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Which Austrian state has the cheapest rent based on your salary?

Which Austrian state has the cheapest rent based on your salary?
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Cost of living is always a question of wages versus expenditure. So where in Austria combines the best salaries with the lowest rents?

The Chamber of Commerce in Salzburg is calling for more affordable housing as rents have soared over the past twenty years.

Rents in the Salzburg region have increased by 60 percent in 20 years, according to a housing and rental price survey by the Salzburg Chamber of Commerce (AK). 

The Chamber is calling for more 1,000 subsidised apartments to be built annually after comparing the 2000 costs of a 70-square-meter apartment in the city of Salzburg (€680) to the 2020 outlay (€1,100).

Rural areas have also seen a 60 percent rise over the past 20 years, 20 percent higher than inflation in the same period, the survey shows. 

READ MORE: Ten tips for finding an apartment in Austria

By contrast, in Burgenland, the cheapest state in Austria, rents recently fell.

Here’s what you need to know. 

How do rental prices compare to wages across Austria?

The Local took a look at some 2019 statistics compiled by the company Stepstone showing how average earnings compare across the country, which was reported at the time by the Kurier newspaper.

Obviously things are a little different at the moment during the pandemic, but hopefully wages will return to normal soon.

READ MORE: The words you need to know before renting a flat in Austria

Burgenland

Housing in Burgenland costs only €650 euros for a 70 square meter apartment. 

According to Stepstone, people on average earn approximately €45,138 a year in Burgenland as opposed to €47,176 in Salzburg.

However, once cheaper rents are taken into account people living in Burgenland may feel better off.

Vienna

Vienna is where people earn the most money in Austria according to the survey, with a gross average salary of €53,948. However, perhaps surprisingly, this is not the most expensive state to rent in.

Due to the large amounts of subsidised government housing in Vienna, it is only the second most expensive state in Austria. 

Despite this, rents increased sharply in Vienna in 2020 – by €15.8 per square metre (4.8 percent). Another thing to bear in mind is there is a big difference between the cost of renting in Vienna’s different districts.

Prices in the capital city range from €19.30 per square metre in the city’s First District (the most expensive district in Austria) to €12.60 in Vienna’s cheapest district – Simmering.

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Tyrol

The most expensive state to rent in Austria is Tyrol, which recently saw an increase in rents of €16 per square metre (5.1 percent) in 2020.

This area includes two of the most expensive addresses in Austria: Innsbruck at €18.50 per square meter and Kitzbühel at €17.30 per square metre. 

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However wages here are significantly lower than Vienna’s, averaging out at €45,408. 

Vorarlberg

Wages are higher in Vorarlberg, averaging out at €50,816, with correspondingly high rental costs, at €15 per square metre in Bregenz and only slightly lower in neighbouring Feldkirk and Dornbirn.

Upper Austria

In Upper Austria, wages are also good, averaging at €47,383. However rental prices are lower than elsewhere in Austria, with rents averaging at €11.6 per square metre in Linz.

Lower Austria

In Lower Austria, the average salary is lower, averaging €44,985. However, rents are also lower, averaging €9.2 per square metre in Krems for example.

And many towns have fast rail connections to Vienna, meaning commuters can take advantage of the higher wages in Vienna’s capital city while enjoying lower rents outside its boundaries.

READ MORE: Why do so few Austrians own their home?

Carinthia and Styria

Carinthia and Styria may be in demand for second homes, but also have average wages above €45,000 per year and rentals averaging at €11.8 in Graz and a little above €10 per square metre in Villach and Klagenfurt.

So where can I stretch my rent euro the furthest? 

Perhaps surprisingly, your ‘rent euro’ stretches further in Vienna than you might think – given the high wages and the fact the rent is not the highest in the country.

Vienna’s size and extensive public transport network also means you may win out in the end by choosing an ‘up and coming’ neighbourhood where you might be able to find a bargain. 

Tyrol on the other hand is perhaps the toughest, as while rents are the highest in the entire country, wages are lower than all but a couple of states.

So if you’re fed up with your shoebox apartment in Salzburg, perhaps it’s time to look further afield to find a better deal in Burgenland, Lower Austria or Styria. 


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