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DFW No Longer A Top 10 City As Home Prices Become Unaffordable, Report Says

Dallas-Fort Worth is starting to lose its reputation as one of the best places to live and work. 

The greater Dallas region ranked as a Tier 2 metro area in a new report from the Milken Institute, falling from the Top 10 list as rising home prices killed local home affordability.


Despite praise from the real estate sector that Texas is a cheap, nice place to live, the Dallas region fell from No. 9 on Milken's 2020 list of Best Performing Cities to No. 14 in 2021 as a lack of affordable housing stock dulled its competitive edge. 

Dallas ranked 146th in the home affordability category out of 200 cities Milken analyzed. 

Most economic indicators ranked Dallas well outside the top 10 in the 2021 study. While Dallas maintained fairly strong scores in job growth (ranking 13th), wage growth (41st), 12-month job growth (20th) and high-tech concentration (23rd), the area struggled on housing affordability and high-tech gross domestic product. 

The study shows Dallas ranking 171st out of 200 large metros in high-tech GDP and 68th for broadband access. 

Housing was already an issue in 2014-2018, when Milken ranked the DFW area as No. 112 in home affordability, and its ranking in this category continues to plummet with population growth and rising home prices outpricing many area residents.  

Austin is the only Texas city to rank in the Top 10 in 2021, with the market coming in third overall thanks to high rankings in the job growth, wage growth, high-tech GDP and high-tech concentration categories.

Like DFW, Austin struggles with home affordability, ranking 93rd out of 200 markets. Yet, Austin's affordable housing struggles were offset by the area's Top 10 ranking in most other categories.

The entire Houston market scored low, coming in as a Tier 3 city with an overall ranking of 112 out of all 200 large metros. The South Texas metro failed to rank in the Top 40 in most examined categories and drew rankings of No. 121 or worse when it came to high-tech GDP, high-tech concentration and housing affordability.