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  • Writer's pictureAlex Dmyterko

South Carolina Economy: What to Expect in 2024


Keeping on top of the South Carolina economy will help you make better, more informed decisions regarding investing, property development, and other financial endeavors. In 2024, South Carolina’s economic landscape is poised for readjustment, with a unique set of challenges and opportunities. Economists from the University of South Carolina have presented their forecasts, and today, we’ll explore some of the vital information you need to know. 


South Carolina Economy: Outlook for 2024


The prevailing theme for South Carolina’s economy in 2024 is “readjustment.” After a period of robust growth since 2020, economists anticipate a slowdown. While the state is expected to experience growth, it will likely be at a more measured pace than in recent years. This is all according to USC Research Economist Joey Von Nessen. 


On a positive note, inflation has been decreasing, and wages are now outpacing inflation, improving the purchasing power of South Carolinians. However, despite a growing population, the state is grappling with a significant labor shortage. The current unemployment rate, at 2.9%, is the lowest since before the pandemic, presenting a challenge for employers seeking qualified workers.


South Carolina Economy & Market Insights


The South Carolina real estate market mirrors the broader economic trends, with both positive and negative aspects affecting buyers and sellers. 


Let’s break down some of the overarching keys and trends in the South Carolina market to keep in mind before we discuss real estate in more detail.


Positives

  • Expect a slowdown in South Carolina’s economy in 2024 due to high interest rates and inflation. Interest rates will trend downward this year.

  • The state boasts historically low unemployment rates. In turn, there’s a favorable job market for job seekers in the state.

  • Wage growth is outpacing inflation for the first time in over two years.

Negatives

  • Labor shortages are widespread—virtually every sector is experiencing the effects—creating challenges for employers.

  • South Carolina’s economic growth has been slowing in 2023, but expect improvement in 2024. 


Are you interested in multi-family property development? Read this article before you make your next move: Are Multi-Family Apartment Developments a Good Investment?


Implications for South Carolina Real Estate


The real estate market in South Carolina is influenced by these broader economic factors, presenting opportunities and challenges for buyers and sellers.


Current State of the Market


In the South Carolina real estate market, median home sale prices have shown a notable 3.3% year-over-year increase, reaching $370,500 in September 2023. This upward trajectory in home prices suggests the ongoing attractiveness of the state’s real estate market.


Furthermore, the number of homes listed on the market has been on the decline. This trend indicates a seller’s market, where the demand for homes outpaces the supply, providing favorable conditions for those looking to sell their properties.


Among the standout areas, Charleston and Beaufort have witnessed substantial increases in their median sale prices. This surge in property values signifies the desirability of these regions, potentially reflecting economic growth and demand for housing in these areas.


Remarkably, many homes continue to sell above their list prices even in the face of high interest rates. This phenomenon underscores the strong demand in the South Carolina real estate market, where buyers are willing to pay a premium to secure their desired properties.


Predictions for 2024


With all of this information from 2023 in mind, we can use it to make predictions for the South Carolina real estate market in 2024. Based on current trends, hesitant home sellers are expected to reenter the market in 2024 as prices continue to rise.


Mortgage interest rates are also anticipated to trend downward in the second half of 2024, remaining above 6%. This will bring new buyers to the market.


The rise in home prices is expected to continue until supply and demand dynamics shift. What does this mean? Buyers will likely face increasing competition and higher prices for desirable properties.


In terms of new construction sales, builders are predicted to offer concessions to attract buyers as they try to keep up with the rising demand. Additionally, iBuyers may persist in making lowball offers as they face financial challenges.


Overall, the economy and housing market in South Carolina are expected to continue growing and thriving in 2024. While there may be some challenges, such as rising mortgage rates and potential lowball offers from iBuyers, the market is still forecasted to be strong with high demand and limited inventory.


Outlook on South Carolina Market Stability


Ultimately, South Carolina has a stable housing market due to:


  • A robust economy

  • Strong job market

  • Affordable cost of living

Charleston’s population growth suggests ongoing demand for housing, while the job market remains strong with a low unemployment rate. Although the current real estate market favors sellers due to high demand and low supply, it also offers opportunities for both buyers and sellers in 2024.


As economics professor Douglas Woodward puts it, “2024 looks very bright. There’s some clouds on the horizon.” 


Streams Development and Our Role in the South Carolina Economy


As you navigate the intricate landscape of South Carolina’s economy and real estate market this upcoming year (and beyond), prioritize staying informed and adaptable to seize opportunities and address challenges. Whether you’re considering a move, property development, or real estate transactions, a thorough understanding of economic trends is your compass.


In this dynamic environment, Streams Development, headquartered in Greenville, SC, with our wealth of experience and commitment to data-driven analytics and transparent communication, stands as a valuable resource for those looking to engage in real estate endeavors. 


With our noteworthy track record in various successful development projects, Streams Development brings both expertise and a keen understanding of the local market, ensuring you are well-equipped to make informed decisions in the South Carolina real estate landscape and the overall South Carolina economy.


Learn more about us, meet our team, or discover some of our current projects here.


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