Once the basic needs of food, water and shelter are out of the way, young families invariably look to public school systems, cost of living and economic growth in determining the prime location to revel in familial bliss.
The number crunchers behind NerdWallet.com took a look at these factors in locales across the Lone Star State to come up with the "Best Texas Cities for Young Families," and while Houston proper didn't make the cut, three of its suburbs ranked high on the list.
At the top was The Woodlands, where the deer are made of bronze and (most of) the public schools are considered some of the best in the nation. Although home prices — at $277,300 — are higher than the Texas average, parents can rest assured that they're making a good investment. The population grew by 22.6 percent between 2010 and 2011.
Beneath North Texas towns of Allen and Flower Mound, League City ranked No. 4 on the list for its great schools, its favorable median home value-to-median income ratio and its family-friendly waterfront activity offerings.
Pearland took No. 5 on the list, with a nod toward the rapidly growing city's diversity: 62 languages are spoken in the schools there. Rounding out the list were Frisco, McKinney, Abilene, Richardson and Carrollton.