McKinney, Texas

Home of the Lions

Looklyloo Score: 85

View Full Profile


What's it like to live in McKinney?

What is it like to live in McKinney, TX?
I lived in Allen, just south of McKinney, for 40 years and have seen the area grow. My backyard was a farmer’s grain field, then became a school yard. My daughter lives in McKinney and has for close on 16 years.

It is another suburb of Dallas. It is essentially very red (conservative), and reasonably safe. Traffic can be a mess, especially as they are continuously widening Central Expressway. They finish one section, start on another, finish that then return to the first part. Outside the expressway corridor, it’s not all that bad. Raytheon is likely the biggest employer, or perhaps the school district is. McKinney hosts Collin College, originally a 2-year community college, now a 4-year college in its own right.

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.

If you drive from McKinney into Dallas, you’ll be hard pressed to detect changes in city limits as you go through Allen, Plano, Richardson and into Dallas. It’s all one single layer of concrete - I think it resembles the Los Angeles area, only a lot newer. The colors on the street signs change, is how I know.

I got tired of the closeness of the houses, people mowing their lawns when i wanted to sleep, and the chock-a-block traffic during rush hour. I moved out into the country. So take what I say with a grain of salt. Rush hour for me is now 2 people at the stop sign ahead of me.

What are the best neighborhoods to live in within McKinney, TX?

The best neighborhood, hands down is the Historic District on the east side. Most of the homes were built in the late 1800’s, early 1900’s. The homes here have character. If you squint your eyes and look at the homes on the other side of town, the west side, they’d all look the same. Every home on the east side is unique, each it’s own! The people here know their neighbors, watch out for each other and act like neighbors used to! And our downtown is hopping with great eats, fun shops and lots of events, mostly family fun events. If you live in the Historic District, you can ride a bike downtown. I’m only about 3/4 mile away!

What don't you like about living in McKinney, TX?

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.

PROS and CONS of McKinney

I've lived in McKinney for four years. Moved here from the Rocky Mountain West for job and family reasons. I miss living in a more politically and socially liberal state/community, but I have also things I enjoy about McKinney and North Dallas, so here's my list:

Pros For North Dallas in General: low-moderate COL if you're used to West Coast prices, good schools, good jobs if you're professional college-educated class, large immigrant community and ethnic diversity in Dallas and Collin County (great food!), lots of arts and entertainment options, major airport nearby with flights anywhere in the world, winter weather is great, excellent options for health care if you have decent health insurance

Pros For McKinney Specifically: lots of residential choices in older or newer neighborhoods, (although it's a seller's market), good city leadership (I'm not Republican but I have been favorably impressed with our mayor), lots of parks and greenspace, great school districts, only 1-2 hours from nice camping in Northeast TX or Southeast OK, Historic Downtown McKinney is a fun shopping, dining, and cultural center, great city services, lots of activities for kids and families with kids, low crime rate, traffic not bad compared to the rest of DFW

Cons for North Texas in General (Not Specific To McKinney): summers are hot and miserable, no topographic relief as far as the eye can see (god, I miss mountains), low wages and expensive housing if you don't have a professional job, social safety net in Texas sucks (not a problem until you need it!)

Based on what you've described I think you would enjoy living here. Once Covid permits, you really should visit Collin County, drive around and get a feel for the place.