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Pros and Cons of Living in Bluffton SC
Dated: September 30 2020
If you're thinking about moving to Bluffton South Carolina, you probably have a lot of questions. If you're currently living here…congratulations!
Bluffton, SC, has many accolades. Here's just a few
- Viewfinder travel blog named Bluffton most beautiful town in South Carolina.
- Awarded “#8 South’s Best Small Town” in Southern Living’s 2019 South’s Best Awards.
- Named 5th in Forbes 2018 Best Places to Retire List.
- Montage Palmetto Bluff voted #9 on 2018 list that TripAdvisor readers deemed the best of the best in the South.
- Bluffton named one of “America’s Happiest Seaside Towns” by Coastal Living.
- May River Golf Club at Montage Palmetto Bluff named to “Golfweek’s” Best Courses List for 2018.
- Huffington Post awarded Bluffton as the #1 Amazing Non-Beach Alternatives for a Summer Getaway.
- RealEstateScoreCard.com named Bluffton best place to live in South Carolina!
We moved to the Bluffton area about six years ago. I remember combing websites and reading articles on what it's like to live in Bluffton. There was such a mixed bag of reviews, and to be honest, I was more confused when I finished than when I started researching. What I found (once I moved here) is that there are a few residents that don't like it and are very vocal about it. But, the majority ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!
Top 5 Pros of Living in Bluffton
The People Are Friendly
You will never find a happier group of people than those living in Bluffton. No matter where you're from or how miserable you were before you came here, you too will meld into a smiling, friendly person. Everyone waves and says hi in passing. Because most residents have moved here from somewhere else, Bluffton is not clicky. The Town is welcoming and friendly towards everyone.
The Beauty of The Lowcountry
When I first moved here, I was awestruck by the beauty of the marshlands and the moss covered oaks. I remember thinking someday this will look normal to me, and I won't appreciate it as much as I do now. I'm happy to say that day never came. Today, I am still in awe of the picturesque beauty of the area. The moss covered oaks and endless marshland are timeless. The orange and red sunsets melt into the horizon and create pictures that God could only create. Egrets and blue herons are in abundance at the edge of lagoons and waterways scattered throughout the area. Bluffton is where I first saw the majesty of a bald eagles flight. Now, seeing Eagles and Osprey are my norm. The beauty never gets old.
The Endless Recreational Activities
There are hundreds of miles of hike and bike trails, and that number continues to grow. The East Coast Greenway and Spanish Moss Trail are just two of the many trails that wind through Bluffton, SC. In addition to running and biking, this area is a boater's dream. With water in every direction, many residents enjoy kayaking and paddle boarding on one of the many waterways. And, if you love bigger boats, the inlets will not disappoint. Most communities have amenities that include pools, pickleball, tennis, fitness centers, and golf. You will even find a golf Frisbee course at Sergeant Jasper Park.
The Awesome Weather Yearround
One of the things I love most about the weather in Bluffton South Carolina is that we still have four seasons. It's just that the winter season is short and mild (about six weeks). In the coldest of days, the average temperature is 43 for a low and 63 for a high. In my experience, the most frigid days will bring temperatures in the mid to high 20's, but they are rare. The fall still brings color (although not as vibrant as in the north), and spring comes in early March with the blooming of the Azaleas, Dogwoods, and Redbuds. Spring is probably our most extended season lasting from late February early March to June. We do still occasionally see accumulating snow, but it is rare.
The Food and Culture
If you LOVE fresh seafood, this place is for you! If you HATE seafood, this place is for you! Because of the vast melting pot of cultures, food from all over the world is found in Bluffton. Like Caribbean food? The Red Stripe is the place to go. If you like Italian, American, Mexican, or Asian, the choices are endless. There are also local cuisines such as Lowcountry Boil, Frogmore Stew, and Shrimp & Grits that are staples of the local culture and community.
Top 5 Cons of Living in Bluffton
Not Enough Mass Transit Options
Living in a small town has small town growing pains. Since Bluffton SC is the second fastest growing city in South Carolina, the roads are becoming more congested. Hardeeville, which is part of the Greater Bluffton area, is the #1 fastest growing community. The more congestion, the more we need mass transit options. The local government is working on options for this growing issue. Currently, Palmetto Breeze offers an option, but more (especially during tourist season) is needed. Of course, there are ways to work around the growing traffic. Most locals try and avoid 278 during rush hours and on Saturdays (changeover day on Hilton Head) by taking alternate routes or traveling after the rush.
The Bluffton area is more suited to daytime activities. When it comes to nightlife, we have to travel to Savannah Georgia (about 30 minutes) for mainstream nightlife. But, that's not to say that there is nothing to do at night. Most locals will hang out in Old Town Bluffton when they are looking for a night out. There you will find live music, great food, and craft beer. Since this is the only area (at this time) that has a decent nightlife, parking is crowded so get there early. There is also a new area that looks promising to nightlife. Buckwalter Place promises to be a new hot spot and already has Southern Barrel (craft beer) and Frankie Bones. More restaurants, bars, and entertainment are in the works in this area.
The Summertime Heat
Most residents stay indoors during July and August because the temperature and humidity can get a little too much to bear. But, coming from the Cincinnati area, we lived in a valley. The air did not move. So, for us, the heat and humidity are not as bad because even on the hottest days, there is an ocean breeze. The heat and humidity are nowhere near what it is in Florida, but the average temperature in July is 90 (low 73), with an average humidity of 70%. The sun is HOT, so we do use a lot of sunscreen.
Home Inventory (and Prices)
According to Zillow, the median home price in the US is $226,800. According to the Hilton Head MLS, the average home price in Bluffton is $325,000. In addition to higher home prices, home inventory is low. That means when a home under $300,000 comes on the market, there is a lot of competition for the home. We are combating this issue with new home construction. Many new home builders can build homes in the $250,000 range. And, all of the local governments are working together on a solution for workforce housing. Because Bluffton is one of the fastest growing cities in South Carolina and the nation, this is a number one priority for the local governments.
Not Walkable (yet)
Although neighborhoods are walkable, there's not many within walking or biking distance of work or shopping. In Savannah, you can park your car and never need it again, but in Bluffton, you will be driving pretty much everywhere you need to go. We do have some walk-friendly communities like Buckwalter Place and Old Town Bluffton, but they are still the minority.
Bluffton SC, even with the cons, is one of the best towns in the US to call home. It's great for raising families, retiring, or just starting out. The location is close to Savannah Georgia, Beaufort South Carolina, and even Charleston. Want to take a day trip to Myrtle Beach? It's just 3 hours north. Want to take a day trip to Daytona Beach? Only 3 hours south. No matter what you like or where you are from, you'll find Bluffton SC a great place to call home.
If you'd like more information on Bluffton, please reach out to us. Call us at 843-707-6956 or email us firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to help answer your questions and make your move to Bluffton SC an easy one.
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