If you’re moving to a new place, there are probably a couple of hundred questions running through your mind right now. A lot of different factors have to be taken into account when choosing the best location for you and your family!
- Charlotte, North Carolina.min.jpg
- Outer Banks, North Carolina.min.jpg
- Duke Gardens in Durham, North Carolina.min.jpg
- Heavy rain in North Carolina.min.jpg
- A 5-bedroom family home for sale in Durham, North Carolina.min.jpg
- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.min.jpg
- The Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina.min.jpg
- Woman in a job interview.min.jpg
- Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina.min.jpg
- Interstate highway I-240 in North Carolina.min.jpg
- A pair packing items for their move.min.jpg
- Home to over 10 million residents, North Carolina is the ninth-most populous state in the United States.
- View of the Downtown Charlotte skyline.
Have you ever considered moving to North Carolina? If the answer is yes, then this article will be of great help! In this comprehensive guide, we’ll show you everything there is to know about the Old North State — from the pros and cons of living here to the best places to see in North Carolina!
Pros and Cons
North Carolina is a good place to live with your family — but that doesn’t mean that this state doesn’t have its cons. In fact, we’re certain that there’s no place you’ll find that has no flaws at all! To help you decide whether moving to North Carolina is the best option for you, here are 7 pros and 7 cons of living in the Old North State!
- Low cost
- One of the best advantages of moving to North Carolina is that it has a relatively lower cost-of-living. The median house price in this state is one of the lowest in the country!
- Unlike states in the New England region, North Carolina doesn’t experience harsh winters! The weather is mild throughout the year, although summers can get pretty hot.
- North Carolina has plenty of diversity when it comes to the natural attractions that it offers to its residents, from beaches to mountains!
- If you’re moving to the capital of North Carolina, be prepared to live nearby some of the best restaurants and best breweries in the state!
- The average commute time in North Carolina is below the national average, which means that it takes less time for NC residents to get from their homes to their jobs! On top of that, only approximately 8% of North Carolina’s roads are in poor conditions, whereas the national average is over 23%.
- According to people who have moved to North Carolina, the residents in this state are warm and nice to most newly-arrived residents.
- If you’re a sports fan, you’ll certainly have a good time in North Carolina — this state has great sports teams, from college to professional teams!
- If you’re into cold winters, or if you would like to live somewhere where you’ll get to experience the four seasons very distinctly, North Carolina may not be the place for you!
- North Carolina is not the safest state in the country. It ranks at #28 in terms of public safety and its violent crimes rate is almost higher than the national average.
- When you move to North Carolina, one thing that you should keep in mind is that hurricanes are a real threat in this state, especially if you leave closer to the ocean.
- Depending on the industry that you work in, the wages in North Carolina are relatively low. On top of that, the poverty rate in the Old North State is more than 15%, which is significantly above the national average of 10,5%.
- While North Carolina has a good higher education system that is among the top 15 best in the country, its Pre-K-12 system is not as good, ranking at #28 out of 50 states.
- The quality of health care in North Carolina, as well as the quality of public health, is not among the best in the country — this state ranks at #30 in terms of health care.
- Air and
- The average number of days with unhealthy air quality in the U.S. is 227. In North Carolina, that number is as high as 273! This means that the Old North State has serious pollution issues.
- The Outer Banks in North Carolina are barrier islands that make up for some of the most beautiful and most popular beaches in the country.
- Aerial view of a beach at the Outer Banks, North Carolina.
One of the original colonies, North Carolina has an extensive history. This state is home to some of the most famous inventions on the planet — and it has also served as the location for important events that even include the very first aircraft flights! Here are 6 fun facts you didn’t know about North Carolina!
- Kill Devil Hills in North Carolina was the location where the Wright Brothers tested their first powered airplanes over a hundred years ago!
- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was first chartered in 1789 — which makes it one of the oldest public universities in America, as well as the first state university in North Carolina.
- The Outer Banks in North Carolina are especially known for the beautiful beaches you can find there. In fact, this location is so popular that there is a Netflix show that takes place at the Outer Banks!
- Land of
- You’ve probably heard of this famous donuts company. Krispy Kreme is known all throughout North American — and the very first Krispy Kreme store was headquartered in North Carolina!
of the Atlantic!
- There’s a part of the Outer Banks in North Carolina where there’s often sand shifting, which makes this area really hard to navigate. Rumor has it that over 5,000 ships have sunk in this area — hence the nickname “Graveyard of the Atlantic”.
