Homes for Rent in Gainesville, FL: What You Need to Know
Gainesville is the seat of Alachua County in north-central Florida. It’s known as the college town that brought Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers to the music world.
Schools and Higher Education
Gainesville is home to the University of Florida (52,218 students), the state’s flagship university. It boasts of two Pulitzer Prize-winning faculty members, 52 Olympic gold medals, and 36 national athletic championships. There are two other universities in Gainesville and 41 colleges within 100 miles of the city. Its 53 public schools have an average reading proficiency score of 58%, higher than the 55% Florida average, and math proficiency score of 58%, the statewide average. The total enrolment in primary and secondary education is 23,752 students.
Tom Petty, born in Gainesville on Oct. 20, 1950, started making music in high school. He and the Heartbreakers gained enormous success with songs like “Free Fallin” and “Runnin' Down a Dream.” They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002. Petty died of an overdose in 2017. The independent label No Idea Records is based in Gainesville, where it holds the annual musical event called The Fest. Other popular bands from Gainesville include Hundred Waters, Less than Jake, and Against Me!
The Cost of Living in Gainesville
One of the best things about living in Gainesville (population: 133,997) is its affordability. The city’s cost of living rate, food, and housing costs are 6.6%, 19.8%, and 21.8% lower than the national average, respectively. The median gross rent in Gainesville is $930. New to Florida? You’ll be happy to know that the state doesn’t levy an income tax. It collects 6% to 8.50% in sales tax.
Know Your Neighborhoods
If you’re an urbanite, check out the downtown neighborhoods, from east of the University of Florida campus through the area around University Avenue and Main Street. You’ll find new condos, modern apartments, and old houses. In the suburbs, Alachua and High Springs are known for their excellent public schools. Residents love Alachua’s farmer's markets and small festivals. High Springs is farther, but its natural springs and scenic landscape make the commute worthwhile.
Getting Around in Gainesville
Gainesville Regional Transit System (RTS) provides a viable alternative to driving. Its fleet of 123 buses serves Gainesville and Alachua County and the University of Florida and Santa Fe College campuses. It maintains 40 city routes and 10 campus routes. In 2019, RTS provided a total of 6.5 million passenger trips. Gainesville Regional Airport is the closest airport to the city.