Advantages and disadvantages of living in Texas
This article examines the key advantages and disadvantages of living in Texas. Certainly, Texas is very well known for its rich history, iconic landscapes, and vibrant culture. It is the second largest state in the United States by land area. It has a total area of 268,820 square miles (696,241 km²). From the bustling cities like Houston and Dallas to the serene countryside filled with ranches and farms, it has something for everyone.
Texas is a state of contrasts, where cosmopolitan cities coexist with beautiful countryside, and technological advancements go hand in hand with cowboy traditions. Its varied landscapes, from the Gulf Coast beaches to the desert in the west, make it a fascinating place to live. However, like all other states in the USA, it has its own disadvantages too. The discussion that follows highlights the pros and cons of living in Texas.
Advantages of living in Texas
Texas’ booming economy
The economy of Texas is one of the largest in the world. It is well ahead of Australia, Mexico, Spain, and Russia in terms of nominal GDP (Texas Economic Development Corporation, 2023). It has strong employment and income growth forecasts for the next several years.
Texas is now home to more Fortune 500 companies than any other state in the USA (Fortune Media, 2023). These companies provide ample job opportunities in various sectors like technology, healthcare, and energy.
No income tax in Texas
There is no state income tax in Texas for individuals and businesses alike. Therefore, employees know that they are getting the most out of their hard work. Likewise, companies can invest more in skill development and other activities (Texas Economic Development Corporation, 2023).
In fact, Texas has never levied a tax on personal income. This has encouraged many large corporations to move to this state. Likewise, it has also encouraged many people looking for a better economic environment to choose Texas as their preferred place to work and live.
Entertainment in Texas
Texas offers a diverse range of recreational and cultural activities. It is known for its love for sports, music festivals, and mouth-watering Tex-Mex cuisine.
Top places/attractions to visit in Texas are The Alamo, San Antonio River Walk, Texas State Capitol, Dallas World Aquarium, Padre Island National Seashore, Space Center Houston, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Natural Bridge Caverns, Hamilton Pool, and Dinosaur Valley State Park.
Space Center Houston
Photo credit: Trip Advisor
Texas is also home to world-class museums, diverse dining options, and a thriving arts scene. Living in this state means experiencing its rich history first-hand, from the Alamo in San Antonio to the state capitol in Austin.
Landscapes in Texas
The state’s diverse natural landscapes offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities like hiking, fishing, and horseback riding.
Low cost of living
Texas also boasts a low cost of living compared to other states, making it a desirable place for families and individuals alike. In fact, house prices here are well below the national average.
Education in Texas
Texas offers a variety of educational opportunities, with numerous top-ranked universities and a strong focus on STEM education. It also has a diverse range of public and private schools.
Disadvantages of living in Texas
While Texas offers numerous benefits, it comes with its share of disadvantages as well.
Extreme weather in Texas
One of the significant drawbacks is the extreme weather. Summers can be scorching, with temperatures often exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, winters can be harsh in certain parts of the state. In fact, conditions such as large hails, tornadoes, dangerous heat, and sweltering humidity are very common in the state (Cappucci, 2023).
Texas’ large size means longer commutes and distances to travel. While this might not be an issue for everyone, it can be a significant consideration for families with young children and or vulnerable individuals.
Health challenges in Texas
While the state has made progress in recent years, it still ranks lower compared to other states on various health indices. For instance, according to America’s Health Rankings 2022 annual report, Texas is ranked 38th in the country for overall health.
Texas has one of the highest uninsured rates in the country, and access to healthcare can be challenging in rural areas. It also faces significant health disparities, with higher rates of chronic illnesses in certain populations.
High property taxes
Homeowners in Texas pay some of the highest property taxes in the United States. This is mostly due to Texans paying no income tax. The state is ranked 45th for the highest property taxes in the country.
Necessity of owning a car in Texas!
Owning a car is necessary for most areas in Texas. According to Statista (2023) there are over 18 million licensed drivers in the state.
Conclusion: Advantages and disadvantages of living in Texas
The pros and cons of living in Texas vary depending on personal preferences and lifestyle. While the state’s strong economy, low cost of living, and rich culture are attractive, the challenges in healthcare, extreme weather, and long travel distances can be significant considerations.
Ultimately, the decision to live in Texas should be based on careful research and consideration of personal and professional needs. If people value a strong community, diverse culture, and economic opportunities, Texas could be the perfect place for them.
However, if they prefer a more compact living environment, milder weather, and a more robust healthcare and education system, they might want to consider other options. It should be remembered that every state has its pros and cons. What matters most is finding a place that feels like home and aligns with people’s values and lifestyle.
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Last update: 07 July 2023
Cappucci, M. (2023) Extreme weather targets Texas with heat indexes near 115, severe storms, available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2023/06/12/texas-extreme-heat-severe-storms/ (accessed 06 July 2023)
Fortune Media (2023) This state boasts the most Fortune 500 companies, available at: https://fortune.com/2023/06/05/state-most-fortune-500-companies/ (accessed on 02 July 2023)
Statista (2023) Licensed drivers in the U.S., available at: https://www.statista.com/statistics/198029/total-number-of-us-licensed-drivers-by-state/ (accessed 07 July 2023)
Texas Economic Development Corporation (2023) Texas’ economic strength and growth, available at: https://businessintexas.com/why-texas/economic-strength/ (accessed 01 July 2023)
Author: Joe David
Joe David has years of teaching experience both in the UK and abroad. He writes regularly online on a variety of topics. He has a keen interest in business, hospitality, and tourism management. He holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Management Studies and a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing Management.