New neighborhoods reflect the growing population and increasing demand for housing in suburban settings. Shreveport and Bossier City have dozens of residential areas for nearly any taste, ranging from small, tree-lined neighborhoods with well-kept houses to large subdivisions with playgrounds, neighborhood schools and nearby shopping. Both communities also feature neighborhoods that include gated entries, oversized lots and community common areas with parks, trails and lakes.
Property tax rates in Louisiana are consistently ranked as the lowest in the country. On average, a homeowner in Shreveport will pay a tax rate of about $4.18 for every $1,000 in property value.
A buyer typically can find homes less than 10 years old with at least 2,800 square feet and up to an acre of land for about $300,000 to $350,000. Older homes in these areas generally cost a little less and have more land.
These homes are surprisingly affordable, with prices starting at or below $200,000 for 1,800-square-foot homes to upwards of $500,000 for five-bedroom houses with 3,500 square feet. Shreveport-Bossier homes also appreciate in value; the latest statistics showed an average of 4-5 percent annual appreciation, more than double the U.S. average.
A short drive from Shreveport-Bossier reveals the best of both worlds - rural living with lots of land, just minutes from the excitement of downtown amenities. Smaller communities such as Haughton, Benton, Keithville and others offer larger, rural homes with enough land to create your own oasis. Some of these homes are in subdivisions that feature larger lots, and many are a little farther off the beaten path and have acres of land, lake views and barns.
Shreveport-Bossier rentals feature luxury living at affordable prices
For those who prefer the flexibility of apartment living, Shreveport-Bossier has plenty of upscale options that are convenient and affordable.
Apartments and townhomes are available in furnished and unfurnished models throughout the region. Many feature fitness centers, common green areas and parks. Some units have granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, crown molding and other amenities you would expect in a high-end house.
The Towers at Cross Lake in Shreveport is among several developments that offer gated security access, walking trails, swimming pools and clubhouses. Prices at The Towers at Cross Lake begin at $715 a month for a one-bedroom, one-bathroom unit and go up to $1,850 a month for a two-and-two. At Residences of Springridge in Shreveport, renters can enjoy the clubhouse, fitness center, pool and cabana. Prices at this gated community start at $965 a month for a one-and-one and $1,495 for a three-and-two.
Many developments offer short-term leases for those who are looking for temporary housing while shopping for a permanent home.
Many complexes, such as The Summit of Shreveport and Canebrake in Shreveport, are pet friendly and feature extra storage areas. Canebrake also features tennis courts, basketball courts and individual garages for tenants. The Reflections of Island Parks development, also in Shreveport, offers private lake access and a 24-hour business center.
In Bossier City, renters may have a tough time deciding among all the amenities different developments offer. Jamestown Place, for example, has one-, two- and three-bedroom units featuring crown molding, wood floors and gourmet kitchens. The Landing at Willow Bayou and Oakwood feature a fitness centers, a pool and gated security.
“Downtown Shreveport offers some unique apartments, including units in a renovated hardware store and a railroad hotel from the 1920s.”
Villagio is a mixed-use residential and commercial development for those who like to live in the middle of the action. Villagio has 50,000 square feet of dining, shopping and other retail services within the development, all centered on a 6-acre lake. Villagio offers three-and-two units for about $1,350 a month.
Generally, Bossier City renters can find luxury apartments with top-notch features for about $1 per month, per square foot of living area.
Planned communities differ from traditional subdivisions in their scope and, usually, size. Instead of featuring just one neighborhood of homes in the same general price range, planned communities often offer multiple neighborhoods for different price points and lifestyles. Planned communities also commonly feature recreation areas, shopping, medical facilities, schools and entertainment venues, all within the confines of the "neighborhood". Although the planned community concept is relatively new, proponents emphasize these communities are actually more like neighborhoods of the past, when neighbors walked, instead of drove, to the store or to the park.
Most planned communities offer year-round neighborhood activities, including parades, outdoor movie nights, crawfish boils and concerts.
Provenance is one of the newest planned communities in south Shreveport and features three residential areas to fit different budgets and lifestyles. Prices start at around $200,000 for bungalows and go beyond $600,000 for large estate homes. Provenance also is home to Windrush Village Marketplace, a retail area featuring restaurants, dry cleaning, medical facilities, a post office and banking. Future plans include spas, boutiques, specialty stores and galleries. The development includes parks, a lake, a pool and clubhouse and children’s playground.
