernando County (to the north). Its westernmost border sits along the coast, opening up to the Gulf of Mexico.
This county is home to sandy coastal parks, thriving suburban neighborhoods, and sprawling commercial shopping centers. It’s a relatively diverse destination with plenty to offer.
To determine whether Pasco County is an excellent place to live, we’ll discuss the finer aspects of living here.
As of the 2020 census, the population was around 561,691. There are 209,483 households and 39,278 families within the designated area. The largest city in the county is Zephyrhills, and the county seat is Dade City.
All our demographic data is taken directly from census.gov. To view more detailed information, please visit the official site. Until then, we took time to break down the most important facts and figures for you.
|Age and Sex||Pasco County, FL||United States|
|Persons under 5 years||4.9%||5.7%|
|Persons under 18 years||20.4%||22.2%|
|Persons 65 years and over||22.1%||16.8%|
|Race and Hispanic Origin||Pasco County, FL||United States|
|Hispanic or Latino||18.1%||18.9%|
|Black or African American alone||7.4%||13.6%|
|American Indian and Alaska Native alone||0.5%||1.3%|
|Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone||0.1%||0.3%|
|Two or More Races||2.6%||2.9%|
|Income and Poverty||Pasco County, FL||United States|
|Median household income (in 2021 dollars), 2017-2021||$58,084||$69,021|
|Per capita income in past 12 months (in 2021 dollars), 2017-2021||$31,931||$37,638|
|Persons in poverty||11.6%||11.6%|
Weather and Climate
Pasco County experiences long, humid summers with plenty of rainfall. Average temperatures during the summer range between 80 and 98 degrees Fahrenheit, and afternoon rain is a common occurrence.
The winters are short, dry, and mild, with temperatures rarely falling below 48 degrees Fahrenheit. In fact, the last recorded snowfall occurred in 1977.
Pasco County is generally sunny, humid, and hot.
Cost of Living
The cost of living in Pasco County falls below the state and national average. However, groceries, health care, and home utility costs are above the Florida average.
Housing in Pasco County is more affordable than in other parts of the state. The median home cost is approximately $252,000, which is $42,000 less than the state average.
Residents of Pasco County can expect to pay slightly more for health services and utilities, which might become an issue for those with limited income.
Pasco County’s primary attractions are nature parks and preserves. For example, you can explore the following:
- Conner Preserve
- Cypress Creek Flood Detention Area
- Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park
- Starkey Wilderness Bike Trail
- Werner-Boyce Salt Springs State Park
- Withlacoochee River Park
You might find Pasco County lacking in exciting activities and attractions if hiking through natural trails does not appeal to you.
You can find almost every imaginable type of cuisine in Pasco County, especially when visiting the Tampa Premium Outlets in Wesley Chapel, The Grove at Wesley Chapel shopping mall, or The Shops at Wiregrass outdoor mall.
New Port Richey, Trinity, and Holiday also have a diverse selection of restaurants, including chain eateries (Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s, Denny’s) and independently-owned family restaurants.
How far in Pasco County, FL from the closest major city?
From Pasco County, FL, the closest major city is Tampa, located 30 miles south. There are many ways to get there, but the best transportation method depends on many variables, such as your budget, timeframe, and personal preferences.
If you prefer flexibility and independence, opt for a personal vehicle. For a budget friendly-option where you don’t have to worry about driving, we suggest hopping on a bus. If you want to travel quickly and have money to spend, book a plane ticket. Of course, you can also travel by taxi, Uber, or another ride-sharing service. Just be prepared to pay the fare, which can vary depending on the time of day, exact distance, and type of vehicle.
Other Nearby Cities
- St. Petersburg: 35 miles southwest
- Orlando: 100 miles east
- Jacksonville: 200 miles northeast
- Miami: 280 miles southeast
Which Neighborhoods in Pasco County, Florida, Are Best for Retirees?
Pasco County contains several cities and towns, including:
- Dade City
- Land O’ Lakes
- New Port Richey
- San Antonio
- Wesley Chapel
Each destination has something unique to offer residents, and the best choice for you depends on your preferences and needs.
If you enjoy living in busier areas with plenty of shops and attractions, Holiday, New Port Richey, Trinity, and Wesley Chapel could be excellent choices. People who prefer to live in quieter, rural areas might want to choose Dade City, San Antonio, or Zephyrhills.
If you are looking to join an age-restricted retirement community, New Port Richey is your best bet.
What are the best Pasco County, FL Neighborhoods to Live?
As stated, Pasco County is a relatively safe place to live overall. Although the best places are subjective, we will do our best to highlight some of the most popular neighborhoods based on factors like affordability, amenities, school, and quality of life.
Wesley Chapel, Florida
Situated in the central part of the county, Wesley Chapel, FL, is a rapidly growing area with a mix of suburban and rural neighborhoods. It features a variety of shopping centers, restaurants, and entertainment options, as well as several parks and trails.
New Port Richey, Florida
New Port Richey, FL, is a coastal town known for its historic downtown area, public library, parks, and waterfront activities. The communities here are active and safe, and the public schools are organized and well-maintained.
