Over $634 million was pumped into the Austin economy from international homebuyers from April 2020 to March 2021, a period that saw unprecedented growth in the housing market despite the pandemic.
According to the 2021 Central Texas International Homebuyers Report by the Austin Board of Realtors, the top international buyers were from five countries: Mexico (14%), China (14%), Canada (6%), India (6%) and Armenia (5%).
As the housing market reached new highs foreign investors continued to show interest in the area, according to ABoR president Susan Horton, although the number was significantly lower than the year prior due to travel restrictions from the pandemic.
"Even in the midst of a global pandemic, international homebuyers continued to invest in residential real estate in the Austin area—a testament to the strength, popularity and resiliency of our local housing market," Horton said. "The bottom line is that Austin continues to attract people from all over the world, and we welcome them to our community whether they are looking to relocate or invest."
Horton said that international homebuyers showed new interest in townhomes and condominiums as vacation homes. Around 3% of all sales dollar volume came from foreign-born buyers, who frequently bought homes $100,000 over the median price during that period. The median home price for international buyers was $428,100, over $75,000 more than the median sales price of international buyers nationwide and slightly lower than the median price of homes in the metro as of September 2021 ($450,000).
As more companies, including Tesla, Oracle and dozens of startups, begin to invest in the area, so did international customers—more buyers looked for investment properties and rentals than in the first International Homebuyers Report in 2020.
That international interest was reflected in native Austin buyers as well. Nearly 65% of the 2,000 Central Texas realtors surveyed, said they worked with an American client to look for properties abroad, well above the national average (11%).
With the pandemic bringing remote workers in and out of Central Texas and continued global interest in the Austin area, Horton said local realtors will continue to see that trend increase.
"With the added job creation by major corporations such as Tesla, Amazon and Apple, Austin's reputation as a global leader in tech innovation will only continue to grow," Horton said. "The number of Central Texas realtorswho specialize in international real estate is growing equally as rapidly, and it will be exciting to see Austin's impact on the international housing market as the world begins to open up again."
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Come later tonight, Texans will officially know who will be on the ballot for the November general election.
In Texas, candidates must win at least 50% of the vote to be elected. In the March primaries where the top candidate only received a plurality of votes, a runoff is being held. Voters will decide on the candidates to represent their party in the November general election. Just like the March primaries, voters will choose which party they'd like to vote in. Then based on location, each ballot will show which races are in a runoff.
Here's everything you need to know before heading to the polls.
Know before you go
The registration period for this election has passed; check if you're registered to vote here.
The polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. As long as you're in line by 7 p.m., you can vote.
You'll need a valid photo ID to present once you're at a polling location.
Here is where you can vote in Travis County.
View wait times at polling locations here.
Races to watch in Travis County:
- Republican: Incumbent Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick won his primary in March.
- Democratic: Mike Collier and Michelle Beckley are vying to be the Democrat candidate on the ballot.
- Republican: Incumbent AG Ken Paxton is fighting for his seat against George P. Bush.
- Democratic: Rochelle Garza and Joe Jaworski will face off to be the Democratic candidate in this race.
View all the statewide races on the ballot here.
U.S. House of Representatives
View the district you live in here.
- Republican: Incumbent Chip Roy won his primary in March.
- Democratic: Claudia Andreana Zapata and Ricardo Villarreal are hoping to secure this vote.
- Republican: Dan McQueen and Michael Rodriguez are going head to head to be the Republican candidate in this race.
- Democratic: Former Austin council member Greg Casar won this race in March.
- Republican: Ellen Troxclair and Justin Berry are vying to be the Republican candidate in this race.
- Democratic: Pam Baggett won her primary in March.
A big-money bird has been stolen from a northwest Austin pet store.
Kelsey Fernandez, the owner of a $6,000 sulphur and citron-crested cockatoo named Lemon Grab, said the emotional support animal was taken from the Gallery of Pets store, around closing time on Sunday.
"I've struggled with mental illness my entire life, and ever since I got him I've been doing so much better," Fernandez told Austonia.
The $6k cockatoo is young and will starve unless he is fed by hand, Fernandez said.
In a surveillance video, a man appears to have something under his shirt as he and two others exit the business around the same time the store believes that Lemon Grab was stolen.
Fernandez said a report has been filed with the Austin Police Department with an $1,000 reward for his return.
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