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Fort Worthian 101: Our guide to becoming a Fort Worth resident

From how to register your car to finding your favorite taco shop, this overview will give you everything you need to know to get established as a Fort Worth resident.

Downtown Fort Worth

Soon, seeing this skyline will mean “I’m home.”

Photo by Joseph Haubert

Table of Contents

Picture this: You just moved to Fort Worth, TX and you need some help with the practicalities of life (we can’t just sit back and watch the cattle drive all day, unfortunately). That’s where we come in. Keep reading for Fort Worthian 101, our guide to all things Fort Worth residency.

Photo of the Tarrant County Courthouse.

Help build the future of Fort Worth by voting in local elections. | Photo by @dallasfortworthphotography

The essentials

Voter registration
Make sure you’re eligible and registered to vote, find your polling location, and preview upcoming elections and sample ballots here.

Driver’s licenses
New residents in need of a Texas driver license will need to provide proof of US citizenship or lawful presence, a Social Security number, two documents confirming your residential address, and proof of Texas Vehicle Registration and insurance if you have a car.

You will also be required to complete the application, pay an application fee, and pass an eye exam. Make an appointment at the Department of Public Safety to obtain a Texas driver license.

Vehicle registration
To register your car in Texas, you’ll need to bring proof of car insurance, a car title, proof of inspection from a certified Vehicle Inspection station, and a Vehicle Identification Number to the Tarrant County Tax Office (located at 100 E. Weatherford St.) to get your Texas plates.

Initial registrations may be subject to a $52+ fee. You can make an appointment at any of Tarrant County’s Motor Vehicle Divisions to register your vehicle.

Establishing yourself with a primary care provider is one of those things you’ll be glad you did when you need one. Reach out to the professionals at USMD, UT Southwestern, or Texas Health Resources, to name a few. Pro tip: Websites like DocSpot filter physicians by location, patient reviews, insurance, language, and more.

Photo of Greek Revival style library facade

Find a branch of the Fort Worth Public Library near you.

Photo by @FTWtoday

Educational needs

School registration
Prepare your student for the school year by registering them with Fort Worth ISD. You’ll find your school zone (based on your home address), a list of registration and immunization requirements, and the registration portal.

Live outside the district? Check out the other 19 school districts in Tarrant County. For information on Fort Worth’s private schools, check out Niche’s list.

Library card registration
If you think libraries are only for renting the occasional book, think again. Register for a library card at your nearest Fort Worth Public Library branch to take advantage of:

  • Events
  • eBooks, music, and movies
  • Online databases
  • Private meeting spaces for groups
  • Instrument lending
  • Device and technology lending
  • Botanic Garden passes

To get your card, you’ll need proof of identity and proof of residence. Fort Worthians of any age can apply for a free card to be used at any local branch.

Fort Worth Recycling

Get ready to become a mean, green, recycling machine. | Photo by @FTWtoday

Home necessities

Finding a home
Peruse different neighborhoods and keep an eye on the real estate trends in Fort Worth to know when to buy.

Thanks for thinking green. For everything you need to know about recycling in Fort Worth, from where to place your bin to pick up times and accepted materials, check out our guide.

Moving is exciting, but no one wants to unpack by candlelight. Establish your services with a local electric company or update your address to your existing account. Check out Choose TexasPower to compare rates.

Internet providers
No connectivity issues here. Check out some of the internet providers in the 817:

  • AT&T Internet | Fiber internet service starting at $55 per month for 12 months.
  • Spectrum | Cable internet service starting at $50 per month for 12 months.
  • T-Mobile Home Internet | 5G internet service starting at $50 per month for 12 months.
  • Viasat | Satellite internet service starting at $50 per month for 12 months.
  • Frontier | Fiber internet service starting at $50 per month for 12 months.

You gotta have your obligatory longhorn photo.

Photo by FTWtoday

The ultimate Fort Worthian initiation

Having a Texas driver license and an 817 area code may qualify you on paper, but you’re not officially a Fort Worthian until you’ve taken part in some local fun that is only found in Cowtown.

Take a tour
Get to know your new city with five tours around Funkytown that hit the local historic and contemporary highlights. Or you could go on a self-guided tour around the city’s historic landmarks or explore the local mural scene.

Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo
Mark your calendars for January 2024 when the legendary Stock Show and Rodeo returns to Cowtown. Want so Western-themed fun before then? Head north of town to the Historic Stockyards and catch the world’s only twice-daily cattle drive.

Trinity Park
The centralized park is one of the most popular recreation spots in town and is part of the Trinity Trail system. Walk the gravity-defying Phyllis Tilley Memorial Bridge, keep an eye out for the returning Forest Park Miniature Railroad, or attend one of the annual community events like Mayfest.

Is there something you’re still left wondering about to get you properly established in Panther City? Ask us your question and we’ll do our best to answer it for you, like a good neighbor.

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