2018 Year In Review Residential Market Update – Charleston, SC

The new year has begun and just like that, the first month is almost over. Sellers are rapidly working on their last minute repairs and clean up efforts before the hot buying season approaches. 2018 was a great year for real estate, and 2019 promises to be equally as successful. Last year was the 2nd busiest year ever for Charleston, just a few hundred transactions shy of the 2017 record and still short of 18k units.  

  • 2018 was down 1.9% in transactions from 2017

  • Median sales price was up 6.4% to an all time high of $272k

  • Overall, we are at 3.2 MOI, a sellers market for sure

  • Charleston region’s economy jumped from 22nd  to 16th-best in the nation (Milken Institute ranking)

Take a look at this trendline for median sales price since 1991. We are currently just slightly below the trend line with actual median sales price of $271k. So, we are undervalued, but only by a small amount. It also shows that our growth rate is about 4.4% compounded continuously.

Here’s an interesting chart that shows supply vs demand since 1991. Demand is right up there where we experienced it in 2004 and 2005. However, inventory now is slightly higher and appears to be remaining steady.

So, what can we expect for 2019? All indications show that the Charleston economy is continuing to grow. Cargo growth at the port and more than $1.6 billion in automotive industry investments contribute to the healthy economy and influx of jobs. The Milken report says, “The strong income and population increases will support future growth in the three-county region.”

  • Average of 38 newcomers move to the region each day

  • Median family income rose 27.6% between 2012 and 2017 to $76,236 per year

  • More than ⅓ of Charleston’s workers are employed in retail, education, health services, or tourism

  • The Port of Charleston makes it a destination for export-oriented industries like Volvo Cars and Mercedes-Benz Vans which means more suppliers setting up shop around the plants.

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