- Maybe you don’t know this, but North Carolina is the top producer of sweet potatoes in the United States, as well as being second in the farming of pigs and turkeys!
Funny State Laws
Every state has its fair share of funny laws. Although it’s kind of hard to tell why these laws were created in the first place, what makes them funny is the fact that some of these laws are just way too obvious! Are you curious why? Here are 5 funny laws in North Carolina!
- Driving on
- If it wasn’t obvious enough before, please keep in mind that it’s illegal to drive on the sidewalk in North Carolina!
- A tip on
how to ride your bike!
- If you’re moving to North Carolina and you enjoy going on bike rides, always use both hands! It’s illegal to ride bikes without both hands in North Carolina.
- No bingo
and alcohol allowed!
- Do people even drink alcohol during bingo games? Well, as hard as it is to picture that, North Carolina has a law that forbids people from consuming alcohol during bingo games.
- It’s pretty difficult to decipher how this law came to be. Elephants aren’t native to North America, especially not in North Carolina! And to try to use them to plow fields? That’s super weird!
- Another funny law in North Carolina is that, if you’re moving to Forest City by car, you need to let the city know beforehand!
Weather and Climate
- Unlike other states in the region, the weather in North Carolina is not as cold during the winter — but the Old North State is great during the summer and the spring.
- Duke Gardens during the spring.
We’ve already mentioned that the weather in North Carolina is not as cold as in other states of the region — this is because this state has a sub-tropical climate. According to weather reports, snowfall is rare in the Old North State. January is the coldest month of the year, with temperatures reaching as low as 20 °F in the mountains. For most of the year, the weather in North Carolina is mild and pleasant, except during the summer: in July, the temperatures can get as high as 91 °F — which is why many tourists are attracted to the beaches in the Old North State.
North Carolina has a geographically-privileged position within the map of the United States. Here’s why we say that: the Old North State crosses three different regions of the country — the coastal plains, the Piedmont, and the Appalachian Mountains. This means that North Carolina has beautiful landscapes wherever you go, from beaches to lakes to breathtaking mountains. If you’re moving to North Carolina, here are the top 5 places you have to visit:
- The Great Smoky Mountains
- Cape Hatteras
- The Outer Banks
- Triple Falls
- Sliding Rock
- North Carolina is prone to experience hurricanes and tropical storms, especially in the regions that are closer to the ocean.
- Road in North Carolina after a flash flood.
One of the first things that people want to know when moving to a new place is what kinds of natural disasters can occur in their new location. This is important information that can even influence the exact area where you’ll want to buy a new home. If that’s a concern that you have, here are 5 natural disasters that can occur in North Carolina:
- Tropical storms
Moving Prices from Major Cities
If you’re moving to North Carolina, one of the very first things you’ll want to do is try to save the most money. In order to do that, you’ll have to plan very meticulously before you relocate. Getting free moving quotes is probably one of the best ways to estimate how much you’ll spend during your relocation process. Here are the estimated moving prices from 6 major cities in the United States:
- Fort Worth, TX to North Carolina: $3074 – $5123
- New York City, NY to North Carolina: $2110 – $3517
- Los Angeles, CA to North Carolina: $4872 – $8121
- Seattle, WA to North Carolina: $5281 – $8802
- Miami, FL to North Carolina: $2499 – $4165
- Nashville, TN to North Carolina: $2157 – $3596
Housing / Real Estate
- The cost of living in North Carolina is below the national average — and the median home price in this state is less than $190,000, making it a great location to buy a family home!
- A $180,000 two-story house for sale in North Carolina.
As we’ve mentioned previously, North Carolina has one of the lowest cost-of-living in the United States — especially when it comes to buying real estate. The median home price in North Carolina is approximately $188,000. This number is significantly below the national average of $266,104. In regards to rentals, North Carolina is also more affordable than other states: the median rent value in the Old North State is just a little over $900!
Price of Living
One of the best parts of moving to North Carolina is the relatively low cost of living. Whether you’re moving to the Old North State alone or with your family, you won’t be spending more than $100,000 annually! If you’re wondering how much you would spend annually while living in North Carolina, here are the estimated expenses a family of two adults and no children would have in this state:
Raleigh (metro area)
Durham/Chapel Hill (metro area)
Asheville (metro area)
Charlotte/Concord/Gastonia (metro area)
Greensboro/High Point (metro area)
All the estimated costs were calculated using the Family Budget Calculator provided by the Economic Policy Institute.
