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10 Things to Know Before Moving to Belton, TX

Written by Zach Spanton

Tucked away in the heart of Texas, Belton stands out with its distinctive character. Surrounded by stunning natural landscapes and a welcoming community, this town enchants all who visit. 

This small community, which occupies 21 square miles and is midway between Austin and Waco, offers a wealth of activities. Though smaller than Austin, Belton provides all the amenities one could wish for, almost resembling urban living in a more intimate setting. Let’s check out ten things to know before moving to Belton, TX.

1. A convenient location close to Austin and Temple

Situated in the heart of the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood metropolitan area, Belton lies conveniently between Waco and Austin, with Temple, Texas, as its neighbor. This central position means you can easily reach various destinations within an hour, making it an ideal hub for day trips.

Residing in Belton provides easy access to I-35, offering a plethora of travel options. The distance from Belton to Austin is approximately 60 miles, allowing you to reach Austin in under an hour, whether for leisure or work!

2.The Belton Independent School District is thriving

The Belton Independent School District serves students not only in Belton but also in Morgan’s Point Resort and some areas in Temple. Because the district boundaries were established long ago to encompass unincorporated county areas, it now finds itself adapting to the combined growth of these towns.

In response to this growth, Belton is constructing new schools and implementing innovative technologies to meet the needs of its expanding student population. Administrators and educators are dedicated to delivering top-notch education to every student, making the district highly coveted in the region.

3. A slower pace of life

Belton seamlessly combines the allure of small-town living with the amenities of a city, making it an increasingly popular destination.

With a population of under 25,000, as estimated by the 2023 United States Census, Belton offers a respite from heavy traffic and bustling crowds. Its abundance of charming local eateries and recreational activities, coupled with its proximity to larger urban centers, make it an appealing choice for those seeking a balanced lifestyle.

4. The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor is in Belton

Belton is also home to the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, a higher education institution with a student population of fewer than 4,000 as of 2023. Known for its traditional values and renowned football program, the university attracts numerous young adults from across the state. 

Additionally, in close proximity to Belton, you’ll find Texas A&M University-Central Texas in Killeen and Temple College in Temple, Texas.

5. Belton Lake is a major attraction

Who can resist the allure of a stunning body of water? Belton Lake stands as a major draw, enticing visitors with a plethora of water-based activities such as fishing, boating, waterskiing, tubing, and jet skiing, among others. Numerous lakeside parks dot the area, providing ideal spots for daytime leisure, complete with playgrounds, picnic areas, and restroom facilities. 

For a delightful dining experience by the lake, be sure to visit Dead Fish Grill, where you can savor delicious seafood while taking in the scenic views of Belton Lake.

7. Shop, catch a show, or attend events at Belton’s downtown area

Belton’s downtown area serves as a hub for a variety of engaging activities, offering an array of local gems to explore. Numerous stores showcase artisan-made goods like candles and home decor, alongside women’s clothing boutiques, antique shops, bookstores, event venues, and a diverse selection of locally-owned restaurants.

A standout attraction is the Beltonian Theatre, a historic venue that has been screening movies for the community since 1922. Visitors can enjoy the theater’s $1 movie series, kids’ shows, and classic film screenings throughout the year. Additionally, during the warmer months, Belton Market Days, an outdoor artisan market, takes place one Saturday each month, providing a vibrant shopping experience.

Downtown Belton is also a vibrant setting for various city events, including holiday parades, Oktoberfest celebrations, food festivals, and more, ensuring there’s always something exciting happening in the heart of the city.

8. Explore the trails and parks in Belton

Belton boasts an abundance of parks, trails, and waterways, providing residents with ample opportunities to immerse themselves in the stunning scenery and invigorating fresh air. Among the standout trails are Chalk Ridge Falls Park Trail, known for its captivating water feature, as well as Armadillo Trail, Tennessee Valley South River Loop, and several others.

Nolan Creek goes through Belton, offering a refreshing escape for residents, with some even enjoying the shallow waters in the downtown area. These natural features contribute to the city’s charm and provide residents with countless ways to enjoy the outdoors.

9. A lower-than-average cost of living

Belton’s cost of living is notably favorable, with expenses 7% below the national average.

The housing cost in Belton is especially attractive, being 23% below the national average. With home prices averaging around $318,534, Belton offers affordable housing options, making it an appealing choice for individuals and families seeking a budget-friendly living environment.

10. A slightly higher crime rate

In Belton, the violent crime rate stands at 25.2, exceeding the national average of 22.7, while the property crime rate is 36.1, also slightly higher than the US average of 35.4. 

It’s worth noting that although these crime rates in Belton are above the national average, they are still relatively low overall. While it’s essential to stay vigilant, there’s no need for undue concern, as Belton remains a generally safe community.

Final Thoughts

Belton, Texas, offers a unique blend of small-town charm and urban conveniences, making it an appealing place to call home. From its central location to its thriving school district and abundance of outdoor activities, Belton has much to offer residents. 

While the cost of living is favorable and the community is generally safe, it’s essential to be aware of the slightly higher crime rates in the area. Overall, Belton provides a welcoming and vibrant community for individuals and families looking for a relaxed yet engaging lifestyle in the heart of Texas.

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