People are moving to Texas in large numbers. It’s one of the five fastest growing states in the country. A fast-growing economy, good infrastructure and affordable housing with a lower cost of living are just some of the attractions. If your family is one that is asking the question, should I move to Texas, it’s a good idea to do a little research. Here are the key things to know before moving to Texas.
1. Expect Warmer Weather
Compared to northern states, Texas weather is warmer. In fact, in many areas, it gets downright hot. Warm weather, for some people, is the reason why they move to Texas in the first place. It is a large state with many microclimates and there are seasonal differences. Relocating to Texas, you can expect mostly mild winters. The summer high is around 94°F, with winter lows around 36°F. But be prepared for some extreme weather. It’s worthwhile to brush up on some hurricane safety tips and to be ready for tornadoes.
2. Taxes are Lower than You Would Expect
Texas is one of the few states without a state income tax, and state sales taxes are also relatively low. The Texas comptroller web site lists 60 fees, assessments, and other kinds of taxes, like local sales taxes collected for counties, cities, and towns. All in all, however, low taxes are one of the reasons for moving to Texas.
3. Cost of Living in Texas Can Be Affordable
Why move to Texas? Potentially saving money on taxes is only the start. The cost of living may be significantly lower than other areas of the country. You could pay less for housing, food, healthcare, services and energy.
Harker Heights. The cost of living here is about 11% lower than the national average, driven by particularly affordable housing.
Pearland. This suburb of Houston sits on the south side of the city. Despite its proximity to an urban center, it’s still about 5% less expensive to live here than the national average.
Little Elm. The cost of living is only 3.7% lower than the national average, but given its proximity to Dallas, that’s expected. It can be approximately 59% cheaper to live here compared to New York City, and nearly 130% more affordable than San Francisco.
Austin. You’ll find the cost of living in Austin just 3% lower than the national average. It’s the state capital and home to the University of Texas, so it has attractions beyond a low cost of living.
Dallas. As one of the 10 largest cities in the U.S., the Big D is one of the more affordable, at 2.7% lower than average.
San Antonio. This city is larger than the Big D, and it beats it out when it comes to affordability. The cost of living is lower than the national average by about 10%.
The state has long been associated with jobs in oil and energy. These kinds of companies continue to be major employers in the state–with the inclusion of green energy jobs in wind and solar. Education, healthcare and technology are also booming sectors.
6. Texas is Diverse
Texas has always been a racially and ethnically diverse state. English and Spanish are commonly spoken. Whites and Hispanics are the largest ethnic groups, followed by Blacks and Asians.
7. Texas has Heavy Traffic
They say everything is bigger in Texas, and that can be especially true for traffic jams. The spread-out nature of the state and lack of public transportation options means that many Texans drive a car. Sometimes it seems like everyone is trying to cram onto the same freeways at the same time. If you have a long commute to work, expect to spend time in traffic.
8. Texas is Great for Food Lovers
Texas is a food lover’s paradise. If you enjoy steak, BBQ or Tex-Mex and wonder, should I move to Texas, the answer is yes, yes, yes. The multi-ethnic nature of the state means you don’t have to limit yourself to a few cuisine choices. You can find just about any kind of ethnic and fusion food, particularly in the bigger cities.
Additional resources for moving to Texas
Of course, some of the most important things to know before moving to Texas are things related to how to move to Texas. You’ve got a few bureaucratic details to chase down.