T Nation

Move to Houston for a Job?


For a little background, I am in my final year of an engineering degree and I have recently been given a very very good post graduation offer in my field. I have grown up in Chicago, go to college close to the city and in general have loved my time here. I only recently visited Houston for one day while interviewing, have never before this interview been to Texas and have no family or friends down there. Also for clarification, while I would try to live in a Houston suburb, my workplace would be about 1.2 hours outside of the city.

Now, I am not opposed to moving somewhere, as I figured that I would have to in order to pursue my degree field, but I am not sold on Texas. It just seems like a very different world from what I am used to, and while some things are appealing, I am still on the fence. I do freely admit that I need more information on the area to make a better decision.

So since there are a number of people from Houston or the general area on this site, I am looking for a list of pros and cons for moving there. If possible, I would also love to hear from others who grew up in a large northern city and how that transition was. Keep in mind that I am only 23, I enjoy city life, going out, younger crowds, etc. Thanks.


Dont come here. :slight_smile:

Just joking I will not bring up our discussion in the other thread.

I will let others give you the pros and cons and add when I have time. Congrats with graduation and good luck.


Pros and cons: look at this economy, you have a job offer in one of the few states that has done well lately and is ranked at the top of places to move for work.

1.2 hours outside the city. Where exactly?


Pros, cheap everything from what I have seen. My cousin moved down there and paid off his student loans by accident. Nice people, overall great place. (I do business there all the time)

Cons: the fucking heat, being from the north you are not going to like the summers much. Also, not a "pretty" city. Not run down or anything, just every time I have been there, nothing has made me do a double take... well, maybe some of the girls.


Texas is fucking awesome.


thats all i got




Yes RLy, are you Jelly?


No state tax


He jelly.


i hung out with bugAD for a weekend in austin.

u jelly?


I'd be working in Freeport for Dow and from what I've heard most of the younger 20 something employees live in Pearland and commute. I think the commute from there would be ~1hr, which I would be willing to do if it meant living closer to the city. No way I could live in Freeport or Lake Jackson at this point in my life.

As far as having a job, I am actually not too worried about finding something in my field if I decided to not take the offer. I just highly doubt another offer could be better let alone match. But that is just me thinking about the money aspect of things, which of course is a factor, but I have other considerations.

Edit: Just read the no state tax from TommyGunz and that is a pretty awesome consideration when looking at monetary factors as well. I think the cost of living index for Chicago is 115 or so and the Houston area is around 90 so that does provide more spending power.


Thank you, I appreciate it.


That is some of the feel that I got in my limited time there, so I hear ya. It just kind of surprises me to hear that there is less diversity/culture with Houston being the 4th largest city in the US, but it is not shocking. I would love to stay in Chicago, and I love a couple of west coast cities like San Fran and Seattle, but there is not as much opportunity there for me.


Less diversity in what way?


HM I have done the 6th street thing when you were in grade school dreaming about your teacher. I am not Jelly?


South side, Pearland is right next to Friendswood where I live and my wife was working in Lake Jackson and was taking her about an hour to commute.


I was taking that from what CubanMeat stated, but I suppose it could mean anything from people and neighborhoods to dining choices and entertainment. In a broad perspective of the word I certainly would say that Chicago has diversity, but nothing really compares to NYC on that front.


ON the tax front:

Texas does not have a state income tax(we do have a franchise tax, but thats a whole other matter). We do, however, have property taxes. I do not know if Illinois does or not. This shouldn't factor in too much even if you are looking to buy property, as land values down here are pretty low at the moment.

Cost of living in the Houston area is also a good deal cheaper than cities elsewhere of comparable size. This only gets better the further out you go. This really depends on the amount of time commuting you are will to tolerate and the amount of money you are spending on gas.

To give you an idea, I lived and worked in the greenway plaza area(not far from the galleria) and things were fairly cheap. My rent at the time was around $730 for a double apartment(1 roommate). This was back in 2008 though, so I would imagine its a little higher now, but not too much.


For some reason if people do not see lots of ethnic neighborhoods on the tourist map they assume there is no diversity.

Houston is a diverse place, across and within areas. They are not readily demarcated by flags on the lampposts.

Plus, within a few hour drive you have Austin, Galveston, San Antonio, Dallas & Fort Worth and New Orleans (in no particular order or direction).


Congrats on the upcoming graduation and the job offer. My home is in Fort Worth but I lived in Houston for 2 of my 3 years of law school. Many people from Texas do not like Houston, and I did not look forward to moving there. I will say from experience that it is a much better place to live than to visit. I actually lived just west of downtown 1 year, then actually in downtown the next. I liked it. I'm not sure what it would be like living that far out.

Summers are hot and humid, and traffic is horrible. We once got caught in traffic at 11PM on a weeknight. We were coming home after celebrating after our last final of the summer. OTOH winter is very mild, and if you know where you are going in town you can often avoid traffic.

I found that many people there were transplants from elsewhere. There are multiple colleges and graduate schools there, not to mention a lot of jobs, so there were a lot of reasons for people to live there. I thought there was plenty of diversity, but I'm not from Chicago. I saw people from all over the world, and it looked like there were a million things to do, but I was strapped for cash and usually had to study. The people seemed to be pretty friendly, especially for a big city, and I was rarely concerned for my safety.

There are a lot of sports bars and they will tell you which teams games they are showing that day. I watched the 2004 TCU Northwestern football game with a group of Northwestern fans at a Sports Bar called SRO.