Best areas near USC to purchase rental?

22 Replies

My son is attending USC this fall and although he is living on campus I want to invest in a property that I can rent out and I'm not familiar with the best areas for this purpose.  I would love to hear some feedback so I can start looking.  With one kid at UNC Charlotte now the other at USC Im all about residency these days.  Thanks for your input

Hi Sloane,

Great choice by your son to become a Gamecock. I graduated in 2010 and the most popular areas that students lived in were the Hollywood/Rose Hill area and Shandon. These two areas are right next to each other and are close to campus and Five Points. I know the city has become more developed since then and that there are some newer apartment complexes by the stadium that could also be a good choice.

Hi, Where you buy depends in part on your budget. I know a lot of USCstudents who live in West Columbia, right across the bridge from USC because the rents are more reasonable. You can pick up hpuses there, or Rosewood, Shandon etc. I will say that most housing (small apartments and houses) right near USC are older and have issues that do with their age but the rents are high.

I agree with Jo and am no way influenced by our office being in West Columbia ;)

Another area is what I call Rosewood when I am selling there but call South Kilbourne when I am buying. Near Jim Hamilton Airport is a place you could pay 50 to 95k for a small well-built house that seems likely to appreciate. Younger people and gentrification going on there and those houses would rent for 900 or more after he graduates.  Downtown there are a couple of nice condo towers that make a lot of financial sense for someone who would otherwise be renting. I am selling a two-bedroom condo to a family for their freshman son for 110k. He will rent one room to a friend for 6 to 700 and be paying practically nothing, even with regime fees.
Lots of nice neighborhoods in Columbia with houses under 100k that he could rent a second room out to another student or a young professional. Renting an apartment here whilst going to school makes no financial sense.

Well, I forgot to mention that your son will definitely be reaping the rewards of becoming a Gamecock, as previously mentioned. A fine education, as well as bragging rights...hopefully once again during baseball season (we can only hope!). We will be investing also for our own children so we and they can enjoy rent-free accommodations!

Hello - I have a question about this thread...I also have a son at USC and have look extensively at buy and hold properties, just have not pulled the trigger yet... But I do not believe that owning property in SC alone, is enough to get my son residency in SC to qualify for "in state" status through USC. From what I have read, there is a lot that goes into it, (understandably) but I just wanted to make sure that I had it correctly. Owning property in SC alone, is not alone. I believe this must become the student's legal address. 

@Kim Puckett hi kim! just wanted to make you aware of the property taxes here in sc. for non owner occupants there is a 6% tax. for owner occupants it is a 4% tax. Maybe you could put the property in your sons name to cut down on cost. And when they say "resident" they really mean someone who has a driver's license in the state of sc. Hope that helps!

@Kim Puckett @Jasmine Norris is right, you do need to be aware of the non-owner occupant tax but you could put it in your sons name temporarily with an estate granted in Fee Simple Determinable so that it shows as him having ownership rights and then transferring back to you when he completes college. But if you purchase correctly, you should still be able to make it work without the worry of the taxes.

@Kim Puckett Have your son call the residency office. they are so helpful with the entire process. i transferred to usc from new york and was able to get instate tuition very easily. surprisingly, the residency office walks you through the entire process. The two most important factors are getting a SC license for at least one year. and your son being able to "prove" that he pays for more than 51% of his expenses. 

Hi All - I finally closed on a property in columbia. Finding a contractor has been a struggle so I have decided to break the jobs in bits and have handy men complete the different tasks. My Inspection did not indicate a roof issue but insurance went for their inspection and said we need a roof fix. Would you guys have any recommendation for a reputable company I can call in Columbia to go assess extent of repairs needed for the roof?

Just curious, in Columbia SC, if investor buys a SFH lot, is it OK to build a duplex there without zoning change? If zone change is needed, is it easy or hard? Personally I feel 6% over 4% is ok with investor if cash flow is good.

@Jasmine Hu it depends on the zoning but it is possible. I'm actually building one this fall specifically for a student rental. RG-1 requires a minimum 10,000 SF for a lot and RG-2 requires 7,500 SF for a lot to build 2 units. 

Finding lots that would work for that are pretty hard to find in my experience.

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