Reviews & Comments
San Antonio, TXReal talk.
I was born and raised in San Antonio. Here's my $0.02.
THE TL;DR -- If you can handle allergy season being (basically) year-round, don't mind humid, hot weather, have a specific skill-set/job (or don't mind capping your pay), are knowledgeable about property tax and Texas' tax system, and aren't looking for a liberal oasis --- San Antonio is probably a perfect or good fit for you. if any of those things stand out to you, you might want to do a lot more research, and really consider if the city is a good fit for you!
Jobs/COL: There are high paying jobs, but they're mostly segmented with specific employers or job fields. Example: My brother works for USAA, and gets paid VERY well for the typical COL of San Antonio. Lawyers and doctors will also get paid well. Outside of that, you'd need to find a specific company that you can build a career with, because San Antonio is lacking in any sort of job market. The tech jobs are in Austin, the blue collar and professional-level careers are in Dallas. San Antonio has jobs, obviously, but it's not going to be as "easy" find a good paying career you actually enjoy. Speaking from experience and years spent scouring the market for better opportunities.
Housing: PLEASE do not be fooled by the "no income tax" of Texas. Texas, and Bexar county in general, have EXTREMELY high property tax (some of the highest in the nation). Read: IT EVENS OUT. The no income tax is VERY EASILY swapped for the obscenely high property tax. You're looking at 2.6%+ in some areas, and obviously with the housing market, you can expect your house to appraise higher than you paid. Expect for property taxes to steadily increase each year, also.
Another note on housing. If you want to live in a "desirable" location, the starting price of most homes will be $250k+. Again, please consider property tax, as it's killer.
Allergies: It's going to be hit or miss for how bad they are for you. However, there is a LONG list of allergens that plague South Texas/San Antonio. Growing up there, I think I developed somewhat of an tolerance towards them, as I'd get through the ear with minimal eye-puffiness and flu-like symptoms. HOWEVER, my partner who is NOT native to South Texas, legit was MISERABLE year round. It didn't matter the season, his allergies were non-stop horrible. My advice: Look up specific allergens (cedar, pollen, etc.) and then get an allergy test done. This likely is NOT the place for you if you have extreme allergies to those.
Weather: It's hot and sticky in the summer. I loved the weather, but again, I grew up here. Winters are short. Fall basically doesn't exist (lol). When it rains, it POURS -- and roads will flood. Seriously, be wary -- a lot of SA is built on flood plains.
Politics: Inner-SA is considered liberal. The further from city-center you go, the more conservative it becomes. Texas is pretty conservative as a whole, though. Lots of "NObama" stickers. Lots of ignorant people (on both sides) who refuse to hear another point of view or have intelligent conversations. In my time here (my entire life), SA is filled with people who LOVE to lie and exaggerate. Daily I'd come in contact with a friend, acquaintance, or coworker who would spout nonsense about the news (or anything, really). Upon facing them with FACTS or the truth - you're met with MORE lies or exaggerations. I'm not just talking about politics either. It bleeds through into every day life. They don't want to hang out? Their mom has cancer. They missed your birthday party? It's because their dog ran away. You bought your coworker lunch and they still haven't paid you back? They'll begin ignoring you.
^^^ I want to clarify and say I'm sure there are flakes and bad friends everywhere. But I'm saying is I've now lived in three different States/cities, and ONLY in San Antonio did I encounter THIS level of sheer fake-ness. To summarize this point: If you like surface gestures and general politeness, with no REAL empathy or kindness/friendship behind it, then you'll love SA.
Social/culture: Another thing, is people in SA seem to be STAGNANT. Like... just STUCK. There seems to be no drive, no WANT to improve quality of life or knowledge. They drink EVERY NIGHT/weekend. Seriously, I grew up here. I know a LOT of people. I'm not kidding when I say 9/10 people here drink at EVERY single opportunity. Also, I love to drink, but it's next level in SA.
The other thing. They drink AND DRIVE. It's an epidemic. Every. Single. Person. My 36 year old coworker. My 45 year old coworker. My 23 year old college buddy. My 21 year old friend, barely legal. My parents. My cousin. EVERY SINGLE PERSON seems to have NO issue with drinking and then getting behind the wheel. Again, I've lived in Portland and Denver now, and I've NEVER seen this kind of blatant disregard for life or other's lives.