Rental Housing In South Carolina

South Carolina Rental Overview

The population of South Carolina, according to the 2010 Census, is 4,625,364. The total number of households in the state is 1,801,181. The average household size for South Carolina is 2.4. The total number of renter households in the state is 552,376 which means that 30.67% of households are renter households. Compared to all other U.S. States, South Carolina is ranked 38th in percentage of renters. District Of Columbia is ranked first with 57.99% and West Virginia ranks last with only 26.55%.

According to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, the median rent paid among all renter households and housing types and sizes in South Carolina is $758 per month. Ranked against all other states in the country, South Carolina ranks 29th for the highest median rent. Hawaii ranks first at $1,353 and West Virginia ranks last at $606. Though rents are set more locally, statewide median rents provide a basic outlook of housing costs for each state.

The number of vacant rental units in South Carolina is 81,617 representing a vacancy rate of 12.9%. Among all U.S. states, South Carolina ranks 52nd for the lowest vacancy rates. As lower vacancy rates are an indication of a healthier rental housing portfolio, South Carolina’s rental housing portfolio is performing well below the National average.

ProgramProjectsUnits
Project Based Section 8 257 17,062
Section 202 103 3,799
Section 811 87 1,065
Section 515 290 10,879
RDRA 239 6,389
LIHTC 462 20,186
Senior 276 10,353
Public Housing 95 7,806
Section 8 Voucher 43 26,673
Total 1,076 49,681
Note: The total does not necessarily equal the sum of each program as some properties may participate in multiple funding programs.

‡This program is not project based, instead Housing Authorities provide vouchers to individual renters. In the state of South Carolina there are 43 independent Housing Authorities that may issue these vouchers.

The average number of units per property for affordable rentals in South Carolina is 46.20. The largest market for federally assisted housing in the state is Columbia at 5,222 units and the smallest is Coward at 6 unit(s). 276 apartment properties provide housing for seniors containing 10,353 units. Of the 49,681 units, 27,903 units include some form of rental assistance (like Section 8) to make rent more affordable for very low income families.

Affordable Housing by Counties in South Carolina ranked by federally assisted units

There are 46 counties or county equivalents in South Carolina. The county or county equivalent with the largest population is Greenville County at 451,225 and the smallest is McCormick County at 10,233. The county or county equivalent with the largest percentage of renter households is Charleston County at 39.67% and The county or county equivalent with lowest portion of renters is McCormick County at 20.11%.

The density of Federal housing assistance at the county level in South Carolina ranges from a low of 30.7 units per 1,000 renter households in Berkeley County to a high of 416.2 units per 1,000 renter households in Laurens County. The average Federal housing assistance density for all counties in South Carolina is 169.8 units per 1,000 renter households.

The table below summarizes the Federally assisted housing located in each county in South Carolina. All major affordable housing programs are provided on a county by county basis. Click on the name of the county to see a more in depth summary of affordable housing in that county.

CountyTotal Units
Richland County 4,789
Greenville County 4,660
Charleston County 3,425
Spartanburg County 2,788
Anderson County 2,335
Horry County 1,979
Lexington County 1,833
York County 1,806
Beaufort County 1,531
Dorchester County 1,370
Laurens County 1,323
Orangeburg County 1,265
Aiken County 1,174
Pickens County 1,137
Sumter County 1,033
Florence County 993
Cherokee County 924
Oconee County 914
Clarendon County 840
Darlington County 815
Greenwood County 808
Lancaster County 804
Marlboro County 784
Kershaw County 782
Union County 688
Dillon County 673
Georgetown County 666
Williamsburg County 641
Berkeley County 553
Abbeville County 550
Colleton County 498
Edgefield County 496
Newberry County 495
Fairfield County 492
Lee County 426
Chesterfield County 422
Chester County 421
Barnwell County 420
Bamberg County 392
Allendale County 379
Marion County 364
Hampton County 334
McCormick County 272
Jasper County 254
Saluda County 129
Calhoun County 68

Affordable Housing by City in South Carolina ranked by federally assisted units

We are tracking 173 cities in South Carolina that have at least one Federally assisted housing community. With a population of 129,272, Columbia has the largest population of these cities. There are 91 Federally assisted housing communities in Columbia which are home to about 5,222 families, most of which are lower income families.

The table below provides a summary of all Federally assisted housing communities by city in South Carolina. All the major affordable housing funding program breakdowns are provided. Click on the city name to get a full affordable rental housing report for each city in South Carolina.

