Originally Posted by Nunie
I'm actually really interested in Texas, besides the hot humid summers, would you say Texas is a nice place to settle? How's the cost of living in Texas, and cost of houses/land?
The nice thing about Texas is that it's so big that there is a lot of diversity to chose from. East Texas is largely forested (lots of pine trees), south Texas is largely grassland, the north Texas panhandle is largely plains, and west Texas is largely a combination of desert and mountains. Summers are very hot and humid in the Houston area and along the Texas gulf coast and the area is subject to hurricanes. You can avoid the humidity of the summers by going further west. Having been raised in Texas and having relatives scattered over the state, I've pretty much been all over Texas and I would say some parts of Texas are a nice place to settle and others are not. I grew up in Greenville (about an hour NE of Dallas) and truthfully I'm not particularly crazy about that area. The summers are hot and humid there, the land is flat (I personally love mountains), and much of the ground is black gumbo (not very good for growing crops). I have relatives in Lubbock, TX (in the NW part of the state just south of the panhandle) and in my personal opinion it has to be one of the worst places in the US to live. My uncle moved there for business reasons and it's nothing but flat, red dirt with very hot, dry summers and fairly cold winters. The cost of living in Texas is actually quite inexpensive (one of the lower costs state-wise) and the cost of houses/land is pretty inexpensive as long as you're not too near one of the big metropolis areas (Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth, San Antonio). Housing/land prices climb way up the closer in you get to those large cities. Having given you the downsides, there are some nice areas in Texas and if you ask me about a specific area, I can tell you more. If I were going to move back to Texas, I would personally want to move to one of the following areas:
San Marcos (or New Braunfels which is close to San Marcos) -- This area has relatively inexpensive housing/land, relatively warm winters, rolling hills, forests, rivers, good hunting and fishing, and a lot to see and do including the glass bottom boats at Aquarena Springs, swimming, river rafting, Wonder World Park, water parks, wildlife ranches, Animal World Zoo, and the famous Natural Bridge Caverns. In addition, these towns are close enough to San Antonio (only about an hour drive) that if you wanted to visit a large metropolis area you could easily do so. The summers are fairly hot and humid in this area but not as bad as they are in the Houston area or anywhere along the Texas gulf coast.
Glen Rose -- The housing/land in this area is a bit more expensive than it is in the San Marcos/New Braunfels area but it's still relatively inexpensive. This is a forested area where the Paluxy River cuts through beautiful chalk white cliffs. It also has good fishing and hunting, and there is loads of things to see and do in this area including swimming, the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, Dinosaur Valley State Park, the Creation Evidence Museum, Big Rocks Park, Dinosaur World, Tres Rios Park, and of course the crystal clear Paluxy River. In addition, Glen Rose is close enough to Ft. Worth (about an hour drive) and Dallas (about an hour and a half drive) that if you wanted to visit a large metropolis area you could easily do so. The summers are fairly hot and humid in this area but not as bad as they are in the Houston area or anywhere along the Texas gulf coast.
Mount Pleasant -- The housing/land in this area is very inexpensive (less than the other two areas above). This a gorgeous area of rolling hills, pine forests, rivers, and lakes. There are considerably less attractions to see and do in this area that the above two, but it has great fishing and hunting and the land is very fertile for gardening and farming. I have gone fishing in some of the lakes around Mount Pleasant and have caught more than 60 crappie (my favorite fresh water fish) in an hour. The only possible downside I can see to Mount Pleasant is that if you wanted to visit a large metropolis area, the closest one (Dallas) is about a two hour drive away (it's the reason why houses/land are less expensive there). Again summers are fairly hot and humid in Mount Pleasant but not as bad as they are in the Houston area or anywhere along the Texas gulf coast.
I hope this helps. Let me know if you want to know about any specific city, town, or area in Texas.