Builder guidelines in planned communities ensure that all of the home sizes and architectural styles are appropriate for the neighborhood.
Twelve Oaks, also in Shreveport, has five residential communities that offer prices from about $250,000 for a 1,700-square foot home to more than $600,000 to for houses with more than 4,000 square feet of living area. Located on 400 acres in southeast Shreveport, Twelve Oaks is a gated community of custom-built homes and neighborhood green spaces, parks and common areas. The area is convenient to shopping and restaurants, and developers plan a neighborhood shopping village adjacent to the gated entry.
Legacy, just north of Bossier City, features lakes, parks, a swimming pool, walking trails and a fishing pond. Three different neighborhoods are contained in Legacy’s 650 acres, with small, 1,100-square foot homes started at just $150,000 and large, custom homes starting at around $300,000.
Together, the Caddo and Bossier parish school systems educate about 63,000 students in 93 schools, 15 of which the U.S. Department of Education has recognized as Blue Ribbon schools, signifying they are among the best in the nation. While most students are assigned to a public school based on where they live, each public school system has many choices, especially for students with special aptitude or
In 2012-13, Louisiana had five U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon schools. Two of those schools
– Claiborne Fundamental and
Oak Park MicroSociety School –
are in the Caddo Parish school system.
In many Caddo Parish high schools, science teachers work with college professors to expose students to university laboratories and experiments. Starting at the elementary level and continuing through high school, many of the schools also offer robotics, which not only teaches math and science in a fun way but also encourages critical thinking skills and teamwork. Caddo Parish also offers gifted and talented programs at many of its schools at the elementary, middle and high school levels.
Bossier Parish schools consistently rank among the highest
in the state for student achievement.
Because of the schools’ dual enrollment program, seniors have the opportunity to earn college credit before high school graduation. According to the school system, 45 percent of all seniors graduated in 2013 with college credit from area secondary schools, including Louisiana State University-Shreveport, Louisiana Tech, Northwest State University and Bossier Parish Community College.
Shreveport-Bossier private and parochial schools offer choice
Parents in Shreveport-Bossier will find there are many private and parochial school schools that have a long tradition of offering quality choices for parents.
There are approximately 14 private and religious-based schools in Shreveport-Bossier that serve students from pre-kindergarten through the 12th grade. Most of the religious-based schools do not require a child’s family to be a member of the church or denomination to attend school, but some give preference to church members.
Students at Loyola College Preparatory must complete
100 hours of community service to graduate.
Three of the schools - St. Joseph Catholic School, St. John Berchmans Cathedral School and Loyola College Preparatory High School - are affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. St. Joseph and St. John Berchmans each take students from pre-K through the eighth grade, and Loyola enrolls students from 9th through 12th grades.
Three Baptist schools - Calvary Baptist Academy, Heritage Free Will Baptist and First Baptist Church School - take kindergartners. Calvary Baptist, the largest private school in the area with more than 1,000 students, admits students through the 12th grade.
More than 5,000 students attend private or parochial schools in the Shreveport-Bossier area.
This compares to about 63,000 students who are enrolled in public schools.
Evangel Christian Academy, which is affiliated with the Assembly of God church, is a well-known school and enrolls students from kindergarten through 12th grade. University Christian Prep School also takes students of all ages.
Other Christian schools include the Christian Center School (K-9/Montessori), Colquitt Christian Academy (K-8/Seventh Day Adventist), St. Mark’s Cathedral School (K-9/Episcopal) and Word of God Academy (preK-9).
Southfield School is a non-sectarian school that takes students from pre-K through eighth grade. The Montessori School for Shreveport also is not affiliated with any church. It admits students from kindergarten through 9th grade.
Magnet schools attract students throughout Caddo Parish
Captain Shreve High School’s engineering magnet component includes
courses in principles of engineering, AP physics and engineering graphics.
Caddo Parish has nine magnet schools - six elementary, two middle and one high school. Although magnet schools are public schools, students must apply to attend those schools. Magnet schools are designed to facilitate the educational needs of students who are high achievers and thrive in a fast-paced learning environment that includes an advanced curriculum.
To be accepted into a magnet school, a student must meet minimum standards, including better than average grades, no disciplinary record and an excellent attendance record. The admission process usually begins in January for the next school year.
