Combining big city attractions with old-school charm, San Antonio is one of the hottest destinations around. It's Spanish and Old West heritage has created a community as unique as it is characterful, along with a cuisine so legendary, it’s worth the trip alone. If you’re considering making your next visit to the city permanent, you’re not alone. Every year, thousands move into the city, attracted by the excellent lifestyle (which can be just as relaxed or as active as you want), first-rate education system, a thriving economy, and a bountiful supply of museums, festivals, galleries, and shops. If you’re convinced San Antonio is the right choice but aren’t quite sure where in the metropolitan to base yourself, take some inspiration from our round-up of the 20 very best places to live in San Antonio.
20. Fair Oaks Ranch
For those that can afford the $425,100 property price, Fair Oaks Ranch makes an excellent choice of destination. Along with a frankly enviable household income of $124,741, newcomers can expect a low crime rate, first-rate schools, and outstanding natural beauty.
Home Snacks rates Schertz as the tenth best place to live in San Antonio, and while we don’t quite agree with its ranking, it’s hard to dispute the attraction of this charming little suburb. Along with affordable housing (expect to pay no more than around $186,600 for a decently sized property), Schertz offers it 38,199 population safe, clean streets, a median income of $80,112, a good selection of schools, and all the amenities, recreational venues, and services anyone could ever want.
18. Fort Sam Houston
For affordable housing, you’ll struggle to do better than Fort Sam Houston, where a single-family home can be had for as little as $157,011. Residents of the neighborhood are spoilt for things to do when it comes to recreation, with the zoo, botanical gardens, and various museums all within striking distance. The community is a close-knit affair, with plenty of family-friendly events and activities to keep both kids and adults happy.
Residents of Helotes may be few (8,603 by the last headcount), but they’re likely to be extremely happy with their choice of home, even if it is small. Wonderful schools, beautiful houses, friendly neighborhoods (and even friendlier neighbors), pools, parks, grocery stores, restaurants, bars, and cafés galore … if you can think of a quality that goes into making your dream home, you’re likely to find it here.
16. Castle Hills
Considering the average household income of Castle Hills is $90,172, the average property price of $274,200 seems more than reasonable. Safe, family-friendly, and blissfully quiet, the suburb offers everything its 4,393 residents could ever need right on their doorstep, including top-notch schools, a good cross selection of mom and pop stores and chains, and a great range of cute little cafes and restaurants. For those who want to experience the bigger delights of the city, the center of San Antonio is just a short bus journey away.
15. Garden Ridge
Got $443,500 hanging around doing nothing? Then why not put it to good use by investing in the Garden Ridge suburb of San Antonio? Crime is outstandingly low (according to Area Vibes, the rate of violent and property crime is 56% lower than the US average, giving residents a just 1 in 82 chance of being a victim); the median income of $117,258 is 112% higher than the national average; the high school graduation rate of 96% is 15% higher than the national average, while the school tests scores are a whopping 80% higher than the average. Yes, the cost of living may be 40% more expensive than the average, but considering the other stats, who’d complain?
14. Huebner/Leon Creeks
For first time buyers on a budget, Huebner/Leon Creeks offers an excellent opportunity to get a foot on the property ladder without sacrificing quality of life in the process. A good-sized, three-bedroom house can be had for as little as $163,763 – a figure made all the more attractive when you consider how it comes with safe, clean streets, a healthy median income of $65,201, a great selection of first-rate schools, an almost over-abundance of parks and green spaces, and too many shops, bars and restaurants to count.
13. Scenic Oaks
Want to live in a community that’s small enough to feel cozy but close enough to the city to feel cosmopolitan? Then you may want to consider Scenic Oaks, a remarkably peaceful, safe community that’s just as idyllic as its name. Thanks to the easy accessibility it offers into the heart of San Antonio, residents aren’t exactly short of big-city opportunities (or, judging by the mammoth $133,293 median income, job prospects), while the relaxed pace of life in the suburb itself offers a refreshing reprieve from the hustle and bustle.
12. Timberwood Park
Safe, clean, and surrounded by natural beauty, it’s not hard to understand what makes Timberwood Park such a desirable destination for Texans. The schools serving the area are excellent, with Reagon High School, International School of the Americas, and Johnson High School are scoring highly when it comes to test and graduation rates. Amenities are bountiful, while the average median income of $113,331 is an attraction all of its own. At the heart of it all is a big-hearted, warm community that goes out of its way to put the friend in friendly.
11. Cross Mountain
If you can afford the $317,600 it takes to buy a property in the family-friendly suburb of Cross Mountain, count yourself lucky. Along with a jaw-dropping median income of $147,734, residents can expect to enjoy a low crime rate, an excellent range of schools, amenities, and recreational opportunities, and a warm, friendly community.
