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Chaoswolf

Help me decide if I'm moving to Texas (looking for information)

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  I'm in the Fort Worth area for the last 13 years, so I'll try to help some.

 

TG says be careful of Dallas,and he's right. Fortunately you said Fort Worth, and while they look like they're right next to each other on a map, they're in entirely seperate counties with almost 20 miles of Arlington and Grand Prairie between them.  

 

On 5/12/2020 at 10:33 AM, Dilvish the Deliverer said:

Questions I always consider before moving:

 

Rental/Homebuying market- how expensive are living expenses.  Can I get into a place without a home owners association? (I have heard too many horror stories to ever want to be in one)

Living expenses are moderate.  Not as bad as other parts of the country and not as bad as Houston or Austin, but higher than, say, Lubbock or El Paso.

 

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Commute times- is it possible to live close enough to the job not to spend a chunk of time driving to/from work.  Hand in hand with that is traffic.  I've lived 15 miles away from work and had it take an hour (or two) to get too/from work. (I'm looking at you Norfolk).

Very much depends on where you're coming from and going to. I live in south fort worth and work in north Arlington.  I commute to work 7am to 4pm, and have a 40 minute drive each way.  On those days I have to work 8-5 it goes up to a full hour.  As with any commute it helps to know where the trouble spots are.  I35E is almost always bad, but not as bad as I5 is in Anehiem ....
 I20 eastbound in the afternoons is bad.  Elsewhere it's hit or miss.  In Dallas area however it can all be bad on the interstates.

Note that we do have numerous toll roads in the area. Getting a 'toll tag' (prepaid RFID tag) is almost a must unless you avoid the toll roads completely but be prepared to add a lot of time.
 

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Taxes- Income/property, vehicle registration/personal property and so forth.  Any weird recurring expenses?

 

Texas does require a current vehicle inspection before you can renew your registration. Runs about $40, then registration on a passenger sedan rusn about another $60 yearly.  Texas does require a collision liability coverage policy as well.  As others have stated property taxes can be a little higher and is very dependent on school district.

 

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School Districts- only applies if you have kids still in school (or have grandkids that may live with you; starting to become more common these days).  Again this can influence taxes.

 

Services- are any required services in the area. Medical specialists, dental, hobby, sporting, recreational.  Varies per person or family.

 

Not having kids I can't help much with the shool district thing.  

medical - we have it all, including top tier children's,  trauma, and heart hospitals in fort worth.

As for hobby - most of the gaming stores around here double as comic shops. (Reaper is a notable exception, as is the couple of GW stores around, and Evo Games in south forth worth.  Texas Toy Soldier,  over in Carrolton is hands down one of the best mini stores around)  Also several RC hobby and train stores around if you're in to that sort of things.  There's a huge gaming community here, and I'm constantly amazed at the number of creatives I know online that I find out are based in the area.

 

As for HOA, my experience is more like OneBoot's, I have one, it's actually very pleasant and not super expensive.  Where they are depend on a lot of factors, but new developments almost always have them.  

central Fort Worth is kind of a patchwork of good and bad neighborhoods and it's hard for me to put a finger on 'go here not here'.
If you're ok with a commute, the Burleson/Crowly/Joshua region is growing fast but has affordable new builds. That area also has a lot of older neighborhoods that are well maintained and has a bit of a 'small town' feel despite being a close suburb.  Godly is also popular but further out, as is Weatherford.   Mansfield is also quickly growing in the southeastern part of the county.  Avoid Everman.  I can't speak as much about the north side but there's a lot going on there too and all very reasonable drives with ample highways to get into town. A lot of this is going to depend on where you would have to commute to.
If you are able to go with a newer community - energy standards in the building code have gotten kind of extreme but in a good way. Even in the heat of our summers my electric bill seldom exceeds $60. 

If you can get away from Fort Worth and into one of the surrounding communities, you can save a huge chunk on your water bill.  Water and garbage collection are lumped into a single bill, and even though we have the smallest can, during the summer it's actually not that unusual for our water bill to be higher than our electric.

 

As others have said - it's hot.  It's also mildy humid, but we're not talking DC humidity here.  (I mainly consider it humid because I grew up in in the Lubbock area which is just shy of being a desert).  Expect most days from late June thru august to exceed 100 Degrees c .   Expect frequent thunderstorms, with occasional hail and tornadoes, though not as bad or frequent as Oklahoma or other areas.  Learn to appreciate the storm sirens, which are tested the first Wednesday of every month in early afternoon.
Winters are mild and usually comfortable. The city kind of shuts down if there's snow and ice. Generally it doesn't stick around for more than a day or two. (Icemageddion 2011 being an exception).  Most days will have highs in the 50s.  fall and spring tend to be blustery, with extreme weather shifts (75 one day, 38 the next, back up to the low 60s the third).  We tend to consider a 15 mph wind a 'light breeze'

 

Oh, and be ready for at least a few people to call you a D&*& Yankee.  Usually it's meant affectionately.

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9 minutes ago, pcktlnt said:

How's the Healthcare in texas?

 

They breed horses in Texas, don't they?

Just don't break a leg...

 

image.png.99e503f994ea25735c5b9a5ee3e263b4.png

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I would say not bad.  Insurance rates are nuts like everywhere in the states, but there are a lot of inexpensive no-insurance clinics, as well as 3 major hospital networks in the area that all take the major insurances and cover basically all of the specialties. 

 

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If you're going to be in the DFW area you're going to be able to find everything and anything you'd want, much like any east coast metro area you're used to.   You'll do a lot of driving, like others have said it takes an hour minimum to get anywhere.  You'll want a vehicle for every adult driver, public transit really isn't a thing in the area. 

 

 

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Can't speak for Ft. Worth, but avoid the Frisco/The Colony/Plano area (north of Dallas), unless you like high property taxes. Lot of companies have moved here in the past 5-ish years, so we're paying for it.

 

Not that I'm bitter, or anything...

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