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The Pros and Cons of Moving to Houston

The Houston skyline at night

Whether you’re a Texas local looking to change cities or you’re moving to the Lone Star State for the first time, you’ll find that Houston has something to offer everyone. As the largest city in Texas (both by population and by area) and one of the most diverse cities in the country, it’s no wonder why people continue to move to the Bayou City.

But, just like any city, it comes with the good and the bad. Whether Houston is right for you will depend on what’s most important to you. For some, the weather is the top deciding factor, while for others, employment opportunities matter more.

We’ve compiled some of the pros and cons of moving to Houston to help you decide if this city matches what you’re looking for.

Pros of Moving to Houston

  1. Hot Job Market
  2. Cost of Living
  3. Warm Weather
  4. Diverse City With Plenty to Do
  5. Delicious Dining Options

1. Hot Job Market

With thriving industries like aerospace, aviation, biotechnology, energy, technology, and logistics, professionals can find a variety of job opportunities in Houston. There are 24 Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Houston, and the city ranks second in the U.S. for corporate relocation and expansion projects.

2. Cost of Living

While Houston is the largest city in Texas, its cost of living is actually lower than Dallas and Austin. The average costs of utilities, housing, groceries, and healthcare are lower than the national average.

3. Warm Weather

If you hate months of cold weather and removing snow from your driveway, you definitely won’t have to worry about that in Houston. The temperature usually ranges from 47°F to 95°F throughout the year, with the hot season lasting from June to September and the cool season lasting from November to February.

While snow is rare in Houston, you can expect a decent amount of rain, especially since it’s right on the gulf coast.

4. Diverse City With Plenty to Do

Houston is named the most diverse city in the U.S, offering a melting pot of cultures and lifestyles. This diversity not only makes for an enriching experience, but Houston locals also have plenty to see and do

Both families and young professionals will enjoy all that Houston has to offer in terms of entertainment. From sporting events to museums to the Space Center, you can find activities to suit your preferences. The warm weather also makes it possible to do plenty of outdoor activities throughout the year.

5. Delicious Dining Options

The diversity of this city also means that you’ll find a variety of delicious cuisines. From Vietnamese to Mexican to Malaysian dishes, your taste buds will thank you. If you’re also looking for a good barbeque or cajun food, this southern city is the perfect spot.

A street in Downtown Houston at night.

Cons of Moving to Houston

  1. Poor Public Transportation & Heavy Traffic
  2. Crime Rate
  3. High Humidity & Mosquitos
  4. Prone to Natural Disasters
  5. High Sales Tax

1. Poor Public Transportation & Heavy Traffic

Unless you’re living in the city center or in a place that’s close to your job, you’ll likely need a car. Houston is 637.4 square miles and is one of the most expansive cities in the U.S. Unlike cities in the northeast like New York or Boston, Houston isn’t exactly walkable – the city is quite spread out.

With such a large amount of people owning cars, you can expect some serious traffic, especially during rush hour. So if you’re planning to commute to work, keep in mind that you’ll need to leave earlier if you’re taking the highway (and make sure you have enough gas!).

2. Crime Rate

While Houston is far from the most dangerous city in the country, the crime rate is higher than it is in most of the rest of the U.S. In 2021, violent crime increased, and the metro area ranks in the top ten for robberies.

But, as with any large city, there are safe areas along with areas that are more dangerous. Make sure to do your research when looking for neighborhoods to move into and talk to locals to understand the areas better.

3. High Humidity & Mosquitos

The warm weather is definitely a plus, but the only downside is that the area is incredibly humid due to the fact that most of Houston was built on marshes, swamps, or prairie land. This also means that you can expect a bit more bugs than you would in a drier climate, including mosquitos.

4. Prone to Natural Disasters

Since Houston is right on the gulf coast, the city is susceptible to tropical storms, hurricanes, and can experience flooding from heavy rains (Houston is only a little above sea level). This is definitely something you need to think about when purchasing property or even choosing a place to rent.

In addition to hurricanes, Houston is also at risk of experiencing tornadoes. While the city is not in Tornado Alley, tornadoes can occur during severe storms and weather.

5. High Sales Tax

Texas is a desirable state to move to due to it having no state income tax, but the sales tax of 8.25% is actually higher than most states, which typically have sales taxes that range anywhere from 4% and 7%. So while you won’t have to have as many taxes taken out of your paycheck, you can expect to pay a little more when you purchase goods. Learn about typical Houston salaries here.

Moving to Houston: How to Get Started

After you’ve weighed all the pros and cons and decided that Houston is the right move for you, the next step is to find a quality moving company that can make your move as smooth as possible.

At Isaac’s Moving & Storage, we handle your move with care while staying on schedule and providing you with guidance along the way. Our professional movers receive the most extensive training in the industry, and we offer moving services for local, long-distance, and international moves. Learn more about the different services we offer and why our satisfied customers return and refer 77% of our business.

Ready to get started? Contact us today!

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