Choosing the Right Location: A Guide to East Texas Communities

Choosing the Right Location: A Guide to East Texas Communities

Whether you’re a Texas native or new to the state, finding the right community to live in is paramount to your happiness. No matter how great your home is or how close it is to your work, it stops being relevant if you don’t feel like you fit into the neighborhood or if it doesn’t provide you with the lifestyle features you enjoy.

Do a little research before you move to make sure the area you’ll be in has the amenities you want, whether it’s parks and recreation areas, nearby grocery stores or farmer’s markets, quality schools, opportunities for involvement in local history, bustling nightlife venues, or quiet, peaceful streets.

As a long-time local to East Texas communities, JennRand Diversified offers some guidance on the unique towns in the area to help you start your research, and if you’re looking to build a custom home, our team is ready to tailor a home to you and your needs.

Here’s some insight into the towns we love!


This dense, suburban community is full of diverse families and young professionals, many of whom own their homes. With the median home value being less than the national average, Longview residents often feel they have a good chance of owning and maintaining their home, too.

Longview offers good quality, above average school settings in both public and private varieties, has a decently low crime rating, and encourages community growth through a busy calendar of events its residents can enjoy and participate in.  

Amenities Highlights

  • Parks and recreation areas: If the great outdoors is calling your name, there’s a park for you in Longview! From playgrounds and water parks to hiking and mountain biking trails, you’ll find something fun to do outside. Enjoy disc golf and regular golf courses, multi-use courts, picnic areas, an arboretum, historic plazas, and more.

  • Arts and culture opportunities: Whether you want to participate in artistic endeavors or prefer to simply let your senses take in a show, the opportunities to fill your imagination are endless. Take a walk through the Arts!Longview Cultural District to witness a celebration of community diversity. Or see and hear an array of performances by the Artsview Children’s Theater, the East Texas Symphonic Band, the Longview Symphony, and the Longview Theater and Ballet Theater performers!

  • Nightlife: Find a local brewery and many restaurants and places to quench your late-night thirst downtown. Show off your ax-throwing skills, bowl with the best, catch a dine-in movie, or groove to live music at a classic honky tonk, all within a short drive from wherever you live in Longview.

  • A regional hub for entertainment: Experience a train day trip from Longview to Mineola, featuring local food, drinks, shops, a historic movie theater, and trains (obviously)! Take in a multitude of live downtown concerts, and don’t miss the Great Texas Balloon Race hosted each summer in Longview.


Marshall provides that small-town Texas feel and charm, with homeowners enjoying a little more space to stretch out and view the countryside. Most families own their homes and value taking in the town's relaxed atmosphere. Marshall offers decent schools, a lower cost of living, and a diverse population, making it an ideal location for raising a family.

Lifestyle Features

  • Historic Downtown and shopping destinations: From downtown boutiques to rare treats, Marshall offers shopping venues of all kinds. Find vintage and trending looks, western wear, and even the famous Bear Creek Smokehouse and General Store.

  • Historical Presence: Marshall maintains a deeply rooted, storied past with historical sites plotted throughout the town. Visit the Harrison County At War Museum, the Starr Family Home, the historic County Courthouse and Museum, and the Texas and Pacific Depot Museum. Then enjoy the culture at the Michelson Museum of Art and see the birthplace of Boogie Woogie!

  • Outdoor Escapes: For those wanting to enjoy the outdoors while soaking up relaxation, visit the multiple wineries or take a tour of all the vineyards in the area! The Marshall Lakeside Country Club is also a popular spot for golfing, dining, and more for the whole family.


If you prefer a quieter, more rural life, Tatum, Texas, might be just the place for you! With a population under 1,500, this small town provides a suburban rural lifestyle where many families own their homes and know their neighbors well. The community boasts “an abundance of pride in our churches, schools, and local businesses” that can be seen with above-average public and private schools, lower than the national average costs of living, and low crime rates. This close-knit community is an ideal location for young homeowners to raise their families.

Lifestyle Comforts

  • Lakes, Rivers, Parks, and more: Enjoy kayaking, fishing, and camping by one of several lakes in the area or the Sabine River. The parks include hiking trails and nature centers that host art in the park and children’s activities to help inspire all ages to benefit from the great outdoors. The Martin Creek Lake State Park also partners with local animal rescues for pet adoptions.

  • Seasonal festivals: Every season offers a story and something to do in Tatum. Follow the Wild Flower Trail all spring as it blooms and leads families into Rusk County’s past. Or experience the truly unique summertime Tatum Pecan Pie Festival, complete with vendors, antique car shows, live entertainment, and all the food you could want, including pecan pie! 


For a full suburban city feel and a town featuring lots of parks, coffee shops, schools, businesses, and various residential living options, come to Tyler, Texas. As a welcoming home to many families and young professionals, this East Texas city offers its residents a little bit of everything.

With minimum crime and a sound schooling system, many families want to settle their roots and build new homes in the Tyler community. And since the town is ranked highly as one of the most diverse cities in America and one of the best places to retire, this jewel of Texas is worth a closer look!

City Features

  • Garden gems and outdoor beauty: Some cities just know how to beautify their streets and green areas, and Tyler is uniquely lovely. The city has worked hard to line its walkways and city-owned spaces with roses. Plus, the town holds an extensive collection of gardens, nurseries, parks, and outdoor attractions open to the public.

  • Museums and science centers: From the Tyler Rose Museum to the Discovery Science Place, there is a museum for every age and interest! Learn about Texas African American history, check out classic airplanes and aviation, view exquisite art in the multiple galleries and museums, and explore historic homes throughout the city.

  • Wildlife explorations: Tyler doesn’t mind letting you view the wildlife, sometimes up close and personal! Enjoy the Caldwell Zoo, Cherokee Trace Drive-Thru Safari, lakes and campgrounds, Texas Rose Horse Park, and even multiple area dog parks. It’s fun for the whole family.

  • Sports complexes and recreational spaces: For beginning kids’ teams through adult rec leagues, find every sport represented on the many fields, courts, diamonds, courses,  parks, and aquatic centers in town. Whatever sport you play, you’ll find a team ready to add you to the roster.

  • Shopping and all the food you’ll ever need: From Western wear to chic boutiques, all styles are represented in the multiple shopping venues throughout the city. And when you’re ready to eat and drink, you can find all types of cuisine to indulge in. Try classic Texas bar-b-que and traditional American favorites, or branch out to the many international flavors dotting the town. Then wet your whistle at one of the many breweries, wineries, or bars downtown!

Find Your Home in East Texas

With so much to see and do and so many options that can suit you and your family’s lifestyle, there is definitely a place for you here in East Texas! Build a home in one of our charming communities, feel a part of something great, and start growing roots.

The team at JennRand Diversified is here to help you find a home or build a new one that sets you up for the future. With 20 years of experience establishing families in custom homes throughout the area, we believe in building something empowering for generations.

Contact us online or call 903-557-1070 to start the conversation about building or finding your dream home in East Texas today!


An EasyDNNNews Module ID hasn't been set yet. Please open this module's Settings and give the setting a value.

For Current and Most Recent Projects, Be sure to Find us on Facebook Icon

ETBA Logo NAHB Logo Texas Asociation Builders Logo