There is undeniably an independent attitude here, and everyone is encouraged to make his way the best he can. Fortunately, that's easy in Allen, where the cost of living is a real knee-slapper it falls just below the national average. That doesn't mean sacrificing essentials, though. Housing values are high for Texas but low for the nation.
Renters can also make the most of this situation. They aren't kidding when they say everything's bigger in Texas. It's as true of the steer as it is the square footage of housing. Your search for apartments in Allen will likely provide a selection of one and two-bedroom apartments that are expansive, furnished to the teeth and boasting included goodies, like a pool, fitness center and upgraded appliances.
Vacancy rates are fairly average, so folks worried about planning their apartment hunt months in advance can chill, if momentarily. What newcomers do need to concern themselves with is the weather. Texas is a desert, and that means hot, hot, HOT summers and chilly evenings. The Polar Vortex did manage to swing low enough to dust the town in flurries, but come August, those temps will soar into the triple digits. It's a dry heat, of course, but pack plenty of sunscreen!
Other only slightly winking suggestions include a pair of cowboy boots, an etched flask and maybe a horse. Well, maybe the horse would only be appropriate on a dude ranch. After all, Allen is pretty urban; it's got a population of over 80,000 people, so it should come as no surprise that cars are a better and much more reliable choice for transportation in Allen. Public transportation is available, but a bit on the limited side, hitting only the major hot spots like the public library, the hospital and a couple retail parks. While the city is committed to funding an expansion of services, chances are, you're going solo if you ride the bus.
There aren't really distinctive, defined neighborhoods in Allen. There's kind of a west side and an east side, along with plenty of small communities, some gated and some not, that call themselves neighborhoods, but most folks agree Allen is Allen. For those hoping for a bit more guidance on where to find an apartment, here are some suggestions that should steer you straight.
The West Side: Unofficially designated as the section of Allen to the left of I-75, the west side has nice, well-built homes, smaller square footage and oodles of amenities, parks, restaurants, retail, you name it. It's true the houses are a bit smaller than the rest of Texas. Just remember, a smaller home in Texas is still a palace in some other places.
The East Side: Located (you guessed it) on the right side of I-75, East Allen is a little roomier, but you'll have to drive just over a whopping 10 minutes to hit your favorite big box store. Some residents grumble about the quality of the newly built homes, but more likely than not it's a bunch of hogwash. Rental apartments seem to have a tried and true reliability in this part of town, so that might be a good place to start while you learn more about the area.
Parker: Parts of this nearby city fall into the borders of Allen, so it's worth considering the house rentals. It's pretty (and we mean _really _pretty); the only drawback is that the cost of living is noticeably higher. Keep your pinky finger raised when you enjoy a beverage, though, and you'll fit in just fine.
Outsiders view this classic motto as a macho threat, but in actuality, it's a sensible plea to keep the land clean. New arrivals to Allen will find streets bearing signs with this slogan because it's actually an anti-littering campaign, and it suits the feel of this green-friendly and environment-loving town. That doesn't mean they don't also love stereotypical western hobbies, like hunting, sweet tea drinking and rodeo, but it does mean newcomers must prepare to change their perception to encompass the array of qualities that make this area such a fun spot to live.
Allen's forward thinking doesn't end with eco-consciousness. They're also avid athletes, with a community-wide focus on health, fitness and recreation. The city boasts 50 miles of hiking and walking trails and over 800 acres of parkland, all available to residents and non-residents alike. While typical sports, like football, baseball and tennis, are grand, new recruits should definitely get into the country spirit and try two-stepping, cattle roping or bowling? The sky's the limit for sweat-inducing activities.