Crews arrived at the complex on Flintrock Road near Castleford around 12:30 a.m.
Firefighters found a heavy fire on the second level of an apartment building, and pulled a second alarm just before 1 a.m.
Fire victim says, "We're blessed to be alive."
In all, about 60 to 80 firefighters responded to help attack the fire and evacuate some residents.
Fire victim Edward Horne said he "woke up to flames coming at me" from the patio doors, and rushed to get his wife and two sons out of the apartment.
"We're real thankful," Horne said. "We're blessed to be alive."
PHOTOS: Massive fire destroys apartments in NW Houston
Horne described seeing high flames and very dense smoke as he urged his neighbors to evacuate.
Resident David Herrada, who used to live in the building that erupted in flames, said he watched as the fire spread quickly to other units.
"It went quick," Herrada said. "I'd say in a span of 20 or 30 minutes. I didn't know if it was electrical or what the case was."
Surveying the damage, Herrada guessed the building was a total loss.
Houston Fire Department Deputy Chief Blake White said four units were significantly damaged, while another six to eight units had various fire, smoke and water damage.
RAW VIDEO: HFD battles 2-alarm apartment fire
Fortunately, no one was injured in the fire.
The Red Cross was dispatched to help the displaced victims find shelter and to start the recovery process.
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