The last decade has been an expensive one for Texans, with the median price of homes soaring 76% statewide. While every Texas metro area is going up in price, only one can be crowned most expensive: Austin.
A new report from the Texas Association of Realtors showed that houses in the Lone Star State have been increasing in demand from 2011-2020, especially in the capital city.
In the last decade, median home prices in the Austin-Round Rock metro shot up by 82%, starting at $189,000 in 2011 and closing out at $343,914 in 2020. Austin was the only metro area to break an average price of $300,000, though Midland came close at $299,000.
(Texas Real Estate)
Not only are you paying a premium for the luscious Hill Country location, but you're also paying more per square foot. Between 2011 and 2020, the price per square foot went up 78%, from $115 to $205.
And you'd better be quick to close—while you might have had time to mull it over in 2011, with an average of 84 days on the market, it was a different story in 2020, as homes only spent around 45 days on the market.
Although $109.1 billion worth of homes were sold in the Austin area in the last decade, the city actually didn't see the greatest price increase. The honor of biggest price jump goes to Dallas, where median prices rose by 94%, from $149,900 to $291,000.
Austin also didn't see as dramatic a jump as other areas of the state—Sherman residents, in North Texas, saw price increases across the board. Median home prices jumped 130%, from $87,000 to $200,000; price per square foot is up by 107%, from $58 to $121, and home sales are up by 123%.
Austin originalists rejoice—moving to Texas may have become trendy over the last ten years but in terms of the four largest metros in Texas, Austin fell second to last for the number of home sales. Dallas sold nearly a million homes over the last ten years, Houston sold 811,105, Austin sold only 315,946 and closing out the list, San Antonio sold 292,322.
If you're looking for a cheaper place to settle down, take a look at Wichita Falls. With a median home price of $145,000, the savings can't be beat.
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After months of speculation, a new report says political personality Beto O'Rourke is mulling a run for Texas governor that he will announce later this year.
Sources tell Axios the former congressman is preparing his campaign for the 2022 election, where he will likely vie for the position against incumbent Gov. Greg Abbott. The only other candidate that has announced he will take on Abbott for governor is former Texas GOP Chairman Allen West—no Democrats have announced they are running as of yet.
"No decision has been made," Axios reports David Wysong, O'Rourke's former House chief of staff and a longtime adviser, said. "He has been making and receiving calls with people from all over the state."
A new poll from The Dallas Morning News and University of Texas at Tyler shows O'Rourke is narrowing the gap between himself and Abbott's prospects for governor. In the poll, 37% said they'd vote for O'Rourke over Abbott, while 42% said they'd vote for Abbott.
Abbott has been in the hot seat due to his handling of COVID-19 and the signing of landmark legislation into law, including new abortion and voting rights laws; 54% of poll respondents voted they think the state is headed in the "wrong direction." Still, Texas hasn't had a Democrat as governor since the 90s.
O'Rourke's people-focused approach to the 2018 Senator race, which he lost to Sen. Ted Cruz, gave him a widespread following and many hoped he'd throw his hat into the ring since he said he was considering it earlier this year.
"We hope that he's going to run," Gilberto Hinojosa, the state chair of the Democratic Party, told Axios. "We think he'll be our strongest candidate. We think he can beat Abbott because he's vulnerable."
Austin rapper Jordi Esparza may not have won the 2021 Red Bull Batalla, the world's largest Spanish freestyle rap competition, but for a spirited two rounds, the 22-year old Mexican native looked like he had every right to.
On Saturday evening in Los Angeles, the event itself looked like Cobra Kai meets Star Search with graphics adding a very Batman Beyond aesthetic. Over a dozen rappers hoping to represent the U.S. in the international round of the competition took to the stage with in-your-face jabs at accents, sexual orientation and odors, among other things.
This was Esparza's second rodeo; he had placed third at the 2020 National Finals, automatically securing him a spot this year.
However, things were different this year. He was not nervous about the contest. Unlike in 2020, when he made his Red Bull Batalla debut, the anxiety of the event led him to "feeling so bad."
Affecting a casual calm, the locally-based landscaper said he just felt "so relaxed, so happy" and primarily wanted to "enjoy everything."
Choosing his first-round opponent, Esparza, whose stage name is Jordi, elected to go against LA-based Boss.
Esparza freestyled an attack on his opponent's weight and cholo style of dress.
Boss—bracketing his Latin freestyle with English appeals to the crowd—mocked Jordi's lack of education, made fun of how clean Jordi's shoes looked and suggested that Jordi just came back from a Footlocker.
That first round went to Jordi.
But his next opponent Eckonn would prove to be his undoing.
Eckonn compared Jordi to Hannah Montana, while Jordi soulfully explained that he had learned from the best.
Esparza's verbal dexterity is matched by a rattling rhythm and a game face that is as mawkish as it is mockish. The overall effect is that of an underdog with bite.
Eckonn beat Esparza in that round with the overall championship going to Palm Beach-based rapper Reverse.
However, Esparza was just happy to be there. He recently told Austonia going to the finals again was a dream come true—a pinnacle that he said he won't know how to top.
With his nimble jabs and sneaky prowess, honed from pop culture and the swagger of a young working man hungry to be more, Jordi Esparza is just getting started.