Austin Housing Costs Widen Gap Between Rich And Poor: Report

‘The cost of putting a roof over one’s head is increasingly driving an even bigger gap between the haves and have-nots,’ analysts noted.
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AUSTIN, TX — A new study exploring links between housing markets and rising income inequality shows that in Austin, households at the 90th percentile were earning nearly 10 times more than those at the 10th percentile — with trends in housing costs widening the gap.

The Apartment List study shows that while incomes are growing fastest for the 1 percent, lower-income households are paying more for their housing than they used to. In Austin metro, housing costs for those earning more than the national median have increased 13 percent, the analysis showed. Housing costs for those earning less, on the other hand, have increased 20 percent, according to the data.

The figures are from 2017 data, the most recent available.

Bottom line: "The cost of putting a roof over one’s head is increasingly driving an even bigger gap between the haves and have-nots," researchers concluded. The report features local data on the evolution of housing inequality. Among its other key findings:

Despite the unequal growth in housing costs, local income inequality in Austin has actually decreased 10% over the past decade.Lowest earners in the Austin, TX metro make far less than the median family, but pay comparable rents. Even though the poorest quarter of households earn a full 73% less than the median, their housing costs are virtually the same.Renters have enjoyed strong national income growth over the past decade, but rents have also steadily risen. Monthly housing costs for homeowners, on the other hand, have fallen. "This divide partially explains the growing rift between the rich and poor," analysts observed.

To read the full report, click here.

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