Neutra was born in Leopoldstadt, the 2nd district of Vienna, Austria Hungary, on April 8, 1892. Neutra attended to the Sophiengymnasium in Vienna until 1910, and he studied under Adolf Loos at the Vienna University of Technology (1910–1918).
Neutra worked for a time in Germany in the studio of Erich Mendelsohn. He moved to the United States by 1923 and became a naturalized citizen in 1929. Neutra worked briefly for Frank Lloyd Wright before accepting an invitation from his close friend and university companion Rudolf Schindler to work and live communally in Schindler's Kings Road House in California.
Neutra died in Wuppertal, Germany, on April 16, 1970 at the age of 78.