Affordable Retirement Along Coastal South Carolina

Coastal South Carolina never looked better for active adults.
Coastal South Carolina never looked better for active adults.
Coastal South Carolina never looked better for active adults.

Ask anyone about top retirement destinations and the tried-and-true classics like Florida and Arizona are always part of the conversation. However, a new generation of retirees are looking for additional options beyond the typical retirement destinations and are turning to areas like the South Carolina coast, which has its own unique spin on 55+ living. Retiring along the coast of the Palmetto State means enjoying balmy summers and mild winters, warm water temperatures, a low tax burden, and some of the highest quality golf courses in the country.

If all of this sounds so good that you think it must be out of your price range, take another look. Most people are surprised to find out that from Myrtle Beach on south to Hilton Head, there are a lot of reasonably priced homes within these active adult communities that sacrifice nothing in terms of quality while giving you the same wonderful weather, beautiful beaches, and stellar golf that residents of pricier communities also enjoy. 

Hilton Head Area

Hilton Head itself is located in the southernmost part of the Lowcountry region of southeast South Carolina. Formerly known for its agricultural output, the region is known as one of the top golf destinations in the country with a vast selection of premier golf courses on the island and many more inland. Beyond golf, this area also offers retirees beautiful weather, especially during the spring season when the azaleas are in bloom.

Not only will active adults enjoy a warm climate, but the area is also popular for its fresh seafood thanks to its coastal location that attracts visitors and homebuyers year-round. Sun City Hilton Head by Del Webb is located in Bluffton, SC just a few miles inland and represents an excellent value for homebuyers looking for a large, active adult community at a reasonable price point. Homes start in the mid-$100s, which is a tremendous value to active adult homebuyers.

Those who prefer a smaller-sized community will find a lot to like in Alston Park in New Riverside. This community of just 133 single-family homes is close to I-95 and just minutes from the coast, making getting around the region a breeze. Latitude Margaritaville Hilton Head, a new active adult community coming to the Hilton Head area, has generated an enormous amount of buzz in the region. As of this writing, home prices are slated to start in the low $200s with access to what’s sure to be a truly impressive range of amenities combined with all the flair of the famous singer Jimmy Buffett.


Settled in the late 1600s, Charleston is the oldest and largest city in the Palmetto State. Visitors are drawn for the city’s beautifully preserved colonial streets and buildings⁠—from military fortifications that illustrate its history as an important port city to elegant mansions, built from the great wealth generated in the city over the centuries. In the modern era, Charleston had become a capital of arts and culture in the southeast with a world-renowned dining scene.

Located within the master-planned community of Nexton, Del Webb Nexton is one of the newest active adult communities in the area that opened in 2017. Residents will have access to a 25,000 square-foot clubhouse, brimming with resort-style amenities spread across 2,000 acres of preserved green space. Home prices begin in the mid-$200s, making this an accessible community to a wide range of homebuyers.

Nearby Cresswind Charleston and Del Webb Charleston, offer similarly impressive amenities and home prices starting in the mid-$200s for both. Those looking for a great value should check out The Elms of Charleston, where resale homes can be found in the low $200s.

Myrtle Beach

Heading north along the coast is the famed Myrtle Beach area, which requires little introduction for many people. Long a highly-regarded vacation destination that attracts millions of visitors annually with its stunning sandy beaches and abundant sunshine, the area has become increasingly popular with homebuyers aged 55 and older who want to enjoy the Myrtle Beach experience year-round.

Along with the tourist attractions, the city has a new boardwalk that opened in 2010 that has received accolades from National Geographic and Travel + Leisure hailing it as one of the best in the country. With more than 100 golf courses in the area, there’s also plenty of opportunity for golfers of all skill levels to hit the links.

There are a number of remarkably affordable options in the area, offering both value and quality to homebuyers. At The Myrtle Beach Golf & Yacht Club homebuyers can find single-family homes starting in the low to mid $100s with access to a great clubhouse, plenty of green spaces, and parking for RVs and boats.

Lakeside Crossing in Conway is just 15 miles from the beach and has home prices starting below $100,000 without skimping on amenities. At Cameron Village, homeowners are close to beaches and numerous golf courses. Both single-family and attached homes are available, typically starting in the mid $200s.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

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