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I moved to Miami instead of the Bay Area to start my tech career 3 years ago. Here’s why it was the right choice.

  • Kevin Cook moved to Miami after graduating college from New Jersey and says he’s never looked back.
  • He lives in Coconut Grove and pays $1,100 a month for a spacious one-bedroom apartment.
  • Here’s why he thinks Miami is a major hotspot, as told to Robin Madell.

I’m the chief product owner at On The Map Marketing, a digital marketing agency headquartered in Miami, Florida. 

I moved here about three years ago from New Jersey after seeing the potential the market had for growth in the tech sector — and have never looked back. 

After graduating college, I didn’t have much direction for my life. 

I got in a car with two friends and we spent the summer crossing the country and exploring different areas. My initial thought was that I would move out to San Francisco and work my way into a startup. 

When we got to San Francisco, I had a few relatives there that we met up with. I told them about my interest in calling San Francisco home, and they told me not to ask for help with finding an apartment. This led to a huge conversation about the housing market and how absurd it was to live there. 

Feeling a bit discouraged and doing my own research, I decided I didn’t want to fall into debt paying to live in a small apartment in a bad area of town. I concluded it would be best to search elsewhere, and so I came up with two other options, Charleston, South Carolina, and Miami. 

Charleston is a smaller area, but it did have close access to an airport and the beach. It was a second choice, while Miami was first in my mind. 

I chose Miami because of the lower cost of living (compared to California), the major international airport just a 15-minute ride away (compared with my 45-minute ride in New Jersey), and perfect weather all year round. 

Once I got to Miami, I realized there was a lot more going on here than nice beaches. 

A guy standing with a mask on by a TV presenting a slide

Cook giving a presentation at work.

Kevin Cook


Our officials are pushing to make sure we’re the hub everyone talks about in the next five years, and big companies are coming in quickly.

One of the most important milestones I’ve seen came just this year. With the explosion of the crypto market, Miami officials pushed to have the Bitcoin Conference here in Miami, with the mayor promising to find a way to integrate crypto into the framework of Miami. 

This push also came after talks of Elon Musk building a new tunnel system in the city, which would be yet another milestone. 

A guy in a santa hat standing by a tree with a beer in his hand

One of the best perks of living in Miami is the weather. Here’s Cook drinking on the beach during Christmas.

Kevin Cook


My rent is $1,100 a month for a spacious one-bedroom apartment. 

I live in Coconut Grove, just 10 minutes south of the downtown area. It’s an amazing neighborhood lined with trees and has a truly residential feel to it. The people are nice, and there’s a huge local scene there. We don’t share any walls with neighbors either, which is hard to find.

As for activities, I can take my girlfriend out to a nice restaurant and share a bottle of wine and eat great food for $100 or less. There’s plenty of variety in the food available as well. In just a few blocks of our apartment, I have access to a Middle Eastern restaurant, a Portuguese restaurant, a top-tier steakhouse, a French breakfast cafe, and a Greek restaurant.

Right now, one of the biggest issues Miami faces is traffic. 

While it’s nowhere near LA levels, it’s still a bit tiresome. 

But if Miami keeps growing and enticing big tech to plant its roots here, I’m sure we’ll see new, innovative transportation methods pop up, like tunnels under the ocean. 

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