I’d be interested in looking into this study, reported by the Statesman and other media outlets, further. I assume the methodology is based on how the market will respond to the influx of a certain number of people at various income levels.
The study looked at the rent forecast between the years 2018 and 2028. According to CoStar, the average Austin rent will go from $1,206 a month this year to $1,450 in 2028. But if Amazon HQ2 settles in the city, the average rent is expected to go from $1,206 to $1,553 during the same period.
What was originally expected to be a 20.2 percent increase will become 28.8 percent, or a $103 monthly surge. The estimated increase applies to apartments of all sizes.
Here’s something else I’d like to see: How much would rents go up based on different levels of housing supply? Or, even more controversially, how much would rents go up based on different zoning scenarios (i.e. how much housing in the urban core would the city allow to be built)?
At the very least, I hope that studies such as this one will deter Austin and other cities from offering Amazon tax breaks or other subsidies.