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Old 11-30-2018, 07:27 AM
32,574 posts, read 51,151,280 times
Reputation: 18438


Originally Posted by ChiknNutz View Post
Hello all and Happy Thanksgiving weekend. Just found this site and it appears to be fairly active, so thought it might be a good place to do some inquiries. We are considering making a move to the DFW area...not looking to be in the city, as we are more country-folk believe it or not given our current locale. We live about 40 miles north of Seattle in Arlington and I personally abhor Seattle-proper. For a number of reasons, we are wanting to relocate away from here and DFW is on our short list.

While are reasons are many, I will try to be as concise as possible. Our primary reason is to hopefully ease my wife's medical conditions. Over the past few years, my wife has developed some issues that we strongly believe to be largely environmental. After visiting several doctors and the like, they all recommend a warmer and drier climate. San Diego is the ideal climate, but too many reasons that location is out of the question, but I digress.

If we relocate, I would possibly work in northern Forth Worth. I currently commute 20 miles and that can vary from 30 minutes to 1 hour+ (but rarely that long). My initial findings suggest traffic to be about on par there. I am willing to drive about the same amount of time, though would like to be closer if possible.

Our family is currently 5 strong (1 of which is out of the house deployed to Afghanistan), with only 1 will be in high school after the move, which we plan for Summer 2019. So schooling is of secondary importance. We have done quite a bit of looking at real estate and there seems to be an okay amount of choices if you head out a ways. We prefer a nice house on about an acre for under $450k. We prefer suburbs and country type feel. Our current home is a 2000+ sq ft rambler on 5 acres. We want to reduce the property size to minimize outside work, but improve on the home some. A shop and pool are preferred.

One thing that is surprising is the exorbitant cost of property taxes. Ours just went up a lot here and are now at $6000 per year. Many of the homes I've looked at there START at around $5000 and go up to like $11000. My current tax bill already seems ridiculous and is a cost you will never escape as a home owner even if the home is paid for. What is the deal there? I cannot totally see how the taxes are assessed as similar homes vary quite a bit I've seen.

Another thing foreign to me is how electricity is done there, like choosing a cell phone plan. Here it is a public utility and there is only one that serves a given area (typically by county). Cost per KWH is now at $0.1032 about the same as there it seems. How do you go about it there typically?

Thanks much for any advice offered.

Property taxes are high because local property owners are taxed by/for local school districts -- among other tax authorities like county hospital, special tax district, county/city tax authorities...

as a state we do not do districts by county like some (FL for example)
Individual districts can have boundaries that flow into separate towns--
Some towns might have 1 or 2 or 3 ISDs within their city limits bases on ISDs locations
Our state does not pay what many homeowners would consider its fair share of school support and thus local districts charge higher property rate to make up difference
Google Texas Robin Hood school tax to get idea of history behind this issue

So voters can approve school taxes to help support their districts' level of educational investment
There can also be special bond elections for high dollar items like new football stadiums or school construction

If you move to area where the property taxes are lower compared to others you should ask yourself why--
Usually the schools are not good and there is lot of ag land because that has lower tax rate
Maybe you are happy with that because you plan to home school or maybe won't have public school to consider long term-or/and get the ag rating yourself--
That does not automatically transfer when land with an ag exemption is sold----because that exemption depends on USE of property--a new owner may not use it same way as the seller--
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:39 AM
32,574 posts, read 51,151,280 times
Reputation: 18438
Re the weather--
Our area can have higher humidity than you might imagine considering it is far from large water source
Our summers are staying hotter at night with less cooling effect because (IMO) of the tremendous amount of concrete we are pouring for development---
That traps heat during the day and disperses it at night
We can have temps at midnight after a day of 100+ temp that is 90...

DFW is also a nexus for pollen and other allergens
Lot of people have allergy problems because of wind dispersed allergens
Don't know if that is part of your wife's issue--exposure to allergens...

Re electric--
In some areas--more rural--there are coop electrical providers--their rates are usually lower but they don't offer cable/wifi services
Often only one provider for cable/wifi services based on the county's approval of contracts which creates monopoly
And rates can vary depending on provider you go with
There are websites that show rates and customer satisfaction for various providers in different areas
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Old 11-30-2018, 10:27 AM
Location: Dallas, TX and Las Vegas, NV
6,831 posts, read 5,707,541 times
Reputation: 15369
We spend less and less time in DFW because of the humidity and lots of rain. However, besides the weather, I find many positives: great medical care, lots of events going on, good museams and shows, relatively reasonable cost of housing for a major metro area. In addition, while taxes are high, the 65+ senior exemptions plus homestead exemptions do help a lot on property taxes.

We also live in the Las Vegas Valley area. No income tax state with much lower property taxes. And weather is really great 9 months out of the year. No real humidity. Medical care not nearly as widely available nor nearly as many elite physicians/specialists here, however. Our residential community has about 75% “California refugees” who find the cost of living and weather here favorable enough to leave San Diego and LA behind.

If humidity is seriously a problem, you should be looking at Phoenix and Las Vegas areas.
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