Austin v. Nashville: Where to Invest?
Nashville and Austin are two of the most popular real estate markets in the country in 2021. New business, jobs, and people are moving to these cities in droves every year. Economic opportunity, combined with good weather, a fun atmosphere, and affordable cost of living, has made these cities all-stars. But which one – Nashville or Austin – will deliver better real estate growth and returns into the future? This video uses deep data from the US Census, the BLS, and Zillow to answer that question.
Job Growth: Both Nashville and Austin are growing jobs at a much faster rate than the rest of the country. And they’ve both rebounded solidly from the COVID recession. However, Austin’s job growth wins out, at a dazzling +15% from 2016 to 2021. Simply put – there’s no area in the country with a faster-growing economy than Austin. Winner: Austin
Income/Wages: Once again, both Nashville and Austin have higher wages than the US average. Austin’s are about 3-5% higher than Nashville’s. But Nashville is catching up! As its economy has matured (Alliance Bernstein & Amazon relocations) it has started paying higher wages to its population. Winner: Tie
Affordability: A home buyer or real estate investor will need to pay significantly more – upwards of 25% more – for a property in Austin. That makes it harder for home buyers and apartment investors to compete. Moreover, the Price / Rent Ratio in Austin is much higher than Nashville, indicating that investors will need to accept lower returns. Winner: Nashville
Political Climate: Despite their similarities in terms of growth, weather, and culture, Nashville and Austin share one key difference: politics. Nashville is a fairly Republican metro, while Austin is very liberal (and becoming increasingly liberal). As a result of its increasing Democrat dominance, Austin’s city council has started to enact some perplexing reforms that will likely damage growth in the long run. Winner: Nashville