Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (2023)

Is McAllen Texas a good place to live? We put together 10 pros and cons of living in McAllen Texas so that you can see if it is right for you to move to.

McAllen Texas is a beautiful, mid-sized metropolitan area that is located right on Texas’ border with Mexico. This vibrant city is a major center for tourism, international trade, and manufacturing despite its reputation as just a small border town.

It is also referred to as a haven for those crossing the border from Mexico to Texas.

We even ranked it as #10 in our latest update of the best cities in Texas in 2023.

The city has developed into an excellent location for different types of cuisines, friendly people, and an excellent climate that is devoid of many weather-related hazards.

Furthermore, this Hispanic-rich city is known for its mild winters and brightly colored birds. But, does this really make McAllen Texas a good place to live? Our in-depth analysis of the pros and cons of living in McAllen Texas will help you decide if moving here is the right choice for you or not.

Table of Contents

(Video) McAllen Best Place to Live

Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas – Top 5 Pros

1. Low Cost of Living

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (1)

McAllen’s extremely reasonable cost of living is one of the primary reasons that people relocate to this city. The prices here are quite low, with an average cost of living that is 20% lower than the Texas average.

This excellent affordability is due to a reduced price on virtually all basic amenities, including accommodation, transport, food, and services. Therefore, it gives residents of this bustling area an incredible opportunity to reduce their expenses and enjoy many things to do at an affordable price. Undoubtedly, McAllen is where you want to be if you want to move to a less expensive area that still offers plenty of amenities.

2. Great Weather

McAllen also offers great weather all year round. There are two major seasons in McAllen, which are winter and summer.

However, the winters are quite mild. For example, January is the coldest month in McAllen, but average highs are still around 72 degrees.

Additionally, rain and icy weather are quite rare in this part of the nation.

On the other hand, summer temperatures stretch from around April through November and residents can make the most of the sunshine in McAllen’s fresh and clear air.

3. Low Crime Rate

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (2)

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One of the critical factors of McAllen that helps boost its livability rating to a high score of 81 is its low crime rate.

The city’s crime rate is 14% lower than the national average, making it quite a safe and secure location to live.

Additionally, this mid-sized city has some of the lowest violent crime rates in the United States, with a rate that is about 78% lower than the national average.

So, is McAllen Texas a good place to live for those who prioritize having a safe community? These numbers surely would indicate that it is.

4. Economic Growth

McAllen is slowly becoming one of Texas’ hottest commercial hubs. This has helped spur McAllen’s expanding economy with new retailers and companies, which in turn has led to job growth.

McAllen’s retail and manufacturing sector has been the economy’s primary driving force, making the city one of the fastest-growing in Texas today.

Plus, Forbes predicts an annual job growth of 2.2% in McAllen.

So, is McAllen Texas a good place to live for those looking for new work opportunities? It certainly seems that the city’s future is quite bright.

5. Quality Education

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (3)

Although McAllen is known for tourism and its retail sector, the city still cares about the development of its residents and has maintained a strong education system.

(Video) Living In McAllen Texas

There are many choices available for students to receive a high quality education, especially compared to bigger cities.

A good measure of the quality of McAllen’s school system is their test scores. McAllen schools have average scores that are about 11% above the national average.

Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas – Top 5 Cons

1. Limited Number of Attractions

The possibility of being bored pops up eventually when you are used to having numerous amenities in the big cities. Although McAllen is well-known for having many tourist attractions, some people might find it a bit lacking after a few months or years of trying out every dish and event the city has to offer.

There are limited attractions, and for someone who is extraordinarily active, spending every outing visiting the local wildlife reserves, museums, South Padre Island, Palm View Golf Course, or trying out Mexican cuisine all the time might not be enough. But, if you are tired of the hustle and bustle of the big city, then McAllen is a calm and serene environment that might be a good option for you.

2. Very Hot Weather

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (4)

While McAllen’s warm climate is a positive aspect for those looking to move from cooler areas, you have to remember that the city is located in a subtropical area. While the excellent weather during winter might be a win for some, the hot temperature during summer might be too extreme for others. McAllen even tops the list of the cities with the most extreme heat.

New residents are likely to adapt to the hot weather over time. But, some people really can’t get used to the hot climate, especially if they are from a much colder environment. Therefore, it might be an uncomfortable city for someone that cannot get used to the heat.

Of all the pros and cons of living in McAllen Texas, we think that this is the most important one that may sway your decision.

3. Lot of Bugs

Due to the hot weather, many bugs, especially cockroaches, thrive in McAllen. The extreme heat brings the cockroaches out from their hiding spots and makes them search for dark and damp areas to call their new home. You may find them running around a lot and looking for leftovers.

Of course, you can hire roach exterminator companies to get rid of these creatures in your home or put traps out to eliminate these pests.

(Video) Pros and Cons of Living In Allen, Texas - Moving to Allen

4. Language Barrier

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? 10 Pros and Cons of Living in McAllen Texas (5)

Is McAllen Texas a good place to live if you can’t speak Spanish? Well, there may be a language barrier if you are an English-speaking individual. That’s because about 73% of the population in McAllen speaks Spanish, while about only 24% of McAllen citizens speak English.

