“City with no property taxes!” is the motto of Stafford, Texas. Located just outside the Houston metropolitan area, Stafford, formerly known as Staffordville, now has a reported population of approximately 17,700 people and 4,483 families.
Though long considered a residential area, Stafford’s tax incentives have made it a draw for many major businesses. Corporations such as United Parcel Service, Tyco and Texas Instruments all have operations within Stafford city limits and the city is regarded as one of the “100 Best Places to Live and Launch a Small Business” by Fortune Small Business Magazine.
The declaration that there are no property taxes within city limits is true. In 1995, Stafford eliminated municipal property taxes for residents and businesses alike, resulting in a dramatic increase in its cash fund balances. Instead of property taxes, Stafford relies on revenue received from sales taxes (the lowest in the Houston area), franchise taxes and user fees that are in line with or lower than those in neighboring communities such as Sugar Land and Missouri City.
On the education front, Stafford boasts the only municipal school district (Stafford Municipal School District) in the state of Texas. This means SMSD is controlled by the city and not an independent school board.
All SMSD grades, pre-K through twelve, are located on a central campus. The primary, elementary, intermediate, middle and high schools are separate but in close proximity to each other.
The City of Stafford stopped levying non-school property taxes in 1995. It is the only Houston-area city that does not levy non-school property taxes.
Stafford City Park, which stretches across 16 acres of land, is the city’s largest park. Stafford City Park amenities include baseball and softball fields, basketball courts, a pavilion, playground equipment, picnic benches, and soccer/open fields. Gordon Fountain Lake Park covers 9 acres and features a 1/2 mile lighted jogging trail, a lake, a pavilion, picnic benches, and playground equipment. Vaccaro Manor Park, at 4.5 acres, has a lighted .25 mile jogging trail, a pavilion, playground equipment, sidewalks, and soccer/open fields. Smaller parks in the area include Rubin and First Street Park, which also has a jogging trail and picnic area.
Residents of Stafford have access to a City Pool, located in the Municipal Complex, at a fee of $10 each year. Also within city limits are the Civic Center and The Stafford Centre Performing Arts Theatre and Convention Centre, which features a massive ballroom, a 1,100 seat performing arts theater and over 28 acres of lush green lawn space for outdoor festivals.
Ashoka Lion Property Management Company has extensive knowledge of real estate in the Houston and its surrounding areas, including the city of Stafford. Ashoka Lion helps investors buy, sell, and manage properties, and optimize profitability while seeing to the needs of their tenants. An experienced real estate agent from the Lion Real Estate Group can also help prospective renters or homeowners search for homes to rent, lease or buy within the Houston area.