Moving to Galveston, TX? Here are 10 things you should know about life in Galveston before you move!
If you're thinking of moving to Galveston, Texas, you've come to the right place. This unique city is located on the Texas Gulf Coast on an island that offers its residents premier coastal living. Home to a growing population of over 50,000 people, Galveston is a beautiful place to live that is only 50 miles from Houston. Galveston is known as a charming beach town full of historic architecture, sunny beaches and highly rated restaurants, so it's no surprise that Galveston is their top choiceMove to Texasand we have compiled a list ofbest neighborhoods in galvestonto help those relocating to the area.
Whether you're relocating for a new job, for retirement, or just for a change of scenery, Galveston is the perfect blend of mellow island living and city living. Before you pack up all your stuff, you're probably wondering if Galveston is the right choice for you. Before you even set foot in town, learn the ins and outs of Galveston with the help of this relocation guide. Read on to learn about 10 things you should know BEFORE you move to Galveston, TX!
The people are friendly.
Galveston locals know how to bank on southern charm. Because this is such a laid-back and relaxing place to live, the city has earned a reputation for having nice and welcoming locals. In fact, 80% of the population was voted nice and friendly. While this may not be a big deal to some, friendly residents can either make or break a person's experience in a new town. If you're new to the area, having neighbors who are welcoming and make an effort to start a conversation can make all the difference in creating a positive living environment.
Low cost of living.
Often overshadowed by other large Texas cities, Galveston is an affordable place to live on the Gulf Coast. With the cost of living 4% below the national average, Galveston is a great option for middle-class families. Galveston is also 5% cheaper thanlives in Houstonand 23% cheaper thanlives in Austin.Housing costs in Galveston are also 2% lower than the national average, which is good news for homeowners. Considering the city's size and population, a median annual income of $47,917 is recommended to live comfortably. Keep in mind that utility prices are about 11% higher than the national average. On the other hand, Texas has no state income tax, which means more money can be spent on buying a new home.
The weather is fantastic.
Galveston is considered to have a subtropical climate and experiences long, hot and humid summers in addition to mild winters. With an average high of 90 degrees Fahrenheit, the month of August is the hottest month of the year with a low of 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, the month of January is the coldest month of the year with an average high temperature of 61 degrees Fahrenheit and an average low temperature of 49 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures rarely fall below 37 degrees and rarely rise above 93 degrees Fahrenheit. The best time to visit Galveston for the favorable weather is between late March to mid-May and mid-October to mid-November.
While the city enjoys 203 days of sunshine year-round, it also rains a lot. Galveston experiences frequent thunderstorms and receives an average of 50 inches of rain annually, far exceeding the national average of 38 inches of rain. Therefore, always take an umbrella or a rain jacket with you when you leave the house. For those coming from colder climates, you can leave your snow gear behind as Galveston receives 0 inches of snow on average. In fact, the last time Galveston received any significant amount of snow was in 1886.
Beware of hurricanes.
While the warm weather may be great for beach-goers, its Gulf-side location makes Galveston a frequent target of hurricanes. The hurricane season typically lasts from June through November each year, with August and September seeing the highest tropical storm activity. Similar to the other states on the Gulf, Texas is often affected by these tropical storms. A total of 56 hurricanes have made landfall in Galveston over the past few centuries, causing millions of dollars in storm damage. Here is aHomeowner's Guide to Stormsand how to protect yourself from it. The last major hurricane to hit Galveston was Hurricane Harvey in 2017. While hurricanes don't always hit Galveston directly, it's important for the city and its residents to be prepared for an emergency.
In the event of a hurricane, follow these tips to stay safe:
Evacuate if possible
Stay away from windows and glass doors in the house
leave mobile homes
Stay up to date on local and national alerts
Be prepared to turn off major sources of energy such as electricity, water and gas
Watch out for strong winds and flooding
There is no shortage of jobs.
Over the past year, Galveston has seen job growth of 3.1%. This is great news for people looking for employment. It is projected that the city will see an overall increase in employment of 31% over the next ten years. While that may be below the national average of 35%, the job market is still growing strongly. Due to the city's geographic location, there are several industries that fuel its prosperous economy. Some of the major industries in the region are tourism, education, healthcare, shipping and financial services. In particular, the Port of Galveston provides more than 13,000 jobs to the city and has provided more than $2.3 billion to the state of Texas. The minimum wage in Galveston is $7.25. Even if there are many vacancies, it does not always mean that there are also vacancies in your industry. If you're looking for a job while moving, be sure to keep an eye out for available positions and be open to new opportunities.
Beaches are everywhere.
