Median RentMedian Sqft
Studio$1,302549 sqft
1 Bed$1,329742 sqft
2 Beds$1,6501,121 sqft
3+ Beds$1,8711,520 sqft


Anyone who’s ever heard the famous (and accurately boastful) expression, “Everything’s Bigger in Texas,” need look no further than Houston as the ultimate representation of that concept. Founded in 1836, not only is Houston now the largest city in the Lone Star State, but it’s also the fourth-largest in the entire United States. Houston is home to more than 2.3 million residents and a whopping 7.1 million people in the greater metropolitan area, according to data from the 2020 Census. With the highest amount of park acreage in the nation for cities over one million residents, four major bayous (Buffalo Bayou, White Oak Bayou, Brays Bayou, and Sims Bayou), more than 70 lakes in and around Houston, and access to beaches along the Gulf of Mexico and adjacent bays — most less than an hour away — outdoor adventures and other fresh-air experiences keep residents active and connected to nature despite the skyscrapers surrounding them in many parts of town.

The cosmopolitan city reflects a diversity of cultures seen in most major metropolitan areas with more than 145 different languages spoken among residents, trailing only New York and Los Angeles. Approximately two-thirds of the population consists of equal numbers of White and Latino people, followed by 17% Black and 7.5% Asian, a portion of which makes up the third-largest Vietnamese population in the United States. The city also lands in the Top 10 for LGBTQ populations. Houston attracts a large number of medical professionals to its 21 renowned hospitals, too, including M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (the #1 cancer hospital in the country) and Texas Medical Center, home to the most heart surgeries in the world. Houston consistently received accolades for its world-class art scene, thriving business culture (including 25 Fortune 500 companies) and award-winning restaurants, as well as being one of the planet’s most famous hubs of human space exploration.

The sun shines down on Houston an average of 204 days per year with a decent amount of rain the other days (approximately 50 inches per year), which contributes to the lush scenery throughout this South Texas burg. Humidity, combined with temperatures in the 90s, can make for very hot summers, but air-conditioning makes things quite comfortable, and the remainder of the year’s fairly mild and patio perfect. Though still relatively rare, the main downside to Houston weather is the threat of hurricanes because of its proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, but the city is well prepared to handle major weather events, alerting people in plenty of time to temporarily evacuate or seek adequate shelter. It rarely snows and there are few frigid days in Houston, making it an ideal place for anyone with an aversion to wintry weather.

Several distinct neighborhoods connect across the Houston landscape, each bursting with rental properties. Houston apartments can be found in everything from smaller, older-construction buildings to sprawling, amenity-rich apartment communities and state-of-the-art high-rises. Rental homes ranging from quaint cottages to spacious, multi-story houses with pools are also available throughout the metro area. Some of the most popular neighborhoods for young professionals include a vibrant downtown central business district, historic Houston Heights and Third Ward, eclectic Montrose and EaDo (East Downtown), sophisticated and modern Galleria/Uptown and Memorial City, and the cultured, pedestrian-friendly Museum District.

Getting Around

Spanning 655 square miles, Houston is first and foremost a car city because things are quite spread out and freeways are the major way people get from starting point to end destination. So people rely mostly on personal transportation, taxis, or rideshare services for the most convenient access.

A robust and affordable public transportation system exists, however, highlighted by the METRO bus system and METRORail, each offering passengers day passes for only $3 at the time of the writing of this guide. Many neighborhoods have pockets of highly walkable small areas concentrated around shops, restaurants, and businesses. The City of Houston has more than 300 miles of interconnected bikeways, including dedicated bike lanes and bike-share programs available in some of the busiest parts of town.

And when wanderlust strikes, two major airports serve Houstonians: Bush Intercontinental Airport with nonstop service to more than 70 international destinations and Hobby Airport, with nonstop service to more than 55 destinations, including Mexico and Latin America.

Food & Drink

Though the stereotypes of Texas food might have many believe that you’ll find nothing but steakhouses, BBQ joints, and Tex-Mex spots, Houston defies conventional thinking with one of the largest and most globally inspired culinary scenes in the United States. Houston is home to more than 10,000 restaurants and more than 750 food trucks. James Beard award winners have restaurants here, as do any number of local, national, and international celebrity chefs. Of course, some of the most beloved and popular places are simple mom-and-pop operations, many of which have been passed down through the generations, sometimes spawning their own local chains. Jewish delis, vegan and vegetarian restaurants, wild game fine dining, Greek cafes, old-school pizza joints, and countless numbers of restaurants representing every regional cuisine of Mexico are among the options, with more than 70 countries represented across the city. Houston’s Asiatown is a must-visit, too, with traditional fare from Vietnam, China, Korea, India, and Pakistan among the highlights. Several food halls dot the landscape with multiple culinary concepts under one roof. And when you’re in the mood to cook at home, you’ll be pleased to find an abundance of grocery store options in every neighborhood, including Houston’s own Phoenicia Specialty Foods and Texas-based H-E-B, Central Market, and Whole Foods. Bars run the gamut from hole-in-the-wall dive bars with zero pretense to high-energy nightclubs and lounges with pricy bottle service and other extravagances. More than 50 breweries craft beers of every imaginable variety, multiple distilleries bottle everything from whiskey to rum, and a handful of wineries bring local sips to the thirsty crowd.


Shopping is a popular pastime — and practically a sport for some — with numerous options for getting great bargains or the latest in designer apparel and accessories from the world’s top designers. Several districts feature a high concentration of retailers, including the Galleria with more than 400 stores under one roof, boutique shopping along 19th Street in the Heights, the smaller-scale shopping center Rice Village, discounts galore at Houston Premium Outlets, and 37 acres of shopping and dining at City Centre. You can also find places making custom boots, shirts, and other fashion items that are truly one-of-a-kind.

Things to Do

Cultural opportunities abound in Houston, ranking high on the to-do lists of locals and visitors alike. The city is the headquarters of four major professional performing arts organizations, including The Houston Symphony, The Alley Theater, Houston Grand Opera, and Houston Ballet — all with home bases in Downtown Houston. Not too far away, the walkable Museum District features 18 different venues, comprising the fourth-largest museum district in the nation. Among the offerings are the Houston Museum of Natural Science, Houston Museum of African American Culture, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, and living works of art at the Houston Zoo. Several beaches, including the most popular on Galveston Island (50 miles away) can be easily accessed for sun-and-surf day trips. Houston’s Memorial Park on the Buffalo Bayou is the city’s largest, clocking in at 1,500 acres (twice the size of New York City’s Central Park). And Space Center Houston allows visitors to experience several out-of-this-world exhibits for the science-minded and ever-curious among us.

Houston’s professional and semi-professional home teams include the Houston Astros (Major League Baseball), Houston Dynamo (Major League Soccer), Houston Dash (National Women’s Soccer League), Houston Rockets (National Basketball Association), Houston SaberCats (Major League Rugby), Houston Texans (National Football League), Houston Roughnecks (X-Treme Football League), Houston Outlaws (e-sports), and Sugar Land Space Cowboys (Minor League Baseball).

Colleges & Universities

More than a quarter-million students are enrolled in colleges and universities across the Houston area, with more than 500 degree and certification programs offered at community colleges and tech/trade schools to world-renowned higher-education universities. Greater Houston is home to 14 major institutions, including four University of Houston campuses, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston Baptist University, Lone Star College, the Houston Community College System, Houston Baptist University, Prairie View A&M University, Sam Houston State University, Rice University, San Jacinto College of Law, Texas Southern University, University of St. Thomas, and University of Texas Health Science Center.

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