With a population of approximately 10,7 million people, North Carolina is the 9th most populous state in the United States. 51% of North Carolina’s population is composed of females, and approximately 61% of the residents are persons between the ages of 18 and 64. Here are the main ethnicities in the Old North State:
- White: 62%
- Black: 21%
- Hispanic: 10%
- Asian: 3%
- Native: 1%
- UNC-Chapel Hill is the oldest public university in the country and it is considered one of the 10 best public universities in America.
- Aerial view of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill campus.
North Carolina has one of the oldest educational systems in the country. It is home to the very first public university in the country — which is also the alma mater of one of the greatest players in basketball history: Michael Jordan! While higher education in North Carolina is among the 15 best systems in the country, there is still room for improvement in the Pre-K 12 system in the Old North State. Here are the top high schools and colleges in North Carolina:
- The Early College at Guilford
- Raleigh Charter High School
- Penn-Griffin Schools
- Philip J. Weaver Ed Center
- Woods Charter
- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Duke University
- Wake Forest University
- North Carolina State University
- Elon University
Healthcare and Medical Institutions
North Carolina is one of the worst states for health care. Ranking at #30 overall, the quality of health care in this state still has a long way to go. According to data, 15,8% of the adults in North Carolina are uninsured, which is a percentage above the national average of 13,8%. In spite of problems with health care, North Carolina is home to some of the best hospitals in the country. Here they are:
- Duke University Hospital (Durham, NC)
- University of North Carolina Hospitals (Chapel Hill, NC)
- Carolinas Medical Center (Charlotte, NC)
- Vidant Medical Center (Greenville, NC)
- UNC Rex Hospital (Raleigh, NC)
Tourism / Attractions
- North Carolina has beautiful beaches and amazing mountains that are extremely popular. The Great Smoky Mountains, for instance, receive over 10 million visitors per year!
- The sunset from atop the Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina.
North Carolina is located in a very privileged region on the U.S. map — its geography is diverse and this state is home to some of the most sought-out beaches in the country, as well as having gorgeous mountains. On top of that, North Carolina also offers lots of attractions for those who are interested in learning about the history of the Old North State and its importance to the country. If you’re moving to North Carolina and want to know what kind of tourist attractions are available in this state, here are 5 places you must visit in North Carolina!
- NASCAR Hall of Fame
- Outer Banks
- Cape Hatteras
- The Great Smoky Mountains National Park
- The Wright Brothers National Memorial
While North Carolina is only the 28th largest in the country, it is home to over 10 million people! A large part of the population is mostly distributed between the Charlotte metropolitan area and the Raleigh metropolitan area. The 5 top cities in North Carolina are:
- Raleigh: The capital of North Carolina is home to over 450,000 people. Raleigh is one of the first planned cities in the United States and it is known as the City of Oaks thanks to the many oak trees all over the city.
- Chapel Hill: This small-yet-modern town is home to the oldest state university in North Carolina, the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, which is also one of the top-rated schools in the country.
- Charlotte: The largest city in North Carolina, Charlotte was the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the entire country. It is also the largest banking area, second only to New York City!
- Durham: This major city in North Carolina is home to the best-rated university in the state, Duke University. It is an important research area and it is also home to one of the best hospitals in the country.
- Greensboro: The third-most populous city in North Carolina, Greensboro is home to over 290,000 residents. This city has important ties to the Civil Rights movement and it is home to several museums and tourist attractions.
- North Carolina has one of the highest unemployment rates in the United States: less than half of the population currently has a job.
- Woman being interviewed for a job.
North Carolina is tied with Mississippi at the 28th position in the ranking of unemployment rates, both with a rate of 6.2. There are approximately 4,7 million currently employed in this state. Over 80,000 of North Carolina’s residents hold a job in the state’s public system, whereas Walmart is the top-hiring private company. Other top-hiring companies include:
- Bank of America
- Compass Group USA
- Advance Auto Parts
If you’re moving to North Carolina and you’ll need a job once you relocate, you can check the state’s official websitefor info on available jobs!
The median household income in North Carolina is a little over $53,000, which is below the national average. Still, North Carolina has the #14 economy in the country, with a job growth rate of 1,7% — the national average is only 1,2%. Manufacturing is the industry with the highest-paying jobs in this state, though it is not the largest industry. Here are the top industries in the state of North Carolina:
- Food services
Things to do
- North Carolina offers plenty of things for tourists and for residents to do. Visiting the Biltmore Estate — the largest private estate in America — is one of these things, for instance.
