Wilton Manors is the major gay area within the Fort Lauderdale area. but my favorite part is Victoria Park within the city itself.
Fort Lauderdale has very cheap housing right now if you are buying. $200,000 US will go a long, long way and will get you a very nice townhouse somewhere.
Fort Lauderdale city has art, movie festivals, great restaurants, amazing nightlife-- it reminds me in a way of San Francisco 20 years ago. I think you will have a great time.
Just get ready for \five months of very hot and humid weather from June 1 - November 1, and be on the watchout for hurricanes then too. the other months are delightful.
Note: Lots of "normal" gay people live in Victoria Park, and it is very gay friendly; Jack is incorrect. I live about a half hour north of Fort Lauderdale in boring but pretty Palm Beach County to be close to family.