Hilton Head Financial Information

Property & Transfer Taxes in Hilton Head 

Property taxes aren’t far from the national average, which is impressive given the fact that historically, the cost of housing on Hilton Head Island has been much higher than the national norm. 

Average Property Taxes: $4,200 

Sales Tax: 5.00% 

State Income Tax Rate: 7.00% 

Real Estate Transfer Fee: .25 of 1% on each real estate transaction in town. This fee is usually included in the closing costs of your Hilton Head real estate transaction.


Plantation or Off-Plantation in Hilton Head 

Hilton Head is a charming community, made up of many gated communities and developments that lie outside of the gates. When you’re deciding where to live, you may be asked if you want to live on or off plantation. 

Approximately 70% of the residences on Hilton Head Island lie within gated communities, as do most of the tourist areas. These are plantation homes. Homes located in the pockets surrounding the gated communities are known as off-plantation. These homes are just as nice as the plantation homes, and which you choose depends on your own lifestyle and your personal preferences. Some people like the ambience of gated communities while others want something with a little less formal. Off plantation homes are more reminiscent of old Hilton Head Island. The great part about Hilton Head Island is that there is plenty of room for both types of homes.

Hilton Head Financial Trends 

Financial trends change constantly but here are the general trends comparing Hilton Head to the state averages. 

  • Median house values in Hilton Head Island are significantly higher than the state average.
  • Unemployment is below the state average.
  • The median age of Hilton Head Island is well above the state average, as is the number of foreign-born residents.
  • The percentage of residents with a B.A. degree of higher is higher than the rest of the state of South Carolina. 

The Town of Hilton Head Island covers the entire island, except Mariner’s Cove, Blue Heron Point and Windmill Harbor. It also covers Moss Creek Plantation, which is off island. The governance is Council-Manager with the Town Manager serving as the chief executive officer. The town has an annual budget of approximately $75 million.

Housing Costs in Hilton Head 

As an island community, Hilton Head real estate and housing costs are higher than the national average. Though the market has continued to fluctuate wildly in the post-housing crisis, it’s safe to say that real estate on Hilton Head Island continues to be a smart investment. Island property will always be a good value, if for no other reason than its rarity in the world. 

Median house or condo value $482,552

Rest of South Carolina: $138,700 

Median price for detached houses: $673,428

Townhouses and other attached units: $373,043

Mobile homes: $83,293

Major Employers in Hilton Head 

There are more than 5,000 businesses and employers in the greater Hilton Head Island area. Here are the largest employers in the region to give you a sense of the industries served and the type of businesses who employee the residents of Hilton Head Island. 

If you’re looking for employment in Hilton Head Island or employment in Bluffton, visit www.indeed.com. 

American Golf Corporation - Recreation Services

Beaufort County School District - Education

Bi-Lo, LLC - Retail

Broad Creek Public Service District ­– Utilities

Civilian Department of Defense - Government Contracting

Cypress Club, LLC - Tourism

Greenwood Development Corporation - Real Estate

Hargray Communications ­– Communications

Hilton Head Public Service Department ­– Utilities

Longhorn Steaks, Inc - Food Service

Malphrus Construction Company - Construction

Marriott Hotel Services  - Tourism

Marriott Resort - Tourism

Morale Welfare and Recreation - Tourism

Palmetto Electric Cooperative ­– Utilities

Publix Supermarkets, Inc. - Retail

Sea Pines Plantation - Tourism/Real Estate

South Island Public Service Department­ – Utilities

Southwind Sales and Marketing - Real Estate

Tempo Personnel Services - Service

Tenet Health Systems (Hospital) - Health Care

The Dafuskie Club - Tourism/Real Estate

Town of Hilton Head Island - Local Government

Wal-Mart - Retail

Westin Hilton Head, Limited – Tourism





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