10. Hollywood Park
Fancy earning $101,450? If yes, you might want to hitch your wagon to the suburb of Hollywood Park. Not only do residents of this exclusive little community get to enjoy an enviable disposable income, they’re also benefitting from some of the most stunning architecture in San Antonio, a year-round calendar of events, a weekly farmers market, a first-rate collection of nightspots, and a community center and pool with a basketball court, sand volleyball court, tennis courts, walking path, and everything else you’d ever need to keep yourself fit and healthy.
9. Tanglewood Ridge
If affordable housing is one of your top priorities, you might want to cast your eyes in the direction of Tanglewood Ridge. With the average property coming in for around $183,573, its eminently affordable- not to say desirable. As well as benefiting from a very healthy salary of around $70,715, residents get to enjoy a great range of amenities, parks, schools, and services, not to mention an exellcent community spirit and an enviably low crime rate.
The delightful suburb of Cibolo has perks to spare: a low crime rate, a superb selection of public schools, a friendly community, a great clutch of restaurants, boutiques, cafes and leisure venues, and the kind of safe, clean streets that make it an insanely attractive destination for families. All of that, and the property prices still manage to be a very reasonable $214,500.
7. Shavano Park
The gorgeous little suburb of Shavano Park is ringed by more oak trees than you’ll find in your average forest, giving it a peaceful, rural feel that residents clearly love… as exemplified by some of the comments on Niche. “The best place to live! Probably about million huge oak trees, shopping just a few minutes from the city, big lots, quiet, great connection to any place, safe, very good schools! Feeling you are in the purest nature!!!”, says one, while another comments “It’s a small area that is just south of 1604 between Lockhill Selma and Northwest Military that has lots of trees that make every neighborhood feel like you are living in a natural paradise. Everyone is very friendly and such good neighbors. Lots of nice houses that are on big lots and are in great shape. You will be delighted at the beautiful architecture that is available in Shavano Park.”
6. Monte Vista
Family friendly but with enough of an edge to attract up-and-coming professionals, Monte Vista is a dynamic, vibrant community of 6,159. With its excellent clutch of schools, low crime rate, and safe streets combining with some great shops, bars, and nightspots, it serves both elements of its community equally well. Property prices are considerably higher than the national average at $361,612, but so are the incomes, with most households sitting pretty on an income of $91,960.
5. Olmos Park
If you want to rub shoulders with Texas’ most elite citizens, you’ll find few better places to do it than Olmos Park. Home to some of San Antonio’s wealthiest, the small neighborhood stands enough apart from the rest of the city to be described as a “city-within-a city”. Small but beautifully formed, its clean streets are lined with boutique-style shops, quaint little cafes, first rate restaurants, and well-maintained parks. At $675,600 for the average home, property ain’t cheap, but with most residents earning in the region of $133,654, you’re unlikely to hear too many complaints.
4. Alamo Heights
No, housing in Alamo Heights doesn’t come cheap (expect to pay around $477,423 for a good-sized family home), but it’s probably to be expected when you consider the extreme desirability of the area. With plenty of hiking trails and parks in the vicinity, not to mention a great range of stores, restaurants, and bars, residents are certainly not lacking in entertainment. Going by the latest calculation of the average income, they’re not coming up short in the wealth department either, with most households netting around $67,502.
3. Northwest Inner Loop
Property in Northwest Inner Loop may come in at around $292,531 for a single-family home, but given the outstanding list of benefits on offer, it’s a price few would quibble over. Both violent and property crime are outstandingly low, while the average household income of $83,042 smacks of a thriving local economy and job market. Schools are numerous and all predictably excellent (International School of the Americas and Alamo Heights High School both come particularly recommended), while the excellent accessibility to every part of town, great dining options, and warm community make for an incredibly desirable destination.
2. Oakland Estates
It can sometimes be easy to confuse low property prices for low desirability. While the theory does stand in a lot of cases, in the instance of Oakland Estates, it couldn’t be more wrong. The average property costs just $164,287, $20,000 less than the US national average. While this might make you think the neighborhood’s residents are suffering from crime riddled streets and no prospects, what you’ll actually find is a friendly, wealthy community (by the last count, most residents were earning in the region of $62,402), an excellent selection of schools, an educated populous (29% have a masters while another 35% have a bachelors), and an almost non-existent crime rate.
1. Terrell Hills
If you’ve got $557,600 hanging around the bank (or can keep up with the $1,654 monthly rent), you might want to consider the lovely little suburb of Terrell Hills. The small-town vibe is complemented perfectly by a warm, close knit community, while the excellent range of shops, recreational facilities, bars, and cafes ensures you’ll never have too far to look for entertainment. Crime is low, the schools are excellent, and the median income is, not to put too fine a point on it, huge…. If you’re worried about the initial outlay of moving in, don’t be. If you’re like most residents, you’ll soon be recouping those losses with your stonking $174,844 income.
Written by Garrett Parker
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