Columbia ranks fourth in college-town affordability
Columbia has been ranked the fourth most affordable college town in the nation, according to a study by Coldwell Banker Real Estate, with an average home price of $137,707.
"Columbia offers a variety of living options, most of which are very affordable . . . It's a great college town."
That's good news for the University of South Carolina and a strong selling point for admissions recruiters and administrators hoping to woo a prospective faculty or staff member.
Scott Verzyl, USC associate vice president for enrollment management, said affordability is definitely a selling point when recruiting students to the University.
"Parents and students are savvy consumers and are looking for quality and affordability in a great location," Verzyl said. "Columbia offers a variety of living options, most of which are very affordable.
"Although this study is mainly about the value of Columbia's real estate, the city offers a wide variety of cultural, entertainment and recreation opportunities usually found in larger cities," he said. "This is attractive not only to students, but also to faculty and staff who choose to make Columbia their home. It's a great college town."
The study, which surveyed real estate agents in college towns, found that 64 percent said more parents are buying houses for their students during college.
The most affordable college town in the study was Muncie, Indiana, home to Ball State University, which boasted an average home price of $105,115. The most expensive was Palo Alto, California, home to Stanford University. The average home price there? $1.4 million.