General Advice about Moving to North Carolina

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Considering a move to NC for a few reasons, but where?

Sept 2009

Hello, We are considering a move to N. Carolina (among other places) for a few reasons and would love to hear from folks who have experience living/working/raising a family there, what you think of it, what the positives & negatives are.

Main reasons for considering moving:

- Cost of living. We are finding it very difficult to afford a family-size house with a yard here (we live in Berkeley), especially once we sell our current house (we'll take a loss on it) which is too small for our family now.

- Job possibilities. N. Carolina seems to have more options as far as tech/internet jobs are concerned.

- Climate/outdoors. I believe N. Carolina's weather & outdoor options would suit us (we hope to avoid harsh winters & love to spend time outside hiking, camping, etc).

- Schools. There seems to be excellent public schools in N. Carolina.

- Proximity to Europe. My husband is from Europe so being on that side of the country would make family visits a little easier.

But where exactly? We don't know the state other than visiting a few times years ago to Raleigh. Would love to hear your feedback on what specific areas are like in N. Carolina, from the community to the people to the general way of life.

Thank you. carolina curious

I can highly recommend the Carrboro/Chapel Hill area. It's ideal for families. There's a lot of local, community oriented people. Great farmer's market on Weds/Saturday. All the benefits of being close to University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. CH/Carrboro is a fairly progressive area, particularly considering NC is generally a fairly conservative state. NC can be very much still the old south once you get too far away from the bigger cities.

Our biggest complaint is that it does get a little small after a while. We've loved living here, but now are moving to the Bay area for jobs (just finished grad school).

Cost of Living: It's definitely affordable relative to the Bay Area. Chapel Hill is considered a little more expensive relative to the rest of the Triangle but it's fairly affordable really.

Schools: We have 2 kids under 3 so I can't speak specifically about the schools, but Chapel Hill/Carrboro is widely know to have an excellent school system and there are a lot of young families in the area. It is very much a college town, but there is plenty around for families too.

Jobs: My husband is in tech/internet and there's definitely a decent job market here, though it doesn't compete with the Bay Area. It's a specific group of tech companies though, not as much internet.. IBM, Cisco, etc. Most of them are in Research Triangle Park which is an area in between Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill.

Climate: Weather is pretty awesome except July-August when it can be unbearable hot and humid. When there is snow/ice everything shuts down, but it's only a few times a winter max. There is also the occasional hurricane, but we're far enough inland that it generally just means power losses from fallen trees. There is tons of outdoor stuff to do within driving distance (2-3 hours to the mountain or beach).

Good luck! Christina