Austin, Texas, leads the charge as one of the U.S.’ fastest-growing economies, making it ripe for commercial real estate interests.
The Texas state capital has witnessed a tide of growth from workers and businesses, especially in the technology sector. Commercial real estate investors and tenants have flocked to Austin’s promising economy and favorable investment returns as the city grows. Crexi’s CRE marketplace connects interested parties to hundreds of available Austin commercial properties, providing them with the best tech tools to analyze and invest.
Austin brokers and those representing Austin listings can harness Crexi’s powerful technology suite to manage leads and deftly navigate properties from list to close. To date, Crexi has empowered brokers to transact over $440 billion in commercial assets, representing more than $5 trillion in property value.
Crexi supports Austin, Round Rock, Georgetown, Lakeway, Buda, and the surrounding communities as the nation’s fastest-growing online CRE platform.
The State of Austin Commercial Real Estate
Austin, the capital of Texas and the 11th largest city in the United States, is a bustling metropolitan area home to over 2.2 million people. With its lively music scene and thriving nightlife, it’s no surprise that Austin has become a hub for businesses and entrepreneurs of all sizes. Those seeking investments can look no further. As the second-fastest growing city in the nation, investing in Austin commercial real estate is an attractive option.
Austin Regional Breakdown
Austin is the second fastest-growing city in the U.S. due to an influx of high-tech companies, venture capital, pro-business government, and population growth. The metro area is ranked #1 for millennial population growth, with Downtown Austin’s population soaring by nearly 80% over the past ten years:
- Austin is home to over 964,000 in the city and nearly 2.3 million in the metropolitan area.
- According to the most recent census report, the city’s population grew by 22% from 2010 to 2021.
- The population of Travis County (where Austin is the county seat) soared by 27% over the same period.
- Austin is a millennial magnet, with the millennial population in the metro area growing by more than any other city last year, according to the Austin Business Journal.
- The population of Downtown Austin surged by 79% from 2010 to 2020, with real estate developers bulking up on housing projects.
- 50% of the residents hold a bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree, about 1.5 times higher than the rate in Texas.
- The median age in Austin is 35.9, with 47% of the population between the ages of 20 and 49.
Austin Job Market
Austin has become a hub for job creation in the United States, with a growth rate of 16% from 2016 to 2021, compared to the national average of only 1.8%. A report from KVUE notes that Austin is “the No. 1 metro in the U.S. for job creation right now.” Furthermore, WalletHub ranks Austin among the top 20 cities to find a job in 2023, ahead of larger metros like Atlanta and Boston.
- Nearly 1.4 million are employed in the Austin metropolitan area, driving unemployment down to just 2.7%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (December 2022).
- Job sectors reporting the most robust growth include professional and business services, manufacturing, information, leisure, and hospitality.
- GDP for the Austin-Round Rock MSA is nearly $193.8 billion, doubling over the past ten years, based on the most recent data from the St. Louis Fed.
- Key industries in Austin are advanced manufacturing, clean technology, corporate H.Q.s and regional offices, creative and digital media technology, data management, financial services, life sciences, and space technology.
- Best colleges and universities in the Austin area include the University of Texas-Austin, Texas State University, Southwestern University, and St. Edward’s University, according to Niche.com.
- Companies in Austin employing over 6,000 include Amazon, Apple, Dell Technologies, IBM Corporation, Ascension Seton, the City of Austin, and the Federal Government.
- Austin’s strategic location in Central Texas, where Interstate 35 and a network of U.S. and state highways intersect, makes it an ideal city for material distribution and business travel via land and air transportation.
Austin Industrial Market
The Austin industrial market had a stellar year, breaking yearly records in net absorption and deliveries under construction, according to the Q4 2022 report from Newmark. With 900,392 square feet of quarterly net absorption, the market saw an all-time high of 14.2 million square feet of deliveries, outpacing demand by 2.1 million.
Overall asking rents stayed steady at $12.09/S.F. with 15.3 million square feet under construction, fueling expectations that supply will exceed demand in 2023, potentially leading to higher vacancy rates. Still, the outlook remains positive, given the synergy between Samsung’s and Tesla’s expansion plans for the coming year.
