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Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Old Mar 3rd 2022, 5:37 pm
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Default Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Hi All,

I'm mostly happy in the Midwest right now but do miss the coast. My wife and I took a holiday last September to Myrtle Beach and she really fell in love with South Carolina, which was pleasantly surprised me! Have grown up on the beach I knew, but I think she realised being relatively near a beach is so much more fun for kids. The more she looked up the Charleston area the more she liked it.I had already said I want to move to the coast when we retire at minimum but would have preferred sooner.

With that in mind, we are considering moving to South Carolina in a few years. Realistically I want to stay in the midwest for a few more years as some of my short term hobbies are better suited here and kid will be going to school full time in 2 years, freeing my wife to go back to work (and the added income).
I could stay with my current employer as hey have a small facility there and I am mostly remote now but I already know they don't do a COL (cost of living) adjustment. That said I'm on a pretty good salary for my role and area (approx $100k plus benefits and I'm due a promotion soon that hopefully bumps that up 7%) and looking at similar roles in the Charleston and greater area it doesn't look like I would get a considerable raise anyway, so at present the plan is to try and stay with my current company.

I had a quick look at housing and we would like a 3 bed with office or 4 bed without, and preferably 0.25-0.5 acres minimum and extra garage space. I'm under no illusions that I could afford a beach front property in Charleston with those requirements, but just wondering if there is a reasonably commute (60-90 mins max) area outside Charleston that would be worth looking at? Are my expectations reasonable?
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Old Mar 4th 2022, 2:07 pm
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Default Re: Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

You would probably find something in Summerville/Ladson, West Ashley, or North Charleston that would fit what you are looking for. Closer to the beaches, Charleston or Mount Pleasant would definitely add some $$$$ to the cost of the property purchase. To be on the beach, Isle of Palms, or Sullivan's Island, you'd be looking at $1 million-plus starting. We live in Mount Pleasant and house prices here are ridiculous. Charleston peninsula floods, a lot, even when it is not raining due to tides.

There are a fair few expats here from the UK. There are also lots to do with kids, and lots of trails and places to go if you have a dog. As you have kids I would 100% research the schools as some are better than others. Charleston County and Dorchester District 2 are good, but within those, some schools are obviously better than others. My eldest goes to Wando high school and they have 4,000+ students. His graduating class had about 1400 when they were freshmen. I am preparing for numb bum at his graduation ceremony in a couple of months.

We moved to the area 10 years ago. We thought about moving to Summerville as housing is cheaper there, but the commute for my husband to his office in Charleston would be too much for him he said. Traffic is diabolical during rush hour (worse than when we were in Indianapolis) and SC drivers are apparently the 2nd worst in the nation behind Louisiana.
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Old Mar 8th 2022, 2:42 pm
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Default Re: Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Originally Posted by Harveyspecter View Post
.... I already know they don't do a COL (cost of living) adjustment. ....
Charleston is probably the most expensive area of SC, but generally the cost of living, and especially housing, is likely to be lower than Indiana. If you're prepared to live outside of a city/ town then several acres of land with a home should be pretty affordable, though with school-age children, finding a good school should probably be your priority. But you could certainly put a move out of town, to the outer fringes of the Charleston area, to a home with "acreage" and room for a huge garage/ shop on your plans for after your kids finish school.
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Old Mar 11th 2022, 3:40 am
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Default Re: Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Great fish and chips shop in Charleston - The Codfather.
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Old Mar 11th 2022, 9:17 pm
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Default Re: Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

Harvey
Check out a housing option called a barndominium. It would be ideal for a person with a car hobby. Lots of different ways to build and a lot of square footage for a low price. I would like one myself but kind of late in the game.
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Old Jun 7th 2022, 1:02 pm
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Default Re: Any Expats in Charleston/SC area? Considering a move to there from Midwest.

I've had a busy few months with a holiday (Cruise) then family visiting, so I completely forgot about this thread, apologies!

Originally Posted by SarahG View Post
You would probably find something in Summerville/Ladson, West Ashley, or North Charleston that would fit what you are looking for. Closer to the beaches, Charleston or Mount Pleasant would definitely add some $$$$ to the cost of the property purchase. To be on the beach, Isle of Palms, or Sullivan's Island, you'd be looking at $1 million-plus starting. We live in Mount Pleasant and house prices here are ridiculous. Charleston peninsula floods, a lot, even when it is not raining due to tides.

There are a fair few expats here from the UK. There are also lots to do with kids, and lots of trails and places to go if you have a dog. As you have kids I would 100% research the schools as some are better than others. Charleston County and Dorchester District 2 are good, but within those, some schools are obviously better than others. My eldest goes to Wando high school and they have 4,000+ students. His graduating class had about 1400 when they were freshmen. I am preparing for numb bum at his graduation ceremony in a couple of months.

We moved to the area 10 years ago. We thought about moving to Summerville as housing is cheaper there, but the commute for my husband to his office in Charleston would be too much for him he said. Traffic is diabolical during rush hour (worse than when we were in Indianapolis) and SC drivers are apparently the 2nd worst in the nation behind Louisiana.
Thanks Sarah, I'm guessing you moved from Indy so that's great to hear from someone who knows where I'm currently at and how it would compare. My current employer has a site in downtown Charleston but I'd only need to visit a few times a month, if at all. So I'm open to an hour or even a 90 minute commute which opens up my affordability greatly.

Interesting about the drivers. I think the I465 in Indianapolis is the craziest road I've ever driven!

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
Charleston is probably the most expensive area of SC, but generally the cost of living, and especially housing, is likely to be lower than Indiana. If you're prepared to live outside of a city/ town then several acres of land with a home should be pretty affordable, though with school-age children, finding a good school should probably be your priority. But you could certainly put a move out of town, to the outer fringes of the Charleston area, to a home with "acreage" and room for a huge garage/ shop on your plans for after your kids finish school.
Really? That's encouraging! Not sure if I've looked far enough out on realtor but what I did see depressed me a bit with regards to home prices. With an hours rodius of Charleston I could look as far as McClellanville/Moncks Corner/Ridgeville I'm guessing. But any suggestions are welcome (I know you are in NC).

I searched within 50 miles of Charleston (admittedly wanting a 3 car garage) but only found 2 homes under $350k.

Originally Posted by tom169 View Post
Great fish and chips shop in Charleston - The Codfather.
Hell yes! I'll be sure to check that out even if I'm just visiting, thanks!


Originally Posted by ddsrph View Post
Harvey
Check out a housing option called a barndominium. It would be ideal for a person with a car hobby. Lots of different ways to build and a lot of square footage for a low price. I would like one myself but kind of late in the game.
I've considered it, but my wife and I don't like them enough and unless you are building a large (3000sq ft +) home, they apparently aren't much cheaper than houses.



Last edited by Harveyspecter; Jun 7th 2022 at 1:05 pm. Reason: Addition
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