Living in Texas? I need info.

Discussion in 'The Locker Room Bar & Grill' started by Bob Hubbard, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • Founding Member
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2001
    Messages:
    47,249
    Likes Received:
    764
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Land of the Free
    It's looking very likely that come May 2011 I'll be heading to somewhere between San Antonio and Austin. Kinda aiming at the Kyle/Buda areas or San Marcos though I'm not set on anyplace in particular right now.

    Game plan is, drive down, get apartment, take a month to get my bearings, and move forward from there, bringing the rest of the family down in the fall once things are stable for me.

    I'm trying to figure out a lot remotely, so need all the intel I can get.

    Where are good places to look for an apartment?
    Criteria is: pet friendly (3 cats and a lizard) (Not needed immediately, but eventually), safe (not looking for dirt cheap but must sleep under kevlar or bar windows), quiet, affordable.
    Internet is a must!

    What do the bills look like? Gas (heat/cooking), Electric, Water, Garbage, Sewer rates? Any other bills I'm missing?

    Any local malls, shopping centers or plazas? Bookstores like Borders or Barnes n Nobel? Chain portrait studios like Portrait Innovations or Picture People?

    Feel free to PM me if you'd prefer. I'm trying to budget for a big move, and plan a starting point.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,521
    Likes Received:
    2,538
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Michigan
    When I relocated to Michigan, I got a lot of good information from Citi-Data:

    http://www.city-data.com/city/Buda-Texas.html

    They've got demographics and forum posts by people who are relocating and those who live there. You can get some bad advice from cranks, but the signal-to-noise ratio has been OK from my perspective; I've found that most of the burbs I was advised to steer clear of in the metro Detroit area were dead on, and the ones I was told were great are. And more - people tell you about the character of the neighborhoods themselves, which helps a lot. A 'great neighborhood' for a 20-something just-out-of-college hipster is not a 'great neighborhood' for a fifty-something commuter and IT worker.

    I would also recommend a reccie before you move even yourself. A week or two spent driving around the area can be well spent. You can get hotel rooms cheap these days.

    I also recommend from personal experience - before choosing an apartment to live in - just drive in on a Friday or Saturday night, preferably a payday for many people, and park and wait. You get an idea of what it's really like when the lights go out. Check the parking lot the first thing in the morning afterwards, too. Busted beer bottles, discarded crack pipes, and dirty baby diapers - bad news. Empty McDonald's sacks maybe not so bad. Look at the cars parked there; give you an idea of the average income level and the type of people living there (blue collar trucks, white collar compact cars, wealthier sport cars and SUV's, etc). Look for signs of cars being repaired after breakins.

    I also recommend finding a local cop on a lunch break and just coming up and asking them if you can pick their brain for a minute. They know the dirt, and one-on-one away from the copshop, they'll spill it. You can also ask the local fire and ambulance crews if you can find them. I don't recommend going to where they work and asking them; you'll always get the politically correct answer or a no comment.

    You can also get great comments at the local coin laundromat, if a bit more biased. You have to consider the source, but people often know the cheapest safe places to live, etc. Local secrets.

    Good luck! Sure wish you'd come to Michigan though. Much better than Texas. Oh well.

    EDIT: Oh one other thing. Call your insurance company. Get rates on different zipcodes in the area where you are thinking of. Lower rates = lower crime, usually. Just another dirty trick and works every time.
     
  3. rlobrecht

    rlobrecht Brown Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Messages:
    473
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Good luck with your move to Texas. I'm in a little community south of Houston, so can't really help in the Austin San Antonio area. One thing to note is that Austin is the home of a really big university, and most of the kids are probably not there right now.

    At least in the Houston area, schools start become the end of August. I don't know if you want to factor at into the plans for your family.
     
  4. TwentyThree

    TwentyThree Green Belt

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    20
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Tarrant County, Texas
    I'm near Fort Worth, and I second the use of city-data.com. I've moved cross-country three times since 2005, and it was an invaluable resource, especially their forums.
     
  5. Balrog

    Balrog Master of Arts

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2007
    Messages:
    1,676
    Likes Received:
    366
    Trophy Points:
    123
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    San Marcos is probably your best place to look. It's home to the 3rd largest university in the state, so apartment living should be reasonable.
     
