Charleston Real Estate Statistics

2020 was a record year for Charleston, SC home sales, and 2021 is expected to be even more robust! Charleston's post COVID-lockdown housing boom is nearing 12 months now, and it's the most active housing market on record for our MLS.

Charleston, SC Housing Market Trends

charleston sc housing market trends

The roughly 2,350 active (or for sale) MLS listings we have right now is the lowest number we've seen in over 20 years.

Our MLS needs approximately 10,000 more listings to have a balanced market (which means it is neither a buyer's nor a seller's market). A balanced market would have 6 months of inventory, yet in the Charleston real estate market we're currently seeing just 5 weeks of inventory (a new record low). The chart below shows Charleston's listing shortage.

You'll see a widening gap between the number of active MLS listings for sale and the number needed to regain a balanced market (which again, is 6 months of inventory).

It's easy to see why so many buyers are frustrated in our current market and also why we're seeing so many multiple offer situations. In many cases, homes are selling before they even hit the MLS.

Right now as Realtors and buyers' agents, our value is getting our clients into a new listing as soon as we can after it hits the market (or better yet, getting info on listings before they go active). In 2020, our team had the most site unseen offers and closings that we've ever had since we're helping so many of our out of town buyers via FaceTime, etc. view homes without having to come to Charleston.

charleston housing market statistics

Market Trends in 2021

  • New construction homes make up about 41% of all listings under contract in the MLS. This is much higher than the 25-30% we typically see and reflects the lack of pre-owned or resale homes that we usually have in our market.
  • The short sale and foreclosure market is almost nonexistent in Charleston. Foreclosures and short sales currently make up a combined .8% of the market which is down from 1.8% a year ago.
  • Homes priced over $1 million have had record sales since July 2020 due to 2 main factors. First, so many local Charleston homeowners are moving up to get more square footage or waterfront homes. Second, Charleston is seeing a migration of home buyers from more expensive markets especially in the northeast and west coast as buyers relocate looking for a mid size city with great healthcare, year round outdoor activities, and a good quality of life. When you compare July 1 through December 31 of 2019 in the $1 million plus market, you'll see 323 sales. During this same time frame of 2020, there were 788 sales (a 144% increase which is incredible)! Charleston's high end real estate market remains one of its strongest sectors.

Looking to Buy or Sell a Home in Charleston?

Contact The Keadle Group online or call 800.804.2187 to learn why so many clients recommend their family and friends to us!