When Justin Brooks started looking for a home to purchase in Austin, a handful of houses would pop up within reach of his budget, which was about $250,000 to $300,000.
Just six months later, Brooks said, he’s finding that comparable homes in the areas he’s looking are mostly priced at the upper end of that range — while homes listed below that amount “are fast disappearing.”
“Everyone is buying. It’s been nuts,” said Brooks, 36, who works at Resurrection Tattoo in East Austin. “I don’t like to overpay for things, and especially not for the largest purchase of my life. I don’t want to be house poor. I know what I can afford. I can’t get into a bidding match.”
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Brooks’ experience is not uncommon. With housing demand still far outpacing supply and construction costs at elevated levels, home prices have skyrocketed in Central Texas, housing industry experts say.
In May, the median sales price within Austin’s city limits — meaning half the houses sold for more than that amount and half sold for less — was $566,500, according to the Austin Board of Realtors. That’s a jump of $105,000 just since December.
Those kinds of prices have left many would-be buyers dismayed and wondering if they have been completely priced out of the Austin market.
“I think it’s safe to say that the new entry-level home in the city of Austin is at least…