Honest Pros and Cons of Living in Summerville

Honest Pros and Cons of Living in Summerville

Located only 35 minutes from Charleston, Summerville is a quiet suburban town with a rich history, gorgeous views, and an abundance of entertainment options. Year-round warm weather enhances the appeal of waterfront activities at the Ashley River Preserve and popular South Carolina beaches less than an hour away. The historic downtown is home to unique shops, delicious cuisine, and popular annual events, including the 3-day Flowertown Festival. Living in the "Flower Town in the Pines" sounds like a dream come true, but you may be wondering if it's the right place for you. This guide shares the real truth about what locals like and dislike about living in Summerville.

5 Reasons you'll love living in Summerville

This small town in sunny South Carolina has a lot to offer. These are just a few reasons locals love calling Summerville home.

1. Proximity to local beaches

Some of South Carolina's most popular beaches are less than an hour from home when you live in Summerville. Whether you prefer an active beach scene with all the amenities or a serene stretch of sand with few distractions, these beloved locations are a short trip away.

  • Isle of Palms: Less than an hour from downtown, the public beach offers accessible parking, restrooms, showers, a sand volleyball court, a playground, and picnic areas with grills.

  • Kiawah Island: Just over an hour away, Kiawah Beachwalker Park has seasonal beach chair rentals and umbrella rentals, dressing rooms, restrooms, outdoor showers, a snack bar, and a picnic area with grills.

  • Folly Beach: Less than an hour away, Folly Beach offers seasonal beach chair and umbrella rentals, restrooms, outdoor showers, a picnic area, and a seasonal snack bar.

  • Sullivans Island: Only 40 minutes away, Sullivan's Island beach offers three miles of peaceful beaches but no public restrooms, showers, or parking lots.

  • Seabrook Island: A little over an hour away, this beach is designed for the needs of local vacationers and island visitors. No public restrooms, showers, or picnic areas are available. 

2. Employment opportunities

Although it's a small town, there are a variety of employment opportunities in Summerville. Businesses in the IT sector, marketing, advertising, automotive, and science sectors are growing. Active tourism provides positions in hospitality as well. Close proximity to Charleston opens up a range of additional career options for Summerville residents to consider.

3. Gorgeous views and outdoor activities

The beauty of Summerville is reflected in its nickname, The Flower Town in the Pines. In early spring, tourists flock to the town to enjoy millions of blooms in Azalea Park and public and private gardens. The annual Flowertown Festival, typically held during the first week of April, celebrates the town's beauty with entertainment, food, and local arts and crafts.

Residents can spend time in Summerville's scenic environment enjoying an array of outdoor activities, including walking, jogging, and cycling in the city's expansive public parks. Many of these venues also include amenities like picnic areas and playgrounds. For waterfront activities within the city's borders, Ashley River is ideal for swimming, fishing, paddleboards, canoes, and kayaks.

4. Lowcountry cuisine

Scrumptious Southern food is available around every corner in Summerville. Lowcountry cuisine features a mouthwatering blend of fresh seafood and rich comfort food favorites to delight diners with dishes like crab cakes and seafood boils alongside hearty side dishes like mac and cheese and fried cabbage. Find classic dishes like fried green tomatoes and smoked chicken or shrimp and grits at Oscar's. For a more upscale experience, visit Halls Chophouse Nexton for exemplary dining in an elegant atmosphere featuring live music.

5. Southern charm

Summerville is a residential town with a laid-back atmosphere and an abundance of Southern charm. Visitors and incoming residents are welcomed with friendly smiles and helpful hands. While the town's location provides easy access to Charleston amenities, its distance from the big city offers a reprieve from the hustle and bustle. Locally-owned shops line the streets of downtown, and numerous annual events gather residents together to enjoy fellowship, entertainment, and delicious food.

3 Things you may have to work around while living in Summerville

No location is perfect, so there are some disadvantages to the Summerville lifestyle. These are a few things that locals wish they could avoid.

1. Limited nightlife

As a small, residential town, Summerville doesn't support an active nightlife. Most businesses in the area center on retail goods, food, and outdoor and cultural activities. For some, this might be seen as a bonus. However, it can be a drawback for young professionals seeking a lively social life. For many, close proximity to Charleston provides an adequate substitute.

2. Weather concerns

Like most of South Carolina, Summerville has a warm and humid climate. This can require residents to spend more to cool their homes in the hot summer months. It also leads to the potential for hurricanes and tropical storms. Seventy-eight hurricanes have been recorded in Summerville since 1930. While not every severe storm causes significant damage, these risks should be considered when purchasing home insurance. Although coastal cities are at a higher risk for storm damage and flooding, Lowcountry neighborhoods are often affected as well.

3. Traffic congestion

In the past, popular cities like Charleston attracted the highest numbers of new residents, leaving little reason for updates to Summerville's infrastructure. However, the town is growing, and the population has nearly doubled in the last 20 years. While expansion leads to local business growth, it also strains the infrastructure, causing traffic backups and slower commutes. Traffic congestion is especially notable when heading to popular beaches during the summer or commuting to Charleston.

Making Summerville your home

Those planning a move to Summerville will find many attractive housing options. Available homes in Summerville range from older Victorians to modern builds and contemporary homes. Large luxury estates are found in residential areas and master-planned communities, and many smaller dwellings in the form of townhomes and condos are scattered throughout local neighborhoods.

When searching for a new home, consider what you want most from the neighborhood. Some neighborhoods are more likely to offer larger homes or easy access to downtown Summerville shops and restaurants. Others are planned communities with a variety of amenities to enjoy. To find a home that checks all the boxes on your wishlist, working with an experienced local real estate agent is essential.

Connect with The Husted Team to find your Summerville dream home

There's no doubt that the pros of living in Summerville far outweigh the cons. If you plan to make Summerville your home, you need a real estate agent with the inside track to available homes and substantial knowledge about the local housing market. The Husted Team is an established real estate firm that has helped hundreds of residents find their dream homes in the greater Charleston area. Jason Husted and the experienced realtors on his team specialize in the Charleston and Summerville areas and can help you find your perfect Summerville home. Get in touch to learn more about how the experienced real estate professionals at The Husted Team can help you find your ideal home in Summerville.

Work With Us

The Husted Team has created a streamlined process for buying or selling homes by assembling a team of industry experts to provide a range of services. Let them guide you with your real estate needs, contact them today!

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