Moving to Austin: Your Guide To Everything

If you are thinking about moving to Austin, TX, either from in or out-of-state, there are a lot of things to consider about Texas’ “weirdest” city. Which neighborhood should you move to? What’s the nightlife like? What’s the job market look like out here? The questions can go on and on for a newcomer trying to settle down in a new city. Here is a helpful guide from our local North Austin and South Austin moving team to help ease your mind about your big move!

Introduction To Austin, Texas

Austin is Texas’ capital city with over 2.25 million Austinites, most of us being between the ages of 30 and 40. According to the US Census Bureau, Austin’s population has grown over 20% in the past 10 years! It’s no surprise more and more people are living in Austin, our city has some of the best neighborhoods, bars, music venues, and more in the country. Let us break it down for you:

 

Get To Know Our Neighborhoods

Looking to build your nest egg in a calm, scenic, fun area of town? There are plenty of charming neighborhoods in Austin with incredible amenities close by. If you’re a fun-loving city dweller, moving to Austin’s trendy downtown or South Congress area will surely suit you. With 6th Street and various shops and boutiques nearby, you will never run out of places to entertain yourself and show your visiting friends.

However, if you’re looking for a relaxed, residential neighborhood to move into, you might want to search North Austin, which has many cozy houses and has experienced a lot of growth with the recent move of many tech companies to Austin. To be absolutely accurate in choosing a neighborhood try this Which Austin Neighborhood Should You Live In? quiz to see which area in Austin is right for you.

What is the average rent per neighborhood?

If cost is the biggest deciding factor when choosing a neighborhood we recommend taking a look at these Rental Market Trends for more information.

 

What’s the weather like in Austin?

The weather in Austin is typically hot, hot, hot! This is great if you are a fan of getting out on the water. Austin and it’s surrounding areas have lots of wonderful lakes and rivers in close proximity. The Texas coastline has tons of beach options too if that is more your thing. Either way, you can expect it to be swimsuit season from April to October.

The rest of the year is a bit more unpredictable. Weather in Texas can change on a dime and varies pretty significantly from week to week let alone year to year. Since our summers are so long, the other seasons tend to be a bit more condensed. Our winters are pretty mild and it’s much more common to wake up Christmas morning to a 90 degree weather forecast than one that includes snow. Even when we do get some frozen stuff, it is usually in the form of iced over roads rather than a winter wonderland. So, if you are a warm weather person, this is the place to be!

 

Jobs in Austin

Job opportunities in Texas have been abundant for a long time! That holds true to Austin just as it does to San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston. We believe this is primarily due to 3 factors:

  1. Access to Abundance of Talent: Austin has a lot of universities in the area leading to a ton of college-educated individuals who are ready to work!
  2. Favorable Business Climate: Texas has no corporate income tax and no state income tax meaning that lots of businesses flock to the area due to these incentives. Additionally, the regulatory climate for businesses is usually more favorable than other states.
  3. Low Cost of Living: The cost of living in Texas remains favorable compared to California and New York which is why we have seen such a large influx of people from those states moving to the area.

However, as a result of COVID-19, job opportunities in Austin (like in many other cities in the state and country) have gone down — but this isn’t going to be forever! There are many diverse employers from various industries, such as technology, health care, government, education, social work and business sectors. High tech companies that are based in Austin, TX include Dell, IBM, Freescale Semiconductor, 3M Company, Apple Inc., Hewlett-Packard, AMD, Applied Materials, Cirrus Logic, Cisco, eBay/PayPal, Google, Hoover’s, Inc., Intel, National Instruments, Samsung, Silicon Laboratories, Sun Microsystems and United Devices. So, if you’re currently in a tech role or are interested in entering the digital career community, Austin is the place for you!

 

What is there to do in Austin?

The entertainment scene in Austin is one of the best in the world and we like to boast about it whenever we can, even going so far as labeling ourselves the “Live Music Capital of the World.” From live music or a quality pub crawl to sports games and beautiful nature walks, Austin has it all! We’ve put together a list of recommended activities our team loves:

    1. Pub Crawls: The No. 3 Pub Bus Crawl is our staff favorite! We’ve done this pub crawl many times and it has yet to disappoint. This pub crawl hits up some great local spots like Buddy’s Place, Common Interest, LaLa’s, and Draught House, and more.
    2. Music Festivals: If you love live music you’ll love our local festivals Austin City Limits Music Festival and SXSW!
    3. Local Tours & Brewery Tours: Austin Detours is a local tour company that does all sorts of cool stuff from corporate events to bachelor parties and brewery tours! If you’re interested in touring breweries for yourself, our team recommends these three on East 6th:
    4. Sports: Catch an exciting football game at the University of Texas stadium or just enjoy the tailgating festivities.
    5. Outdoor Activities: There are also plenty of outdoor activities to dive into while in Austin such as running along nature trails, kayaking on Lady Bird Lake, or swimming in the Greenbelt.
    6. Paintball & Axe Throwing: Austin Paintball & Axe Throwing has a great course in Dripping Springs which is about a 30 minute drive from Austin, depending on the neighborhood you plan to move into. We recommend checking this out on Groupon because they always have great deals!
    7. Golfing: There is such a wide variety of golf spots in Austin from a BYOB course to high class greens, but everyone loves the driving range! Top Golf is a popular destination and offers a fun atmosphere to practice your swing.
    8. Go Kart Racing: If you love all things fast, you’ll love karting! Our favorite indoor place K1 is located in North Austin so make sure to give yourself time to get there! If you’re looking for something more exciting, Circuit Of The Americas lets you race karts around the F1 track which is a bit closer to the city.
    9. Comedy Clubs: Capital City Comedy always books quality comedians so you’re sure to have a good laugh!
    10. Bar Hopping: 6th street and the area around it make up the majority of the downtown bar scene in Austin. It is broken up into three different parts each with their own vibe.
      • East 6th has more of a hipster vibe with cheaper drinks (great strong margaritas at Hotel Las Vegas!). The Yellow Jacket Social Club is one of our teams’ favorites.
      • Dirty 6th is where younger college students like to go. This area has much more of a party vibe. The Blind Pig Pub and Shakespeare’s are our teams’ favorites — Shakespeare’s has cheap mini pitchers!
      • West 6th is where the young professional crowd likes to hang out. Dogwood and the Ranch are both great spots. The drink menus may be pricier here, but you’ll be paying for quality!

