A handful of Lowcountry municipalities made a Top 20 list for affordable places to buy a home in South Carolina. The consumer advocacy site NerdWallet recently analyzed federal data to rank the places that have the most to offer home purchasers in the Palmetto State.

The top pick for the state was Five Forks, a suburb of Greenville that has a 92 home-ownership rate and residents pay 18.4 percent of income for homeownership.

Leading the Lowcountry was Goose Creek, which ranked 8th overall for the state The Berkeley County city grew 5.1 percent from 2010 to 2012. The NerdWallet report says the city also recorded a 69 percent homeownership rate, median monthly homeownership was $1,393 and the percent of homeownership cost was 26.9 percent of an average resident's income.

Other local home markets on the list:

Summerville (No. 13)

Hanahan (No. 16)

Ladson (No. 17)

Mount Pleasant (No. 19)

Nerdwallet said it looked at costs of homeownership as a percentage of monthly income, home values, ownership rates and population growth.

New beats old

A recent study by real estate data firm Trulia discovered American homebuyers prefer new homes 2-to-1.

The firm's research concluded that 41 percent of Americans say they would prefer to buy a newly built home over a previously lived-in home. The key reasons: modern features and the ability to customize.

The firm surveyed 2,048 Americans in March and April and analyzed recent home-purchase and building-permit data from the Census Bureau.