Problem 2: SInce Houston is close to the coast, we are at risk for a hurricane.
Ah. I lived in Houston 28 years. Hurricanes- arrggg.
I solved the problem by moving to Arizona - and wouldn't you know, 2 Pacific hurricanes drenched us the first year here!! But we didn't have full blown hurricanes.
I lived through Alicia in '83 and swore I would NEVER go through another one. Rita was a mess (I had already left) - I knew a lot of folks who sat on the highway for hours and hours in that one, and Houston itself saw little-to-no hurricane activity in Rita. That just makes people let their guard down, and when another Alicia (or Allison - just a tropical storm but what incredible flooding!!!) comes, they won't be ready.
Make a pact with yourself to get out of Houston when a hurricane starts making it's way there - leave anyone who won't go. Houston is not New Orleans - it won't be the same disaster that was Katrina just because it isn't the same geographical problem. The worst part (after waiting for the storm to pass) is being without electricity for days or weeks in the worst time of the year for heat and humidity. (you could invest in a good generator now for that eventuality)