Moving anywhere can either be exciting or scary or both. You never really know what your experience will be like until you get in there and acclimate to your new environment.
Here are a few things I wish I had known before I moved back to Texas as an adult:
High Property Taxes!
Yes, Texas is ranked #6 in the U.S. for highest property taxes. Property taxes vary from neighborhood to neighborhood too, making it a little more challenging to find the right home. Too often, people find a great neighborhood and homes they like, only to discover that it comes with a 3.0% property tax. Taxes can be as low as 1.88%, but generally, in the Austin area, they’re anywhere from 2.2%-2.8% in many areas. The high property taxes can be offset by no state income tax, so it’s worth talking to your financial advisor if living in Texas will work for you.
No Four Seasons!
Texas weather has a lot of plusses, but if you like having four seasons, you’ll miss out on that here in Texas. In Central Texas, we have long hot summers, a brief fall, mild winters and back to summer. The spring is lovely here, with balmy weather and beautiful wild flowers, however, fall is sort of missing. We lived in Michigan for many years and fall was always my favorite season with the changing of the leaves, apple orchards, pumpkin patches (real ones) and apple cider and cinnamon donuts. It stays fairly hot right up to November in Texas. It just doesn’t feel the same here.
This is a weird one, but I miss being able to sit in grass and not worry about getting bit by chiggers or fire ants. Again, in Michigan, if you want to have a picnic at a park or lay out on a lawn and soak up the sun, you can do so and not worry too much about aggressive insects. That’s not the case here in Texas. There are a lot of bugs around here that like to bite, and I haven’t ventured to have a picnic in the 6+ years I’ve lived here. Plus, grass is hard to grow in Central Texas with the high heat, big oak trees that soak up the water and tough soil. So, when I’m showing homes and I pull up to a home with a beautiful green, plush lawn, I’m impressed.
Texas doesn’t have too many natural lakes and the lakes that are here were formed by dams. If you love going boating and fishing, you may miss other areas in the States that have plenty of bodies of water in them. Lakes are just a little different here, however, they are still beautiful and you can still boat and fish on them.
Overall, It’s Great Here!
I have really enjoyed living in Texas these last several years. You can’t beat the friendliness of the people, the diversity of culture and great food. Life is an adventure and moving can bring so many fresh experiences. It’s good to be able to experience different areas around the world and develop broadened perspectives of the world we live in. If you’re moving here, I doubt you’ll regret it. Texas is a neat place to live and there is something for everyone!