Best places to live in North Carolina

Written by:
November 15, 2021
Canva

Best places to live in North Carolina

What do you look for in an ideal town? Proximity to trails, lakes, and beaches? How about top-ranked schools for your children? Would you like a professional or college sports team nearby, or do you prefer museums and art walks?

Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in North Carolina using data from Niche. Niche ranks places to live based on a variety of factors including cost of living, schools, health care, recreation, and weather.

On the list, there’s a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.

#10. Weddington
- Population: 10,794
- Median home value: $457,900 (95% own)
- Median rent: $1,108 (5% rent)
- Median household income: $136,891
- Top public schools: Marvin Ridge High School (A+), Weddington High School (A+), Central Academy of Technology & Arts (A+)
- Top private schools: Weddington Christian Academy

#9. Marvin
- Population: 6,553
- Median home value: $677,800 (96% own)
- Median rent: $3,364 (4% rent)
- Median household income: $206,469
- Top public schools: Marvin Ridge High School (A+), Weddington High School (A+), Central Academy of Technology & Arts (A+)

#8. Cornelius
- Population: 29,256
- Median home value: $322,400 (69% own)
- Median rent: $1,219 (31% rent)
- Median household income: $90,542
- Top public schools: Charlotte Engineering Early College (A), William Amos Hough High School (A), Irwin Academic Center (A-)
- Top private schools: Grace Covenant Academy, Cadence Academy Preschool - Kenton, Cornelius KinderCare

#7. Biltmore Forest
- Population: 1,473
- Median home value: $910,400 (91% own)
- Median rent: $1,083 (9% rent)
- Median household income: $180,781
- Top public schools: Martin L. Nesbitt, Jr. Discovery Academy (A), T.C. Roberson High School (A), Buncombe County Early College (A-)
- Top private schools: Carolina Day School (A+)

#6. Carrboro
- Population: 21,230
- Median home value: $368,800 (43% own)
- Median rent: $1,078 (57% rent)
- Median household income: $58,702
- Top public schools: East Chapel Hill High School (A+), Chapel Hill High School (A+), Carrboro High School (A+)

#5. Chapel Hill
- Population: 60,998
- Median home value: $399,700 (50% own)
- Median rent: $1,191 (50% rent)
- Median household income: $73,614
- Top public schools: East Chapel Hill High School (A+), Chapel Hill High School (A+), Woods Charter School (A+)
- Top private schools: St. Thomas More Catholic School, Montessori Community School, Montessori Day School

#4. Apex
- Population: 51,370
- Median home value: $327,800 (75% own)
- Median rent: $1,380 (25% rent)
- Median household income: $111,435
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Thales Academy Apex JH/HS (A), Saint Mary Magdalene Catholic School, Thales Academy Apex K-5

#3. Davidson
- Population: 12,735
- Median home value: $448,300 (79% own)
- Median rent: $1,264 (21% rent)
- Median household income: $124,853
- Top public schools: Community School of Davidson (A+), Charlotte Engineering Early College (A), Collaborative College for Technology & Leadership (CCTL) (A)
- Top private schools: Davidson Day School (A)

#2. Cary
- Population: 166,268
- Median home value: $356,400 (68% own)
- Median rent: $1,246 (32% rent)
- Median household income: $104,669
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Cary Academy (A+), Cary Christian School (A+), St. Michael the Archangel School

#1. Morrisville
- Population: 26,280
- Median home value: $331,800 (48% own)
- Median rent: $1,398 (52% rent)
- Median household income: $101,738
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Discovery Child Development Center, Kiddie Academy of Morrisville, Kids 'R' Kids Academy - Morrisville

You may also like: Highest-rated specialty museums in North Carolina, according to Tripadvisor

Best places to live in North Carolina

What do you look for in an ideal town? Proximity to trails, lakes, and beaches? How about top-ranked schools for your children? Would you like a professional or college sports team nearby, or do you prefer museums and art walks?

Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in North Carolina using data from Niche. Niche ranks places to live based on a variety of factors including cost of living, schools, health care, recreation, and weather.

On the list, there’s a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.

#10. Weddington
- Population: 10,794
- Median home value: $457,900 (95% own)
- Median rent: $1,108 (5% rent)
- Median household income: $136,891
- Top public schools: Marvin Ridge High School (A+), Weddington High School (A+), Central Academy of Technology & Arts (A+)
- Top private schools: Weddington Christian Academy

#9. Marvin
- Population: 6,553
- Median home value: $677,800 (96% own)
- Median rent: $3,364 (4% rent)
- Median household income: $206,469
- Top public schools: Marvin Ridge High School (A+), Weddington High School (A+), Central Academy of Technology & Arts (A+)

#8. Cornelius
- Population: 29,256
- Median home value: $322,400 (69% own)
- Median rent: $1,219 (31% rent)
- Median household income: $90,542
- Top public schools: Charlotte Engineering Early College (A), William Amos Hough High School (A), Irwin Academic Center (A-)
- Top private schools: Grace Covenant Academy, Cadence Academy Preschool - Kenton, Cornelius KinderCare

#7. Biltmore Forest
- Population: 1,473
- Median home value: $910,400 (91% own)
- Median rent: $1,083 (9% rent)
- Median household income: $180,781
- Top public schools: Martin L. Nesbitt, Jr. Discovery Academy (A), T.C. Roberson High School (A), Buncombe County Early College (A-)
- Top private schools: Carolina Day School (A+)

#6. Carrboro
- Population: 21,230
- Median home value: $368,800 (43% own)
- Median rent: $1,078 (57% rent)
- Median household income: $58,702
- Top public schools: East Chapel Hill High School (A+), Chapel Hill High School (A+), Carrboro High School (A+)

#5. Chapel Hill
- Population: 60,998
- Median home value: $399,700 (50% own)
- Median rent: $1,191 (50% rent)
- Median household income: $73,614
- Top public schools: East Chapel Hill High School (A+), Chapel Hill High School (A+), Woods Charter School (A+)
- Top private schools: St. Thomas More Catholic School, Montessori Community School, Montessori Day School

#4. Apex
- Population: 51,370
- Median home value: $327,800 (75% own)
- Median rent: $1,380 (25% rent)
- Median household income: $111,435
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Thales Academy Apex JH/HS (A), Saint Mary Magdalene Catholic School, Thales Academy Apex K-5

#3. Davidson
- Population: 12,735
- Median home value: $448,300 (79% own)
- Median rent: $1,264 (21% rent)
- Median household income: $124,853
- Top public schools: Community School of Davidson (A+), Charlotte Engineering Early College (A), Collaborative College for Technology & Leadership (CCTL) (A)
- Top private schools: Davidson Day School (A)

#2. Cary
- Population: 166,268
- Median home value: $356,400 (68% own)
- Median rent: $1,246 (32% rent)
- Median household income: $104,669
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Cary Academy (A+), Cary Christian School (A+), St. Michael the Archangel School

#1. Morrisville
- Population: 26,280
- Median home value: $331,800 (48% own)
- Median rent: $1,398 (52% rent)
- Median household income: $101,738
- Top public schools: Green Hope High School (A+), Panther Creek High School (A+), Wake NC State University STEM Early College High School (A+)
- Top private schools: Discovery Child Development Center, Kiddie Academy of Morrisville, Kids 'R' Kids Academy - Morrisville

You may also like: Highest-rated specialty museums in North Carolina, according to Tripadvisor

Trending Now