The Rent Is Already Too Damn High

If you haven’t been following the news two apartment complexes in my neighborhood have been literally falling down. They are the Las Palmas and Wood Ridge apartment complexes. I haven’t met anyone who lives in the area who was surprised by this. Most just thought it would have happened to some of the complexes that appear to be in worse condition (Canyon Oaks I’m looking at you).

Thankfully no one has been hurt yet, but these complexes allow for an illustration in how housing prices work in Austin. A lot of people in Austin seem to think building new expensive condos raise housing prices. But these complexes show that isn’t the case.

The estimated monthly rent for Las Palmas is between $600-700/month. Wood Ridge is $680-860/month. Think about that. These are places that are literally falling down, and yet they can still charge 40% of the cost of one of those luxury rentals on Rainey Street. Even though the buildings are falling apart.

That says to me that Las Palmas and Wood Ridge cost the same as the luxury rentals. Once they rebuild the building they will be able to charge a 60% premium for a building that isn’t falling down. Not because they’re luxury condos. Because they’re not falling down.

They’re already priced as structurally unsound luxury condos.