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Dallas vs Houston: What’s the Difference?

In the last couple of years, Texas was one of the places that many chose as their new home. Both Dallas and Houston are major cities in this American state, and yes, they are were popular places to live in. Besides their shared state location, there are some similarities and differences that make each of them unique.

So how can you make a difference between Dallas and Houston? There are many differences but now I will mention the lower cost of living in Houston, but at a price of a little higher crime rate compared to Dallas.

This is not everything for sure, and choosing a place to live is a much wider topic. I will cover all the basics when it comes to living and thriving in these cities. After finishing reading this article you will know what to expect from life in both Dallas and Houston. It will be a lot easier to make a pick between them. Keep reading!

Cost Of Living

When it comes to the cost of everyday life, Houston is somewhat cheaper than Dallas. The difference is around 7% and most of it is contributed to the cost of living space. To be able to live comfortably you will need around 43.000$ in Houston, while that figure goes up to 50.000$ for Dallas.

The highest gap in prices is in the housing cost, and it goes to somewhere around 27%. Other factors also chip in, and honorable mentions go to the cost of healthcare and food, which is higher at 15% and 12% respectively.

That difference is not without reason. More perspective companies are looking into Dallas as a place to branch out. That is one of the keys to the relatively high cost of living in this city. Better and more diverse job offers come with the cost of having to pay more to live there.


Crime And Safety

Dallas nor Houston can be called safe cities, and they are both not the safest cities in Texas alone. But when making a comparison, Dallas is a bit safer than Houston. Dallas is still above the average crime rate when put in perspective with the rest of the USA.

The good side of Dallas crime is that it is easy to learn which neighborhoods are known for a higher crime rate and to avoid it. There are a lot of good and low-crime areas that can be real heaven on Earth.

On the other side, Houston is known for a high rate of violent crimes, and among them, homicides. Yearly there are around 300 homicides in Houston.

The government is well aware of this problem, and the stats are going slowly down. Given more time, the level of violent crime is just going to continue to fall which will earn Houston a few points in the good column.

Which City Is Better For Young Professionals

Dallas is a real powerhouse and a lot of industry is moving to it. The majority of it is in the energy sector, but other industries, such as IT and telecommunication are also coming in. Dallas is becoming a real center, and with it comes a lot of job opportunities from different branches. All these factors, combined with a good house market make it a good place for young adults to start a career, family, or both.

Houston is even more dependable on the energy sector. It can be easily seen when the prices of oil and gas go down, it pulls a lot of other things with it. Still, there is a dynamic job market in Houston, and it is fairly easy to start a career there.

Everyday Life

Dallas in overall offer more when looking at all the factors that count as everyday necessities. One of the reasons is slightly higher taxes, but with that comes other perks. Crime is lower, there are more schools, museums, parks, healthcare is more accessible, and city services are well developed.

Dallas is a lot cleaner and better organized than Houston. Dallas is well known as a great shopping destination that can offer a lot to everybody – no matter how much money do they have in their pockets.

When talking about the real estate market, despite being one of the most popular cities to start fresh, Dallas still can offer a good price. Houston is also a market on a rise. It is a little cheaper than Dallas, but it is still a very good choice. In the last year, the price of real estate went up around 20%.

Houston is known for its culture and ethnic diversity. Over 90 languages are spoken in this city alone, and many minorities groups offer a wide array of unique cultural programs. Also, Houston is famous for its Museum and Theatre districts. Its Theaters have the highest number of seatings, only behind New York City.

Also, a question of climate and wheater is important. Dallas has long and very warm summers that can be hard to adapt to for someone. Houston also has a very warm climate, but it has a lot of excess humidity which makes it even harder to bear during those long warm summer days.


When talking about everyday life the question of traffic must pop out sometimes. Dallas and Houston are planned differently and so are their traffic systems. It is easier to move around Houston because everything goes either eas-west or south-north.

The biggest problem is the routes themselves. Everybody is using the same freeways, and there are almost no alternative roads. Dallas can be more difficult to get to know in the beginning.

A lot of main streets and freeways are leading in different directions with you not knowing where you could end up. But on a plus side, there are a lot of ways to get around, and you can make your route to almost any part of the city.

Dallas vs Houston Skyline

Both Dallas and Houston have well-known skylines. The Houston skyline is twice as large as Dallas, but it is considered to be boring. The Dallas skyline is one of the most memorable, thanks to several old buildings that stick in people’s memory.

Different building colors, shapes, and architectural styles make the Dallas skyline different and somewhat eye-catchy. Also, the Dallas skyline at night is a sight to see. All those well-lit buildings make it a real sight to see.

Houston skyline has taller buildings that may be eyecatching, but they are not memorable, especially if they are being looked at at night.

Dallas Houston
Population 1.3 million 2.3 million
Safety Dallas is relatively safe. Some problematic neighborhoods with a problematic number of homicides
Cost of living Around 50.000$ is needed for a cozy life Around 43$ is needed for a good quality of life
Transportation Confusing road network. More time is needed to adapt. Has a better-planned road network. Easier to learn the best routes.

FAQ About Dallas And Houston

Why is Houston better than Dallas?

Houston has a large port that is responsible for handling a large portion of overseas shipping for that part of America. Thanks to that transportation sector generate a lot of jobs.

Also, Houston is a booming real estate market allowing a cheaper way to get to new land and homes. It is worth mentioning Houston`s well-developed cultural scene which includes a large number of ethnicities. In Houston, everyone feels right at home.

Is Dallas safer than Houston?

Dallas is safer than Houston. To be clear, Dallas and Houston are not known for their safety, but Houston is a bit harsher place to live. In Houston happens around 300 homicides yearly.

When choosing a neighborhood to live in, check everything. Both of these cities have their bad neighborhoods, but if you choose carefully you may find a piece of heaven. Once you get to know these cities, you will know where is safe to go, and which places you should avoid.

Is it cheaper to live in Houston or Dallas?

Dallas is a bit pricier than Houston. While in Houston median real estate price is 295.000$, in Dallas that figure goes up to 330.000$. Houston saw a rise in property value in recent years and it is coming close to Dallas.

Sales tax is also higher in Dallas, like some other taxes, but that results in better communal services, education, cultural programs, and safety services coverage. While you need a yearly income of 50.000$ for comfortable living conditions in Dallas, that figure for Houston is around 43.000$.


Both Houston and Dallas are attractive cities in Texas. They are seen as a great place to live in which can be seen in the rise of population in both of these cities. They are charming, multicultural powerhouses with a lot to offer. A wide variety of jobs, a great cultural scene, and well-developed education institutions, are all pluses for these cities.

Another plus in their columns is a great and thriving real estate market that can guarantee that everyone will have a chance to find their perfect home.

If you want to start your life fresh, choosing either Dallas or Houston would be a great pick and a real life-changer!

James Smith

James is a passionate explorer and the creative mind behind, a platform dedicated to unraveling captivating distinctions. With an insatiable curiosity, he uncovers hidden nuances in various aspects of life, from cultural traditions to scientific phenomena. James believes that appreciating differences fosters personal growth and societal empathy.