Arlington is one of the most popular and attractive neighborhoods in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Founded in 1876, it is now far more than a frontier town: it’s a bustling hub of activity, business, and recreation.
With a modern population of nearly 400,000 people, Arlington is a great place for young professionals, college students, families, and even retirees. But no matter why you want to move to Arlington, you need to know what to expect; let’s break down what you’ll find when you finish unpacking your boxes and hit your first Arlington weekend.
Cost of Living
If you’ve just moved to Texas, you might have heard that Arlington is relatively affordable without being too expensive. That’s true!
According to the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four should expect to spend approximately $78,434 per year. That’s around $6,536 per month. Compare that to the expected expenses of a family of four in Chicago: $7,432 per month or $89,187 per year. Seen in this light, it’s clear that Arlington is significantly cheaper than many other major metro areas!
That’s not all. The average age for a home in Arlington is just 29 years old. So you won’t need to worry about your chosen abode falling apart anytime soon.
However, keep in mind that Arlington does have a city sales tax of approximately 8%. That’s 2% higher than the national average, so you’ll pay more on a purchase per purchase basis for everyday items in some cases.
Still, it’s more than likely that you’ll save money in the long run if you move here, even with the high sales tax, provided that you find a great property to purchase or rent.
Naturally, lots of people come to Arlington because of the apparently excellent housing market. Indeed, the average house in Arlington sells after about 13 days on the market. Part of this is due to the wide range of different neighborhoods available, each with its own quirks, atmospheres, and price ranges.
With 57 neighborhoods to choose from in total, families moving to Arlington always have lots of different homes to browse through. That said, Arlington home prices are up by 29.6% from last year — even this city is affected by the broader housing market.
Families can expect to pay about $350,000 for a home on average. Should you choose to rent instead, you’ll pay about $1,500 per month for a decent apartment. That’s still quite reasonable compared to the cost of housing in other major American cities.
Living in Arlington
What can you expect when you actually live in Arlington after purchasing a house and setting down roots?
Like many other larger cities, Arlington sees a bit more crime compared to smaller, more rural locations. Arlington has about 35% more property and violent crimes compared to the national average. Even compared to the rest of Texas, Arlington’s crime rates are approximately 24% higher.
That said, Arlington’s government has taken steps to combat this worrying trend. It employs seven police departments to combat crime throughout the city; they’re most active in the summer, which is also when most crime tends to occur. On top of that, different neighborhoods are more or less susceptible to crime waves.
Arlington has dozens of different neighborhoods to check out. If you’re planning to move here, you may be able to relocate to a neighborhood with a low crime rate and a more tight-knit community if you want to avoid this particular downside.
But crime rates aren’t everything when it comes to living in a city like Arlington. Since it’s in the heart of Texas, you can expect mild winters and hot summers, with about 40 inches of rain each year.
Commuting to your work should be a breeze, given that Arlington is connected to major highways such as the I-821, the I-30, and the I-20. That’s a good thing, too, since Arlington is one of the biggest American cities that lacks a dedicated public transportation network. You’ll have to own a car to live and work in Arlington with any convenience.
That lack of public transportation may not bother many Americans who move to Arlington, however, thanks to its economic prospects. In fact, Arlington’s job market increased by 2.7% between 2020 and 2021.
Even better, long-term prospects are positive; the job market in Arlington is supposed to rise by 40% total over the next decade. With low unemployment at 3.5% (well below the national average), it’s clear that many Arlington residents have no trouble finding and keeping work.
The most popular industries for that work are also staples of the broader Dallas-Fort Worth area, including gas, manufacturing, aviation, financial services, and technology companies.
Entertainment in Arlington
But what about after work? Good news: there’s lots to see and do in Arlington after you clock out from your job or while relaxing on the weekends.
For example, you can catch a game at the well-decorated and popular AT&T Stadium, which is the home stadium for the Dallas Cowboys. Alternatively, you can see the Texas Rangers during one of their home games at Globe Life Park.
Not a sports fan? In that case, you can visit Dallas in a whopping 27 minutes on average. Or you can check out Fort Worth and everything its downtown area has to offer in about 20 minutes. Regardless, both of these cities and surrounding areas have tons of restaurants, clubs, and bars.
Outdoor enthusiasts should also find Arlington pleasing. For example, this well-sized city has its own dedicated lake and a wide range of different parks for outdoor entertainment, running, or walking your dog.
Consider Moving to Arlington
Every city has its positives and downsides. But it’s clear that Arlington is a net positive place to live, especially if you’re looking for good work opportunities and reasonable housing prices. The job economy is on the rise, and there’s tons of entertainment and recreational activities for both you and your family once you finish moving.
Want to know more about this historical city before you arrive? Learn more about the history of Arlington, Texas here!