Profile: Social Statistics

Residential construction activity was fairly steady in the Rural Capital Area (RCA) throughout the early 2000s, averaging 8,300 housing permits a year between 2001 and 2005. In 2006, the RCA saw a spike in housing permits, near the end of the national real estate bubble, with 11,200 permits issued. Housing construction dropped after this peak, and activity remained below pre-2007 levels, with an annual average of 7,100 permits issued over the last ten years.  Still, 2017 witnessed the second-highest activity level in history with 10,800 units permitted, just 400 units shy of the 2006 peak.

Housing Permits Rural Capital Area 1997-2017

The Rural Capital Area has seen consistent growth in the dispersal of benefits including Social Security, Supplemental Security, and Veterans Benefits. The number of Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients grew 25% and 21% respectively in the most recent 5-year period. During this period, total Social Security dollar payments grew 41%.

RCA vs US Growth of Social Security Benefits 2006-2016

RCA vs US Growth of SSI Recipients 2005-2015

The Austin metropolitan area has a low murder rate when compared to the U.S. as a whole (the average of all metro areas), though 2016 saw a spike upward.  In 2017, the Austin metropolitan area experienced just 2.5 murders per 100,000 population, less than half the national rate of 5.3.

Austin TX Metro vs US Murder Rate per 100000 2007-2017

Incidents of larceny and theft, while down overall since 2000, are still higher in the Austin metro than the U.S. level. Larceny and theft in the Austin metropolitan area reached 3,000 incidents in 2009 at 143% of the national rate of 2,100. However, in 2017, there were just 1,800 incidents in the Austin metro, only 9% higher than the national rate. The regional rate has decreased significantly faster than the U.S. rate in the last five years.

Austin TX Metro vs US Larceny Theft Rate per 100000 2007-2017