16 Pros and Cons of Living in El Paso, TX

Updated On November 20, 2023

El Paso, TX, can be an attractive location for many.

It combines a nice mixture of nature, culture, and an affordable cost of living for all who live here.

But, just like any other town, it can have several downsides.

So, if you’re considering a move to El Paso and are still indecisive, use this guide to help you make an informed decision.

Here, you will find several advantages and disadvantages to living in El Paso.

El Paso, Texas
El Paso, Texas

Pros of Living in El Paso, TX

1. Affordable to Live

El Paso is extremely affordable to live in.

In fact, the cost of living here is 11% lower than the national average.

People who live in El Paso can effectively manage their finances while living comfortably.

A huge contributing factor to the affordable cost of living in El Paso is the cost of housing.

The average price of a home in El Paso is 30% below the national average.

El Paso, compared to other cities in Texas, provides a substantially affordable lifestyle.

It’s 13% lower than Dallas and 12% lower than Austin.

2. Thriving Economy

Another huge perk of living in El Paso is its thriving economy.

Several big employers are located in El Paso, such as Tech University Health Sciences Center, Fort Bliss, and the University of Texas at El Paso.

Additionally, El Paso has a few industries that are thriving, including the healthcare field.

El Paso is the perfect location for international trade thanks to its proximity to Mexico.

In fact, many industries and businesses are already benefiting from the location of El Paso by participating in cross-border commerce.

3. Welcoming People

El Paso, overall, has a friendly community.

The majority of people living here are warm and welcoming.

The community frequently hosts festivals, local events, gatherings within the neighborhoods, and much more.

This allows you ample time to connect with your neighbors and form new connections.

So, if you consider yourself a friendly and outgoing individual, you’ll have no problems making new friends in El Paso.

4. Good Public Schools

If you have younger school-aged children, you’ll be happy to hear that El Paso has a great public school system.

Many of the schools are rated a B+.

While this isn’t a perfect score, 40 out of the 210 schools here are rated an A.

There are not many schools located in El Paso that have a grade lower than a B.

So, what does this mean for your kids?

It means that they will be given the ample resources they need to succeed as adults.

5. Great Weather

El Paso’s nickname is “The Sun City.”

There’s no mistake about it.

On average, El Paso sees 297 sunny days each year.

So, if you thrive off of sunlight, you are going to enjoy living in El Paso.

In fact, it is the sunniest city in the entire state of Texas.

Another plus for many is that you will not see much snow or rain in El Paso, since it’s pretty much desert land.

6. Many Outdoor Activities

For those who enjoy hiking, walking, and just the outdoors in general, El Paso is the perfect location for you.

El Paso offers plenty of mountain viewing and is an excellent place for trail biking and rock climbing.

There are also several scenic trails, including Lost Dog Trail Head and McKelligon Canyon Road.

Plus, if you enjoy festivals, you’ll be glad to know that there are more than 20 annual festivals that take place in El Paso every year.

7. Low Crime Rates

It may come as a relief to hear that El Paso has overall low crime rates. In other words, it is considered a safe city.

A study published by AdvisorSmith revealed that El Paso earned the third spot for being the safest large city in the United States.

Furthermore, the crime rates in the metro area are significantly lower than the national average.

8. Not a lot of Traffic or Congestion

Living in El Paso means that you don’t have to deal with heavy traffic jams.

This means that you’d be able to navigate the city pretty well without dealing with long commute times.

This is a good thing if you are going to be commuting to work.

Also, El Paso isn’t a crowded city compared to other major towns in the country.

This is yet another huge plus.

It means you’ll be able to enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle.

Cons of Living in El Paso, TX

1. Harsh Summer Temperatures

El Paso is located in the desert, which means you will have to deal with extreme temperatures, all of which can be challenging for some.

Temperatures in the summer in El Paso typically exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

The winter, however, is relatively mild, which can be a great thing.

But summer heat can be difficult to deal with if you aren’t used to this type of humidity.

2. Limited Public Transportation

The public transit score in El Paso is only 28.

This is yet another drawback to living here.

El Paso has a very limited number of public transit options.

There is, however, a bus system in El Paso.

But this can be extremely challenging to navigate.

Also, the bus schedules in El Paso are fairly scarce.