- Total industrial inventory: 118,334,002 SF
- Average asking rent: $12.09/S.F. per year NNN
- Vacancy rate: 4.9%
- Absorption: 12,167,145 SF in 2022
- Key lease transactions by tenant: Valex 189,280 SF, Applied Materials 170,100 SF, EOS 68,040 SF, Frito Lay 53,232 SF
- New construction: 15.3 8 million under construction, an increase of 18.6% year over year
- Investment sales trends: $345.4 million (through Q3 2022) year to date, market cap rate 6.3% (NAR)
- Largest industrial submarkets: Northeast, Southeast, Southwest Hays, North
Austin Office Market
As the fastest-growing office market in the country, since the pandemic began, Austin has seen a 28 percent increase in office-using jobs in the last 30 months. To keep up with this growth, developers added 3.1 million square feet of new office space to the city last year, increasing its office stock by 3.6 percent.
Despite recent upheavals in the tech sector, including layoffs and office downsizing, Austin’s office market continues to thrive. Here are the most recent Austin office market statistics, according to Cushman & Wakefield:
- Total office inventory: 62,478,535 SF
- Overall average asking rents: $45.58/S.F. per year, full-service gross
- Vacancy rate: 21.8% market total
- Absorption: 46,103 SF in 2022
- Key leases by tenant: Vista Equity 220,000 SF, AMD 135,250 SF, Kirkland & Ellis 130,000 SF, TikTok 127,000 SF
- New construction: 4,911,893 SF under construction with 2,437,106 SF delivered in 2022
- Investment sales trends: $291.7 million in acquisitions in Q3 2022, market cap rate 5.8% (NAR Commercial Metro Market Reports Q3 2022)
- Largest office submarkets: Far Northwest, Central Business District, Southwest, Northwest
Austin Retail Market
The Austin retail market saw increased activity in Q4 2022, with vacancy levels only rising by ten bps. According to CBRE’s Q4 2022 Retail Market report, a surge in tourism drove economic growth and encouraged new construction projects, adding 1.9M sq. ft. of retail space to the pipeline.
Additionally, 14 projects totaling 161K sq. ft. were completed in Q4, as demand rose for leisure and hospitality services; over 27K jobs have been added since January, a 17.1% YOY increase according to BLS figures. Here are the most recent retail stats and trends for Austin from CBRE:
- Total retail inventory: 116,958,627 SF (NAR Commercial Report)
- Average asking rent: $22.20/S.F. per year, NNN, with market rents growing by 3.5% year over year
- Vacancy rate: 3.3%
- Absorption: 634,510 SF year to date
- New construction: 496,761 SF delivered in 2022
- Investment sales trends: $174.1 million in acquisitions in Q3 2022, average sales price $334/S.F., cap rate 5.8% (NAR)
- Submarkets with highest occupancy: Bastrop County 99.1%, Caldwell County 99.0%, Central Business District 99.0%
Austin Multifamily Market
Multifamily developers kept bringing new Austin apartment projects online in Q3, leading to a 50-basis-point rise in vacancy. Despite rising vacancies, rent prices continued to trend higher, with asking rents up 2% QoQ to $1,546/mo and 12.9% YoY.
Multi-family transactions slowed by 35%, while the median sale price was up 7% at $221,700/unit (2022). These are the most recent Austin multifamily market statistics for Q3 2022 from Northmarq and CensusReporter:
- Total housing units: 996,718
- Renter occupied: 41%
- Multi-unit inventory: 408,654 units
- Asking rent: $1,546
- Rent growth: 12.9% year over year
- Vacancy rate: 5.1%, a decrease of .60% year over year
- New construction: 6,183 units delivered (through Q3 2022), with 20,899 units under construction
- Investment sales trends: $221,700 per unit, up 7% from 2021, with cap rates averaging 4.0%
- Per capita income: $47,161, about 40% higher than the state of Texas and 25% higher than the amount in the U.S.
- Median age: 35.9 years, about 90% of the figure in the U.S.
Get more in-depth market data with Crexi Intelligence.
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