Ah, Texas. The Lone Star State. The state where secession is talked about on a daily basis. A place for rebels, pick-up trucks, sexy cheerleaders, and the hardest-working Americans of all time.
But, is it all roses in Texas? Of course not. For every good, there has to be a bad. And that’s where this post aims to investigate. Even in one of the best states in the union, there have to be bad spots. The dead zones. The bruises on the apple, if you will.
After analyzing almost 331 of the most populous cities, we came up with this list as the absolute worst 10 places in the state of Texas:
What? Where are these places you wonder? And before you get all riled up and say we’re picking on small town America, that’s not the case.
We understand there’s a lot of good in every place.
However, according to data (which doesn’t measure things like beauty and ‘friendly people’), there are far better options in the state for making a place home. And the worst place to live in Texas? That would be Cleveland.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and see how your city fared in 2019.
For more Texas reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Texas
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Texas
- 10 Most Dangerous Places In Texas
The 10 Worst Places To Live In Texas For 2019
Welcome to Cleveland, which might be one of the poorest areas in Texas. Residents average $38,644 a year in combined income, which is right at the poverty line. In fact, 24.4% of Cleveland residents live below the poverty level.
Homes here go for an average of $80,200 and the unemployment rate hovers near 10.0%.
Port Arthur has 702 people per square mile. In comparison, Dallas has a population density of 3,500 per square mile. That means there’s a lot of open space here. Say what you want about ‘open spaces’, but in terms of feeling like you’re part of a community, it’s hard to do when everyone is spread out.
In addition, homes in Port Arthur only cost $64,300 which is 16th lowest. Meaning…more open spaces. Unemployment here is 9.2%.
On the bright side, spending on students in Port Arthur is the second-highest in Texas at an astounding $16,494.
The unemployment rate in Hutchins is a sky high 9.7%, which is the 33rd highest in the state. Ouch.
The median income in Hutchins is $37,582. That means 27.7% of the population is living below the poverty line. Crime isn’t horrible here, but you have a 1 in 25.9 chance of being the victim of a property crime when you’re within city limits every year.
Located on your way to somewhere else you’d want to be, Robstown has few options for some sort of entertainment.
The main issues here are economic and education. The unemployment rate is also sky high here (15.2%) and homes are the 6th cheapest in the state ($54,300).
Say what you want about ‘cheap living’, the fact is, homes are priced by demand, and there’s absolutely no demand to live in Robstown.
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $84,600 (68th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 11.3% (20th worst)
More on Palmview: Data
Palmview is a really small, densely populated place in Texas.
The unemployment rate here is sky high at 11.3%, and income levels are the 20th lowest in Texas. Homes sell for an average of $84,600.
If you’re trying to have some sort of professional career in Texas, this is one of the last places you would want to live.
Aransas Pass ranks as the 6th-worst place in Texas due to a variety of factors, placing in the bottom third for unemployment, median income, and crime.
On top of that, residents have the 127th-worst commute of any place in the state.
Donna, located at the far southeastern tip of the state, is one of the more dangerous places in Texas. In fact, that entire region ranks very high on our most dangerous cities in Texas study.
Household incomes are very low here as well. Basically, Donna is a small town with a high unemployment rate where there’s not a lot to do in the general vicinity except listen to police sirens.
Now we can get to some actual cities that might have some normal numbers. In this case, Humble ranks high mainly due to the low economic numbers. Homes are the 152nd cheapest in the state here at $113,000. Say what you want about low cost of living. What the data says is that cheaper homes means less demand. And there isn’t a lot of demand to live in Humble.
The median income levels here are the 69th lowest in the state of Texas, at $38,961. Crime is above average, but not horrible like some of the cities we’ll talk about in a minute. And almost 8.1% of people in Humble were without jobs according to the latest numbers.
you’re looking to live in Texas, Terrell might not be the best choice as it places 9th in our ranking of the worst places to live for 2019.
Terrell doesn’t have the worst crime in the state, but it’s sure up there. And when you factor in one of the lowest household incomes in the state and a sky high unemployment rate, Terrell may not be your first choice for a vacation.
According to science, Progreso is the 10th worst place you can live in Texas.
Let’s see why. Progreso has the 10th-highest crime rate in the state, surprisingly. In terms of number of crimes per person, Progreso is certainly up there.
Factor in a very low housing cost ($50,700), and the 154th-highest unemployment rate in the state (5.9%), and across the board, Progreso doesn’t sound like the best of the best.
Plus, there’s simply not a lot to do here (unless you count having a Walmart and a Piggly Wiggly as fun). We’re aware that people enjoy outdoor activities, but in terms of pure entertainment, you’d have to drive a ways away.
How we determined the worst places to live in Texas for 2019
To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what cities have the least amount of those things.
We don’t think it’s a stretch to assume that people like the following things:
- Good education
- Lots of jobs
- Low crime
- Low poverty
- Nice homes
- High incomes
- High population density (Lots of things to do)
- Short work commutes
- Health insurance
We broke crime down into violent crime and property crime to give violent crime a larger weight — if you did a simple calculation of all crimes per capita, property crimes are normally 7x more common and really bias that ranking.
Furthermore, only cities with at least 5,000 people were considered — leaving 331 cities.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 331 for all the criteria with a #1 ranking being the worst for the particular criteria.
Next, we averaged the rankings into one “Worst Place To Live Score”.
Finally, we ranked every city on the “Worst Place To Live Score” with the lowest score being the worst city in Texas — Cleveland. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 worst cities in Texas.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased.
Wrapping Up The Worst In Texas
If you’re looking at areas in Texas with the worst economic situations, where there’s higher than average crime, and not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
And in the end, Cleveland ranks as the worst city to live in Texas for 2019.
If you’re curious enough, here are the best cities to live in Texas:
- Terrell Hills (Pop. 5,248)
- University Park (Pop. 24,692)
- West University Place (Pop. 15,477)
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