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Houstonians top list of renters moving to Austin as prices soar

While California-linked companies like Tesla and Oracle are ditching Silicon Valley for Central Texas, it is Texans more than Californians driving the rental market.

AUSTIN, Texas — The biggest source of prospective renters for Austin’s booming rental market comes from Houston, according to newly released data from Apartment List.

While California-linked companies like Tesla and Oracle are ditching Silicon Valley for Central Texas, Californians and people from other states do not top the list.

Houstonians made up a fifth of Austin apartment searches from July 1 to Sept. 30, followed by Dallasites with 12% and San Antonians at just below 10%, according to the data.

San Francisco and San Jose made up around 2% of Austin apartment searches, while Los Angeles accounted for around the same percentage.   

Data from Realtor.com showed rental prices in Travis County hit a median price of $1,695 in September, a higher year-on-year growth than any other tech center, including Boston, Chicago, Denver and Seattle. But Austin’s median rental price was still cheaper than the other 10 localities, and well below the $3,450 price in San Francisco.

Austin’s home prices continue to soar as professional transplants opt to buy instead of rent. A third-quarter report from Texas Realtors showed the median house price is up to $465,000, jumping nearly 33% compared to last year.

Apartment List data also revealed that Austinites looking to rent elsewhere are looking to San Antonio, with around 30% looking for apartments there, compared to 5% looking in Houston. Meanwhile, Dallas residents make up 14% of searchers in the Houston area, a jump from 8% last quarter.

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