Dallas Apartments

Renting an Apartment in Dallas

Quite a few Texans are asking each other whether they will want to rent or buy.  The increase in home ownership rates during the mid-2000s housing boom, and subsequent housing market bust, has led to a heightened interest in apartment rentals.

Incidentally, several people razed by the mortgage market probably think differently. Of course, you can’t be foreclosed upon if you aren’t a homeowner. To these people, leasing has become not only the savvy option, but the solely sensible one.

Besides stability and prestige, owning a property can help build equity, strengthen credit scores, and can currently be used as a tax write-off. That said, Texas has some of the highest property tax rates in the country, leading to an increase in the quantity demanded of apartment rentals.

In many markets, people are better served by leasing. That is due to the fact that in these locations, the cost of purchasing a new house continues to be prohibitive, especially given more restrictive lending guidelines.

No matter why you are renting an apartment, you can substantially enrich the experience by being aware of more about the financial and legal components of renting an apt.

Yet another factor is that renting a new property could possibly be a much better alternative until such time when the national economy truly recovers.  While the DFW real estate sector mostly escaped the housing boom/bust, the market continues to be tepid.

About Dallas

Dallas is the third-most-populous city in the state of Texas and the ninth-most-populous in the United States. The city is also large in geographic area as it covers 385 square miles (997 km) and is the county seat of Dallas County. Dallas is one of 11 U.S. global cities as it is ranked “Gamma World City” by the Globalization and World Cities Study Group & Network.

As of the 2000 U.S. Census, Dallas population was 1.1 million (though a 2006 estimate placed the population at more than 1.26 million.) The city is the main cultural and economic center of the Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington metropolitan area (colloquially referred to as Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex), which is the fifth-largest metropolitan area in the U.S. with a population of 5.7 million in 12 counties. The 16-county metropolitan area designated by the North Central Texas Council of Governments had a population of 6.2 million in 2006.

Dallas Neighborhood and Districts

The City of Dallas has many vibrant communities and eclectic neighborhoods. Major areas in the city include: Downtown, the center of the city and the epicenter of urban revival, coupled with Oak Lawn and Uptown Dallas, the shiny new urbanist areas thriving with shops, restaurants, and nightlife. East Dallas is home to Deep Ellum, a trendy arts area, the homey Lakewood, and Fair Park. North Dallas is home to mansions as palacial as Versailles in Preston Hollow, strong middle-class communities like Lake Highlands around White Rock Lake, and high-powered shopping at the Dallas Galleria, North Park Center, and Preston Center. South Dallas lays claim to the Cedars, an eclectic artist hotbed, and Pleasant Grove, a poorer section of the southeastern city. Oak Cliff is a gorgeous hilly area with beautiful old homes and schools and even entertainment districts like the Bishop Arts District. The city is further surrounded by tens of suburbs and encloses enclaves like Cockrell Hill, Highland Park and University Park.

Despite attempts to make Dallas a more pedestrian-friendly city, the overwhelming majority of Dallasites get around by car. Efforts to diversify including the construction of light rail lines, biking and walking paths, wider sidewalks, and more efficient public transportation are currently major priorities of the city and its residents. The city is much like other United States cities developed primarily in the late 20th century — criss-crossed by a vast network of highways which has led to and contributes to Dallas being a very low-density city.

The city of Dallas is centered among a large number of major interstate highways — Interstates 20, 30, 35E, and 45 all run through the city. The city’s freeway system, as it has no major geographical inhibitors surrounding it, is set up in the popular hub-and-spoke system, much like a wagon wheel. Starting from downtown Dallas, there is the main downtown freeway loop, Interstate 635/20 Lyndon B. Johnson loop, and ultimately the tolled President George Bush Turnpike (the Bush). Inside these freeway loops are other partially-limited-access and parkway-style loops including Loop 12 and Belt Line Road. Another beltway around the city is planned upwards of 46.50 miles (70 km) from downtown in Collin County. Radiating out of downtown as the spokes of the system are Interstates 30, 35E, and 45, US 75, US 175, TX Spur 366, the tolled Dallas North Tollway, and further out TX 114, US 80 and US 67. Other major highways within the city that do not serve primarily as spokes include TX 183 and TX Spur 408.

