There’s a difference between and wanting to move and needing to move. Sometimes needing to move might cause a family to live in an area that you aren’t so happy with. Make the wrong choice, and maybe it’s too far away from work or you’re not so happy with the traffic flow or, even worse, there’s nothing to do.

Some may choose to do a short-term rental before buying for this very reason. Picking the right area to live in is a crucial component in the experience of home ownership as there are thousands of variables that can go into the decision. One thing to always keep at top of mind is the current and future home values of that area.

Odessa Real Estate

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Some choose to move to an area for safety and comfort.  Areas of high traffic have a naturally higher occurrence of crime than rural areas that are off the beaten path.   According to, Odessa Florida has 30% lower crime rate than the National Average and is considered 47% safer than other American cities.

For families, many choose to relocate to a specific community because of an area’s school district options. All parents want the perfect trifecta of Elementary, Middle and High Schools that are all high achieving; knowing their child will be able to grow and feel happy with friends in a positive learning environment.

If you’re thinking Odessa because of schools, good choice.  Odessa has some of Hillsborough’s highest rated public and private schools is the country.  It is important to note that school districts change their boundaries from time to time; if there is a school that you have in mind, be sure to discuss with your realtor the specific school(s) that you are wanting your child to attend to ensure that you have the most up-to-date information available.

If having accessibility to enjoy outdoor adventures is your reason for wanting to move to Odessa, you’ve made a wise choice. There are many options located just minutes from each other and encompass thousands of acres of Hillsborough County that are able to be enjoyed by all members of your family.

Lake Rogers Conservation Park is a treasure to the community and one of Hillsborough County’s best kept secrets. Walkers, hikers and joggers utilize the park for its well-maintained trails that take you on a stroll through a forest of Pine, Oak and Cypress trees. The main trail is 2.5 miles and perfect for a cross country run or bike ride. The Boy Scouts have improved many trails and have created a marker system so you don’t get lost while exploring. Dogs are welcome but they must be leashed, but it is always a good idea to keep dogs on a leash at parks to ensure they do not interfere with the wildlife.

One of my favorite parts of the park is a unique stand of trees that were damaged by a storm many years ago that has turned into a sanctuary for a family of woodpeckers looking to get at the bugs under the dying bark. Peaceful and serene are the best ways to describe this area of the park.

What makes this park so unique is the access Lake Rogers provides to youth groups for camping.  That’s right, camping is available within minutes of downtown Tampa.  It’s truly awesome that you can create some of the most magical memories under the stars while being just a few miles from home.

Another awesome feature of the park is that anglers and kayakers can enjoy two freshwater lakes that enhance the beauty of the park, including Lake Rogers, which is one of the largest lakes in the county.

Located a few minutes down the road, Brooker Creek Preserve is just under 8,700 acres of conservation area located in Odessa and shares acreage in both Hillsborough and Pinellas counties.  Brooker Creek is part of the St. Petersburg Water Conservation Program and is a true sanctuary that serves the surrounding community in many ways.

It’s actually the largest remaining undeveloped land in Pinellas County.  Made up of mostly forested wetlands and flatwood pine tree stands, it provides a unique refuge for the native flora and fauna and is established mainly for the protection of the Brooker Creek Watershed.

There is a complex system of hiking and equestrian trails.  Odessa has a large population of riders and Brooker Creek is a great place for riders to enjoy a day on the range.  Regularly maintained and cut trails provide safety and direction and really make this huge park easily navigable.

Special programs, classes and events are run through Brooker Creek Preserve’s Pinellas County Extension Program.  They have a variety of interactive and hands-on educational experiences.

Odessa has a river running through it. Actually, Odessa only has a few creeks and streams, but there is a river in Odessa, and its man-made.  There’s a literal river of walkers, joggers, runners and bikers that are out all hours of the day on the Upper Tampa Bay Trail.

The Upper Tampa Bay Trail is located in Northwest Hillsborough County and spans 7.25 miles. It begins at the Old Memorial Trail Head and meanders its way all the way up through Odessa and beyond as it follows along the extension of the Suncoast Memorial Expressway.

The original section winds through suburban Citrus Park along an old unused rail road corridor that extends along the west bank of Channel A waterway and drainage canal.  The best access point for those in Odessa, is at the 4.3-mile extension that takes the rail trail to Keystone Park and the Austin Davis Library.

From there, the paved trail follows Lutz Lake Fern Road to a connection with the 42-mile Suncoast Trail. There are three or four good access points to the Upper Tampa Bay Trail throughout the Odessa area, but you can hop on anywhere along trail, with main trailheads at Ehrlich Road and Lutz Lake Fern that have plenty of available parking.

You’ll find many signs of volunteer work and contributions made by the Boy Scouts of America and The Friends of Keystone throughout all of the area parks.  There is something about seeing independent acts of kindness that makes you appreciate the community of Odessa even more.

No matter the reason to move, we all need to get out and experience the amenities our community has to offer. Get out and enjoy!