- Aerial view of the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina.
Do you like going to the beach? North Carolina has some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. Do you prefer going on a hike or climbing mountains? The Great Smoky Mountains National Park has it all. Do you prefer to spend your free time appreciating art and history? North Carolina is home to great museums and art galleries. If you’re moving to North Carolina, here’s a list of 8 things to do in the Old North State:
- Biltmore Estate: This mansion was built per the request of a member of the Vanderbilt family. With 250 rooms, this estate is the largest private property in the entire country.
- The Great Smoky Mountains National Park: This incredible park receives over 12 million visitors per year, making it one of the most popular national parks in America! In addition to that, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is home to some of the highest mountains in the U.S.!
- North Carolina Aquariums: If you’re interested in marine life, you can’t miss the North Carolina Aquariums. There are three of them, each in a different location — and all of them have dive shows and animal encounters!
- Morehead Planetarium: This planetarium is one of the oldest and most popular planetariums in the United States, having received over 7 million visitors since it was founded!
- Outer Banks: Probably one of the most popular destinations in North Carolina, the Outer Banks are barrier islands that are home to beautiful beaches and rich biodiversity!
- The Raleigh Greenway System: If you feel like getting in touch with nature and avoiding the hustle and bustle of major cities, you should definitely visit this beautiful path!
- Contemporary Art Museum – Raleigh: Looking for a breath of fresh air? This contemporary art museum in the capital of North Carolina features breathtaking exhibits by local and international artists.
- Battleship North Carolina: If you’re interested in World History, you’ll probably enjoy visiting this ship that was really important during World War IIand during other battles.
When we move to a new location, one of the first things we want to do is to learn how to get around town. Using public transportation may be one of the cheapest (and most environment-friendly) ways of commuting. If you’re moving to North Carolina, here are 8 means of public transportation that’ll help you with your routine!
|Chapel Hill Transit||Free|
|Greensboro Transit Agency||$1.50|
|Asheville Rides Transit||$1.00|
Crime and Safety
In terms of crime and safety, North Carolina has slightly higher crime rates than the national average. This state ranks #28 when it comes to public safety, and reports have attributed this crime rate issue to major cities like Durham and Charlotte, where more crimes are bound to happen. If you’re moving to North Carolina, here are the 5 safest cities in the Old North State:
- Holly Springs
Acquire a new driver’s license in North Carolina
Relocating to a different state entails a lot of bureaucratic stuff — including transferring some of your documents to your new location. One of the first things you’ll have to do once you move to North Carolina is to acquire a new driver’s license. According to the state’s DMV, you’ll have up to 60 days to do that. Here’s a step-by-step guide of how to proceed to acquire a new driver’s license in North Carolina:
- Read about the road safety laws and regulations in North Carolina.
- Make an appointment at the DMV here.
- Bring the
- Your out-of-state license (or another document with your full name and date of birth).
- Your Social Security card.
- A document containing your physical address in North Carolina.
- A document proving that you have insurance coverage.
- Keep in mind that you may be required to undergo a written and/or road test before acquiring your new driver’s license in North Carolina.
Road safety, highways, and routes
- While the number of car crashes on North Carolina’s roads has decreased since 2019, the state is still working towards its goal of reducing fatality rates.
- Highway I-240 leading to Asheville, North Carolina.
According to reports, there were a little over 240,000 car crashes in North Carolina in 2020 — a significant decrease from 2019’s number of crashes (approximately 318,000), although the number of fatalities in 2020 was higher than 2019’s. The North Carolina Department of Transportation has a goal of reducing the fatality rates to 1.15 or less, but this performance indicator has yet to be met. Here are the main highways and routes in North Carolina:
- NC 24
- NC 87
- NC 42
- NC 903
- NC 27
First established as a colony in 1729, North Carolina has a lot of history to share with the world. It played important roles during the Revolutionary War, the American Civil War, and World War II. Because of that, there are over 60 museums across the Old North State, ranging from historic houses to military museums! Here are the top 7 museums you can visit in North Carolina:
- Biltmore Estate, Asheville
- Caldwell Heritage Museum, Lenoir
- North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh
- Airborne and Special Operations Museum, Fayetteville
- International Civil Rights Center & Museum, Greensboro
- Carolina Basketball Museum, Chapel Hill
- Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, Outer Banks
In the end, is moving to North Carolina worth it?
