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By Darrell Self
‘Money Magazine’ released its annual survey of America’s Best Small Cities on July 12, 2010, awarding Allen, Texas the 16th position in a field of a hundred. Allen, a community of 84,000, is located just 30 minutes north of Dallas in the thriving DFW Metroplex.
** Allen Met Stringent Criteria for ‘Best’ City Status **
In a world where the news is too often filled with grim real estate reports and more stories about foreclosure than relocation, the ‘Money’ article is a happy reminder. Strong, healthy communities like Allen, with robust economies and high standards of living do exist and are growing in America.
‘Money’ examined 746 cities with populations below 100,000. Locales with significant job loss, low salary, out-priced housing, poor schools, and high crime were immediately eliminated.
The remaining communities, including Allen, Texas, offered affordable real estate choices in safe areas with diverse populations, excellent health care, and above average arts and leisure amenities.
‘Money’ visited each town and interviewed residents, assessing first hand such ‘ease-of-living criteria’ as traffic density and air quality. The on-the-ground surveys were also an attempt to get a sense of intangibles that create the community ‘spirit’ that sets one city above another.
** Allen, Ease of Living and Community Spirit **
Allen more than met the criteria for ease of living with exceptionally high local spirit and a sense of community pride. An outstanding set of accomplishments supports the accolade from ‘Money Magazine’ — facts that are exactly the kinds of things families want to hear when they start looking for homes to buy.
Fifteen of the public school campuses in the Allen Independent School District carry an ‘exemplary’ rating from the Texas Education Agency. (Relocating to Allen will also place those children in a community known for community policing and a high quality of life.)
** Strong Economic Numbers for Allen **
Economically, Allen looks even more attractive, boasting a stable local economy even in the midst of the ongoing recession:
– Median annual family income stands at $115,686 for 2010.
– The sales tax is 8.35%.
– The job growth rate in Allen for 2000-2009 was 83.41%.
– The median home price is $204,264.
Located 23 miles north of Dallas on U.S. 75, Allen residents can easily draw on the broader opportunities offered by the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, which is the 12th largest metro economy in the world, with the fourth largest labor force in the United States. (Dallas is the third largest city in the state of Texas and ninth largest in the nation.)
** Metropolitan Opportunities, Small Town Living **
While Allen residents enjoy all the perks of small town living, they are also centrally located for exceptional access to all the metroplex has to offer, including:
– 14 colleges, universities, or professional schools within 30 miles
– 3,448 restaurants within 15 miles
– 38 movie theaters within 15 miles
– 154 public golf courses within 30 miles
– 41 libraries within 15 miles
– 5 nationally accredited museums within 30 miles
And, of course, all sports fans in North Texas are looking forward to 2011 when the Super Bowl will be hosted in Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.
** Impressive Demographics, Good Mobility **
Allen’s racial diversity index is 88.6, comparing favorably to the national average of 100. With a median age of 32.4, approximately 82% of the population has completed or is in the progress of completing a college degree. Approximately 74% of residents are married.
The average commute time for Allen residents is 27.6 minutes with only 23% of the population facing a drive of 45 minutes or longer. Long distance travel needs are met by the DFW International Airport, which lies halfway between Dallas and Fort Worth, a facility that ranks seventh in the world in passenger volume.
** ‘Money’ is on the Money about Allen **
The ‘Money Magazine’ rankings will, no doubt, serve as an index for home buyers considering relocating to the North Texas area and to the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in particular.
As potential buyers survey the ‘bedroom’ communities that lie adjacent to both major cities, so much more goes into the decision to buy or rent a home than just real estate prices and structural factors like numbers of bedroom and bathrooms.
Relocating to Allen means relocating to a new home with new opportunities and a strong community energy. In that sense, ‘Money’ could not have been more ‘on the money’ in naming Allen, Texas one of the Best Small Cities in America.
About the Author: Are you buying or leasing a home in Dallas | Fort Worth Texas (DFW)? Darrell Self can help you if you’re shopping for
Allen houses for sale
move to Dallas
in the future. Visit DMD Realty DFW.com and browse ALL the homes for sale (and ALL the lease homes) listed in the MLS on 1 website … no registration required.