McKinney, Texas

Home of the Lions



Sunny Days: 229
48100 Affordability
100100 Schools
32100 Diversity
92100 Safety

Texas has a tight cohesiveness perhaps stronger than any other section of America. Rich, poor, Panhandle, Gulf, city, country, Texas is the obsession, the proper study, and the passionate possession of all Texans.
–John Steinbeck

Best Part About McKinney?

If you like conservative family towns!

McKinney is frequently rated high on lists for the city overall and for raising families in particular. If you like your politics and schools red you’re going to like it here. Banning CRT (regardless of it not being taught), banning books, and sexuality and gender regulations are hot button issues that are generally passing in the McKinney school district. Expect local and national elections to vote conservative or extreme conservative here. If that’s your cup of tea this could be your place.

In the words of a local who seems supportive but pointed:
It is another suburb of Dallas. It is essentially very red (conservative), and reasonably safe.

Quality of life is very high, public safety very good. Overall infrastructure is new - McKinney didn’t start really growing until about 30 years ago. It has exploded since they changed out the city council from a bunch of no-growth farmers to people wanting to become a suburb full of soccer moms. Taxes are about average to above average. There are 3 high schools. They have built the biggest and most expensive football stadium in the State.

Worst Part About McKinney?

If you dislike conservative family towns!

There are plenty of families moving to southern states like Texas, looking to take advantage of the lower cost of living. If you’re liberal, and are considering McKinney you may want to double-check yourself. While growth has brought a bit of diversity, at least in thinking, overall the population and the schools will feel unwelcoming on the political and policy front.

Here's the pov of a local progressive:
Everything is great about McKinney as far as shopping, and real estate prices. It is almost all white which bugs me. The politics are ultra conservative so if that is what you like then you are in heaven. As a liberal, which I am, it’s a nightmare. At least Fox News is not on every place you go as it has been due to more liberals moving here. Tons of churches.

Lifestyle of McKinney

As recently as 2014 McKinney was rated the best city in the U.S. to live by Money Magazine. That ranking plus overall migration trends have driven tremendous growth in McKinney and the other north Dallas suburbs. This is a deeply family-driven suburban city of Dallas and the lifestyle mirrors that role. It has very high ranked schools, great parks, tons of family-friendly activities, and relative to other parts of the country (we see you Cali), amazing prices on homes. You are very close to Downtown Dallas here so expect to head into the big city for more glamor nights out but also know there are plenty of more casual restaurant/bar options in town.

If you want to know what's happening in McKinney check out the calendar of events:

Workstyle of McKinney

Many of the north Dallas suburban cities cater to commuters heading to Dallas-based headquarters but there are several big employers here: Raytheon in the defense space, Torchmark in insurance, and several health/medical facilities. Overall though the majority of residents live in McKinney and other northern suburbs to get affordable housing and commute into work.

Why You Should Move Here Now?

Education/Family Lifestyle > Cost of Living

The cost of living relative to the quality of education and family lifestyle is hard to beat. There are tons of apartment buildings that are going up nonstop in the area if you’re looking to rent, and even though housing costs have gone up quite a bit if you’re coming from the west or east coasts you’ll find it affordable.

Neighborhoods in McKinney

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The Area

McKinney is on the north side of the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex, more commonly known as DFW Metroplex. It’s farther north than other suburban cities like Plano or Frisco but not by much. All of DFW is easily accessible by car and there is a train but it doesn’t reach McKinney so not practical for commuting.

Many people think of DFW as a great big giant city (with 7.2 million people) with borders among the cities, suburbs and towns as largely irrelevant given the lack of natural borders from things like rivers or lakes. While there can be plenty of traffic in DFW for the most part the freeway system/turnpike gets everyone around in very short drives (or train rides) relative to most of the other large metroplexes. DFW is extremely new compared to the other big developed metroplexes and that means it is just more convenient. You’re 15-35 minutes into downtown Dallas or Fort Worth from a great majority of the suburbs which means if you choose to live that rolling lawn lifestyle it’s not far to hit the big cities. Most of the popular suburbs are directly north Dallas: Plano, McKinney, Frisco among others but there are also plenty in between the two cities: Irving, Arlington and Grand Prairie that draw a lot of attention as well.

If you’re looking for the most “developed” of the north suburbs in terms of a commercial district then Plano is a good option. Frisco is the fastest growing with the most development happening and McKinney as the farthest north tends to be a bit better on pricing. It also tends to be the most conservative if that is to your liking.

None of this means you have to live close to one of the big cities. The Metroplex is nearly 9,300 square miles, which means it is larger than the land areas of six U.S. states. If you want rural you can find it here.

Historic Downtown

Young Professionals

McKinney has a notable Historic Downtown district and while it will in no way replace being in downtown Dallas it can make do in a pinch for a local beer or meal. If you’re trying to save some bucks and live away from the big city, perhaps also for a shorter commute than this is a good neighborhood option. There are some casual eating and drinking options when you feel like hanging local and want to just walk to the bar or restaurant of your choosing.

  • Historic Downtown

Auburn Hills


Family life is where McKinney shines. Master-planned communities like Auburn Hills are ideal if you want life to be easy and awesome for the kiddos. The Gray Branch Park has cycling and hiking trails, an amphitheater, lacrosse, soccer, baseball fields and both indoor and outdoor recreation spaces for all sorts of other sports and play options. This is all in addition to great newer homes and excellent schools. Master-planned communities like Auburn Hills dominate the neighborhoods here, all with plenty of amenities, outdoor play, and plenty of water to cool off in during the summer months.

  • Auburn Hills
  • Craig Ranch
  • Hardin Lake
  • Isleworth
  • Trinity Falls

The Retreat at Craig Ranch

Empty Nesters/Retirees

McKinney has a combination of appealing neighborhoods and 55+ communities to choose from. The weather, amenity-filled options and reasonable prices are appealing for empty nesters and retirees. Any of the master-planned communities have a lot of the great homes and nearby amenities retirees appreciate. There are several highly-rated 55+ communities in McKinney, like The Retreat at Craig Ranch. The Retreat has a 9,000 square foot, two-story clubhouse with amazing activity options for residents. It also offers access to the Cooper Aerobics and Fitness Center, and indoor and outdoor fitness and spa facility. This place is nice.

  • The Retreat at Craig Ranch
  • Villas at Willow Grove
  • Fireside Village