Housing in Sumter 20% Lower than U.S. Average

September 24, 2007

Housing in Sumter is an exceptionally good buy, according to the American Chambers of Commerce Research Association (ACCRA).

Each quarter ACCRA compiles cost-of-living data from 274 urban areas to create its Cost of Living Index. The index is based on more than 50,000 prices covering almost 60 different items, from housing, utilities, groceries, transportation, health care and miscellaneous goods and services.

Housing accounts for 28% of the overall index, and in this area, Sumter is strong with a rating of 80.4% of the national average. On the other end of the scale, New York City is a perennial champion in high housing costs, and came in at 214.7% of the national average in the latest period.

Local real estate executive John M. Brabham of Prudential John M. Brabham Real Estate said that while Sumter continues to grow at a respectable pace, housing developers have kept up with demand and the result is extremely competitive housing costs.

“Like anything else, the price of a house is based on what the local market will bear,” Brabham said. “And even though housing values have increased pretty rapidly over the past decade, Sumter is still a great market for buyers.”

Similarly, Sumter remains a bargain in most every category studied by ACCRA. Utilities and healthcare in Sumter cost about 92% of the U.S. average, while transportation came in at 91% and miscellaneous goods and services at 98%. Sumter’s overall composite index, which combines all the different categories, came in at 91.6% of the national average.