With some of the most expensive rent in the country, a $1,500 rent budget in Austin won’t get you nearly as far as if you settled down in the Midwest, the South or a smaller Texas city.
According to a RentCafe study comparing how much apartment space $1,500 will get you in the top 100 cities, Austinites can reasonably find a 753-square foot apartment within city limits. Austin ranked 71 on the list with major California cities, New York City and Miami coming in more expensive per square foot.
Venturing to suburbs like Georgetown, Round Rock or Kyle, square footage per dollar is a different story.
So how much apartment space will $1,500 or less get you within Austin city limits? Austonia gathered listings from apartment locators Smart City Locating to curate this list.
$1,179-1,469 | The Violet | 409 East William Cannon Dr.
A $1,500 budget will get you pretty far at The Violet, with much more square footage than the city-wide average, and even more if you have an extra $100 to spare. Though there are smaller and cheaper options at the complex, $1,469 per month will get you an 847-square foot two-bedroom, one-bathroom unrenovated apartment with in-unit laundry and walk-in closets. Just an extra $40 monthly bumps the unit up to two bathrooms.
$1,343-1,500 | Griffis Southpark | 8515 S I-35 Frontage Rd.
If you’re prepared to sign on for a 15-month lease in Southpark Meadows, Griffis Park can get you a studio or larger-than-average one-bedroom. The best option to get the most bang for your buck is the Zilker II floor plan, a one-bedroom and one-bathroom, 868-square foot apartment that you can secure for $1,497.
$1,352 | Flats on San Felipe | 7920 San Felipe Blvd.
Four floor plans fall into the budget at the McNeil-central Flats on San Felipe, ranging from studio to single bedroom options. No matter which you choose, you’ll come in below the city-wide square footage average from 432-646 square feet.
$1,395 | Summit Hyde Park | 5200 N Lamar Blvd.
Coming in with the smallest area at 450 square feet, this one-bedroom, one-bathroom Hyde Park apartment is in a great location for the price. Signing for 15 months will get you the best price, several hundred dollars off per month. For an extra $28 monthly, a 645 square foot apartment enters the budget.
$1,185-1,400 | Monterey Ranch | 4701 Staggerbrush Rd.
A $1,500 budget will get you access to five floor plans at the Sunset Valley complex but the most floor space can be found in The Brodie Classic, with a modest 697 square feet. With one bedroom and one bathroom, the unit is pricier than some of its other counterparts but comes with in-unit laundry and a large balcony with outdoor storage.
$1,417 | Highline | 13201 Legendary Dr.
You won’t find an apartment for less than $1,500 at Highline but with one month free prorated across the whole year, you can live in either The Carnegie or The Chrylser floor plan. The McNeil-area apartments are on the small side, ranging from 668-750 square feet, but come with in-unit laundry and large balconies to enjoy.
$1,410-1,475 | Bell Southpark | 10300 S I-35 Frontage Rd.
This Southpark Meadows complex, located far south with easy access to I-35, has several floor plans that fit the budget. Ranging from 587-672 square feet, Bell Southpark’s apartments fall below the average size but if you’re willing to shell out an extra $35, you can land a unit at 768 square feet.
$1,445-1,475 | Agave South Congress | 625 E. Stassney Ln.
Located far on South Congress, Agave’s A1 and A2 units fit the budget and can get you the space you need. From 700-789 square feet, the one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartments fall right around the average, but an extra $70 monthly brings the space up to 898 square feet. Agave is currently offering $500 off the first month of rent!
$1,485 | Henley Riverside | 6107 E Riverside Dr.
Centrally located along East Riverside, Henley has only one floor plan that fits the budget and it’s one of the smallest on the list but closest to Central Austin. With one bedroom, one bathroom and in-unit laundry, the complex is currently offering $500 off the first month of rent at this 591 square foot apartment.
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What would Austin be without its City Hall, Central Library or iconic 360 Bridge?
For 50 years, Austin developer Hensel Phelps has shaped Austin with city-focused landmark developments across the metro, gracing the top spot on Austin Business Journal's best general contracting list for years in a row.
In 1972, the company broke ground for the first time in Austin with the Town Lake, or Mopac Bridge project, connecting the developing areas of West Austin to the rest of the city.
Hensel Phelps broke ground for its first project, the Mopac Bridge, in 1972. (Texas Freeway)
The Town Lake Bridge was one of eight available bridges in Austin at the time of construction. (Hensel Phelps)
Since then, it's headed several projects, including:
- The Pennybacker (360) Bridge: After the Town Lake Bridge success, the company set out to build the world's second cable-supported bridge. Newcomers and native Austinites alike take to the nearby 360 Bridge Overlook Trail to see sunset views of the cliffside, copper-colored landmark.
