Man in the rain standing on two chairs We’re not short on sunshine here in Charleston, with around 200 days of full sunshine in a year the next sunny day is never far away. For the other 165 days it doesn’t rain much either, on average we get around 50 inches of rain per year – but when it does eventually rain, it pours. The rain often leads to flooding in downtown Charleston SC. This can become a deciding factor when looking at properties in the area. 

While everywhere experiences the odd damp day, when it comes to looking at property it’s worth considering a visit during a downpour. Charleston gets the name ‘Lowcountry’ due to the peninsula we’re located on, which lies close to sea level. Much of the peninsula was reclaimed from tidal creeks and marshes over the 250 years or so of the city’s history.

When viewing a property bear in mind that something that looks idyllic, at a bargain price on a warm sunny day, isn’t always so. That dream property can really turn into a nightmare at the first sign of a high tide combined with a Charleston downpour.

This was witnessed from my truck window recently, taking advantage of a heavy downpour to test the theory on a small house we were looking at. On an average day it’s the perfect property, but on this particular day the dream was shattered, and matters of flooding only worsened as the day wore on and the rain continued.  If the occasional tropical depression decides to “stall ” over the Charleston area for a day or two, we’ve been known to log some record rainfalls.

NOTE: The moral here is when buying a property in Charleston, knowing where the water levels lurk under the surface can save you frustration in the future. You can invest in an old map from the Historic Charleston Foundation or the Preservation Society of Charleston, OR spend some time on our interactive GIS map, The Charleston Map, and experience through an assortment of map layers how flooding can affect real estate in Charleston to find out where those creeks and marshes once were.  

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