If you’re still considering moving to El Paso, you must make sure that you heavily rely on a vehicle to get around.

3. Isolated Town

Moving to El Paso means that you’ll be living in an isolated city with very limited attractions or cities close by.

This can be an advantage for those who are going after a more remote and relaxed lifestyle.

But it can be a huge disadvantage for those who are looking for a bustling town full of entertainment and excitement.

If this sounds like you, you may want to rethink your decision about moving to El Paso.

4. Shortage of Water

Unfortunately, El Paso experiences intermittent periods of water shortages in addition to severe drought conditions.

This is mainly due to the city being located in a desert region.

This means that resources for water can be sparse.

The good news is that the city has put a plan in place to try and preserve water.

However, it’s critical for people living here to be aware of the amount of water they are using on a daily basis.

By doing so, you will be playing a role in conserving water.

5. Major Storms

El Paso can be a major issue when it comes to major weather storms, including flash flooding, dust storms, and infrequent winter storms.

Even though these types of storms don’t occur often, when they do, they can be extremely vicious.

If you live or are planning on moving to El Paso, it’s important that you take the necessary safety precautions in the event of an emergency.

6. Limited Job Opportunities

The job market in El Paso isn’t the best.

Finding a job in the customs and border industry may be a possibility since El Paso is located close to the border of Mexico.

But, the job market has slowly increased over the last year.

It just isn’t as strong as other job markets within the state.

Furthermore, finding a high-paying job in El Paso is challenging as those jobs are limited.

7. Limited Nightlife

As mentioned earlier, El Paso is a remote location with very limited options for entertainment.

This also means that nightlife in El Paso is extremely limited compared to other major cities.

If you are a night owl or like to party, El Paso may not be the perfect location for you.

If you’re looking for a good time, you may have to travel a bit of a distance for entertainment purposes.

8. Issues with Poverty

Poverty is a huge issue in El Paso.

This is another downside of living here.

Many of the residents currently living in El Paso are living below the poverty line.

This can greatly reduce your quality of life if you plan on living there for quite some time.

El Paso ranks 22 as having the highest poverty rate in the United States.

The poverty rate currently stands at 20.1%.

El Paso, Texas
El Paso, Texas

Pros and Cons of Living in El Paso, TX – Summary Table

Pros of Living in El Paso, TXCons of Living in El Paso, TX
1. Affordable to Live1. Harsh Summer Temperatures
2. Thriving Economy2. Limited Public Transportation
3. Welcoming People3. Isolated Town
4. Good Public Schools4. Shortage of Water
5. Great Weather5. Major Storms
6. Many Outdoor Activities6. Limited Job Opportunities
7. Low Crime Rates7. Limited Nightlife
8. Not a lot of Traffic or Congestion8. Issues with Poverty

El Paso Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: El Paso Safety Review

Safety Index:

Frequently Asked Questions

Should you move to El Paso?

El Paso is an excellent city to move to.

This is mainly due to its low rent and property costs.

This means that the average individual will be able to live comfortably and enjoy the amenities that the city has to offer.

On the flip side, El Paso does have a high unemployment rate, making it a less glamorous city.

The decision is ultimately yours.

You must carefully weigh the pros and cons to decide whether moving to El Paso can still be beneficial for you.

What is El Paso known for?

El Paso’s nickname is “Sun City,” mainly due to the average number of days per year the city sees the sun.

As mentioned earlier, El Paso sees at least 297 days of sun each year.

Furthermore, the city is also well-known for its Tex-Mex cuisine.

What neighborhoods are considered "the worst" in El Paso?

Here is a list of the worst neighborhoods in El Paso:

  • Central
  • Pasadena
  • Magoffin
  • Eagle
  • Buena Vista
  • Chihuahuita
  • Alameda Business
  • Chamizal
  • San Juan

What are the best neighborhoods in El Paso?

Here is a list of some of the best neighborhoods in El Paso:

  • North Hills
  • Album Park
  • Cielo Vista
  • Mountain View
  • Mission Hills
  • Silver Springs Village
  • Mesa Hills

Is downtown El Paso safe to walk around?

Generally, downtown El Paso is considered safe to walk around and enjoy.

But it’s still recommended that you take extra precautions.

It’s always advisable to explore downtown El Paso during the day.

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