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Isle of Palms beachfront, by Cugirl, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Summer is officially here, and now is the time to visit the Isle of Palms or another Charleston-area beach enclave to find amazing real estate at an awesome price. The way things have been going in the Charleston real estate market, this summer may be one of your last chances to find an exceptional deal. Plus, the weather has been perfect for a beach trip over the last few weeks. You can come down, enjoy a relaxing vacation AND start the necessary legwork for making a great investment.

Charleston’s inventory of homes for sale has fallen to the 6.4-month mark (a 6-month inventory is considered healthy), and prices are beginning to climb with a surge in demand. The rental market has been showing a robust recovery, and rents are up, making investing in a residential property here a smart move.

At the Isle of Palms, inventory has dropped by 24% since last year. In May 2011, the median home price was $975,000. In May 2012, that figure has dropped to around $900,000 (down 7.7%). While the median single-family home price is down, the average price is up from $1,145,663 in May 2011 to $1,391,773 in May 2012 (up 21.5%). So it looks like you can still find some good deals, but prices are on the rise overall.

Luxury townhouses and condominiums on the Isle of Palms can be found in $300,000–$400,000 price range, but their prices are climbing quickly as well. The median price of an IOP townhome increased by 5.7% from May 2011 to May 2012, and the average price jumped by 17.6%.

If you compare the Isle of Palms to real estate in other beach communities, it becomes evident what a great deal IOP property is. Check out this comparison of prices per square foot for other communities similar to the Isle of Palms.



Avg. Price/
Sq. Ft.

Isle of Palms, SC


Carpinteria, CA


Cayucos, CA


Sanibel, FL


Avalon, CA


Rumson, NJ


East Marion, NY


Honolulu, HI


Captiva, FL


Palm Beach, FL