- Dell Diamond Baseball Stadium: Since it opened in 2000, the Round Rock Express, the metro's Triple-A- Minor League baseball team, has held countless games at this 85-acre, 11,000+ capacity stadium.
- Samsung Fab 2 Chip Fabrication Facility: When Hensel Phelps helped Samsung with its second semiconductor project in the area in 2007, the grand opening ceremony was commemorated with the University of Texas Longhorn Band, UT Cheerleaders, pop singer LeAnn Rimes and a bald eagle to boot.
- Austin Central Public Library: With six floors, a rooftop garden and plenty of window views of downtown, Austin's Central Library project quickly became a central hub for the city when it opened in 2017.
- Darrell K. Royal-Memorial Stadium: The company has had a hand in all major expansions of the Texas Longhorns' longtime football stadium.
Austin's new Central Public Library first opened in 2017. (Hensel Phelps)
Through dozens of projects dotted throughout the region, Hensel Phelps' Southwest district manager and Vice President Brad Winans said the company's focus has always been the public sector.
"That's where we think we support and develop the city, from truly grassroots, truly local support and involvement in the community," Winans said. "Our job is to develop things that truly support the city, not specific to one business."
Austin's City Hall was constructed with native Texas limestone and built with sustainability in mind. (Hensel Phelps)
A University of Texas graduate and 30-year employee, Winans said that the company's 2004 City Hall project felt most impactful to the community. The building, built from both native limestone and recycled materials, embraced sustainability and high-tech qualities, including solar panels in its garage, while maintaining a classic Texan identity.
"It's a very hard industry to be a part of, but it's also very rewarding," Winans said. "For me, City Hall means a lot because the back in the day, we called it 'The Jewel,' and so it's great to be part of that."
The company has constructed at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport in the past and will continue to help expand the airport. (Hensel Phelps)
With 50 years under its belt, Winans said the company will continue to work on the "endless" development opportunities coming to the city, from expansion of the rapidly-growing Austin-Bergstrom International Airport to projects in the tech sector.
"Everybody seems to want to come to Austin," Winans said. "It'd be nice if things did kind of spread out a little bit, but right now there's still a very eager push to develop in and around Central Texas and I think (Hensel Phelps) will be a major part of that."
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Starting the next season for the San Antonio Spurs, you’ll see an Austin-based financial tech company on the team’s uniforms.
Self Financial announced a partnership with the Spurs this week, in which a patch with their logo will replace where Frost's was on the jersey.
RC Buford, chief executive officer for Spurs Sports & Entertainment released a statement on the partnership, which will involve community engagement. The organizations are launching an annual $10,000 award that will be presented to a leader of a local nonprofit or community impact organization.
“Self builds credit, the Spurs build talent and both build dreams,” Buford said.
“Our partnership will draw parallels between people looking to build credit and a talented young group on the basketball court committed to building a championship team. We believe the Self-branded Spurs jersey will become a symbol of this mission—self-improvement in pursuit of building dreams.”
This trails another announcement earlier this year from Self as the official credit building sponsor of the Moody Center.
At the beginning of the year, the team of nearly 300 employees switched to a new office at 901 E. 6th St. to accommodate the growing team.
Priding itself on helping people build their credit, Self launched in 2015 after CEO James Garvey went through his own credit mishap. Automatic payments on his credit card weren’t set up correctly. Months passed, causing his credit score to dip.
The Self team set up credit builder plans to help people budget and meet their financial goals. Here’s how it works: plans range from small to extra large, with the small requiring $25 a month for two years and the largest $150 a month for a year. With that, users can track their credit score and automate payments with the option to cancel anytime.
Currently, Self has more than a million active customers, and Texas is its top market.
Self is working with Spurs guard Josh Primo as a brand ambassador. In 2021 at 18 years old, Primo moved to the U.S. from Canada and became the youngest San Antonio Spurs player ever.
“As a young international player, Josh has no credit history in the US, and represents millions of young people who need to build credit and are working hard to achieve their dreams and goals,” Garvey told Austonia via email. “We’re excited to work with him as he gets started building credit and he continues to build his career.”
On Thursday, Self will be the presenting partner for the Spurs 2022 NBA Draft festivities, which will include official watch parties in both San Antonio and Austin.
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