People have many reasons for moving to Miami including the sunny skies, diverse culture and interesting employment opportunities. No matter what the reasoning behind their moves, everyone runs into the same logistical challenges. This article pulls together a variety of resources to help you bypass the red tape and get your new life off to a smooth start.
HousingMost likely, your first priority is choosing a place to live. Whether you plan to rent an apartment or purchase a luxurious mansion, your search for shelter is probably best started by selecting a neighborhood. The Neighborhood Guide from the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau is a great place to start. Once you've selected an area or two, take a look at our Apartment Hunting and Real Estate subject pages to locate the home of your dreams.
UtilitiesIn South Florida, your electric power will be provided by Florida Power & Light. They provide an online system for opening or reopening your electric service account. Water service is provided by the Miami-Dade Water & Sewer Department. You can apply for water & server service online. AT&T/BellSouth provides primary telephone service to most homes in Miami and you can establish new service on their website.
Trash and RecyclingType your address into the county's Service Finder and you'll learn a number of interesting details like your trash collection days and representatives in government. Dade County also has mandatory recycling. If you don't have them already, you'll need to request recycling bins.
EmploymentUnless you came to South Florida with a job offer in hand, your next concern will probably be finding gainful employment in our fair city. You might want to check out our list of Employment resources to get your job hunt off the ground.
EducationMiami's home to a large number of educational institutions. If you have school-age kids, Miami-Dade Public Schools is the fourth-largest public school district in the nation. We're also home to the University of Miami, Florida International University and a number of other colleges and universities. If you love to read, you'll also want to apply for a library card. For more information on educational opportunities in the area, take a look at our list of Education resources.
TransportationOnce you've selected a job or school, you're going to need a way to get there. Our Transportation subject page outlines a number of the mass transit options in Dade County. If you're going to drive, you'll need to obtain a Florida driver's license and Florida tags for your vehicle. You also might want to check out our list of Maps to help get your bearings.
GovernmentThere are a few other miscellaneous items you'll need to take care of with the various branches of government. You probably want to fill out the online form to change your address with the U.S. Postal Service. It's also your civic duty to register to vote in Florida. You've probably already heard that the State of Florida has no income tax. However, if you own a significant amount of stocks, bonds, mutual funds or similar assets, you may be subject to the state's intangibles tax.
Hopefully, this will help you get your new life in Miami started on the right foot. If you'd like to meet other Miami residents and ask advice or share tips, feel free to stop by our forums!