Cost of Living Austin, TX 2021

When choosing where to live and exploring different living costs in the US, you’re likely to consider Texas. That’s because Texas became the number one state to relocate to between 2020 and 2021. And according to some studies, Texas could become home to as many as 30 million new residents in 2022.

The most popular city to move to has been Austin, though Dallas is close behind. So what exactly is the cost of living in Austin and why should you consider a new home in Austin?


The Buzz Behind Austin

When choosing where to live, there are a few good reasons to pick Austin. In addition to the warm weather that you’ll find in most of Texas, Austin also has a thriving downtown, local transit system, and a few good walkable neighborhoods.


Big Tech Shifts

More than a few notable tech companies have decided to open up headquarters in Austin. Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, relocated to Texas and is building a Tesla manufacturing plant close to the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. And Drew Houston, co-founder and CEO of Dropbox, chose Austin as the second location for Dropbox.


In 2019, Apple began work on its new $1 billion, 3-million-square-foot campus. Expected to open in 2022, the campus will initially house 5,000 employees, with the capacity to grow to 15,000. Oracle, the second-largest software company in the world, also announced in 2020 that it would move its headquarters to Austin—at the time, it already had an estimated workforce of about 2,500 people in the area.


Hello, Hollywood

These moves, in addition to celebrities like Owen Wilson, Sandra Bullock, Matthew McConaughey, and Elijah Wood deciding to make Austin home, have prompted many to say that Austin is the new California.


Cost of Living in Austin

Unfortunately, all of this buzz has also driven living costs up in the Austin area—primarily when it comes to housing. Housing costs went up about 3 percent in 2021, compared to 2020. These prices continue to rise due to increased demand and lack of inventory.


On an index of 100, with 100 being about average, the cost of homes in Austin is currently sitting at around 160, while the rest of Texas is only around 84. So if low living costs are important to you when choosing where to live, you might want to search outside of Austin. Here are a few places worth considering.


Taylor, TX

Only 45 minutes away from Austin, Taylor offers a cozy small-town feel with a local live music scene and a reputation for artisan crafts. On a path for steady growth, a new construction home in Taylor, TX starts at around $340,000.


San Marcos, TX

Another great option for keeping living costs low without sacrificing your quality of life is San Marcos. Offering a little flavor from both Austin and San Antonio, without all of the overcrowding—San Marcos has a quaint, small-town feel. It’s also home to Texas State University, making it somewhat of a college town. The cost of a new construction home in San Marcos is between $250-350,000.


Georgetown, TX

In love with Victorian-age architecture and charming downtowns? Just 30 minutes outside Austin, Georgetown offers low living costs in a safe community that dates back to the mid-1850s. With two somewhat walkable areas, you can find new construction homes in Georgetown starting at around $330,000.


Choosing where to live can be a challenge sometimes. But while the cost of living in Austin may be high for some, you can still enjoy everything Austin has to offer and find lower living costs if you do your research. Learn more about the costs of buying a home and explore everything that Texas has to offer.


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Published 02.17.22

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