A Guide to Retiring to Charleston SC

Posted by Lee and Katherine Keadle on Thursday, July 2nd, 2015 at 1:42pm.

retiring in charleston south carolina

Ready to retire? Many retirees are finding that Charleston, South Carolina has the perfect mix of affordability and fun for the graceful retiree. Not only is the state swelling with historical homes, but the median home price in the area is just $203,000.


Not as hot as Florida yet much milder winters than Maine or New Jersey, South Carolina has mild winters and warm summers. Coastal areas are much better in terms of winter temperatures with 60 degrees being the average during the winter and nights dropping to 38 degrees.

Snowfall in the state is very minimal with many years recording no snowfall. The exception will be near the Blue Ridge Mountains, which averages 12 inches of snow per year.


Keep more money in your pocket. South Carolina has the 9th lowest tax burden in the country. Furthermore, retirees over the age of 65 can exempt $15,000 from their taxes. Those not yet 65 can deduct $3,000 from their pension income per year.

Up to $10,000 in military benefits can be deducted per year as well.

On social security? There is no tax against social security benefits.

Property taxes are on the higher end with the state having the 37th highest property tax. However, retirees are able to apply for the “Homestead exemption.” This exemption will be able to exclude $50,000 of their home’s value from their property taxes.

Estate and inheritance tax does not exist in the state, allowing you to leave money to your loved ones without worrying that they will be taxed in the process by the state.

Cost of Living

Living in South Carolina is much more affordable than other states. The Charleston Metro area has a median home sale price of $203,300. This is higher than other areas, such as Columbia or Greenville, but neither have the historic appeal of Charleston.

Builders often create active retirement communities, but the state does not have a certified program for retirement communities.

Charleston is dubbed one of the best places to retire in the whole country. Parks, art centers and beautiful climates are just some of the reasons why so many retirees are flocking to the area. Many also say those living in South Carolina are some of the nicest and most polite in the country, and the economy is strong thanks to the local military base and tourism. Technology jobs in the area are also booming.

If you love golf, you’ll also find a lot of retirement communities near or on golf courses.


Ready to start your search for the perfect Real Estate in Charleston? Call us today at (800) 804-2187! Our Charleston Real Estate MLS can help you to find the perfect home, but using the filter to only show the homes you would be interested in. Whether by price, type of build, or even neighborhood (such as James Island Real Estate), the perfect home is waiting for you!

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