Here’s something to consider when you are house-hunting: not only is Plano safe, it can add extra years to your life. Recall I told you last year on DallasDirt that Plano was boring because, except for the teenage heroin deaths of a whole generation ago, it’s one of the safest cities in America. Forbes selected Plano as one the safest cities in the USA. That’s right: our Plano, Texas!

“There are still plenty of U.S. cities where the living is easy. Take Plano, Texas–residents of this wealthy Dallas suburb enjoy the lowest violent crime rate of all big American cities, and have a much lower rate of fatal car crashes. In fact, this “All-American City” tops our list of America’s Safest Cities.”

Now comes word that Plano is not only safe, but living there increases your life expectancy. Plano has been included in a list of the top twenty cities in the USA where folks have a longer life expectancy. So think about that when you go buy a house! Most of the cities are on the west coast, no shocker  there — San Jose, CA tops the list. Others include Anaheim, CA, Bridgeport, CT and Seattle. Of course Honolulu is way up there. Note also that most of these cities are some of the most expensive places to live, like San Francisco. So what they are saying is something we already know: rich people tend to live longer lives. When you can afford a chauffeur to navigate you through traffic jams, it’s a lot less stressful!

PS: Gotta love the world’s vision of Plano: hay farming!

All the squawking in this country about illegal immigration, I thought this might help influence your first, second and third home purchases: the safest cities in the U.S. have higher immigrant populations — and better ethnic food, all of which is very important when considering a second home purchase!

CQ Report Press, now owned by SAGE Publications, an independent publishing house founded by the publisher of the St. Petersburg (FLA) Times, Nelson Poynter, after whom The Poynter Institute, a journalistic think tank, is named, compiles the list. That the late Nelson Poynter started the Congressional Quarterly in 1945 gives me security as to the validity of the research. According to CQ’s research, these are the safest cities in the USA — and our own Fort Worth/Cow Town is one of them:

CITY FOREIGN BORN POPULATION
El Paso 26.1 %
Honolulu 25.3 %
New York 35.9 %
San Jose 40.5 %
San Diego 25.7 %
Austin 16.6 %
Portland 13.0 %
Los Angeles 40.9 %
Seattle 16.9 %
Fort Worth 16.3 %

Here are the highest crime cities in the US and the only one with high crime and a higher foreign-born population appears to be Houston.

CITY FOREIGN BORN POPULATION
Detroit 4.8 %
Baltimore 4.6 %
Memphis 4.0 %
Washington, DC 12.6 %
Atlanta 8.7 %
Indianapolis 4.6 %
Philadelphia 9.0 %
Milwaukee 7.7 %
Houston 26.4 %
Columbus 6.7 %

I wonder why Houston has higher crime than the other cities? This was not brought up much during the recent race for Texas governor, in which incumbent Rick Perry defeated Bill White, whom Houstonians love. If you have any ideas or thoughts, chime in.