Job opportunities for someone who cannot speak Spanish might be limited. Many jobs may require you to be bilingual or at least understand both languages.

Aside from the job market, knowing Spanish would also help you converse better with many of the locals. Otherwise, you might have some difficulty familiarizing yourself around the city.

So, is McAllen Texas a good place to live if you are unwilling to learn Spanish? Probably not then.

5. High Population Growth

Despite feeling like a mid-sized city, McAllen is the fifth most populous metro area in Texas. Regardless of its recent economic boom, the area still has high poverty rates due to its ever-increasing population.

There is a growing divide between the rich and the not so rich around town as there are simply not enough good opportunities for the entire lower and middle class of McAllen.

That may partially be due to the fact that McAllen’s rate of expansion has not been equally distributed across its whole community.

However, we are hopeful that further growth will provide new opportunities for the entire population.

Is McAllen Texas a Good Place to Live? Summary

We hope that this list of pros and cons of living in McAllen Texas gives you a deeper insight into this diverse city. We are confident that it will help you make your decision.

(Video) Living in South Texas- McAllen Luxury

We recommend that you visit for a few days or weeks to figure out if McAllen is a good place for you to live before deciding if you would want to relocate here or not.


Is McAllen Texas a good place to live? ›

It is amongst the top 10 safest cities in the US. It has lower crime rates, but it is also known for safe driving and less drug usage. Driving under the influence in the US is common, but McAllen isn't one of them. This makes McAllen safe from all aspects.

Why is living in McAllen so cheap? ›

Low-Cost Living: As metro cities go, McAllen is one place you will spend less on daily expenses such as food, healthcare, and transportation. The city is a retail epicenter having brands such as Walmart, Sears and large shopping malls like La Plaza and Las Tiendas Pavillion: a seven-acre shopping area.

Is McAllen a cheap place to live? ›

The cost of living in McAllen, TX is 17% lower than the state average and 23% lower than the national average.

What is the livability score in McAllen? ›

Best cities to retire on $1,500 a month

McAllen, Texas came in at No. 1 with monthly expenditures totaling $1,363, a livability score of 81 and 11% of the population aged 65 or older.

Does McAllen get hit by hurricanes? ›

Hurricanes. Throughout McAllen's recorded weather history, there has yet to see a serious hurricane or storm to make landfall directly over the area and remains as a low-risk area compared to other Texas cities closer to the Gulf of Mexico.

Why should I move to McAllen Tx? ›

McAllen is in Hidalgo County and is one of the best places to live in Texas. Living in McAllen offers residents a dense suburban feel and most residents own their homes. In McAllen there are a lot of parks. Many families and young professionals live in McAllen and residents tend to be liberal.

Is McAllen Texas flood prone? ›

Overall, McAllen has a minor risk of flooding over the next 30 years, which means flooding is likely to impact day-to-day life within the community.

What is McAllen known for? ›

Known for its mild winter weather, tropical breezes, brightly colored birds, and low cost of living, it's also a shopping mecca drawing millions of visitors annually to its many shopping districts. Today, McAllen is one of the fastest growing cities in America.

What percentage of McAllen is Hispanic? ›

85.5% of the people in McAllen, TX are hispanic (122k people).

What is the cheapest safest place to live in Texas? ›

  • Breckenridge. The cheapest place to live in Texas is Breckenridge. ...
  • Beaumont. The second cheapest city in Texas is Beaumont. ...
  • Wichita Falls. Located in north-central Texas, Wichita Falls is a cheap destination for nature lovers. ...
  • Harlingen. ...
  • Texarkana. ...
  • Abilene. ...
  • Amarillo. ...
  • Odessa.
Jan 10, 2023

Where is the cheapest city in Texas? ›

Most Affordable Places to Live in Texas
  • Brownsville.
  • El Paso.
  • Galveston.
  • Harlingen.
  • Lewisville.
  • McAllen.
  • Temple.
Dec 16, 2022

What is the tax rate in McAllen Texas? ›

What is the sales tax rate in Mcallen, Texas? The minimum combined 2023 sales tax rate for Mcallen, Texas is 8.25%. This is the total of state, county and city sales tax rates.

Does it rain a lot in McAllen? ›

The chance of wet days in McAllen varies throughout the year. The wetter season lasts 4.5 months, from May 25 to October 8, with a greater than 22% chance of a given day being a wet day. The month with the most wet days in McAllen is September, with an average of 9.6 days with at least 0.04 inches of precipitation.

What part of Texas is safest from hurricanes? ›

Generally, areas in the western and central portions of the state tend to be at a lower risk. This includes El Paso, Fabens, Van Horn, College Station, and Laredo. Let's look at the risk index to know for sure. Powerful Hurricane Harveys Destruction On Texas Coast.

