South Carolina started as an English settlement in 1670, and although it has grown significantly since then, it’s managed to keep its charm and slow-paced lifestyle. People from all over the country visit the state every year to enjoy pristine beaches, golf, and nature activities. And not surprisingly, more people than ever are packing up and moving to the Palmetto State.

Are you thinking of living in South Carolina? If so, you won’t want to miss this post that shares ten of the best things about calling this state your home!

1. The Abundance of Natural Beauty

Can’t decide between the mountains or the beach? In South Carolina, you don’t have to. You can live at the beach and drive to the mountains on the weekend, or vice versa. 

It’s not surprising that many nature lovers call South Carolina home since there is so much to do. Hiking trails abound, and there are plenty of rivers and lakes to go rafting or kayaking. And if you’re into water sports, you can catch a good surf break at Folly Beach in Charleston. 

Even if you aren’t too athletic, South Carolina is the perfect place to take scenic drives. Many roads have panoramic views and pull-offs for enjoying them and a picnic. 

No matter your hobbies, living in SC provides plenty of opportunities to explore natural wonders, which will be a breath of fresh air for your lungs if you live in an urban area. 

2. Relatively Low Cost of Living

Finding an affordable place to settle down without sacrificing a high quality of life may seem impossible. But, if you’re wondering, “where can I buy my house of my dreams?” look no further than SC!

Thankfully, homes in South Carolina are much cheaper than the national average, making it possible to purchase a new home without breaking the bank. 

Some of the most affordable cities to live in include:

  • Parker
  • Conway
  • Laurens
  • Murrells Inlet
  • Chester

As you get closer to the coast, prices tend to increase, but you can still find a good deal on a seaside home compared to other states. And South Carolina’s property taxes are among the lowest in the nation. 

As for state income tax, you’ll pay no more than 7% if you’re currently employed. Retirees can deduct up to $3,000 of retirement income from their state income tax bill, resulting in significant savings. 

Not to mention that Gas taxes are low, resulting in some of the lowest transportation costs in the United States. 

Yet, despite a lower-than-average cost of living, the economy is prospering in many larger cities! 

For example, Charleston has a military base and a port, as well as a strong tech industry and plenty of health care jobs. 

Many recent college graduates move to Charleston or stay there after completing their degrees. This isn’t surprising since the city is bike-friendly and picturesque, with cobblestone streets and gardens. 

3. High Quality of Life

Don’t let the low prices in South Carolina fool you into thinking that you’re missing out. The atmosphere in South Carolina is relaxed, the people are friendly, and the weather is warm. 

Since the quality of life here is high, staying happy and healthy is more manageable. 

One reason is the climate since you can exercise outdoors year-round. You don’t need to commute to the gym to run on the treadmill. Just grab a pair of sneakers and head outdoors!

With a great climate, you’ll likely stay active without intending to while enjoying your favorite hobbies, such as:

  • Golfing
  • Horseback riding
  • Walking on the beach
  • Cycling through historic neighborhoods

There are also state-of-the-art medical facilities to rely on when you need health care. Some of the best hospitals include the Medical University of South Carolina and Spartanburg Medical Center. 

4. Mild Temperatures

You likely have had enough of the below-freezing temperatures and snowstorms in April if you live up north. Moving to South Carolina is a perfect and permanent treatment for winter blues! 

In the winter months, the average temperatures are usually in the 60s, so you don’t even need to bring your snow boots. 

Summer months tend to be hot and humid, depending on where you live. Thankfully, mountain breezes and dips in the ocean can keep you cool. 

5. Southern Cuisine

South Carolina will have you drooling if you’re a fan of downhome cooking. Ingredients such as fresh peaches, tomatoes, and oysters triumph. There are also famous traditional foods like:

  • Grits
  • Collard greens
  • Fried tomatoes
  • Boiled peanuts
  • Cornbread
  • Pimento cheese

Menus feature a lot of fried and comfort foods, which may sit heavy in your stomach if you aren’t used to eating them. But, there are plenty of other dining options, especially in larger towns and cities. 

Some of the best SC restaurants for a classy meal include Brazilian steakhouses, Italian eateries, and fresh seafood.

But, best of all is South Carolina barbecue. This state puts its twist on it by adding vinegar and mustard, creating a tangy sauce. 

6. Nearly 3,000 Miles of Coastline

Even if you can’t settle down on the coast, living in South Carolina means that you are never more than a few hours from the beach. And you aren’t limited to summer trips since the climate is mild all year. You can take trips to the ocean whenever you desire without spending a lot of money. 

Hilton Head is one of the best locations in South Carolina to spend the weekend. The water is warm, and its miles of beaches are perfect for kayaking, swimming, or paddleboarding. The island also boasts beautiful golf courses.

Kiawah Island is another option for a trendy getaway. It recently hosted the PGA championship from one of its many courses! 

Of course, if you get bored after exploring all the coastline in South Carolina (we doubt you will!), there are even more beaches to enjoy in neighboring states. 

7. Historical Charm 

The history reflected in cities and small towns makes South Carolina living unique. 

Charleston is particularly charming since it’s the oldest city in the state. Many buildings are preserved and open for tours, perfect for learning about the state’s rich history. 

You can also visit many old plantations which double as museums. The McLeod Plantation Historic Site is one of these and stands in recognition of generations of enslaved people.

Another significant landmark is Fort Sumter National Monument, where the American Civil War began in 1861. Visitors can access the fort by boat and tour it to learn interesting facts about one of the most important wars in the nation’s history.

8. Slower Pace of Life

If you’re tired of living a fast-paced life, you can slow things down in South Carolina. Here, people tend to take the time to enjoy conversations and dinners with family. 

And the abundance of natural spaces makes daily tasks less burdensome. Imagine how much better a commute to work would be with scenery to enjoy. Even better, picture yourself working from home on your patio or with beautiful views out your window.

Still, we all feel stressed from time to time. But that’s nothing that a short trip to a state park can’t fix! 

9. Friendly Locals

Southerners are famous for their hospitality, so it’s no shock that most people who move to South Carolina have no trouble fitting in or feeling welcome. 

You may get a fresh-baked pie or cookies from a neighbor when you move into your new neighborhood, especially in small towns. And chatting with cashiers and waiters will become a new norm for you.

If you’re not used to these types of interactions where you live, it may come as a surprise at first. But it’s an attitude that rubs off! 

So, you’ll likely find yourself wanting to greet others and spread kindness after you settle in. And that’s a good thing!

10. Plenty to Do

Unlike places with harsh winters, you don’t have to wait until summer to have a good time. There are plenty of things to do in SC during all seasons, including the State Fair in October. It’s the perfect place to sample fried foods, watch live entertainment, and ride some attractions. 

The Gullah Festival is of particular interest since it shares the culture and traditions of the people who inhabit the state. It’s not just about learning, though. Fun crafts, shows, and delicious foods abound!

There are also many food festivals, such as those centering around strawberries in spring. Myrtle Beach also hosts Bike Week, and Columbia has a Greek Festival! 

Experience the Perks of Living in South Carolina Firsthand

After considering all the great things about living in South Carolina, it’s hard to think of a reason not to move here! So start researching some of the most popular cities to know which area is the best fit for your family. Then, browse real estate listings or ask a realtor for some advice about SC living!

If you’re looking for a change, browse more of our posts that can help you with your personal finances and real estate!