CityTotal Units
Columbia 5,222
Greenville 3,048
Charleston 2,162
Anderson 1,580
Spartanburg 1,237
North Charleston 1,034
Orangeburg 932
Summerville 908
Conway 889
Sumter 889
Beaufort 870
Rock Hill 801
Gaffney 796
Lancaster 756
Myrtle Beach 738
Laurens 723
Greenwood 711
Camden 662
Union 656
Manning 619
Florence 597
Seneca 552
Clinton 540
Bennettsville 512
Walterboro 498
Winnsboro 474
North Augusta 470
Lexington 464
Newberry 447
Greer 445
Fort Mill 423
Kingstree 421
Georgetown 418
Dillon 409
Taylors 409
Bishopville 408
Aiken 402
Bluffton 388
Abbeville 381
Darlington 370
Easley 370
Chester 363
Hartsville 345
York 336
West Columbia 330
Edgefield 312
Walhalla 312
Travelers Rest 304
Duncan 303
Allendale 291
Central 290
Fountain Inn 284
Batesburg 264
Inman 234
Lake City 232
Ladson 231
Clemson 222
Moncks Corner 221
Belton 207
Andrews 200
Mccoll 200
Hemingway 200
Marion 196
Barnwell 196
Clover 194
Lugoff 192
Cheraw 188
Pendleton 186
Ridgeland 180
Simpsonville 178
Denmark 176
Bamberg 168
Mullins 168
Mauldin 165
Latta 156
Mccormick 148
Cowpens 148
Wedgefield 144
Loris 142
Cayce 142
Williston 140
Hampton 138
Liberty 128
Blacksburg 128
Williamston 128
Holly Hill 127
Pickens 127
Mc Cormick 124
Summerton 121
Boiling Springs 117
Estill 116
Johnston 112
Hilton Head 112
Calhoun Falls 111
Saluda 109
Lake View 108
Landrum 106
Chesterfield 104
Clearwater 104
Lamar 100
Turbeville 100
St. George 100
Hanahan 96
Goose Creek 96
Woodruff 96
Graniteville 96
N. Charleston 95
Red Hill 90
Hilton Head Island 90
John 88
Wellford 88
Fairfax 88
Blackville 84
Honea Path 82
Piedmont 80
Varnville 80
Lyman 80
Irmo 80
Pageland 78
Johnsonville 78
N. Myrtle Beach 74
Hardeeville 74
Warrenville 72
Port Royal 71
Iva 70
Gloverville 70
Ware Shoals 66
Chesnee 64
Boiling Spgs 64
N Charleston 64
Leesville 60
Great Falls 58
Timmonsville 56
North 56
Jefferson 52
Ft Mill 52
Westminster 50
Moore 50
Clio 48
Ehrhardt 48
Kershaw 48
Pelzer 48
Pawleys Island 48
Santee 48
Johns Island 47
Elloree 44
Swansea 40
Saint Matthews 40
St George 36
Pacolet 36
Harleyville 34
Branchville 34
Jonesville 32
Ninety Six 30
Ninety-six 29
Saint Stephen 28
West Pelzer 24
Wagener 24
Mc Coll 24
Pamplico 24
Bowman 24
Little River 24
Whitmire 24
Prosperity 24
Aynor 22
Eastover 20
Greeleyville 20
Ridge Spring 20
Ridgeway 18
Lynchburg 18
Joanna 12
New Ellenton 8
Coward 6

Housing Authorities in South Carolina ranked by assisted units and vouchers

Housing authorities are governmental (or quasi-governmental) entities that manage various Federal housing assistance programs on behalf of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These programs include Public Housing, Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers and other programs.

There are 43 housing authorities in South Carolina. These housing authorities own and operate an aggregate of public housing units and administer Section 8 rental vouchers. Of the 43 housing authorities, 74.4% have both a public housing and Section 8 program.

The largest housing authority in South Carolina by total housing assistance units managed is Housing Authority of the City of Columbia with 5,574 public housing units under management (2,130 public housing units and 3,444 Section 8 vouchers).

The table below provides a list of housing authorities in South Carolina and includes each housing authorities public housing and Section 8 voucher count. Click on the housing authority name to get more details on the housing authority.

NamePublic Housing UnitsSection 8 Vouchers
Housing Authority of the City of Columbia 2,130 3,444
Housing Authority of Greenville 780 2,730
Housing Authority of Spartanburg 1,178 2,158
South Carolina Regional Housing Authority 1 1,323 1,653
Housing Authority of the City of Charleston 1,405 1,483
Housing Authority of N Charleston 319 2,026
South Carolina State Housing Authority - 2,064
Housing Authority of Florence 754 772
Charleston Co Hsg & Redev Auth 399 1,079
SC Regional Housing Authority No 3 781 572
Housing Authority of Sumter 327 925
Housing Authority of Greenwood 223 967
City of Aiken Housing Authority 242 875
Rock Hill Housing Authority 369 500
Beaufort Housing Authority 291 574
Housing Authority of Myrtle Beach - 804
Housing Authority of Anderson 277 500
Housing Authority of Conway 260 368
Housing Authority of Lake City 299 311
Housing Authority of Union 286 274
Housing Authority of Newberry 315 235
Housing Authority of Marion 373 153
Housing Authority of Greer 186 280
Housing Authority of Georgetown 293 163
Housing Authority of Cheraw 227 180
Housing Authority of Lancaster 140 247
Housing Authority of Chester 112 269
Housing Authority of York 124 233
Housing Authority of Hartsville 98 210
Marlboro Co Hsg & Redev Authority 54 253
Housing Authority of Fort Mill 141 154
Housing Authority of Gaffney 274 -
Housing Authority of Darlington 166 93
Housing Authority of Mullins 194 60
Housing Authority of Bennettsville 154 64
Housing Authority of Kingstree 140 -
Housing Authority of Abbeville 128 -
Housing Authority of Laurens 120 -
Housing Authority of Easley 99 -
Housing Authority of Woodruff 98 -
Housing Authority of the City of Cayce 41 -
Housing Authority of McColl 34 -
Housing Authority of Atlantic Beach - -

Federally Assisted Affordable Rental Housing

According to our affordable housing data, South Carolina has a total of 1,076 rental properties that receive at least one form of Federal housing assistance and are at least partially reserved for low income persons. These properties contain an estimated 49,681 rental housing units. (Note: Some of the Federal source data we use does not include total unit count for a property -- most notably the LIHTC database -- so the number of units listed here may be less than the actual.)

The Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program is the largest assistance program by unit count. The program assists 20,186 in South Carolina. The charts below lay out how each Federal program impact affordable housing in South Carolina.

Federal Programs By Unit Count Hover over a bar to view