Population: 20.8 million.
Population Density: 77.9 per square mile (Rank 4 of JWR’s top 19 states).
Area: 266,800 square miles (rank 2 of 50).
Average car insurance cost: $759/yr. (rank 25 of 50).
Average home insurance cost: $880/yr. (rank 1 of 50).
Crime Safety Ranking: 41 of 50.
Boston T. Party’s State Firearms Laws Ranking: 82%.
Per capita income: $27,752 (rank 24 of 50).
ACT & SAT Scores Ranking: 47 of 50.
Plusses: Has a high rating in “education freedom” (ranked #6 of 50), since Texas has relaxed home schooling laws, but the public schools are far below average. Texas is just plain huge. The population density figure cited above is skewed by the Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston metro areas. A lot of Texas out in the hinterboonies is very lightly populated.
Minuses: High population density (by western U.S. standards.) Major population centers. Very high crime rate. Hurricane prone (ranked #1 of the coastal states.) Coastal Texas and +/- 50 miles inland is in the hurricane zone. Extremely high home insurance rates. (Average of $880 per year–ranked #1 in the country for 2005–but probably soon to be surpassed by Louisiana.) High ratio of illegal aliens. Some rural parts of the state are recommended, with reservations.
JWR’s Combined Retreat Potential Ranking: 13 of 19.