Cost of living overview

Texas consistently ranks as one of the nation's most favorable business climates based on its low tax burden and competitive regulatory environment. In Texas, aggregate costs for real estate, energy, wages and taxes are below most states in the country. Texas features no personal or corporate income tax, and overall the state has one of the lowest state and local tax burdens in the nation, ranking 32nd among the 50 states in taxes paid per capita and ranking 38th in taxes paid per $1,000 of personal income.

Compared to other major business centers, Austin is well known for offering affordable living. The National Association of Realtors reports that the median home price in Austin was $367,100 in 2020 while the national median was $299,900. The National Association of Home Builders, which also produces median home price estimates, has a narrower difference between Austin and the nation. Their fourth quarter 2020 estimate for Austin is $338,000 and the national estimate is $320,000. NAHB estimates that 63.6% of homes sold in Austin are affordable to households earning Austin's median family income – above the 58.3% national affordability rate.

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Cost of Living Index, 2021 (U.S.=100)

Austin MSA
Composite Index
Grocery Items (17.26%)
Housing (30.90%)
Utilities (10.21%)
Transportation (7.54%)
Healthcare (4.42%)
Misc. (29.67%)

Source: The Council for Community & Economic Research, Cost of Living Index.