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8 Reasons to start your business in Austin and 4 reasons you may want to reconsider

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So, you want to choose the best city to start your new business? If you have asked yourself that question, I’m sure you have thought about Austin. Having lived in Dallas before moving here I firmly believe Austin is one of the best places for any startup, whether it be tech, product oriented, or food.

Here are 8 compelling reasons to start your business in Austin.

  1. The community screams, “Support Local.” With several farmers markets, several organic farms, and hundreds of locally owned coffee shops (as well as other businesses), this community is local proud, and loves supporting local brands.
  2. Business incubators abound, and not just tech incubators. It’s home to Incubation Station, a business incubator geared towards consumer packaged goods, and there are plenty of office spaces geared towards co-working.
  3. High net worth community. If you are looking for investors, Austin is filled with people of high net worth in a relatively small area. Austin may be big, but it has a small town feel.
  4. Networking is a breeze. Because Austin has a small town feel it’s easy to network and meet new people to partner with. And, since the community is so supportive of local you won’t have a problem finding somebody willing to give you a moment of their time to help you with your startup.
  5. Looking to start a consumer goods food business? Austin is the Silicon Valley of food. There are numerous packaged food companies in Austin, some already large, some on the rise. A few of them are: Sweet Leaf Tea, Oatmega Bar (Boundless Nutrition), Bearded Brothers, Kosmic Kombucha, Daily Greens, Food for Lovers, Zhi Tea, and many more.
  6. Festivals abound! Aside from the business side of things, there is some sort of festival going on nearly every weekend. There is not shortage of quality entertainment here in Austin, and many of the events are free.
  7. If you love the outdoors then Austin is a wonderful place to live. There is access to the Greenbelt trail system from downtown, cycling routes through the beautiful hill country, and you have loads of State Parks within an hour and a half driving distance from town.
  8. Food trucks, food trucks, food trucks. LOTS of them, on every other corner! Not only that but Austin is also home to several other fine eateries. Austin is often known as the music capital of the US, but it is also a great place to eat!
Town Lake Austin

Austin’s Town Lake from the I35 pedestrian walkway.

 But Austin also has its drawbacks; here are some reasons you might make you reconsider

  1. Traffic is a nightmare. If you think traffic is bad where you live, Dallas I’m talking to you, try living in Austin. It may take you forty-five minutes to an hour to drive 35 miles in DFW, but in Austin it will take you an hour just to drive 12 miles during rush hour.
  2. The population is BOOMING. Hundreds of people are moving to Austin every day, condos are going up on every other corner, especially near downtown. Yet nothing is done to improve the roads. The population is getting dense.
  3. If you need your own office or production facility built, the city is currently backlogged with permits. It may take months to get your plans approved.
  4. Even finding already existing office/production space can be difficult because so many other startups are looking for the same type of space.

 

There will be cons anywhere you live, but even in locations like Austin that have a list of cons, the pros far outweigh them. Otherwise, why would people flock there? I love Austin, it’s one of two places in Texas I would want to live, the other being Denton. But, as a business owner and a lover of the outdoors I feel Austin is the perfect home in Texas.

About Caleb

I'm the co-owner/founder of Bearded Brothers, an organic snackfood company. I love ultra running, rock climbing and cycling. I'm also a vegetarian, passionate about health and well-being.