Florida’s Pasco County is home to the city of Zephyrhills, which is renowned for its natural springs, outdoor activities, and aviation heritage. Zephyrhills is a highly secure location to reside. The city’s violent crime rate is 2 percent below the national average and much lower than rates in other cities of comparable size.
If you are looking for waterfront events, boating trips, or fishing, then Hudson, FL, is the perfect place to call home. It’s a picturesque town with a strong real estate market set against a rural ocean backdrop.
Land O’ Lakes, Florida
Land O’ Lakes, FL, is an unincorporated community known for its natural beauty, scenic lakes, and outdoor activities like hiking and biking. Many consider it one of the top places to live in Florida, especially for homeowners wanting to enjoy more space.
Odessa, FL is an ideal location for outdoor lovers that may want to invest in a private larger estate. It is an excellent town to raise a family, and the general environment is charming, friendly, and safe. Take note that the cost of living is a bit higher, but it has the perk of direct access to downtown Tampa.
How Safe Is Pasco County, Florida?
Pasco County is safer than 92% of other Florida counties, with a comparatively low rate of property crimes. The county’s central areas tend to experience the fewest crimes, though this part of the county is mostly comprised of farmland and nature preserves.
Land O’ Lakes, San Antonio, and Wesley Chapel tend to be the safest cities in Pasco County, Florida. Bayonet Point, Starkey Ranch, and the southeastern portion of New Port Richie are the highest-crime areas.
The most common types of crimes are:
- Theft (4.211/1000 residents) and burglary (4.088/1000); followed by
- Drug crimes (3.523/1000)
- Vandalism (3.346/1000), and;
- Assault (1.817/1000).
Other Safety Considerations
Similar to the rest of Florida, Pasco County is susceptible to a variety of natural disasters, including hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, wildfires, and even sinkholes. If you’re thinking about moving here, be sure you are prepared to deal with these kinds of issues and equip yourself with the appropriate insurance.
In addition, it’s a good idea to stay informed about weather conditions and be on the lookout for emergency alerts. Take some time to put together a disaster plan in the event of an emergency, and always follow evacuation orders and instructions from local authorities.
Sinkholes in Pasco County, Florida
If you’d like to learn more about local sinkholes, please take a moment to review our Pasco County sinkhole map. There you can use our sinkhole database technology to stay up-to-date on safety consideration topics in your area.
You can also use our search tool and email alert system to find local foreclosures. This way, you can access real-time sinkhole data to help you find properties that are safe from sinkhole hazards.
Pros and Cons of Living in Pasco County, Florida
Every location has advantages and drawbacks, so it’s crucial to consider your potential retirement destination’s pros and cons.
Some of this county’s disadvantages might be dealbreakers for you. Alternatively, its positive aspects might outweigh its negative qualities. The only way to find out is to compare these qualities and consider your personal preferences.
Pros of Living in Pasco County, Florida
- Proximity to Tampa: Pasco County could be a top-notch choice if you’d like to explore Tampa but don’t want to spend each day dealing with its traffic and crime. It’s only a short drive away from the city of Tampa.
- Diverse cities and towns: While you won’t find any metropolitan cityscapes in Pasco County, you will find small, peaceful rural communities, bustling suburban areas, and activity-rich coastal cities.
- Comparatively low crime rate: Pasco County, Florida, has a lower-than-average crime rate, making it much safer than larger Floridian cities like Orlando and Tampa.
- Lower than average housing costs: Buying a home in Pasco County is far more affordable than buying a home in Miami, Orlando, St. Augustine, or Tampa.
- Plenty of retirement communities: Pasco County attracts thousands of retirement-aged individuals, which is why it’s home to several top-rated retirement communities designed for residents age 55 and up.
- Nudist resorts: Suppose your idea of the perfect retirement means having the freedom to walk around naked in an enclosed community. In that case, you’ll appreciate Pasco County’s thriving nudist communities – Caliente Club and Lake Como.
Cons of Living in Pasco County, Florida
- Limited public transportation: Retirees looking to ditch their car when moving to Pasco County might want to think again. This county has limited public transport, especially in its smaller, more rural towns.
- Hot, humid summers: If you’re sensitive to high temperatures or humidity, Pasco County might not be a suitable retirement destination. The heat index in some areas often exceeds 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer months.
- Higher utility costs: Higher temperatures result in costlier air conditioning costs, so people with limited income might find that utility costs in Pasco County are above their budget.
- No large cities: Though Tampa is a relatively short drive away (30 minutes to an hour), Pasco County has no metropolitan areas, so there’s a general lack of high-quality museums, art galleries, and theaters.
Are you thinking of moving to Florida? If so, you’ll want to consider choosing one of Pasco County’s many towns and cities.
New Port Richey is the busiest and most populated part of Pasco County, making it an ideal retirement destination for active adults. If you’re looking for small-town charm, Dade City or San Antonio might be a better choice.
For more information on retirement-friendly destinations in Florida, check out these related articles.
Before you move, you’ll want to ensure that your property is safe from sinkholes. Use this sinkhole locator to double-check your preferred Pasco County destination.