Which Texas city is most likely to receive damage from hurricane? ›

Where do hurricanes hit the most in Texas? From border cities like Brownsville to northern hubs like Port Arthur, any area along the Texas coast is vulnerable to hurricanes. But the cities of Galveston and Houston have experienced by far the most severe hurricane damage of any Texas city over the last century.

What is the blackest part of Texas? ›

A large majority of Black Texans live in the Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio metropolitan areas. Texas has the largest African American population in the United States.

What is the blackest city in America? ›

At 90 percent, South Fulton is the Blackest city in America. No other city above 100,000 population has more than 80 percent Black residents. South Fulton, Ga.

Who lives in McAllen TX? ›

Who lives in McAllen, TX? Much of McAllen's population is young – 36% of the population is under age 20 – and thanks to the metro area's location along the U.S.-Mexico border, the community is largely bilingual and bicultural. In the region, Catholicism is the predominant religion.

How far is McAllen from Mexico border? ›

It is located at the southern tip of the state in the Rio Grande Valley, on the Mexico–United States border. The city limits extend south to the Rio Grande, across from the Mexican city of Reynosa. McAllen is about 70 mi (110 km) west of the Gulf of Mexico.
McAllen, Texas
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Are people moving to McAllen TX? ›

Accounting for these factors and anticipating future trends, the population of the Mcallen-Edinburg-Mission metro area in Texas is projected to grow from 895,000 in 2022 to 1,578,200 in 2060. The 76.3% projected population growth in the metro area is the 13th highest of all 384 U.S. metro areas.

Is it worth moving to Texas? ›

Warm and tax-friendly, living in Texas is a great idea. With many diverse cities and endless job opportunities, Texas is a popular destination for young professionals, families, and retirees. Compared to living in Florida, Texas is slightly cheaper and just as warm as the sunshine state.

What is a good hourly wage in Texas? ›

As of Mar 1, 2023, the average annual pay for the Hourly Rate jobs category in Texas is $49,401 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $23.75 an hour.

How much is minimum wage monthly? ›

As of April 2022, these figures are: £4.81 (under 18 and apprenticeships) £6.83 (18–20 year olds) £9.18 (21–22 year olds)

What is the minimum pay in Texas? ›

What is the minimum wage in Texas? Texas adopts the federal minimum wage rate. Effective July 24, 2009, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. With specified restrictions, employers may count tips and the value of meals and lodging toward minimum wage.

Does McAllen Texas get a lot of tornadoes? ›

A total of 13 historical tornado events that had recorded magnitude of 2 or above found in or near Mcallen, TX.

Where does McAllen get its water? ›

Sources Of Drinking Water in McAllen, Texas

The Rio Grande currently supplies approximately 97% percent of water supply via water delivery contracts with four raw water supply districts.

Where does Texas flood the most? ›

Texas is home to flash flood alley, part of the state where heavy rains have high potential to cause floods. This area extends from San Antonio, to Austin, to Waco, all the way up to Dallas. Why some areas flood while other communities don't can be broken down into several factors.

How far is McAllen TX from the beach? ›

Located 70 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, McAllen attracts those who enjoy the water. Weekend pastimes range from pedal boating or kayaking in the metro area's Town Lake at Fireman's Park to taking day trips to the beach.

Is crime high in McAllen Texas? ›

The crime rate in McAllen is considerably higher than the national average across all communities in America from the largest to the smallest, although at 20 crimes per one thousand residents, it is not among the communities with the very highest crime rate.

Can you drink the water in McAllen Texas? ›

For the latest quarter assessed by the U.S. EPA (January 2021 - March 2021), tap water provided by this water utility was in compliance with federal health-based drinking water standards.

What city in Mexico is closest to McAllen Texas? ›

The city of Reynosa is situated in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, on the southern bank of the Rio Grande, while the city of McAllen is located in the American state of Texas, directly north across the bank of the Rio Grande.

What city in Texas has less crime? ›

Hutto. Hutto is a small town located on the northeastern edge of Austin and has a great reputation for being one of the safest cities in Texas.

What is the safest big city in Texas? ›

Safest Large Cities in Texas
RankCityCrime Score
1Sugar Land18.9
4League City29.7
35 more rows

What city in Texas has more crime? ›

Dallas. With a population of 1,304,379, Dallas is one of the largest cities in Texas. It's also one of the most dangerous, as it has a crime rate of 4,291 per 100,000 people making the city 83% more dangerous than the national average. The chances of becoming the victim of a violent crime in Dallas is 1 in 113.

How cold does it get in McAllen Tx? ›

The cool season lasts for 2.5 months, from December 2 to February 17, with an average daily high temperature below 76°F. The coldest month of the year in McAllen is January, with an average low of 52°F and high of 71°F.

What is the race population in McAllen TX? ›

The largest McAllen racial/ethnic groups are Hispanic (86.2%) followed by White (8.9%) and Asian (2.7%).

Is McAllen bigger than Brownsville? ›

The largest city on the American side of the region is Brownsville (Cameron County), followed by McAllen (Hidalgo County).


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