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No matter if you’re moving for a new job, to live near family, or for a change of pace, one thing you’ll always want to know before moving somewhere new is the cost of living. Cost of living can play a big role in your overall quality of life, so it’s important to know what to expect. Fortunately, North Carolina not only boasts beautiful weather and family-friendly neighborhoods, but it’s also a surprisingly affordable place to live considering all it has to offer.

Is it Expensive to Live & Work in NC?

From its rich history, mild climate, and diverse population to its vibrant entertainment scene, top-notch healthcare, and stunning scenery, North Carolina has so much to offer. For these reasons, you’d be justified in asking “What is the cost of living in North Carolina?” and “Is it expensive to live and work there?”

North Carolina’s low costs, along with its thriving job market makes it an extremely desirable option for people who want a great quality of life without breaking the bank. To grasp the full picture of the cost of living in NC, we need to delve into various aspects such as taxes, utilities, healthcare, groceries, and more. Let’s dive in!  

  • Housing: Housing is significant out of all the factors that contribute to the cost of living. The average home value in North Carolina is about $300,000 and lower than the national average by about $30,000. The price of housing can vary widely depending on where you choose to live. Of course, living in a big city, close to the mountains, or beachside can cost more.
  • Healthcare: With a huge selection of top-tier healthcare facilities, well-known medical schools, and being home to some major medical and pharmaceutical companies, the cost of healthcare in North Carolina is 12% higher than the national average. However, there are regions with lower costs, such as Raleigh, which is 3% below the national average. The quality of service versus the cost is certainly something to consider.
  • Childcare: If you have children, it’s important to factor in childcare when calculating the overall cost of living when relocating to North Carolina. Childcare costs can vary significantly depending on several factors, so you’ll want to do a little research. The average cost of childcare is about $9,000 as opposed to the national average of $15,000 per year.
  • Taxes: Taxes are reasonable when considering the cost of living in North Carolina. It offers a flat individual tax rate of 4.99% and a relatively low sales tax of 4.75%. There is no state property tax, a big plus for homeowners.
  • Utilities: In terms of utilities, the cost can vary greatly between beachside and mountain regions. Overall, it’s still lower than the average US city by 6%. While that might not seem like a lot, it adds up over time. Utilities cost around $260 per month not including cable and internet.
  • Transportation: Things like gas, oil changes, and insurance are included in transportation costs. When compared to the national average, North Carolina is around 3% cheaper for gas and 27% cheaper for an oil change depending on where you live. The commute is a breeze with several public transportation options available. The average commute is also lower than the national average at 24.3 minutes compared to 26.4 minutes.

North Carolina Job Market

In addition to the cost of living, it’s important to consider the North Carolina job market when moving here. North Carolina boasts a diverse economy with a low unemployment rate and thriving industries such as technology, finance, healthcare, and manufacturing. According to the US Chamber of Commerce, the state’s top industries include trade, transportation, and utilities, professional and business services, education, healthcare services.

Small businesses are thriving, encompassing 99.6% of all businesses. If you’re looking to start a business, North Carolina is a great place to start. Many people work from home with one-third working remotely at least one day a week. This helps cut the cost of transportation, adding to the affordability this state offers its residents. Lastly, out-of-state tuition is less expensive than the national average ($23,357 compared to $28,000). Therefore, getting the education you need to qualify for better job opportunities is possible throughout the state.

Should I Move to North Carolina?

For those pondering a relocation to North Carolina, the decision hinges on various factors. While the cost of living is an essential consideration, there are numerous advantages to living in the Tar Heel State.

There’s no shortage of friendly faces. The people are welcoming and exude that southern hospitality expected when moving here. There’s also a diverse population, so you’re bound to meet people who share similar interests and backgrounds. North Carolina’s laid-back, slow pace of life makes it easy to truly connect with neighbors and enjoy every moment.

As mentioned, the state is home to several esteemed universities and colleges, providing excellent educational opportunities for students of all ages. While you’re not studying, there are tons of things to do, especially outdoors. North Carolina’s natural beauty abounds with everything from majestic Blue Ridge mountains to the pristine beaches of the Outer Banks. Best of all, the winters are mild compared to states further north, so you can enjoy the outdoors year-round.

The culture scene has something for everyone, with vibrant cities like Charlotte, Raleigh, and Asheville hosting an array of art galleries, music venues, and restaurants. Speaking of restaurants, North Carolina is well known for its mouthwatering BBQ. Between the two styles (Eastern style and Lexington style), you can’t go wrong with the delicious selections of BBQ cuisine here. So, if you’re asking yourself, “Should I move to North Carolina?”, the answer is yes! And Value Build Homes can help you get the ball rolling with a custom home built just for you and your family.

Contact Value Build Homes Today!

Value Build Homes is here to turn your dream home into reality. With a commitment to quality craftsmanship and personalized service, we are your reliable partner in creating the perfect home for your family. We have over 10 years of experience building custom homes that suit what you need.

Choose from dozens of floor plans or create your own with our New Home Designer. Whether you’re envisioning a cozy cottage or a spacious estate, Value Build Homes has the expertise and resources to bring your vision to life. Contact us today to take advantage of the low cost of living in North Carolina, along with a new home built with you and for you on your land!