Skyline of tall buildings by water in Downtown Jacksonville.

Safe, Affordable Neighborhoods in Jacksonville

Thinking about moving to Jacksonville? Known for its thriving technology industry, fun sports scene, and miles of beachfront property, Florida’s most populous city is a perfect landing spot for nearly any lifestyle. Consider settling down in one of these five safe, affordable neighborhoods in Jacksonville!

  • Beach Haven
  • East Arlington
  • North Beach
  • Sandalwood
  • Secret Cove

Beach Haven

One story white house with large green lawn. Photo by Instagram user @thekirasikesgroup
Photo via @thekirasikesgroup
  • Home Price: $228,686 median purchase price; $1,056 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 71% of Florida cities
  • Perfect For: Families, retirees

Looking for a family-friendly neighborhood in a great location? Beach Haven might be perfect for you! This Jacksonville neighborhood is within 15 minutes of the beach and 20 minutes of downtown, making work commutes and fun weekend outings easy. Beach Haven offers a quiet, suburban feel and has excellent schools like Chets Creek Elementary School and J. Allen Axson Elementary School, so it’s a top spot for families and retirees in Jacksonville!

Things to Do in Beach Haven

Zip around on an airboat and see some of Florida’s best native wildlife at Crazy Fish. Watch movies at Regal Beach Boulevard, where you can get a 4D film experience. Play at Shipwreck Island Waterpark, race go-karts, and battle it out in laser tag at Adventure Landing. Join Jacksonville Golf & Country Club to hit the links while the kids hang out in the Kids Clubhouse and Junior Lounge. Enjoy some of Jacksonville’s best tacos at Taco Libre, a cantina-style spot with amazing specialty tacos like the Camaron and the Lengua. Celebrate a special occasion at Marker 32, a high-end American restaurant with incredible dishes like Bistro Steak and Blue Crab Cakes. Or take in the vibrant Cuban atmosphere at Mambo’s Cuban Cafe, a kid-friendly eatery where Pollo Mango and Ropa Vieja rule.

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East Arlington

Two-story cream house with bright blue front door. Photo by Instagram user @rachelbalzanorealestatejax
Photo via @rachelbalzanorealestategroup
  • Home Price: $179,483 median purchase price; $1,457 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 83% of Florida cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families

If reasonable home prices and safety are what you’re after, take a peek at East Arlington. Located just 20 minutes from Downtown Jacksonville, this area is ideal for those who work in the city but prefer to live in a more residential area. In addition, East Arlington is surrounded by green space, offers affordable apartments and spacious single-family houses, and has top-rated schools like Waterleaf Elementary and Sabal Palm Elementary.

Things to Do in East Arlington

Peruse the walking trails to see some of Florida’s best flora or take in a fun event like the Butterfly Release at Jacksonville Arboretum and Gardens. Learn some new moves during a Tiny Tumblers or Hip-Hop dance class at The World of Dance & Talent. Make a trip to Fort Caroline National Memorial to learn about the area’s local native population and French exploration. Check out one of the coolest holiday collections around at the Blackhawk Bluff Christmas Display, a huge winter wonderland that brings the North Pole to Jacksonville. Enjoy a Red Dragon Burger or a Cordon Bleu Chicken Burger with a strawberry milkshake at Epik Burger. Dig into some of the best seafood in Jacksonville at Sid & Linda’s Seafood Market, a no-frills spot known for the Scallop Basket and steaming Hush Puppies. Or get your fill of live music and cheap drinks at local dive bar Cliff’s Bar and Grill.

North Beach

Two-story light gray house with white trim and black shutters. Photo by Instagram user @realtorsantaheredia
Photo via @realtorsantaheredia
  • Home Price: $229,312 median purchase price; $1,140 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 67% of Florida cities
  • Perfect For: Families, retirees

Situated in The Beaches area of Jacksonville right along the coast, North Beach is perfectly suited for families and retirees who want to be near the water. It’s also a great spot for active military and military families, as Mayport Naval Station borders North Beach to the north. Far away from the buzz of Downtown Jacksonville, North Beach offers a safe suburban atmosphere without the typical beachfront price tag—and there are plenty of family-friendly activities nearby to keep everyone entertained!