Known for its 32 miles of beautiful beaches, this island city offers prime access to the Gulf of Mexico. The beaches in Galveston attract both locals and tourists every day and are a popular destination for all types of beach-goers. The water is not only warm but also calm, which provides perfect conditions for water activities like swimming and kayaking. While the beaches here are notorious for not being as clean as Florida beaches, Galveston still has plenty of safe and relaxing beaches to offer.
Check out these local favorite beaches in Galveston, TX!
Babes Strand:Considered the top beach in Galveston, it's a popular spot for couples and families. Filled with new restaurants and bars, this beach with a historic seawall is the perfect place to lie on the sand.
Stewart-Strand:Great for the whole family, this is the perfect place to unwind and enjoy the sea breeze. Build a sandcastle or play a game of beach volleyball.
Crystal Beach:This beach stretches for seven miles and is always a popular spot for scenic views. Not only is this beach dog-friendly, but cars are also allowed on the sand.
Oststrand:Known for attracting a large rowdy crowd, this beach is where the party scene resides. This is also the only beach in town where alcohol is allowed.
Seawolf Park:Although this beach can have a rocky shore, this is a great spot for fishing. There is also a picnic area, playground and military museum on site.
Education is a priority.
Galveston is the site of the Galveston Independent School District which oversees all top quality schools in the area. With a student to teacher ratio of fifteen, the Galveston Independent School District does its best to give individual attention to each student. The city spends thousands of dollars each year on its public schools and places a high value on quality education. For those moving with school-age children, it might be a good idea to find out which neighborhoods will feed into the schools your children will attend before buying a home.
If you are looking for higher education opportunities, Galveston has no shortage of them either.Galveston Collegeis a top two-year public community college in the area, ranked fourth best community college in Texas as of 2021.The University of Texas Medical Department at Galvestonis also a top institution in the city offering both undergraduate and graduate programs in healthcare. One of the best parts about moving to Galveston is the state college status. If you don't mind commuting to college or traveling far from home, there are over 170 colleges and universities in Texas to choose from.
Learn to love seafood.
As a seaside town, it's no surprise that seafood restaurants are plentiful. With more than 100 species of fish regularly caught on the island, Galveston locals love to find new ways to incorporate fish into every meal. From pasta and salads to soups and tacos, seafood is a staple in most homes. The Gulf Grouper in particular is a fan favorite, often seasoned to perfection and added to well-known dishes.
Check out these local favorite seafood restaurants in Galveston, TX!
Gaidas Fischrestaurant:This elegant restaurant, first opened in 1911, offers only the best views of the Gulf and even better food. Be sure to order shrimp, salmon and crab cakes from the Gulf.
Fisherman’s Wharf – Galveston:This casual spot serves freshly caught seafood alongside craft cocktails and ocean views.
Shrimp-N-Stuff:Get shrimp and fried seafood in this cozy atmosphere. Be sure to order the gumbo and coconut shrimp.
Fish Stories:A focal point for tropical drinks and delicious seafood. Offers great service and dishes at an affordable price.
Katies Seafood House:This waterfront restaurant is one of a kind and a great place to enjoy homemade seafood dishes. It can be a good idea to make a reservation to secure a table for your party.
Watch out for crime.
While Galveston is home to many safe and wonderful neighborhoods, the city also has one of the highest crime rates in the country compared to other cities of the same size. With a crime rate of 39 incidents per 1,000 inhabitants, the chance of becoming a victim of a crime is relatively high. In fact, there is a one in 25 chance of being a victim of a violent crime. While this is scary when it comes to crime, there are ways to prevent it. As long as residents make wise decisions, it's possible to stay safe. The southwestern part of the city is considered the safest by locals.
There is always something to do.
Galveston offers residents some of the best attractions in Texas and knows how to have fun. Whether you're looking for a new date idea, a place to bring the family, or a cool place to hang out with friends, there's always something to do and discover in the city.
Instead of going to the beach, check out these local favorite things to do in Galveston, TX!
Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier:With a roller coaster, 15 rides and several carnival games.
Atmospheric gardens:Opened in 1986, this pyramid aquarium is a popular attraction that is home to many species of marine life.
Galveston Historic Seaport - home of the 1877 tall ship ELISSA:A National Historic Landmark, this is one of the oldest ships still operating today.
Schlitterbahn Water Park Galveston:Bring the whole family together at this water park with a lazy river and water slides.
1892 Bishop's Palace:This Victorian style home is open to the public for daily tours.
Moving to Galveston, TX - The Bottom Line
Whether you're relocating to Galveston or not, it's definitely worth a visit. From its pretty beaches to its delicious seafood restaurants, Galveston is a great place to live, brimming with job opportunities and prime real estate. If you decide to officially move to this thriving city, contact one of our knowledgeable and experienced real estate specialists to guide you through the home buying process.Contact us todayto find your dream home in Galveston, TX!