Houston, Texas is widely known to be the most diverse and largest of cities in the state. With a vibrant atmosphere, historic venues, and many entertaining attractions, Houston has something for everyone.
Houston’s total area classes the city as the largest across the nation. Houston also has the 4th largest population in the country, with around 2.3 million residents. Additionally, Houston has great private and public schools, and many families feel at home in the city. Today, Houston is seen as a global city and has the most diverse population in Texas.
Houston has a long and rich history, and historic locations, museums, and cultural sites throughout the city reflect the area’s past. Houston is home to famous attractions like the Houston Zoo and Space Center Houston, and the city’s various and distinct districts are sure to entertain.
Plus, Houston’s location in Texas’s southeastern corner means Galveston Bay and the Gulf of Mexico are short commutes from the city.
A cultural melting pot in Texas, Houston has about 2.3 million residents.
44% of Houston’s population identifies as Hispanic, and 25% of residents are White. 22% of the population is African American, and 7% of the population is Asian. 1% of Houston residents are biracial or multiracial.
23% of residents have some college education or an associate’s degree, and 19% of residents have a bachelor’s degree. Another 12% of residents have a master’s degree or higher.
Houston’s unemployment rate tracks around 4.5%, and the city’s poverty rate is estimated to be 20.9%. The median household income is about $50K, and the median individual income sits at $26K
TOP Houston HIGHLIGHTS
The climate of Houston is subtropical – with winters that are mild and comfortable and summers that are long and hot. The city is a year-round destination but the heat and humidity from June to September can be very muggy and oppressive.
On the hottest days of the year in August, the temperatures here normally reach 104°F. January is the coldest month with temperatures ranging from 45°F to 65°F. On the coldest days of the year, the temperatures in Houston generally drop slightly below freezing.
To avoid the sweltering heat, residents and tourists here go out from mid-March to mid-April and from mid-October to mid-November – when weather conditions are perfect for exploring hundreds of acres of parkland and running trails, visiting museums, and discovering the city’s restaurant scene.
The most common types of natural disasters that threaten Houston include tropical storms, hurricanes, severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, wildfires, and extreme heat.
In the past, heavy rainfall from severe storms paralyzed many areas of the city – leaving interstate highways submerged underwater and properties damaged and flooded. Area floods also affected neighborhoods closest to bayous, creeks, rivers, and streams.
Tropical storms in the area had dumped up to 43 inches of rain and caused hazardous flooding that damaged homes and public utilities.
Houston has a very high risk of tornadoes, with a total of about 315 tornadoes that have occured in the area since 1950. The NOAA says, an average of about 5 tornadoes are recorded in the area every year.
The city is also located within a very high risk hurricane zone. About 52 hurricanes have been recorded in the area since 1930.
Houston also experiences high temperatures and humidity especially during the hot summer months. Periods of extended drought in the area may also cause wildland fires.
Houston Commute Time
Houston Commuter Travel Behavior
Houston residents commute an average of 24 miles daily. Factoring traffic, Houston’s average overall commute is 50 minutes.
Houston is intersected by Interstate 45, Interstate 69, and Interstate 10. Northwest Freeway, AKA U.S. Route 290, and Interstate 45, AKA North Freeway, are frequented local roadways. Additionally, East Freeway, South Freeway, and Southwest Freeway are well-connected roads that make traveling throughout Houston convenient.
Houston has 3 loop freeways that allow for uncomplicated travel throughout the Greater Houston area which are Interstate 610, State Highway Beltway 8, and State Highway 99.
It takes about an hour to reach Galveston from Houston, and driving to Sugar Land takes less than 30 minutes.
Houston is among the cities in Texas with crime rates that are significantly higher than national averages.
Overall, the crime rate in the area is 5,036 per 100,000 residents. This rate is about 95% higher than the national average. Houston’s crime rate is higher than about 90% of cities in the U.S.
Violent crime rate in the area is 1,026 per 100,000 residents. This rate is about 170% higher than the national average.
Property crime happens more often in the area at a rate of about 4,010 per 100,000 residents. This rate is about 82% higher than the national average.
One’s chances of becoming a victim of crime in the area is 1 in 20.
The safest neighborhoods in Houston are located in the western sections, near Bear Creek and Baker Road. The neighborhoods with the highest crime are located in the northeastern sections near Bordersville.
