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Moving to Texas

Are You Moving From or To Texas?

Texas has always remained an attractive state for reasons that include good climate, low state taxes, affordable housing, exciting cities, and plenty to do.

Living in Texas is an ideal choice for millions of people, regardless of whether they were born here or transplant. In fact, Texas is the second-most populous state in the nation behind California.

According to the 2020 estimate from the US Census, nearly 30 million people call Texas home, and that number is multiplying by the day.
This Southern state is not just great in size, but in countless other areas as well: a variety of nature, tons of things to do, plentiful places to explore, and, of course, its rich and unique history. Deep in the heart of Texas are prairies, forests, rugged hills, desert land, a coastline and grasslands that give residents multiple venues to enjoy life. Major industries in Texas include agriculture, petrochemicals, energy, computers, aerospace, and biomedicine. The Lone Star State houses four national research universities along with a variety of professional and college sports teams.

If you’re moving to Texas, there are a lot of things you’re going to need to know. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place.

Moving to Texas

Pros and Cons of Living in Texas

Here are a few pros and cons to consider as you make your move to The Lone Star State:

Pros.
  • Low cost of living: Grocery shopping, housing, gas – you’ll be pleased by your reduced cost in Texas. Gas prices alone are about a dollar lower than the California average . 
  • Job growth: Texas is ranked fifth in the nation and gains new companies all the time. 
  • Excellent schools: Many of Texas’ school systems receive top ratings for their excellent teachers and safety policies. 
  • Good home for families: Texas is known to be family-friendly with activities and accommodations for kids.
Cons.
  • Public transportation needs improvements: Texas is a little behind on the public transportation game, and options are somewhat limited if you don’t want to drive. 
  • Property tax rates: You’ll pay higher property taxes than most other states, with the average household paying over $3,000 in property taxes each year. 
  • The hurricanes: Texas has exposure to hurricanes each hurricane season, so don’t come unprepared.
  • Urban sprawl: As cities spread out, the roads into those cities are congested. The closer you get to the city, the more crowded the roads become.
Tax Rates

Paying an average of 3,000 per year, Texas residents spend more on property taxes than many other Americans do according to WalletHub. However, this is a small price to pay for the excellent home values, plus the state enjoys zero state income fax. Forty-three states enforce state income taxes, but there are seven lucky states that have no state income tax at all! You’ll be excited to know that Texas is one of these special states, so you can save hundreds of dollars each year. Sales tax in Texas can be confusing because not all counties have a local code. The base state sales tax is 6.25%, but local and county taxes add an additional 0.25% -2% depending on where you settle down. The highest sales tax rate is 8.25%. 

Housing Market

The median home value in Texas is $197,300. Texas home values have increased significantly over the past years, and predictions indicate that they’ll continue to rise over the next few years. The median rent in Texas is $987 compared to the US median rent of $1012. 

 

If you’re going to be in Texas for just one year, you’ll save over $5,000 by reating instead of paying a mortgage. Buying a home a home tends to be more cost-effective in Texas, although you many have other reasons to rent rather than committing to home ownership. 

What Should I Know In 2020?

Economy Outlook

The economy of Texas employs 12.7M people. The largest industries in Texas are Construction (988,542 people), Restaurants & Food Services (906,232 people), and Elementary & secondary schools (904,691 people), and the highest paying industries are Oil & gas extraction ($135,355), Software publishing ($131,505), and Securities, commodities, funds, trusts & other financial investments ($121,119).

Texas’ economy was in better shape at the end of the second quarter than the first. Unemployment inches down while job growth continued in June, albeit at a slightly slower pace than the previous month. The energy sector’s payrolls contracted for the fourth consecutive month, although oil prices rallied considerably. The service sector, while still lagging behind pre-pandemic employment levels, added 228,600 jobs. Real retail sales were only half a percent lower than all-time-high levels at the start of the year. The Real State Center´s Texas weekly leading economic activity index also projected continued improvement, but the path of recovery could be hindered by possible upsurges in COVID-19 cases.

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Traffic & Transportation

Local public transportation – including buses, light rail, and trains – is available only in major cities, Austin, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, and even then it is not always comprehensive or necessarily traveler friendly. Operating hours differ from city to city, but in general, services run from about 6 am to 10 pm. Basic fares average between $1.25 and $2.

Texas’ public transit still has a long way to go to come close to what other US big cities have to offer. Because jobs are abundant, and Texas’ population is ample, you might spend a good deal of time in traffic.

There are two major highways in Texas: the I-10 runs east-west, and I-35 runs north-south. Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio have major traffic problems, but traffic is still much more reasonable than in big cities like Los Angeles or NYC. 

Cost of living

Texas offers a varied landscape, both in terms of terrain and cost of living. To get a sense of the overall cost of living in The Lone Star State, you need to delve into not only state-wide metrics, but also those of individual municipalities. While Texas has plenty of large cities, there are also places where prices and wages are rather low.

Overall, Texas is a favorable state for renters. More specifically, the median rate for studios, one bedrooms and two bedrooms is $731, $844 and $1,049, respectively, according to Apartment List data from 2019. When compared to the national averages of $827, $947 and $1,175 for the same apartment types, things look pretty good here.

Texas is famous for its cuisine, which ranges from Tex-Mex to barbecue to chili to Texas toast. According to the MIT Living Wage Calculator, a single adult with no children living in Texas should expect to spend $2,994 on food in a year. On the other hand, a family of two working adults with two children will spend $8,822 on food per year.

Moving to Texas

Things to Know When Moving To Texas

Texas Climate

Texas has diverse climate types that range from arid and semi-arid in the west to humid and subtropical in the east. ... Annual precipitation is the lowest of approximately 15`` (381mm) in the state in the arid areas, while the mountains receive heavy snowfall.

Employment

In Texas, the minimum age to work is 14. Unlike some states, Texas does not require juvenile workers to obtain a child employment certificate or an age certificate to work. A prospective employer that wants one can request a certificate of age for any minors it employs, obtainable from the Texas Workforce Commission.

Real Estate

The median price for an investment property in Texas is $326,404 ($149 price/square foot) which, when compared to the national median, is not that expensive.

Average Income

Median Household Income: $59,570. Average Household Income: $84,221. Per Capita Income: $30,143. 6.9% of Households in Texas are High Income Households that make over $200,000 a year.

Industries

Some of the major industries in the state of Texas include petroleum and natural gas, farming, steel, banking, and tourism. Most of these industries require postsecondary training, although the amount of education needed depends on the specialization.

Crime Rankings

The violent crime rate in Texas is 4.1 incidents per 1,000,Compared to 3.7 nationwide and 4.4 reported last year. The state’s property crime rate is 23.7, which is nearly two incidents higher than the national rate of 22.0, but lower than last year’s rate of 25.5.

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