Moving to Austin, TX: Everything You Should Know
Located on the banks of the Colorado River, the Texas state capitol, Austin is one of the fastest-growing metropolitan cities in the US. In recent years an influx of technology and development companies have seen Austin adopt the nickname "Silicon Hills." It is also known as the "City of the Violet Crown '' due to the glow of light in the hills around the city when the sunsets. Home to one of the largest universities in the US, the University of Texas, Austin is a vibrant place to live, which may be why so many people are calling in the movers and heading for the city.
Austin typically has long, hot summers and short, mild winters, giving the locals plenty of opportunities to explore all the parks and outdoor activities in the vicinity. As one of the few major cities to boast a falling crime rate, Austin is by and large considered one of the safest cities in the US. The growth in recent years has fueled development in the downtown area. The influx of people and businesses into the city has resulted in a skyscraper boom; however, the skyline is still dominated by the State Capitol Building as Capitol View Corridors have forced the tall buildings to be scattered to preserve views of the Capitol Building.
Parks and the Outdoors
Austin has more than its fair share of beautiful parks and outdoor activities including:
- Lady Bird Lake, a dam-like reservoir on the Colorado River. Described as "a paddler's dream," it also has plenty of hiking and biking trails.
Barton Creek Greenbelt, home to a series of sensational natural swimming holes including Gus Fruh, Twin Falls, and Sculpture Falls.
Zilker Park, "Austin's favorite park," hosting a range of recreational activities on the 350 acres.
Lake Travis, with over 271 miles of shoreline to explore. It is, in fact, a reservoir rather than a natural lake, stretching over 67 miles. Lake Travis hosts a range of water activities.
Lake Austin, another reservoir on the Colorado River. There are limited fishing options from the shoreline as most of it is privately owned; however, there are plenty of opportunities on the water.
Cost of Living
The cost of living in Austin is 9% above the national average and 17% above the Texas average, with goods and services (3%), healthcare (9%), and housing (33%) all above the national average, while groceries (8%) utilities (5%), and transportation (10%) are all below the national average.
Buying a house in Austin will take some savings, with a median house price of $295,000, well above the national average. The median rental is $2,316 per month.
Although Austin is a moderately expensive place to live, the cost is offset to a large degree by the above-average wages on offer. The median salary is $76,000, nearly $16,000 above the national average. The relatively generous tax laws mean that Texas has some of the lowest taxes in the US, with no personal or corporate income tax. The state rates 33rd per $1,000 of personal income and 38th out of the states in the amount of taxes paid per capita.
Over the last decade, Austin has grown 37.4%, primarily fueled by the influx of startups and technology companies. With an unemployment rate of just 2.7%, well below the US rate of 4.1%, Austin presents as a strong option for those looking for work, especially those specializing in technology.
Austin has a young and educated population, with two-thirds of the people under the age of 44, while 90.4% of adults in the city have graduated high school. This has contributed to several of the top US companies basing themselves within the city. Top multinational employers within Austin include the likes of Apple, Google, and Dell, while the University of Texas employs around 24,000 Austinites.
For over a decade, Austin has been considered one of the leading areas within the US for venture capital investment. Industries employing over 100,000 Austinites include accommodation and food services, professional scientific and technical services, and healthcare and social assistance.
Austin has been described as the epicenter of creativity due in part to the wide range of museums, performing arts spaces, galleries, and annual arts and music festivals and events.
Austin's music scene focuses around the nightclubs of 6th Street and South by Southwest, an annual music, film, and interactive festival. The self-appointed Live Music Capital of the World has more live music venues per capita than any other US city.
Keeping it Weird Austin
Over the last couple of decades, Austin has become a magnet for the laid-back hipster, who dreams of ditching the day job in favor of a career in music or the arts. Austin adopted the unofficial slogan, "Keeping it Weird Austin," which represents the town's determined effort to protect local businesses, including the weird, wonderful and quaint against the influx of large corporations.
Austin's unique culture includes yard art which ranges from hundreds of pink flamingos to upcycled furniture pieces and the occasional sculptural project that is unlikely to comply with the city ordinances. Then there is the three-story bicycle-based cathedral of junk, which played a role in developing the food trailer culture and its delights.
The city has a diverse and expansive food culture with barbeques, breweries, breakfast tacos, and food trucks encapsulating the role food plays in Austin life. With a high Latino population, the Tex-Mex menu is a firm fixture on the Austin landscape.
Austin is spread out over 273 square miles, with plenty of neighborhoods for new arrivals to choose from, ranging from the high-density central city urban area to quiet family-orientated suburbs. As with most cities, the closer to downtown, the higher the rents, with the rents and prices lowest in the outer suburbs.
Old Enfield is located in Travis County and offers an urban-suburban feel. With public schools that are rated highly, and plenty of bars, pubs, restaurants, and parks, Old Enfield is popular among the liberal young professional demographic.
Gateway has a selection of shops, restaurants, and bars for the mainly renting population. Young professionals are well represented in Gateway, with families with children making up around 10% of the population.
Triangle State is another area where the majority of its residents are renters. The community is considered one of the best places in Austin to raise a family due in part to its highly-rated public schools.
Old West Austin
Old West Austin is set in the hilly area and is home to plenty of wildlife. The services are considered excellent, with several quality healthcare options in the area. Old West Austin has a distinctively urban feel and provides easy access to the downtown area.
Hyde Park provides a mix of rental and ownership options. Families with children make up around 15% of the population. When accompanied by a number of quaint houses, the local shops, parks, and creeks give the area a unique and distinct feel.
There are 94 public elementary, middle, and high schools and 113 private schools in Austin. With 110,610 students in the city, the average student-to-teacher ratio is 13:1. All of the neighborhoods mentioned have highly rated schools.
How Allied Van Lines Can Help you Move to Austin
Allied Van Lines is a full-service moving company that provides quality and professional services to those moving to Austin. With 400 locations nationwide, Allied Van Lines covers interstate, national, international, and long distance residential and corporate moves.
A full-service move takes all the stress out of moving. Allied Van Lines can create checklists based on the customer schedule, pack all of the items for moving, arrange the appropriate transportation and storage (if required), and then deliver the items to the new house or corporate offices.
Allied Van Lines will also ensure that all items are insured appropriately throughout the move. In the unlikely event, something goes wrong, the customer isn't out of pocket and is compensated for the loss or damage.
With over 90 years of experience handling moves in and out of Austin, Allied Van Lines is the perfect moving company. A free moving quote that considers the size of the house or office, the date of the move, the moving truck, and any required packing services is available on request.
Austin, TX, presents as a city that has plenty to offer. There are opportunities to get out and about in the outdoors and enjoy the spectacular landscapes and opportunities it provides. Those who prefer the sights and sounds of the city will not be disappointed, with a unique culture that incorporates the laid-back hipster ethos, a little of the eccentric, and plenty of live music options. On top of this, there is the range and diversity of the food options that incorporate the flavors of the Latino community. Given the growth of the city and the job opportunities available, it's easy to see why people are upping sticks and heading to Austin. Folks considering the move should bear in mind the services offered by Allied Van Lines.