If you are considering a move to Houston, Texas you might be wondering what advantages and disadvantages the people that live in Houston talk about the most. As a native Texan I can assure you that Houston is a vital city in Texas, and of course it is a great place simply because it is in Texas, but I guess there may be some drawbacks to living there, if you dig deep enough you can always find something wrong.
Living in Houston Texas Pros and Cons
Seriously before you consider moving to Houston you should know what things the city has to offer, and what the biggest drawbacks to the city are.
Let’s look at both the pros and the cons, and then you can make your mind up whether you want to say, “Houston, here I come” or “Houston, we have a problem”.
The Pros or Houston Here I come
- The opportunity for gainful employment is one of the biggest reasons why people choose to move to Houston. Houston has the gas and oil industry, they have the aerospace and manufacturing industries, they have medical opportunities to work in children’s healthcare related fields, or adult healthcare related fields and to work in any of the medical specialty fields like cancer, research, infectious diseases, and Veteran’s healthcare. They have opportunities in the energy fields an in the educational fields as well. Houston employers offer fair salaries and when compared to the salaries of some other states they offer very generous salaries.
- Traveling in and out of the city by air is made very easy by the two major airports located in Houston. The George H. Bush Intercontinental Airport and the William P. Hobby International Airport serve as major airports for Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. You won’t have any trouble booking a flight to the destinations of your choice from these two airports.
- Houston is right up there with New York and Los Angeles when it comes to culture and ethnic diversity among the population. Houston is an ethnic melting pot with large numbers of African Americans, Asian, and Hispanic populations helping to create a culture rich environment that is less judgmental and more accepting of each other, each other’s racial differences and the unique opportunities living so closely to so many cultures offers.
- The food in Houston is some of the best in the world. The great ethnic diversity in the city is a big reason why the food is so delightful. You have culinary delights offered from every possible ethnic background, and the close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico means you have seafood selections available to you that are fresh from the boat. Houstonians have the ability to eat in a different restaurant every night of the month without going to the same restaurant twice in a month.
- There are plenty of fun and educational activities to participate in. This city has sports teams like the Texans (NFL), the Astros (MLB), and the Rockets (NBA) in their professional sporting teams and they have numerous local sports teams for you to follow and love. They have the Houston Grand Opera, the Johnson Space Center, the Downtown Aquarium, the Houston Zoo, and many more theaters and museums for you to enjoy. There are open concerts and you will be surprised at how affordable the entertainment is in this city. You are also only a short drive away from the beautiful sandy beaches that are on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico!
- Houston is a part of Texas so there is no state income taxes to be taken out of your check
- Houston is a very affordable place to live. The cost of living in Houston is much cheaper than it is in many other large cities around the country. Most one and two bedroom apartments rent for $1490 or less per month. These rental rates are much cheaper than you will find in many other locations, and many of these rentals include all utilities paid, but when the utilities are separate people are pleasantly surprised to discover that the electricity prices in Texas are lower than they are in most other states. This is partially due to the fact that the state generates their own electricity and does not have to purchase it from out of state and pay high purchase prices.
- Houston is known as being one of the greenest cities because there are over 50,000 acres of parks in the city limits. Houston has been actively restoring old parks, building new parks, and trying to improve the access that the residents have to nature trails and wildlife conservation areas. The largest park in the city is located on the far western portion of the city and it is the George Bush Park. The Bush Park lands are situated inside the Barker Reservoir and you will find many wildlife observation opportunities here.
Here is another interesting post about Moving to Texas Checklist which you may also like to read.
The Cons or Houston, we have a problem
- Houston does not have a really great public transportation system available. The majority of people in Houston own their own vehicles so they can travel around the city at their own convenience, but that means that the highways and byways can get very congested during peak travel hours. Traveling in the city can simply be frustrating.
- Houston is part of a very hot and humid climate. They are located close to waterways and marsh lands, as well as close to bayous and rice fields. Houston is the prime area for mosquitos to live and thrive and these bugs do live and thrive in the city. Houston mosquitos are quite a bit larger and more aggressive than the mosquitos that many other states are accustomed to, so if you live in Houston you are going to have to get use to the smell of citronella candles and bug spray. It may be that bug spray becomes your new favorite cologne. Everyone who lives in this area has window screens on their windows and most people have screen doors to help keep the barrage of insects from infiltrating their homes when they open their doors.
- Houston has a sales tax of 8.25% so you have to get ready to pay a higher sales tax than you will pay in some other states. You may find that property taxes in some areas of Houston are greater than average.
- The humidity can be a real challenge to get used to if you move here from a state that has low humidity levels. If you have ever heard anyone say that it is not the heat but the humidity that gets you then you may have some inkling into the summer oppression that Houstonians live through. Their summer temperatures can soar into the triple digits and their humidity levels are always higher than 90% and they also often soar into the triple digits.
- Houston does experience hurricanes from time to time, and some of those hurricanes can create a lot of damaging winds and high waters. Of course you are going to have weather scenarios no matter what state you live in, whether it is hurricanes, tornadoes, mud slides, snowstorms, or earthquakes. Mother Nature spares no city from some of her insults and assaults.
Are you interested to move in Austin, Texas? Here are the pros and cons of moving to Austin.
Houston is really a great place to live, and I would say that even if it wasn’t right here in Texas.