||# of Agencies
|Single House or Condo
|Home Owners Association
|Total Local Companies
South Carolina Rental Market Overview
Unemployment Drops Statewide, but Vacancy Rates Still High
According to recent data from the U.S. Department of Labor, South Carolina's unemployment rate fell to 5.7% in February, 2014, which is a significant improvement over the 12% unemployment encountered in 2009. Exact unemployment rates fluctuate across the state, but all urban areas demonstrate positive directions. At the time of the USDL report, the Greenville-Mauldin-Easley metropolitan area had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 5.4%. It barely edged out Charleston-Summerville metropolitan area's 5.6%. Other cities of note included Anderson (5.7%), Columbia (5.9%), Spartanburg (6.2%), the Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill metropolitan area (6.9%), and the Augusta-Richmond County metropolitan area (7.4%). Sumter (7.5%) had the highest unemployment rate on the list. Despite improving unemployment numbers, several South Carolina urban areas struggle with high vacancy rates. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau indicate that the Charlotte-Gastonia region had a vacancy rate of around 8% during the fourth quarter of 2013, while Columbia, the largest city in the state, had a vacancy rate over 9%. These numbers are not ideal, but still better than Myrtle Beach, which led both the state and the nation with a 40.3% vacancy rate. As in other U.S. states, the South Carolina vacancy rates should drop as the economy improves, provided that apartment developers do not dump excess rental inventory into local markets.
How Do You Effectively Compete in a Tenant's Market?
Marketing and property exposure are key when competing with other property owners for tenants, but small landlords and independent property owners can find it nearly impossible to keep pace with new multi-unit developments backed by institutional investors. The important thing to remember is that like properties, renters are eclectic and individual. That's why many small investors and independent property owners consult with local property management companies before embarking on new marketing campaigns. Most South Carolina property management companies work with a range of regional investors and have experience in a variety of markets. Because they interact with tenants on a regular basis, they understand what appeals most to tenants. Optimize your marketing plan today. Review our list of South Carolina property company profiles and then request your free information.Â