What’s It Like Living in Seneca SC? | What to Know About Moving to Seneca

What’s It Like Living in Seneca SC? 🏬 | What to Know About Moving to Seneca

If you’re considering moving to Seneca, we’ve written a comprehensive guide of what to know about this city! Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains sits the city of Seneca, which is part of Oconee County and is the principal city of the Seneca Micropolitan Statistical Area. Its motto is “City of Smiles, City with Style.” Seneca is best known for its historic downtown district, welcoming small-town charm, and friendly atmosphere and was founded in 1873 during the post Civil War era. Initially called Seneca City, it was named after the Seneca River and the Cherokee town, Isunigu. Today, people refer to the city as Seneca.

Living in Seneca offers an array of benefits. You’re located near larger cities, but the immediate town is small, quiet, and perfect for a family that enjoys the simplicity of small-city living. Seneca is a very good place to live; the cost of living in the city is low, there are many safe neighborhoods, and there are lots of attractions and things to do!

Where Is Seneca?

Seneca is a rural mountain town located in Northwest South Carolina, in Oconee County. The north side of the city is perfectly positioned around Lake Keowee. You can expect picturesque Blue Ridge Mountain and waterfront views. It’s part of the Seneca Micropolitan Statistical Area and is 37.3 miles from Greeneville, South Carolina.

Clemson Area Transit provides public transportation for Seneca.

Helpful transportation links:


Kayaker on the Seneca River

Seneca SC demographics

  • Sex ratio: 53% female, 47% male
  • Racial and ethnic makeup: 69% White, 21% Black or African American, 8% Hispanic, 2% Two or more races
  • Foreign-born population: 2.4%
  • Educational attainment: 85% have high school diplomas or higher, 27.4% have a bachelor’s degrees or higher
  • Median household income: $48,816

Notable people from Seneca:

Is Seneca safe? According to the FBI, the Seneca, SC crime rate is 3,706 per 100k people, which is 14% higher than the state and 58% higher than the country. However, crime rate statistics aren’t always the most reliable and can be misleading. As in any city, you’ll find crime is present. But, there are plenty of safe neighborhoods in Seneca to call home.

Let’s take a closer look at the Seneca, SC crime rate compared to the state and US averages.

  • Seneca violent crime rate per 100k people: 991
  • South Carolina violent crime rate per 100k people: 531
  • US violent crime rate per 100k people: 388
  • Seneca property crime rate per 100k people: 2,715 or 0.2% lower than the state
  • South Carolina property crime rate per 100k people: 2,721
  • US property crime rate per 100k people: 1,958

Although the crime rate statistics are higher than the average, there are many safe neighborhoods in Seneca! For example, if you look at this crime rate map of the city, you’ll see Springbrook and Southern Meadows see very little crime.

The Seneca Police Department works diligently to ensure all areas of the city stay safe. The force has 30 dedicated sworn officers.

Cost of Living in Seneca

Seneca has a Cost of Living Index (COLI) of 84.5, which is well below the US average of 100.0. The average income in Seneca is $28,622, slightly below the US average of $37,638. Since Seneca is so affordable, living off a lower income is doable! According to the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four can live comfortably in Oconee County with a $62,528 household income.

Typical Seneca living expenses:

  • Inexpensive restaurant meal: $25.00
  • Regular cappuccino: $3.00
  • Gallon of milk: $3.29
  • Loaf of white bread: $2.69
  • Dozen eggs: $3.85
  • Pound of local cheese: $3.98
  • Average Seneca utilities: $321 (per Doxo)

Source: Numbeo

These figures were taken from Clemson, which has a 9.4% higher cost of living, so prices in Seneca are likely slightly lower.

The Seneca, SC, real estate is affordable, with many unique and beautiful homes. The median home price is $209,000 (down 9.95% since 2022) and is below the US median home price of $436,800. The median price per square foot is $151, 6% less than last year.