Things to Do in North Beach

Grab the sunscreen and hit the beach at Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park, where you’ll find over 1.5 miles of coastline and some of Jacksonville’s top surfing spots. Stop at Adventure Kayak Florida and sign up for a kayak tour or simply rent a kayak for the day. Spend a relaxing afternoon at Dutton Island Preserve, which is full of trails, a huge fishing pier, and several camping areas. Splurge on a membership at Atlantic Beach Country Club, where you’ll find some of the city’s best golf and social events. Dine at Bongiorno’s Pizzeria, an Italian spot known for their enormous Philly Cheesesteak Stromboli. Visit The Hangar Bay and Gallery, a quirky ramen restaurant that specializes in Japanese comfort food. Or pick up dinner and dessert from your favorite new bakery Pie Heaven Bakery Cafe.

Sandalwood

One-story gray house with white and large green yard. Photo by Instagram user @neflophoto
Photo via @neflophoto
  • Home Price: $143,912 median purchase price; $1,252 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 66% of Florida cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families

Within 20 minutes of both Downtown Jacksonville and the beach, you’ll find Sandalwood, one of the city’s best neighborhoods for young professionals and families. This primarily suburban area offers budget-friendly apartments and single-family houses, so it’s an ideal place to find affordable housing in Jacksonville. Families will also appreciate having great schools like Sandalwood High School and Kernan Middle School nearby—the neighborhood is even close to the University of North Florida!

Things to Do in Sandalwood

Enjoy a sunny afternoon with the family at Huffman Boulevard Park, which has a playground, a basketball court, and more. Sign the kids up for a gymnastics class or summer camp at TNT Gymnastic and Fitness. Round up your crew and head to The Great Escape Room to face off against challenging puzzles like The President’s Bunker. Dine at Thai Blossom Bistro, one of the best Jacksonville restaurants with delicious specialties like Pineapple Seafood Fried Rice and Crispy Duck in Red Curry. Spice up dinner at Hana Yori of Japan, where skilled teppanyaki chefs put on a show before delivering mouth-watering combinations like The Happy Buddha or Teppan Chicken. Or post up for Game Day at Xtreme Wings Sports Grille, where you’ll find great beer specials and some of the best buffalo wings around.

Secret Cove

Two-story tan house with palm tree in yard. Photo by Instagram user @neflophoto
Photo via @neflophoto
  • Home Price: $168,300 median purchase price; $1,259 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 83% of Florida cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals

Wondering where young adults seeking safe areas like to live in Jacksonville? Add Secret Cove to your list of potential landing spots! Just a 15-minute drive from the city center, Secret Cove is an excellent location for commuting professionals, and it’s ideal for first-time homebuyers, thanks to its wide range of housing options at affordable price points. Whether you’re looking for a luxury apartment, condo, or spacious single-family home, this neighborhood has it all.

Things to Do in Secret Cove

Kick back in a Luxury Lounger at Cinemark Tinseltown and XD to see the latest blockbusters. Load up your fur baby and head over to dog-friendly brewery Bottlenose Brewing. Get your buddies together for some heart-pumping racing action at Autobahn Indoor Speedway, where the Italian-made karts whip around the track up to 50 mph. Experience true churrascaria at Terra Gaucha Brazilian Steakhouse, an all-you-can-eat hub where fire-roasted meats are carved tableside. Hang out at Culhane’s Irish Pub, a neighborhood favorite that features specialties such as Lynda’s Reuben Rolls and Banger’s n’ Mash. Or relax on the patio at Seven Bridges Grille & Brewery, where the chill atmosphere is accompanied by tasty in-house brews like the Southside Pils or the Seven Bridges Specialty Dark.

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Data from AreaVibes

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