Ranking #18 overall, living in North Carolina has its advantages and disadvantages. For one, this state has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country — but it is also one of the cheapest places to live in America. While some cities are more dangerous than others, North Carolina is also relatively safe to move with your family. When it comes to health care, the quality of health care in North Carolina may not be the best, but this state is home to some of the best hospitals in the country, including the Duke University Hospital. If you’re in the food industry or work in education or in manufacturing, you’re more likely to find a job in North Carolina. This state is worth it especially for families who want to buy real estate, as the median house price in North Carolina is lower than the national average!
How to Move to North Carolina
- If you’re moving to North Carolina, there are ten things you can do to optimize your moving process!
- Women packing books into boxes.
After reading our complete guide on moving to North Carolina, you’ve probably come to a decision. If you’ve decided that relocating to the Old North State is the best option for you, here are 10 things you should before moving to North Carolina!
- From the moment you started reading our guide, you started the process of planning ahead. Learning as much as possible about your new location will certainly help you during the moving process!
- Moving is quite expensive as it is, so saving money is one of the top priorities of families that will relocate. Get rid of all unnecessary stuff you may have before you move to North Carolina and you’ll save some money.
- Get moving
- Getting moving quotes from different companies is the most effective way of saving money during the moving process. And it’s pretty easy to do that — you can use our moving quotes calculator to get free moving quotes within a few minutes!
- Once you’ve got enough moving quotes and decided which company will help you with all your needs, it’s time for you tobook a mover. It’s strongly recommended that you do this at least a month or two in advance!
- Visit your
- Before you move to North Carolina, you should take a week to visit your new area and get a true sense of the place you’ll be moving to — this is the best way to determine whether moving is the best option for you, in case you’re still unsure.
- Another thing you should do in advance is packing. Organize your belongings and get them ready to move as soon as possible. If you want to make sure you won’t leave anything behind, you can use our downloadable moving checklist to help you!
- An “Essentials” box is probably one of the most useful items during the moving process. This box is exclusive to pack items that you’ll need to get your hands on as soon as you arrive at your new location, such as toothbrushes, clothes, clean sheets, and others.
- Whether you’re moving to a neighboring state or you’re making a cross-country move, you’ll want to save as much time as you can to say farewells to your friends and family!
- Get some
- While getting some rest seems kind of obvious, a lot of people ignore this tip. Moving is a strenuous and tiresome process, and taking some time to rest is essential if you want to avoid unnecessary stress!
- Enjoy the
- Is relocating to a new area tiring? For sure! But you should always try to keep a positive mind and enjoy as much of this process as possible. By moving to North Carolina you’ll be starting a new phase of your life — and we’re sure you want it to be a great phase!
Moving services to help you relocate to North Carolina
If you’ve never moved before, you’ll be surprised to find that there is so much information to be absorbed. There are a lot of things you should consider before moving, there are several moving companies waiting to be contacted — and there are a bunch of different services that movers offer! Here are 9 moving services that will help you relocate to North Carolina:
- In some cases, moving your current furniture to your new location is cheaper than having to buy everything from scratch. Luckily, most moving companies offer this service.
- There are two types of moving, basically: residential and commercial moving. If you’re moving to a new home, then you should hire a residential mover.
- Depending on what type of piano you may have (upright, grand, spinet, among other types), not all companies will transport this instrument — so make sure to ask your mover if they offer this service.
- Art and
- If you collect art pieces and antiques, you know very well how much care they require. Because of that, you’ll probably need to contact a mover that offers this service specifically.
- Hot Tub
- Hot tubs are pretty expensive and it may be cheaper for you to move your hot tub rather than buying a new one.
- Pool Table
- Pool tables are bulky items, thus it may be more expensive and troublesome to transport them. Not all moving companies offer this service, so make sure to ask your mover if it’s possible to transport your hot tub to North Carolina.
- As we’ve mentioned previously, there are two main types of moving — and one of them is commercial/office moving. If you’re relocating an office to North Carolina, this is the service you’ll want to hire.
- Some moving companies only offer local moving services. That is, they will only transport your items if you’re moving within your state. If you’re moving to North Carolina from another state, you’ll need to hire a long-distance mover.
- Life is unpredictable and we never know what’s going to happen. Sometimes, the moving process doesn’t go as planned and you may have to move earlier than expected. In a situation like this, you’ll need the services of last-minute movers.