At first glance, there are many similarities between Austin, Texas and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Both are major metropolitan centers with rich cultural and musical heritage, great educational institutions, and fascinating histories. However, the two cities come with a very unique feel that make the Austin vs Philadelphia comparison an interesting dive into the two cities. Check out our guide to Austin vs. Philly before deciding which one to call home.
Austin vs Philadelphia Quick Stats
- Population Density: 3,006 per square mile
- Median Household Income:$75,752
- Unemployment Rate: 3%
- Median Age: 35
- Average Commute: 25 minutes
- Median Home Value: $572,500
- Population Density: 12,118 per square mile
- Median Household Income: $52,899
- Unemployment Rate: 5%
- Median Age: 35
- Average Commute: 31 minutes
- Median Home Value: $205,900
Cost of Living in Austin vs. Philadelphia
The cost of living in Austin, Texas is generally higher than in Philadelphia. The difference in median house prices underscores a 59.8% difference in housing costs between the two cities. While expenses such as groceries, transportation, and utilities may be higher in Austin, it’s important to note that healthcare costs in Austin are slightly lower than in Philadelphia, which could be a significant factor for some people.
However, it’s worth considering the relative quality of these houses. The relative population densities show that money buys you a lot more space in Austin. That’s borne out by the fact that 16.8% of houses in Austin have four or more bedrooms, compared to 12.4% in Philadelphia.
Overall, living costs are 18.9% less in Philadelphia than in Austin. However, most of this is housing costs, and Austin is cheaper in several respects than Philadelphia. Transportation costs are 32% lower in Austin, while food and utilities are also significantly cheaper than in Philadelphia.
Austin vs. Philadelphia Size and Location
Austin Geography and Location
Nestled in Texas’s Hill Country region, Austin is a green, spacious city. Its 326 square miles are home to just over one million residents. Flowing through the heart of the city is the Colorado River, providing a picturesque backdrop for many of the city’s trails and popular parks like Barton Creek.
Philadelphia Geography and Location
At just over 1.6 million residents, Philadelphia is the sixth largest city in the US. It’s also one of the country’s most densely populated, covering just over 134 square miles. While Philadelphia may be crowded, it also has a number of public parks and greenspaces, including the famous Fairmount Park, which is one of the largest urban park systems in the world, covering over 2,000 acres.
Austin vs. Philadelphia Things To Do
Austin Culture and Entertainment
Austin, the Live Music Capital of the World, has produced artists from Gary Clark Jr. to Shakey Graves, and of course the legendary Willie Nelson. The city is home to numerous live music venues, and massive festivals like Austin City Limits and South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, which draws performers, speakers, and attendees from all over the world.
Austin also boasts a thriving food scene, with a diverse range of restaurants offering everything from traditional Texas barbecue to vegan and vegetarian options.
Also being located deep in the heart of Texas, it may not come as much of a surprise that Austin loves its sports. The University of Texas at Austin’s Longhorns have long been the hottest ticket, consistently boasting dominant football, basketball, and baseball teams, but there’s new competition in town. Austin FC of the MLS had their inaugural soccer season in 2021 in the new Q2 Stadium. Backed by Austin legend Matthew McConaughey, Austin has quickly fallen in love with their first major professional sports team.
Philadelphia Culture and Entertainment
Philadelphia has a thriving performing arts scene, with numerous theaters and music venues showcasing local and international talent. The city is particularly known for its jazz and soul music traditions, as well as its connection to the birth of hip-hop (West Philadelphia born and raised…).
Since Philadelphia played a crucial role in the founding of the United States and served as the nation’s capital during its early years, there are numerous landmarks worth visiting like the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.
Like Austin, Philly’s sports scene is thriving. Both the Phillies in baseball and the Eagles of the NFL finished runners-up in their respective sports, while their NBA team, the 76ers, is currently anchored by one of the best talents in the sport Joel Embiid.
Austin vs. Philadelphia Industries & Local Economy
Austin is rapidly becoming one of the USA’s most important tech hubs outside California. Electric car giant Tesla moved its headquarters here at the end of 2021, while Oracle and Dell have called the city home for many years. Apple, Meta, and IBM also have major offices in or near the city. Outside of tech, Austin is the home of Whole Foods and SolarWinds.
Education and Health Services are the largest employment sectors within Philadelphia. The city boasts numerous higher education institutions, including UPenn, Temple University, Lincoln University, Drexel, nearby Villanova, and the historic University of the Arts.
Philly is also home to several well-known companies’ headquarters, including Comcast and Urban Outfitters.
How to Choose Between Austin vs Philadelphia?
When choosing where to plant your roots, consider your lifestyle and preferences. If you enjoy the energy of a big city, Philadelphia offers a thriving urban environment. But, if you prefer a more laid-back atmosphere and enjoy spending time outdoors, but still with all the appeal of a major city, Austin may be a better fit.
Life at Lakeside
Ready to settle down in Texas? Contact Lakeside at Tessera today to find your dream home. Our community offers the perfect location and amenities to make the most of Austin’s enviable lifestyle.