So you’re thinking about moving to Texas? I lived in Houston for the past 8-ish months and for 6 months in 2017, so I know a little about what it’s like to move to Texas from out of state. Texas was one of those states that I NEVER thought that I would move to, but I got a job offer in Houston, so here I am! Living here has honestly been so much better than I was expecting and I’ve grown to love Houston. If you’re thinking about moving to Texas, here are some things that I think you should know.
Where in Texas do you want to live?
Texas is a big state. The BIGGEST state in the continental United States (second to Alaska). There are five major cities and their outskirts that house the majority of the population: Austin, the capitol; San Antonio, home of the Alamo; Dallas, the most widespread; El Paso, right at the border with Mexico; and my home, Houston, the 4th largest city in the United States and located right along the Gulf of Mexico. Each of these cities are very large, very widespread, and quite busy.
Austin is the most trendy, “hip” and diverse city out of them all; it’s a popular place to live for young people. San Antonio is a place for people who enjoy history and a smaller city, but still all of the amenities of living in Texas. Dallas is where a lot of the money and “fancy people” live; Austin is challenging this because a bunch of tech companies keep moving their headquarters there and Houston is come to the big oil companies, but I feel like Dallas is the place to go if you want to be fancy… and love the Cowboys. El Paso is a very widespread city, away from everything else in the middle of the southwest and right on the border with Mexico; oil workers live here too. And finally, my favorite: Houston. Houston is the fourth largest city in the United States, so there are a lot of people who live here (but don’t let that fool you, because it still have that small-town Texas feel, but with the amenities of a large city). It’s very diverse with many, many engineers who live and work there for the oil/gas companies, the space center, or tech companies.
After you pick a city, where do you want to live?
Each city has many options for housing. It varies depending on where you live in the city and how you want to live. Do you want to live in an apartment downtown or in a large house in the suburbs? My current 1 bedroom apartment on the outskirts of the city costs me $850, which is probably about average for the area. You can find cheaper houses in the suburbs for less than $200,000, but you can also find houses that cost upwards of $1+ million in downtown or the richest areas.
Do you need transportation?
You absolutely need transportation when living in Texas. There is a central bus system closer to the downtown and central suburb areas of each city, but for the most part, you will need a car. In the southwest, cities are very spread out and it may take you an hour to get to central downtown if you live in the southern suburbs like I do. Luckily, cost of gas is super cheap here.
Do you know where you’re going to work?
Luckily, the job market in Texas is quite good. In every city, I’m sure that you wouldn’t have difficulty finding a job, regardless of what you do. From journalist to engineer to waitress to chef to designer, each major city has it all. I suppose that’s the upside of living in the largest state.
Are you prepared for the weather and climate of the region?
The weather and climate of your city depends on where it’s located in Texas. For example, El Paso is very dry; it has chilly winters and very hot summers. Dallas isn’t as dry and has probably the most “typical” seasonal patterns, so it can still be chilly in winter and hot in summer. Once you get closer to the Gulf, El Paso and Austin get very humid and hot in the summertime, but winters can be nice and cool (although they do get chilly). And then there’s Houston; it’s right on the Gulf so it’s very humid nearly year-round. Summers are very hot, there is a hurricane season so be wary of hurricanes, BUT, winters are typically nicely situated in the 60’s with rainy or cloudy days. I, personally, love humidity and so do my plants, so I am one of the few people who enjoys year-round humidity — it’s quite funny when you walk outside and your classes fog up because it’s so hot and humid outside.
What are the people like?
The people is what makes me love living in Texas. It’s the good ol’ friendly southern hospitality that I love. Strangers will smile and say hello as you walk by; they’ll strike up a conversation with you just because. In emergency situations, like after Hurricane Harvey, everyone banded together to take care of one another. People donated their time and personal money to help others fix their houses and replace their belongings. Companies and celebrities based in Texas donate tons of money to shelters, schools and other charity organizations to make the community a better place. Of course, there are always a few people and corporations that you come across that aren’t too friendly, but I think (and hope) there’s more friendly people than not.
The people here are also career-driven. There are a lot of people who work for the gigantic oil and gas companies or technology companies, so they’re dedicated to making lots of money and growing in their careers.
In summary… Pros VS Cons
Pros: Good housing options, good job/careers options, pretty good weather and climate, lots of big-city amenities, cheap gas, friendly people
Cons: Poor public transportation, cities are spread out, traffic, humidity (if you don’t like humidity), may come across fake people every once in a while.
I hope that this answers a few of your questions, if you’re thinking about moving to Texas! I know that sometimes I get questions about what it’s like to live in Texas from out of state. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask a comment!
Thank you for reading! Are you thinking about moving to Texas? Have you ever visited? Let me know in the comments below and like this post if you want more like it!