Help ! moving in August

Hi all,
I am very excited to be coming to Katy, Texas to work as a Secondary Computer Science teacher.

I do however had a few questions (quite a few ) I am hoping you guys could help me out with

What would you consider a comfortable lifestyle wage? I have a wife and 2 children. We will be renting paying around $1600 a month.

I am hoping the salary to be around $60,000. Is this a good wage for the area and would this be a comfortable living for us or is it likely my wife will need a job.

We have access to a car pool for the first year.
Our apartment will be furnished before we arrive
Medical coverage ( with some co-pay) I have no idea what this is!
I would try and continue to pay for my pension in the UK just until we know if we will stay or not that would be around $450 and we have a loan which we will be paying off around $350 but may get most of that cleared before we go.
I have had a look at living expenses and it seems I'd be ok however, it would be nice to get some peoples real life opinions rather than just looking up costs on the net.

I hope you are al enjoying yourself over there!


I live in the Houston area in The Woodlands.

With a salary of $60,000 you should be fine but don't go crazy!

Cost of living here is affordable... especially food at the grocery stores and clothing.

We live in a 2,650 SF house & I just paid my water bill & that was $102 (high now because of summer), my electric bill came to $187 (high now because of summer heat) and my gas bill was just $23 (low now because of summer, use it mostly in winter).

My wife loves to coupon shop the groceries & we save a TON of money doing that. She focuses on Kroger supermarkets & has their coupon deals very organized & typically saves 30% or more on our grocery shopping by using the coupons. Also, when you spend $1,000 a month on groceries at Kroger they give you $1.00 off gas for your car.... that's another big saving.

Also, shop for clothing at Kohls. They do tons of deals all the time. Especially if you buy the out-of-season clothes. My wife purchased some jumpers the other day and I think they were only $5.00 each. Don't know how they do that.

Don't go to the movies, rent movies from RedBox for $1.75 instead (or something like that).

So.... I would say, be careful with your spending i.e. spend less than you earn.... and you should be fine.

Eating out a lot will kill your budget.

Good luck with the move to Katy.... I'm working on a project in Katy and that's one of the fastest-growing cities in the aea!

B. Regards,

By the way... just noticed you mentioned that you were paying a pension in the UK.

We actually lived in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey for about 10 years!!

When we moved here we purchased our home for half the price we sold the one we owned in England and it was twice the size... so, we got four times the value!!!

Do the math:

Without going into details of your deductions let's use a lower bracket of 20%

60.000 minus 12.000
48.000 divided by 12
4.000 minus 1.600 minus 450 minus 350

Utilities, vehicle insurance, rental insurance, liability up insurance, phones/tv/internet, food, clothes/personal hygiene, kids' activities, ....
You will need a reliable vehicle. Furnished can be either way - great or gross. Linens, household basics, ...  Groceries may be your biggest item. Google local supermarkets and go through the weekly adds. Week end trips, entertainment, return tickets for the whole family plus accumulated stuff as it is called. Life insurance for the breadwinner!
Medical coverage - request the actual handbook and read it page by page. Boring but worth the trouble. What are your actual copays, deductibles and limitations such as physician choice. Is dental/vision included? SO just splurged on a 1500 crown! Do you have an emergency fund? Trips home, illness, ...
Go through the contract line by line: days/hours to work, over time, PTO paid time off ( can be split in sick and vacation), termination (will you be liable for anything from rent to apartment cleaning?)

Amazing thank you guys

I hope your move went well. Last week the possibility of my husband getting a transfer from London to Dallas Texas came up.  One of the first things we wanted to investigate was whether my Australian primary teaching qualification would be recognised.  So when I heard you were a teacher I was very interested in the process you went through to have your qualification recognised and in finding a job.

Any tips you have would be greatly appreciated!



Great informative post!
Bob k

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