There are many reasons to purchase a home in the Eastside’s Holly neighborhood; it’s green and leafy, within walking distance of downtown, and still has a fairly healthy variety of neighborhood residents, businesses, and services.
So what will it cost you to buy a little piece of this partially paved paradise? In an ongoing series with Curbed Austin, real-estate analytics site NeighborhoodX took a close look at the range of sales asking prices per square foot in the area to find out.
Bounded by Chicon Street on the west, Pleasant Valley Road on the east, East Seventh Street on the north, and the Colorado River/Lady Bird Lake on the south, the Holly neighborhood, along with adjacent East Cesar Chavez, has been been one of the places in the city where gentrification issues came to the fore visibly and early.
For years a bastion of working-class, predominantly Latinx citizens who carved out a multigenerational community in the face of the city's early 20th-century segregation policies, the neighborhood been fighting for itself for several decades—first against being a dumping ground for environmental hazards (a power plant and a leaking gas tank farm) and then against gentrification as its proximity to downtown and the riverfront became a valuable commodity.
The current average asking price in Holly is $389 per square foot, although the individual properties contributing to that average range from $268 per square foot (2604 Santa Rosa Street, a small three-bedroom home asking $310,000) to $607/sq.ft. (2518 East Third Street, a bright blue frame home that’s been at the top of the neighborhood’s cost-per-square-foot list for a while now).
As always, the analysis is focused on market-rate properties, so it excludes foreclosures and short sales and income-restricted properties. as well as certain listings with incomplete or contradictory data.
On the chart, readers can mouse over chart bars for analytics, and the addresses link to property listings.
NeighborhoodX’s director of research, Constantine Valhouli, points out the insight to be gained by comparing new and older homes on the market. A detached condo/garden home at 2408 Santa Maria St. Unit B, for instance, is asking $400,000 for for 857 square feet, or $466 per square foot.
For the same price, one can also get the slightly smaller, unrenovated bungalow at 2404 Santa Maria Street ($400,000 for 764 square feet, or $462 per square foot)—but the latter is on a larger plot of land. These two properties perhaps best sum up the drivers for pricing in the neighborhood, said Valhouli.
This observation seems to apply to the properties at 2518 East Third Street and 2021 East Second Street, which are positioned as single-family homes rather than as development sites—but the asking prices of $607 per square foot and $507 per square foot, respectively—suggest that at least part of the value is driven by the development potential of the land.
To put these prices in context, at $389 per square foot on average, Holly is priced just below Rosedale ($389 per square foot) and slightly above East Cesar Chavez ($359 per square foot).