Recent Headlines

Housing and Planning Committee Grapples With How To Prioritize Code Amendments

Date: May 25, 2023

Members of City Council’s Housing and Planning Committee grappled during a Tuesday briefing with how to best approach moving forward on a set of amendments to the city’s Land Development Code.

The discussion occurred at the committee’s May 23 special called meeting, during which it received a briefing from staff on a plan for prioritizing the amendments. The group of city departments that put together the plan is known as the Land Development Code Cabinet, and includes representatives from the...

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Multifamily Rent Growth Returns to Pre-Pandemic Averages

Date: May 25, 2023, a commercial real estate data and listings platform, recently published a report illustrating recent slowdowns in multifamily rent growth, where they took place, and why the slowdowns occurred. The data highlights where multifamily rent growth increased, as well.

As a consequence of falling consumer confidence, seasonal shifts in rent, and rising multifamily vacancies, multifamily rent growth has fallen back to pre-pandemic averages on a national scale.

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A TOUGH JOB: Walter Moreau breaks his back to keep Austin affordable

Date: May 24, 2023

Walter Moreau is trying to tackle what's arguably the biggest threat to Austin: not enough affordable places to live. This is part of our special coverage of the 2023 Commercial Real Estate Awards.

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Bills to build more homes — and lower housing costs — fail quietly in last days of Texas Legislature

Date: May 24, 2023

sweeping agenda to slow Texas’ substantial rise in housing costs by reining in local regulations that opponents say get in the way of building new homes has died quietly in the Texas Legislature.

And when it came to a crucial vote this week, Democrats — who represent the state’s biggest urban areas, where home prices and rents are highest — accounted for most of the opposition.

Although Texas builds more homes than any other state, it’s not building enough to keep up...

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Austin Leading the Nation in Multifamily Construction Activity

Date: May 18, 2023

Austin had the hottest multifamily construction activity in the country, counting 61,873 units underway as of May 2023. According to Multihousing News, they barely beat out Dallas, who has just 1,341 short of Austin. In addition, the metro had more than 106,000 units in the planning and permitting stages.

Austin developers are building larger communities compared to other metros in this ranking, as well.

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Texas GOP’s Broadest Attempt Yet To Erode Blue Cities’ Power Gets One Step Closer to Becoming Law
Date: May 15, 2023
Republican state leaders’ broadest effort to prevent Democratic-run cities and counties from enacting progressive policies — which could drastically limit local government’s ability to make rules on areas like labor rights, drought restrictions and even noise complaints — is one step closer to becoming law.
By a 18-13 vote mostly along party lines, the Texas Senate gave final approval Tuesday to House Bill 2127. The bill will now head back to the House to hash out changes made in the Senate...

City to Calculate Housing Gains Possible With New Building Height Compatibility Rules
Date: May 8, 2023 
City staff members are moving ahead with analyzing how a change to area building height compatibility requirements could disrupt the local housing market. The analysis, which was called for as part of a December resolution by City Council that was intended to lessen restrictions on taller developments near single-family homes, could be disrupted by state lawmakers who appear determined to wipe away many such height restrictions in major cities across the state.

Council Votes to Get Rid of Parking Requirements
Date: May 5, 2023
City Council on Thursday directed city staff to eliminate parking requirements from the city’s land use regulations for new residential and retail developments outside the central business district.
The city eliminated downtown parking requirements, except for spaces for those with disabilities, in 2013. Thursday’s resolution would not change Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.
District 9 Council Member Zo...

To Tackle High Housing Costs, Texas Lawmakers Push to Build More Homes
Date: March 18, 2023
As Texas contends with historically high home prices and rents, state legislators might try to ease the affordability crisis with proposals rooted in a simple idea: build more homes and costs will come down.
Texas lawmakers have introduced several bills this legislative session intended to speed up the construction of new houses and apartments. Some would allow builders to use less land to build single-family homes, help them get local permits faster and make it more difficult for...

Property Owners in Travis County Will Be Getting Their 2023 Appraisal Notices Soon
Date: April 17, 2023
If you own property in Travis County, your notice of appraised value for the 2023 tax year is either on the way or will be soon. The Travis Central Appraisal District has begun the process of mailing out 434,362 of the notices, which include the market value assigned to each property as of Jan. 1 as well as the taxable value of the property based on exemptions. According to the appraisal district, Travis County’s appraisal roll has increased 13 percent, to $485 billion, led by big increases in the value of...

Austin ISD Looking to Fill Over 200 Vacancies for 2023-24 Year, Holding Career Fair Saturday
Date: April 11, 2023
The Austin Independent School District is holding a teacher career fair Saturday, April 15 to fill some of its nearly 225 openings for the 2023-24 school year.
The career fair will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Austin Convention Center. Those interested can RSVP online and are encouraged to apply for a teacher position before the career fair.
Arnoldo Gutiérrez, Assistant Superintendent of Human Capital for Austin ISD, told KXAN that...

Texas State Bill Targets Local Tenant Protections Against Evictions
Date: April 5, 2023
A bill before the Texas state legislature would block city and county governments from issuing new laws to restrict evictions or enforce existing local regulations, potentially affecting thousands of renters in Austin, Dallas and beyond.
The proposal comes in response to ordinances passed by those cities as well as San Marcos, a fast-growing Austin suburb, that require landlords to give tenants additional notice before they file..

Is Relief in Sight for Austin-area Apartment Renters? What You Need To Know.
Date: March 27, 2023
Renters have faced sharply rising rents for quite some time in the Austin-area market.
Rates hit all-time highs last year, with apartment dwellers in some cases seeing their monthly rents spike by a few hundred dollars.
This year, however, might bring some price relief for renters as the pace of job growth slows and the supply of apartment units coming online exceeds demand, experts say...