There’s no secret that Austin is one of the hottest relocation destinations in the US right now – and for very good reasons. The tech industry is booming in the area, with multiple high-profile companies including Tesla, Amazon, Apple and SpaceX opening new offices and production facilities in the area. The unemployment rate in Austin stands at approximately 3.2%, substantially lower when compared to the national average of 4.2%. As a result of its booming economy, Austin saw a tremendous 21% increase in population over the past decade, making it one of the fastest growing major cities in the country.
One predictable consequence of Austin’s rapid growth, both in population and economy, is a very hot housing market. According to the Zillow Home Value Index, the current home value in Austin is around $613K, almost double the value of a typical home nationwide. However, for many of the city’s newer residents, migrating from places like California, where home prices are a lot higher, Austin still offers sweet deals in terms of housing.
Depending on the neighborhood, prices can get significantly under or above the average value. If you’re looking to buy a new home in Austin, you have plenty of options and price brackets to consider.
If you’re on a tight budget but still want to enjoy a nice, dynamic neighborhood, you can start looking in the North University neighborhood. It’s a desirable area close to downtown and the UT campus featuring beautiful historic homes, tree-lined streets and good public schools. The median home value in North University stands at around $446K – significantly under the city average. Other great options would be St. Johns or Coronado Hills neighborhoods, both safe, family friendly places where you can find homes with prices around $440K.
However, if you’re looking for some great amenities and an upscale lifestyle, you’ll have to stretch your budget. Here are some of the best Austin neighborhoods to look for a new home and the price tags you can expect in these areas:
1. Brentwood – $760K
Brentwood’s tree-line streets, bungalow-style homes, and great public and private school options make it an extremely family-friendly neighborhood. It’s located near Brentwood Park, which offers various types of outdoor activities, including playgrounds, tennis courts and a swimming pool. However, Brentwood is not your run-of-the-mill quiet neighborhood: it’s also a trendy one, with many musicians, artists, professors and students living here.
Another charming characteristic of Brentwood is its close-knit community. The neighborhood was created in the 1940s, and many of the original families still live in the area, which helps create an atmosphere of close, neighborly relationships among residents, old and new. Brentwood is also well-known for its old-school burger restaurants and bars, but you can also find ethnic-inspired and fusion eateries.
2. Dawson – $815K
Dawson retains most of the architectural charm of the mid-20th century when many of its homes were built – and many of them feature custom, unique exteriors. The neighborhood, while being relatively quiet and laid-back, is located just a few miles for the downtown area and ensures easy access to numerous entertainment, shopping and dining options. St. Edwards University campus is also nearby. Its convenient location makes it a magnet for various types of residents, from families with children to young professionals and students.
There are multiple schools in the area to choose from, both public and private ones. Dawson Elementary School and San Juan Diego Catholic High School are some of the best-performing in Austin. Also, Dawson has access to several nearby parks, including Barton Springs Belt and Zilker Park. Blunn Creek Natural Preserve is also adjacent to the Dawson neighborhood, and it’s a great spot for hiking.
3. East Cesar Chavez – $835K
East Cesar Chavez neighborhood is an eclectic area where the past meets the present: it still maintains its old town charm, with its Willow Spence Streets Historic District being part of the National Register of Historic Places. At the same time, the area saw a lot of revival in recent years, with new businesses and upscale condos springing up. The food scene is amazing, with everything from family-owned restaurants serving authentic Texan food to fancy fusion eateries established by up-and-coming chefs.
The neighborhood is pretty dynamic, close to the downtown area, and with reliable public transportation, which attracts plenty of young professionals. However, it’s a suitable place for young families also – the residential streets and quiet and peaceful, and there are plenty of spaces for outdoor fun. The Lady Bird Lake, adjacent to East Cesar Chavez, makes for a beautiful strolling spot, and the large community garden located here provides picnic areas and hiking and biking trails.
4. Allandale – $900K
Located just north of downtown, Allandale is a tranquil neighborhood with a suburban feel, even if it’s located pretty close to the downtown area. The house lots are generous, and the housing stock also contains small and midsized homes, along with the more expansive ones, which makes Allandale a good option for various demographics, from young couples and families to empty nesters. Most homes are ranch style, but there are also areas with mid-century architecture. Due to the existence of large home lots mentioned above, many old buildings were torn down and replaced by modernist, contemporary homes.
The local neighborhood association is very active and organizes events such as an annual Forth of July parade, as well as projects destined to improve the community. The public and private schools in the area are well rated – the Liberal Arts & Science Academy, for example, is one of the best public high schools in Texas.
The neighborhood is very walkable, with grocery stores and restaurants scattered throughout it, making it easy for residents to go out on foot, without needing a car, if they want a nice meal or a bit of shopping. Beverly Sheffield Park, Northwest District Park and Northwest Recreation Center provide opportunities for outdoor and indoor exercise & fun.
5. Bouldin Creek – $1.07M
One of the oldest neighborhoods in Austin, Bouldin Creek was created at the beginning of the 20th century – and features numerous historic homes from that period and the following decades. Conveniently located just across the Colorado River from downtown Austin, it perfectly blends the quiet suburban feel with easy access to urban amenities. Two major commercial areas, south First and South Congress, ensure that residents have plenty of shopping and dining options. Entertainment venues such as Palmer Events Center, Auditorium Shores or the Long Center for Performing Arts are within walking distance.
In terms of outdoor fun, Boudin Creek’s central location ensures access to several parks, including Barton Springs Greenbelt, Zilker Park, or the hiking and biking trails at Lady Bird Lake.
Boudin Creek, with its safe, quiet streets, and many generously sized homes, attracts plenty of families with children. However, due to its excellent location and proximity to the downtown area, it’s also populated by many young people that create a hip, vibrant atmosphere.
If you’re planning to move to Austin – or trade your existing home in the city for a better one – you’ll probably need self storage to protect your belongings until the new home is ready. Fortunately, you have plenty of options – there are almost 130 storage facilities in the area. The street rate for a 10’x10’ storage unit in Austin hovers around $122 per month. Should you need a larger one, which can be the case when moving, a 10’x20’ storage unit rents in the area for a little under $200 per month.