Houston’s city council consists of 16 members, including the city controller and the mayor. Members are elected for 4 year terms of office with a term limit of 2 years.
5 council members are elected on an at-large basis, while 11 members represent specific districts of Houston. Council meetings take place at 1:30PM on Tuesday and 9AM on Wednesday.
The Houston Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce focuses on building networks between members, promoting local businesses, providing learning opportunities, and supporting community involvement efforts.
The chamber works to further Houston’s business community and promote local growth through beneficial partnerships and governmental representation. This large chamber of commerce empowers its members through providing useful information, visibility, and promotional opportunities.
The mayor of Houston serves as the executive officer of the municipality. Among other responsibilities, the mayor presides over city council meetings, signs motions, administers official oaths, and oversees the passing of municipality ordinances.
The mayor, who serves for a 4 year term and is elected at-large, puts together the city’s annual budget and advises on the city’s financial standing.
Houston Population 2020
Houston is the largest city in Texas with a population of more than 2,200,000. The number of men and women in Chesterland is almost equal – females lead only by 1,000 at 50.02%, while males comprise around 49.98% of the population.
The majority of the population are young, working professionals who are aged 35 to 54 years. 18%, meanwhile, have ages that range from 25 to 34. The number of people who choose to reside in Houston continues to rise at an annual rate of 1.42%. The city’s population has grown by 10% since the last census in 2010.
Houston spans over 670 miles and has a population density of 3,657 people per square mile.
Houston Population Over Time
Houston Population by year
Houston Population by Sex
Houston Population by Age and Sex
Houston Diversity 2020
Houston is the most ethnically-diverse city in Texas. 57.6% of residents are White, 22.5% are African American, and 11% have some other race alone. The city also has a growing number of French, Irish, German, English, and Italian residents.
English is the language that is commonly used by 51% of residents, while Spanish is spoken by around 39% of residents. 3% speak other Indo-European languages.
Houston Race & Ethnic Diversity
Houston Ancestry (Top 10)
Houston Languages Spoken (Top 10)
Houston Foreign born population
Houston Education 2020
The education level of residents in Houston is significantly higher than the typical US community. 95 public elementary schools, 38 public middle schools, and 25 public high schools make up the city’s broad public education system.
829,000 or around 57% of Houston’s adults aged 25 and above have experiences in tertiary education. 18% graduated from college, and 78.3% finished high school. 32% have a bachelor’s degree, 5% hold an associate degree, and 13% have graduate degrees.
Houston Educational Attainment of Adults (25 years and over)
Houston Level of Education
SCHOOLS IN Houston
Seeing as around 20 independent school districts service Houston, Texas, students have many public schools to choose from. Additionally, Houston contains an estimated 300 private schools, and many of these campuses are recognized by Texas Private School Accreditation Commission agencies, which indicates excellent quality.
According to Niche.com, there are around 780 public school campuses in Houston, including early education campuses, elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, charter schools, and magnet schools.
Local campuses are ranked by Niche.com to be in the top bracket of schools in the state for diversity. Several impressively diverse campuses include Bellaire High School, Kempner High School, and Sugar Land Middle School.
Campuses in and around Houston are also known for having some of the best teachers not just in Texas, but in the United States as a whole. Calvin Nelms Middle School, Cornerstone Academy, Beatrice Mayes Institute Charter School, and Westbrook Intermediate School are several top campuses notable for their incredibly qualified teachers.
Houston Independent School District includes over 100 campuses in Houston and is the 7th largest school system in the country.
Katy Independent School District and Tomball Independent School District are top-rated districts according to the U.S. Department of Education.
The Aldine Independent School District is a pre-k-12 district that serves Aldine, sections of Houston, and other areas. Clear Creek Independent School District is based in neighboring League City, and Crosby Independent School District is a smaller local district.
Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District, Fort Bend Independent School District, Galena Park Independent School District, and Huffman Independent School District are several of the many other school systems that service Houston students.
Houston Housing 2020
Houston’s median property value is estimated at $156K, which tracks below the national average and is considered above average for Texas. Houston generally has a strong demand for housing, so properties typically receive multiple offers.