Getting Around

Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) is the Dallas area public transportation authority, providing buses, rail, and HOV lanes. DART began operating the first light rail system in the entire Southwest United States in 1996, and is still stretching  its coverage. Currently, two light rail lines are in service. The red line goes through Oak Cliff, downtown, Uptown, North Dallas, Richardson and Plano. The blue line goes through South Dallas, downtown, Uptown, North Dallas, and Garland. The red and blue lines are conjoined in between 8th & Corinth Station in Oak Cliff and Mockingbird Station in North Dallas. The two lines service Cityplace Station, the only subway station in the Southwest.

Fort Worth’s smaller public transit system, The T, connects with Dallas’s via a commuter rail line, the Trinity Railway Express, connecting downtown Dallas’s Union Station with downtown Fort Worth’s T&P Station and several points in between. The system of light rail transit, especially through downtown, has skyrocketed land values and has sparked a residential living boom in downtown. Although the system is increasingly popular, most people in the Metroplex still choose to drive their vehicles rather than take public transportation.  Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport serves most passengers flying in and out of the metroplex.

Dallas is served by two commercial airports: Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (known as DFW International) and Dallas Love Field. In addition, Dallas Executive Airport (formerly Redbird Airport), is a general aviation airport located within the city limits, and Addison Airport is another general aviation airport located just outside the city limits in the suburb of Addison. Two more general aviation airports are located in the outer suburb of McKinney, and on the west side of the Metroplex, two general aviation airports are in Fort Worth.

DFW International Airport is located in the suburbs north of and equidistant to downtown Fort Worth and downtown Dallas. In terms of size, DFW is the largest airport in the state, the second largest in the United States, and third largest in the world. In terms of traffic, DFW is the busiest in the state, third busiest in the United States, and sixth busiest in the world. Love Field is located within the city limits of Dallas, 6 miles (10 km) northwest of downtown, and is headquarters to Southwest Airlines.

Dallas has the 10th worst ozone air pollution in the nation according to the American Lung Association, worse than Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, and New York City, but better than Los Angeles, Fresno, California, and Houston. In reality, much of the air pollution in Dallas, and the DFW Metroplex in general, comes from a hazardous materials incineration plant in Midlothian, a small town just south of Dallas, as well as many concrete installations in neighboring Ellis County.

Dallas is a major center of education for much of the South Central United States. The city itself contains several universities, colleges, trade schools, and educational institutes. Several major Universities also lie in enclaves, satellite cities, and suburbs of the city, including the University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, the University of Dallas in Irving, the University of North Texas in Denton, the University of Texas at Arlington in Arlington and the Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie.

North Texas Colleges and Universities

Southern Methodist University (SMU) is a private, coeducational university in University Park, an enclave of Dallas. It was founded in 1911 by the Southern Methodist Church and now enrolls 6,500 undergraduates, 1,200 professional students in the law and theology departments, and 3,500 postgraduates.

The University of North Texas, UNT, located in Denton, is the largest public university in the DFW area.

Dallas Baptist University (DBU) is a private, coeducational university located in the Mountain Creek area of southwestern Dallas. Originally in Decatur, it moved to Dallas in 1965. The school currently enrolls almost 5,000 students.

Paul Quinn College is a private, historically Black college located in southeast Dallas. Originally in Waco Texas, it moved to Dallas in 1993 and is housed on the campus of the former Bishop College, another private, historically Black college. Dallas billionaire and entrepreneur Comer Cottrell, founder of ProLine Corporation, bought the campus of Bishop College and bequeathed it to Paul Quinn College in 1993. The school enrolls 3,000 undergraduate students.

The University of Texas Southwestern Medical School is a prestigious medical school located in the Stemmons Corridor of Dallas. It is part of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, again one of the largest facilities of its kind in the world. The school is highly selective, admitting around 200 students a year. The facility enrolls 3255 postgraduates.