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Top 5 Best Real Estate Investment Markets in South Carolina

South Carolina is a popular market with real estate investors. Located along the Atlantic Ocean, this state features an array of investment opportunities ranging from luxury properties on the coast to affordable single-family homes and apartments in smaller communities.
South Carolina is a popular market with real estate investors. Located along the Atlantic Ocean, this state features an array of investment opportunities ranging from luxury properties on the coast to affordable single-family homes and apartments in smaller communities.

South Carolina is a diverse state rich in history and culture. Formed in 1729 after separating from its sister North Carolina, South Carolina today is a popular destination for retirees and first-time home buyers who want to live somewhere with a low cost of living. The state is home to nearly five million people with a median household income of close to $50,000 annually.

Several major colleges are located in the state, including the University of South Carolina, Clemson University and Trident Technical College. South Carolina is also a popular market for real estate investors looking to profit on the state’s rapid appreciation rates and strengthening economy.

If you’re thinking about investing in South Carolina real estate, here are five markets to consider.

Charleston

From luxury waterfront homes to a dense downtown full of condos and apartments, Charleston and its surrounding communities offer a wide range of properties for real estate investors. The city’s median home value of $320,800 is on the pricier side when compared to the state’s median value of $165,800.

However, Zillow predicts home values will rise by another 3.1% over the next year, which is just under the 5.9% price increase the city and its surrounding communities saw over the past year. The median list price in Charleston is $377,945 with a median sales price of $294,600.

Columbia

Home of the University of South Carolina, Columbia is the largest community in the state. Although analysts predicted a tougher year for the housing market in Columbia, the city started 2019 strong with a 10.6% increase in new listings. Inventories were down 3.4% in February, which indicates buyer demand remains steady.

The current median value of a home in Columbia is $134,000 with a projected year-over-year increase of 3.7%. The median list price is $182,900 with a median sales price of $137,700. The median rent per month is $1,200.

Hilton Head Island

Consistently ranking as the most expensive real estate in South Carolina, Hilton Head Island is a popular coastal community for retirees and seasonal residents. For real estate investors, this popular vacation destination offers some of the highest returns on rental properties, especially during the spring and summer months. Some real estate outlets report investors consistently generate 9% to 10% ROI (return on investment) from their rental properties.

The median home value in Hilton Head Island is $437,200 with a median list price of $457,500. The median sales price is $363,400. The average monthly rent is $2,290. Zillow predicts home values will rise 3.6% over the next year.

Greenville

With home prices rising 8.2% over the past year, the medium-sized community of Greenville presents some interesting real estate investment opportunities. The city now has some of the more expensive housing in the state with a median home value of $186,900.

Estimates show home prices will continue to rise in the city with Zillow predicting another 4% increase over the next year. The current median rent price is $1,200 with an average list price of $274,900 and a median sales price of $201,200.

Sumter

The smaller community of Sumter offers some of the state’s least expensive real estate investment opportunities. The median home value is $83,300, which is well below the state’s average value of $165,500.

However, the city saw a whopping 14.9% increase in home values year-over-year, and estimates show prices will rise by another 9% over the next year. The data suggest investors are taking an interest in this small but up-and-coming South Carolina town.

Why You Need An Agent When Buying Investment Properties

If you’re contemplating investing in South Carolina real estate, it's always smart to partner with a top-rated, local real estate agent. Although the internet offers you some information about the market, it doesn’t replace the local knowledge an agent brings to the table.

The value our South Carolina Clever Partner Agents bring to clients goes beyond finding a reasonably-priced investment property. Our Partner Agents can weed out the hottest real estate markets in the state and help you avoid investing your money in markets with little-to-no prospects for a significant return on your investment.

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Luke Babich

Luke Babich is the co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Clever Real Estate, the free online service that connects you with top agents to save money on commission. He's an active real estate investor and licensed agent in St. Louis, with 22 units currently. Luke graduated from Stanford University and subsequently ran a historic data-driven campaign for University City City Council. Luke's writing has been featured in Homeland Security Today, Mashvisor, Payments Journal, and Bigger Pockets.

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