 

The Best Food Is In Austin

We’re not sure if it was all the amazing music festivals with their food trucks, our famous BBQ, or past wins on Iron Chef, but in the past few years, Austin has become the place for great food and amazing craft breweries! Whether you enjoy a great BBQ or you live for tacos, Austin’s food scene has something for everyone. It would be too easy to write an entire novel about the food in Texas, so to save you some time we asked our Austin teams what some of their favorite spots were so you can look them up, and try them yourself one day:

We hope this gave you a good start to some of the amazing restaurants we have here in Austin!

 

Traffic

We can’t sugar coat this one… traffic in Austin is notoriously terrible, but hey, traffic is everywhere! According to Business Insider Austin is ranked number 18 out of 31 U.S cities for having the worst traffic — so there are the worst places out there! Mostly this is a result of the massive rush of people moving into our city coupled with lack luster public transportation. One of our founders, Cameron Brown has lived in Austin his entire life, and the traffic is probably any native or non native Austin resident’s biggest issue they have with the city.

With that in mind, there isn’t much you can do to avoid traffic in the city but we have a good tip: avoid having to cross the river (or Lady Bird Lake as it’s known) during rush hour. We have two major highways going North and South — MoPac and IH-35 (commonly referred to as just I-35). The River kind of marks the separation between downtown and central Austin and is a major pinch point where traffic builds up like crazy. So if you will end up working South of the river, try to look at moving South of the river. If you plan on working North of the River, live North.

Also, if you want to move to Austin, try brushing up on the local lingo:

Austin Loves Pets!

The entire city of Austin is pet friendly and it’s something we are particularly proud of. Our guess is we are one of the most pet-friendly cities in America!

There are very few restaurants and bars that don’t allow pets either inside or on the patio (and we have a ton of patios). We even have bars such as Yard Bar that have a dog park as a main feature! If we had to pick the absolute best neighborhoods for pets, it would be the Zilker area (due to the Zilker Park where you can find dogs off leash by the dozens on any particular day) and the area of Allandale and North Burnet where the number of dog friendly restaurants and parks outnumber almost any other neighborhood in town.

 

Tons of close by places to travel to

Living in Austin gives you the advantage of only being a couple of hours away from some of the coolest cities in Texas! For example, McKinney is a 3 and a half-hour drive from Austin and has one of the oldest authentic downtowns in Texas! Looking for something closer? Dallas is just a 3 hour drive from Austin where you can visit everything from the AT&T Stadium to the largest permanent model train exhibit in the country, located in the lobby of Dallas Children’s Medical Center.

Houston is even closer, at just a 2 and a half-hour drive from Austin. Some famous tourist spots in Houston include the Space Center and Museum District. An even shorter drive from Austin is to San Antonio, just an hour and 15 minutes away! The Alamo is one of the most important historical sites in the U.S and is a must see if you’re visiting San Antonio. San Antonio also has a lot of outdoor fun including the famous River Walk and Natural Bridge Caverns. There’s no reason to be bored living in Austin when you have such amazing cities just a short drive away!

 

What makes Austin so weird?

“Keep Austin Weird” was a marketing slogan adopted back in 2000 by the Austin Independent Business Alliance. It was an attempt to showcase all the unique and what some might call weird local businesses in town! It caught on super quick because there is some underlying truth to the statement. What it is that makes Austin “weird” though is always up for debate, depending on who you ask.

The main essence behind Austin’s “weirdness” is derived from the fact that it’s the capital of Texas but doesn’t really feel like the rest of the state. Austin started as a college town with the University of Texas being the primary reason people would move to the city and adopted a more liberal mindset making it a blue island in the middle of a red state.

To get a little more specific about our “weirdness”, Tacos are our favorite breakfast foods, most of our best bars are also our best coffee shops, and some of our most well known local celebrities are a bit strange (see the late, great Leslie Cochran for example). On top of that, some of the oldest parts of the city still have a bit of a funky/hippy feel to it, either in the way we embraced healthy, organic, and vegan foods with places like Bouldin Creek Cafe, the first JuiceLand, or in our aversion to small hole in the wall music venues like the aptly named “Hole in the Wall” downtown.

Ready to make the move to Austin?

Contact our local movers in North or South Austin to book your move today!

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