  6. Stac3y

    Stac3y Master Black Belt

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2009
    Messages:
    1,103
    Likes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    73
    I'm in Austin, and know absolutely zip about San Marcos, Buda, Kyle, etc., except that they're considerably cheaper to live in than Austin, which is bloody expensive. San Marcos has an outlet mall. Schlitterbahn (in New Braunfels) is fun. I would avoid San Marcos because of the student population, but that's because I like to sleep at night. I CAN tell you that there are 8-10 open karate tournaments in Austin and San Antonio each year. You can find a list at theaok.org. Sorry I can't be more helpful. I agree with Bill that you should do your best to come down and spend some time before choosing a place.
     
  7. Carol

    Carol Crazy like a...

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    20,311
    Likes Received:
    540
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    NH
    If you haven't already done so, ping PG Michael B. He's in San Antonio, and I have the feeling he's a guy that loves to talk if you catch him at the right time. ;)
     
  8. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • Founding Member
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2001
    Messages:
    47,249
    Likes Received:
    764
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Land of the Free
    If everything continues to stay on track, I'll be looking to swing down late spring, early summer next year for a couple weeks and kinda feel things out. Need to find an affordable clean bedbug free hotel, or short term apt rental though. I'll start that hunt after New Years.....job now is putting the cash together to make this a go.

    Thanks for the tips so far, much appreciated. :)
     
  9. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2004
    Messages:
    27,751
    Likes Received:
    1,516
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Bob think closely where you want to be based on the weather. Texas can be bloody hot!!! I hear from my inlaws that the hill country in and around Austin is a little cooler.
     
  10. Mike Hamer

    Mike Hamer Green Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Abilene TX
    I to am moving to Texas at the end of this month, time to escape the brutal Michigan weather!
    (although right now from what I hear its bad there right now to haha)
     
  11. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • Founding Member
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2001
    Messages:
    47,249
    Likes Received:
    764
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Land of the Free
    I'm still aiming for the Austin-San Antonio area. If I'd already moved, I would have been one of the few folks with a snow shovel, lol. :D
     
  12. terryl965

    terryl965 <center><font size="2"><B>Martial Talk Ultimate<BR

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Messages:
    41,259
    Likes Received:
    335
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Grand Prairie Texas
    Which part Mike?
     
  13. Mike Hamer

    Mike Hamer Green Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Abilene TX
    Abilene.
     
  14. terryl965

    terryl965 <center><font size="2"><B>Martial Talk Ultimate<BR

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Messages:
    41,259
    Likes Received:
    335
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Grand Prairie Texas
    Ok if you are ever in the DFW area stop by anybody that has trained with Brian is always welcomed.
     
  15. Mike Hamer

    Mike Hamer Green Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Abilene TX
    Awesome, thanks!
     
  16. Rich Parsons

    Rich Parsons A Student of Martial Arts

    • Advisor
    • Founding Member
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2001
    Messages:
    15,766
    Likes Received:
    427
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Location:
    Michigan
    Bob, I know four people that sold what they could put into a vehicle and left for San Antonio. One of them had a job lined up a Manager at Burger King and the others all had talked to people there for jobs and found them within a week of getting there. They all work in the service industry, but here in the Flint area they were unemployed and could not find work.
     
  17. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • Founding Member
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2001
    Messages:
    47,249
    Likes Received:
    764
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Land of the Free
    We're considering that Rich. Just really really sick of NY.
     
  18. Wild Bill

    Wild Bill Green Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2004
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Washington
    When I moved to WA from Texas I was shocked at how hard it was to get a job. I had to work at Walmart for six months before finding the hospital security job I have now. In Texas I was used to opening up a phone book and deciding which company I wanted to work for. It was always a sure thing. If they were hiring the position was mine. I have literally never been turned down for a security job before leaving Texas.

    If you have a work ethic and a clean criminal record you can find a job. The draw back is the jobs you find will not always pay as much as you would like. It's better than no job and in the Austin area even the dangerous neighborhoods aren't as bad as New York. You just have to watch your butt and use common sense.
     
  19. ballen0351

    ballen0351 Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2010
    Messages:
    10,315
    Likes Received:
    943
    Trophy Points:
    263
    I cant wait til I can retire and Ill be Texas bound. Looking to gulf coast area
     

Share This Page