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More Austinites back in the office than other major US cities

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Downtown feels like itself these days as more Austinites are back in the office. But other cities can't say the same.


According to data from office security firm Kastle Systems, Austin offices are 59% occupied based on card swipes into corporate offices and campuses. Not far behind, Dallas is at 49% occupied, while the largest 10 markets, including New York and Los Angeles, are around 40% occupied.

While some might think fancy buildings and a fun downtown could be the reason for Austin's successful return to the office, the Wall Street Journal reports it is likely due to multiple reasons.

  • Austin drawing young professionals in office roles of sales, marketing and business development.
  • About a third of Austin residents being millennials.
  • The average Austin commute isn't as bad as other major cities.

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A mortgage banker walks us through the math on purchasing a 'mid-price' Austin home
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So you want to buy a house?

To anyone trying to get on the "housing ladder," it's been a discouraging couple of years as prices skyrocketed in a market crowded with buyers bidding against each other for just about any available home.

Things may be calming down, with the Austin Board of REALTORS reporting fewer sales and more available homes this summer.

Mortgage rates have more than doubled in the last year, from around 3% to well over 6% on a 30-year fixed rate loan, getting even more of a bump this week after the Federal Reserve raised bank rates on Wednesday.

So how affordable are homes right now? That, of course, depends on what you want and how much you're able or willing to pay, but here are some rough estimates of what a typical buyer would pay to buy a $650,000 home, which would be considered "mid-price" in today's market.

Mortgage banker Chris Holland (NMLS 211033) of Austin's Sente Mortgage ran some numbers for Austonia to illustrate a typical purchase.

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