"Austin" is a really wide area. North to south it is almost an hour. East to west maybe forty minutes.
I'll speak about the south side, knowing almost nothing about the North.
Austin sits athwart a very old fault line running North / South. Not an earthquake issue, but a huge economic line. On the west side is the Texas hill country, on the east is a black land (dirt color, not racial) prairie. The cost of living is markedly lower on the east side vs the west side. I live almost literally on the last hill of the hill country. Home prices in our 55+ community are roughly in the half million dollar range, low of $300K high of $1,000K. A few miles east into the prairie you might find prices in the $250K - $450K range. This is just two 55+ communities - there are a vast assortment of choices. Why are the prices different? Because the views and beauty of the hills is "worth" the price. You would have to decide for yourself. In general the cost of housing and the cost of living is much lower than California and a bit lower than Delaware.
There is a lot of rural acreage. If you want a home on 100+ acres, you can have that. If you would prefer to have a postage stamp yard or an even denser urban lifestyle, you can have that. We started on 160 acres with our own cow(s) 20+ years ago and now have a "large" quarter acre lot in a traditional city residential neighborhood.
This is one of the fastest growing parts of the USA. Everything is changing, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. Texas is attractive to businesses. Lower cost of living, lower cost of operation. While the Austin area is on the liberal side, the state isn't that way. My county, Hays, is almost evenly divided liberal vs conservative.
One of the benefits of this area is you are "close" to both Austin and San Antonio. It is less than an hour from my driveway to downtown or ether airport. We see shows / entertainment / sports in both cities while enjoying the relatively quiet smaller town. There are a number of colleges and universities within an hours drive. Traffic isn't a disaster (yet) but it is much more than when we first moved into the area.
Shouldn't leave out poker. Both San Antonio and Austin have semi-legal public poker rooms. Likely against the letter of the law, but the current attitude of the state is to leave it as a local matter. You'll pay an hourly seat fee and a cover charge, but no rake. Or . . . you might note there are a lot of PCF members in this area. I host 60+ games a year, (but not in the time of the plague). David O hosts some games. No doubt other folks also have games, but I do not know the details.
It does get HOT here. Expect 100 degree days in the summer, not every day but often. We run from drought to flood-time, sometimes the same week. It doesn't get that cold. Most years will freeze, but not always. I left my tropical plants outside all winter this year. Snow? Yea, I have heard about such things but rarely have I actually seen it stick to the ground. Ice storms are more common, but not every year. We are just outside the edge of tornado alley, the areas North of us get a lot more damaging storms. We do get some awesome thunderstorms. Nothing "milk-toast" about Texas weather.