Young adults face a bit tougher than average chance of gaining a financial toehold in the Palmetto state, according to Moneyrates’ online analysis, which placed the Dakotas as best states and Washington and Virginia as worst.

South Carolina landed at 31st in the study, which took into account eight economic factors and attractions for millennials.

North Dakota ranked first and Washington state was 51st. Louisiana was the highest finishing Southeastern state at 6th.

According to Moneyrates, North Dakota counted the lowest unemployment rate for the 20–24 age group, a top score for access to high-speed broadband and placed in the top 10 for rental affordability and concentration of night spots.

The state has one of the highest proportions of young adults in its population: The 20 to 24 age group makes up 10.5 percent of the state’s population — the third highest in the nation. Moneyrates found most of the best states are in the Midwest.

The fourth worse unemployment rate for young adults at 14.2 percent and seventh-lowest rate of rental availability at 4.9 percent dragged down Washington state.

According to Moneyrates, there may not be anything flashy about places such as the Dakotas or Nebraska. But Richard Barrington, the company’s senior financial analyst, urges young adults not to overlook the importance of economic factors.

“There’s nothing very glamorous about being unemployed, no matter where you live,” he says. “Unfortunately, the places young people are often attracted to tend to be the very places where competition for jobs can make it tough to find decent work, while competition for places to live can make rents very expensive, if you can even find an apartment.”

According to Barrington, “Young people have the flexibility to move, and they should use this to their economic advantage. Go where the jobs are, and even if it does not turn out to be your long-term home, getting some work experience and building up some savings will give you a lot more options when it comes time to decide where you want to settle down.”

Barrington encourages young people to consider relocating if they are having a hard time financially where they are now.

Reach Jim Parker at 843-937-5542 or jparker@postandcourier.com.