If you’re considering moving to Seneca, you should start browsing homes for sale in Seneca, SC, now! This city has beautiful waterfront properties ready for a new family. Rentals in Seneca, SC, are also a decent and affordable option. According to RentCafe, a 1,072-square-foot rental in Seneca is $1,742. While more expensive than the average US rent of $1,702 for an 897-square-foot rental, you get more space. Renting in Seneca is more affordable than in nearby cities. For example, the average monthly rent in Greenville, SC, is $1,388 for a 957-square-foot rental.

Seneca Neighborhoods | Where to Live in Seneca

Whether you’re looking for homes in the Seneca historic district or a lake-front property, this city has many lovely homes and neighborhoods to choose from!

Here are the best neighborhoods in Seneca we could find!

Seneca Historic District | Ideal for families

Located near downtown Seneca, SC, is the picturesque city’s historic district. On December 31, 1974, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places and has since expanded its boundaries. There’s an array of unique homes, commercial buildings, boutiques, coffee shops, parks, and three neighborhood churches. It’s arguably the most desirable area in the city!

Dimas Brothers Cafe is a beloved local coffee shop, and The Spot on the Alley is a neighborhood bar. Kapp Field is a great place to bring the kiddos, and Blue Ridge Community Center is just around the corner. You can even take a stroll to the neighborhood library–Seneca Library.

Lake Barcroft Acres

Lake Barcroft is a water-front neighborhood in Seneca off of Lake Keowee. The Keowee Marina is within a mile of any Lake Barcroft homes. Aside from the Marina, Lake Barcroft is conveniently located near Publix, Ingles Market, and Huddle House. While Lake Barcroft Acres has plenty of homes ready to buy, there are also lots for sale where you can build your dream home.

White Oak Cliffs

Looking for Lake Keowee homes for sale? White Oak Cliffs is located on the west side of Seneca near South Cove County Park off US Route 123. It was established in 1971 and was one of the first residential areas built on Lake Keowee, South Carolina. There are 120 lots within this Lake Keowee shores development, most with unique lake homes already built. This neighborhood is ideal if you’re seeking Keowee Lake real estate but don’t want to be secluded; all homes are within a few miles of convenient shopping and dining. Starbucks is less than a mile away, and there are numerous delicious restaurants on Keowee Lake close by.

Seneca SC Weather

According to the Koppen classification Seneca, South Caroline has a humid subtropical climate. This means the area experiences hot, humid summers and cool, mild winters (ideal for lake-side living.) Throughout the year, the temperature varies from 36 degrees Fahrenheit and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Seneca is sunny most of the year but will see a decent amount of rain in the summer; March has the most rain, with an average of 4.5 inches. The annual rainfall in Seneca is 52.7. It rarely snows there, making the annual snowfall only 2 inches.

The best time to visit Seneca is early May to early June and late August to mid-October. Since Seneca is a lake town, the late spring and early summer months are ideal for aquatic activities. Likewise, the end of the summer and early fall provides a more relaxed vibe. There are fewer visitors, the temperatures are more enjoyable, and the fall colors begin to show.

High Falls County Park

Looking for lakes in Seneca, SC, to bring the family? High Falls County Park has 4-acres of land (and water) to explore. There’s a fishing pier, mini golf, and multiple sports courts, which are all ideal for a sun-filled, fun-filled day! High Falls County Park is one of the best Oconee County parks!

671 High Falls Rd, Seneca, SC 29672, (864) 882-8234

Seneca Recreation 

The Seneca Recreation Department is one of the best parks in Seneca, SC. This sports facility offers disc golf courses, softball, and baseball fields, and plenty of space for your kids to run around.

698 W South 4th St, Seneca, SC 29678, (864) 885-2709


The Premiere Lux 8 is a luxury Seneca, SC, movie theater and is perfect for a romantic date night or evening out with your friends.

675 ByPass, US-123, Seneca, SC 29678, (864) 882-0000

Additional attractions in Seneca

The beautiful parks in Seneca, SC, are maintained by the dedicated Parks and Recreation Department. Don’t miss anything while living in Seneca; keep an eye on the city’s special events calendar!

Restaurants in Seneca SC

Looking for tasty Seneca restaurants? Here is our perfectly curated list!