8.7% of Houston properties are worth below $60K, and 27.6% range between $60K-$120K. 33.1% of Houston real estate varies between $120K-$239K, and 11.4% of properties range between $239K-$359K.
Another 6.9% of real estate is valued between $359K-$479K, and 8.5% of properties range between $359K-$599K. From there, about 4% of properties vary upwards of $599K to over $1.2 million.
Houston real estate appreciated a total of 54.07% between roughly January 2010 and January 2020. This number can be divided into an average annual home appreciation rate of 4.42%, which places Houston’s real estate appreciation rate in the top 10% bracket nationally, indicating that Houston properties can make for solid long term investments.
Houston Home Appreciation Rates
Houston Home Value
Houston Median Home Value
Houston Median Gross Rent
Houston Home Ownership
Houston Rent & Ownership
Houston Rent vs Owner Occupied by Household Type
Houston Household Type
Houston Occupied & Vacant Number of Homes and Apartments
Houston Real Estate Trends
Houston Age of Homes
Houston Types of Homes
Houston Homes Size
Houston Property Taxes
Houston Property Taxes Range
Houston Homes for Sale
Of around 840,000 housing options in Houston, 56.8% of properties are rented, and 43.2% are owner-occupied residences. The vacancy rate in the city tracks around 11.1%.
Around 45% of properties in the city are single family detached homes, and another 43.5% of housing options are apartment complexes. Additionally, around 5.4% of Houston residences are smaller apartment buildings, and about 6% of residences are condominiums and attached properties.
4.4% of the city’s housing options were built in or before 1939, and 29.6% of residences were constructed between 1940-1969. 46.7% of properties were built between 1970-1999, and 19.3% of Houston residences were built in or after 2000.
Around 28% of housing options in the city have 1 bedroom layouts. 29.2% of residences have 2 bedrooms, and about 30% of properties have 3 bedrooms. Another 11.2% of Houston residences have 4 bedrooms, and 2% have 5 or more bedrooms.
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Houston Economy 2020
Over 1,126,000 people contribute to stimulating Houston’s economy. The unemployment rate here, however, is relatively high at 6.1%. 20.6% of the population live below the poverty line.
Houston has a good mix of white-collar and blue-collar workers. The city continues to attract young, educated professionals who are just starting their careers. The largest industries in the city include manufacturing, retail trade, and healthcare and social assistance.
The median household income in the city is 4% lower than the US median at $51,140. A working resident in Houston typically earns around $64,025 per year. The per capita income in the area is $31,576.
Houston Median Household Income
Houston Per Capita Income
Houston Income Distribution
Houston Income Distribution by Gender in Common Jobs
Houston Income Distribution by Race and Ethnicity
Houston Unemployment Rate
Houston Employment Distribution by Age
Houston Employment Industries
Cost of Living
Houston is among the fastest growing cities in the U.S. but it still remains a relatively affordable place to live in Texas.
The cost of living in Houston is about 3% higher than the Texas average, and is about 6% lower than the national average.
With diverse home options and a median home value of about $192,000, housing costs in Houston are about 18% lower than the national average.
One can expect to pay for grocery expenses that are about 12% lower than the national average, while the costs of goods and services are about 3% higher than the national average.
Transportation costs are about 4% lower than the national average, while prices of healthcare are about 11% lower than the national average. Utilities costs, meanwhile, are about 8% higher than the national average.
Houston Poverty By Age and Gender
Houston Poverty By Race and Ethnicity
Things to do
Being such a massive city, Houston has over 1,000 neighborhoods. Some of the most recognizable parts of the city include Downtown, Southside Place, West University Place, and Greenway Plaza.
Several of the most expensive Houston neighborhoods with the highest safety ratings are centrally located, specifically near Midtown. These affluent Houston areas are close to Memorial Park and have a median real estate price of $2.8 million, which is more costly than virtually all other Texas neighborhoods and 99.8% of neighborhoods across the country.
Western neighborhoods can be more affordable, namely near Bear Creek. The median real estate price here is estimated to be $335K, which is considered more costly than 85.3% of Texas residential areas and 69.6% of residential areas nationally.
Northeastern neighborhoods are seen as some of the most affordable in the city, with a median real estate price close to $75K. These neighborhoods also have higher crime rates than other parts of Houston.