North Caddo Magnet High School offers courses in Latin, astronomy, environmental
science and computer science through Louisiana Virtual School, an internet-based
distance learning program.
In addition to the magnet schools, 11 Caddo Parish public middle and high schools have magnet "components", such as engineering, performing arts, law and technology/communications. These schools have regular neighborhood attendance zones from which they draw most of their students, but a few seats are set aside each year for students outside the attendance zones for inclusion in the magnet programs.
Application guidelines and deadlines for each magnet school may vary, so interested parents should contact the Caddo Parish School Board, or go to www.caddo.k12.la.us.
Higher Education an integral part of Shreveport-Bossier
Within a 90-minute drive of Shreveport-Bossier, five higher education institutions that represent public, private and technical college education at its best serve more than 30,000 students from all walks of life.
Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, established in 1894, is designated as a Tier 1 national university and has about 11,500 students. Tech’s internationally renowned College of Engineering and Science became the first in the world to award a Bachelor of Science in nanosystems engineering in 2007 and launched the nation’s first cyber engineering Bachelor of Science degree in 2012.
Louisiana State University-Shreveport is part of the LSU system and has about 4,500 students and offers 25 Bachelor’s and 11 Master’s degrees under the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Business, Education and Human Development. LSU-S also offers a Leadership Education and Development program, night courses, online degrees and certificate programs.
Located in the Historic Highland area of Shreveport, Centenary College of Louisiana is a private, four-year liberal arts-and-science college. In 2013, Centenary was named for the 10th consecutive time by The Princeton Review as one of the best colleges in the United States. Centenary’s enrollment is less than 800 students, which allows a close student/faculty interaction. The school offers 22 undergraduate majors and two graduate programs in business administration and education.
The Bossier Parish Community College is a member of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System and has more than 7,500 full-time and part-time students. BPCC’s nine academic divisions offer Associate degrees, certificates and transfer programs that lead students to rewarding careers or to four-year universities.
Northwestern State University in Natchitoches offers 50 degree programs and has a nursing campus in Shreveport and two additional campuses in Leesville and Alexandria. Founded in 1884, Northwestern was the first school in Louisiana to offer degrees in nursing and business education, and was one of the first six colleges to enter NASA’s Joint Venture Program, allowing students to work alongside NASA scientists.
Shreveport-Bossier culture: something for everyone
Shreveport-Bossier is a family-friendly city that values schools and students, neighborhoods and neighbors. With nearly a half-million people living here, Shreveport-Bossier offers the diverse cultural experiences of a much larger city, but we still welcome new friends the small-town way, with a handshake, a glass of iced tea and an invitation to supper.
There’s really no one way to define who we are. Located in northwest Louisiana, we’re part Cajun, part cowboy, equally at ease at a crawfish boil or Texas-style barbeque. We have great, old buildings that are filled with history and young professionals brimming with new ideas, and we embrace them equally. We think it’s perfectly natural to enjoy performances of the Shreveport Metropolitan Ballet in the same building that was home to the Louisiana Hayride, which launched the careers of Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash.
We’re a community of cozy neighborhoods and wide-open spaces. Shreveport-Bossier is proud of its top-rated restaurants that offer fine dining, and we brag about our farmer’s market, consistently ranked as one of the best in the United States. We love a Saturday night concert by the hottest band or the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra followed by a Sunday morning walk to church or a sailboat ride on Cross Lake. During the week, we work hard and take care of business, but it’s just important to take our children to the neighborhood ice cream shop.
In Shreveport-Bossier, there is no
one-size-fits-all. We know that different perspectives,
and talents drive our thriving
and diverse community.
Wendell Riley is a native of Trinidad and Tobago but now calls Shreveport home. Listen to how he describes his adopted city and how it all comes together.
Mollie Corbett moved to Bossier City four years ago from her native Virginia when her husband was assigned to the area. In four years, she has embraced Shreveport as there is something for everyone.
Col. Russ Mathers, USAF
Col. Russ Mathers of the U.S. Air Force is stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City. Here’s what he told some friends who are moving to the Shreveport-Bossier area from Germany.
Kourtney Washington is a public relations professional in Shreveport. She talks about all the activities that are available in the area.
Joe Bluhm moved to Shreveport from New York for what he thought would be a three-month assignment. Four years later, Joe has decided to make Shreveport his home.
Everardo Recendiz moved to Shreveport from Mexico City several years ago. He loves his neighborhood, which he describes as typically American.