Vangeli’s Bistro

Located in downtown Seneca, SC, Vangelis Bistro is an eclectic Seneca restaurant offering delicious cuisine. While there are a few fan favorites like the ahi tuna and a decadent pork belly, Vangelis uses local, in-season ingredients, which means their menu changes often.

119 Ram Cat Alley, Seneca, SC 29678, (864) 973-8887

Solé Grill and Sushi Bar

Looking for sushi in Seneca? Solé Grill and Sushi Bar is one of the tastiest restaurants in Seneca, SC! This gem has a vast menu, offering unique items like sushi and sashimi as well as American favorites like burgers and steak.

700 Bypass, 123, Seneca, SC 29678, (864) 882-9463

Seneca Family Restaurant

Seneca family restaurant is a popular dinner-style restaurant in Seneca, SC. The menu consists of homestyle American favorites like burgers and fries or eggs and bacon! This spot is family-friendly and provides a comforting ambiance.

515 By Pass 123, Seneca, SC 29678, (864) 886-9599

Seneca SC Jobs

Before moving to Seneca, here is a closer look at the economy and job options. Seneca has seen a 1.2% job market increase since last year and has a predicted future job growth of 29.3% by 2033. The unemployment rate is 4.2%, or 1.8% lower than in the US. 

20.8% of residents earn under $15,000 yearly, 13.4% earn between $60,000 and $75,000, and 2.1% make over $200,000. The average hourly rate is $16.35, and the average annual salary is $65,000.

Here’s what to expect to make when living in Seneca and working in one of these positions.

Sr. Human Resources (HR) Manager $106,868
Manufacturing Technician $50,196
Office Manager $59,763

The Seneca, SC economy employs around 33,000 people. The leading industries are Manufacturing, educational services, healthcare, social assistance, and accommodation and food services. The highest-paid industries are utilities ($93,679), company and enterprise management ($73,371), and professional, technical, and scientific services ($60,625).

The average commute time is 17.5 minutes, and most Seneca residents will commute to jobs in Clarksville and surrounding areas. 2.8% of commutes are less than 5 minutes. However, many residents work in the city.

There are tons of jobs in Seneca, SC! The largest employers in Seneca are Greenfield Industries, Oconee Federal Financial, and The Home Depot. City of Seneca SC jobs are a great option with many diverse positions; the city of Seneca employs around 200 people.

Seneca Schools

Seneca is part of the School District of Oconee County. There are 11 schools serving 8,224 students in the entire district and five in Seneca. 20% of enrolled students are minorities, and 9.3% are economically disadvantaged.

The student-to-teacher ratio is 1:15, and 99.7% are certified. 

Seneca schools are:

The school district provides special resources catered to the student’s needs. Gifted students can join GATE Gift and Talented Education; there are virtual learning options for those homeschooled and summer learning resources, assisting 365 days a year–the district spends around 25 million dollars a year on student services.

75% of elementary students tested above the proficient level in math, and 72% tested above the proficient level in reading.

If you or a soon-to-be high school graduate is planning to further their education, there are a few highly-rank colleges nearby. Clemson University is less than 10 miles from Seneca. And Tri-County Technical College is another great option.

If you ever need a quiet place to study, read, or relax, the Seneca Public Library is nestled in the city’s lovely downtown area.

Statistics & Information

  • County: Oconee County
  • Seneca Area: 8.3 square miles
  • Seneca, South Carolina Zip Codes: 29672, 29678, and 29679
  • Seneca Area Code: 864
  • Seneca Elevation: 951 feet
  • Seneca Time Zone: UTC-5 (EST)
  • The closest airport to Seneca, SC: Greenville/Spartanburg (GSP) Airport is 50 miles from Seneca

Seneca SC map

If you’re considering moving to Seneca, you have the right idea! It’s a beautiful, small city in the Blue Ridge Mountains, offering loads of charm and other attractive attributes. It’s an affordable place to live with many activities to keep you busy. But before you take on this journey alone, give our trusted Seneca movers a call at 888-883-2795. We provide top moving services at an affordable rate!

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