Post # 1
So DH and I are considering moving to either North or South Carolina within the next year or two. Our reasons for moving are cost of living (NJ is insanely expensive and we can’t afford it), over population and the desire for a more relaxed day to day life.
I have a few questions though. How is the economy? Salaries vs cost of living? Also, family and friends have been telling us not to bother even considering a move there since “southerners will hate us b/c we are from New Jersey”. I really can’t imagine each person despising us b/c of where we are from, but there are plently of prejudices going around in the world today. Any truth to this statement?
any comments/suggestions are welcome!!
Post # 3
- Wedding: June 2012 - Franklin Plaza
Hey there! DH and I just moved from NYC to Charlotte, NC about 2 months ago. We moved for the same exact reasons you have listed. It probably hasn’t been long enough to answer your questions, but I can say that everyone I’ve met so far has been nothing but friendly and we absolutely love it here. NC and SC are both large states so I’m assuming this might vary from city to city, but Charlotte has been wonderful for us.
The economy here is kinda crappy right now and there is a high unemployment rate in Charlotte, but DH has pretty steady work right now and I am just sitting here applying to as many jobs as I can hoping to find something soon! Again, it’s only been two months and I’ve only been seriously looking for a few weeks so I’m not concerned yet.
Hopefully some other bees who have lived in NC or SC longer can chime in, but if you have any questions I can help you with feel free to send me a message!
Post # 4
Plenty of people move here to the Charlotte area, from up north, so you would fit in. We are friendly here. What kind of job field? Some are doing well, some not so much. I have lived in both states, I love everything about living in Charlotte, rather than SC, except for the taxes. NC is one of the most taxed states, between income and property. Car inspection every year in NC too, never in SC.
Post # 5
@meke: I do admin/accounts payable at the moment. I would assume something like that is pretty easy to come by (receptionist etc if necessary), but then again I’m only judging by what I see a great deal of around here. DH is working on getting his bachelor’s in computer information systems, but due to financial constraints, may not finish for a while. He’s also an excellent mechanic.
Our taxes are around 2k every quarter where we are right now. I’m sure we are taxed pretty high as well…i think however the first year we would probably rent just to make sure we were truly sure about purchasing property.
Post # 6
Admin jobs are usually easily available here. I’m in legal admin and had no problems, of course I haven’t searched recently though.
Post # 7
@Pixie26: I’m from NYC and FI is from Jersey. We’re in Raleigh, NC and we love it here. We’ve never encountered any prejudice because of where we’re from – in fact, the majority of people that I’ve met so far are actually from up North. The people here are very nice and the environment is definitely more relaxed and not as crowded as Jersey.
The cost of living here is really low and housing prices are great from what I’ve seen. If you did a quick search on Zillow for houses in North Carolina (I’d look in the Wake County area or specifically Raleigh) you’d find that its so cheap for the amount of space you’re getting.
Something that I’ve never thought about before that I really enjoy about here are the wide, open roads and the availability of parking everywhere. Seriously – I’ve never had to park on the street since I moved here.
However, one thing that does bother me about the South is the heat and humidity. Right now the weather is pretty great since its fall, but in the summer the heat is BAD. Like I try not to leave my house bad. Thankfully, pretty much everywhere you go/live will have central air conditioning.
Post # 8
I’m an NC bee, and while I’ve lived here all my life, my ILs are from NJ (in fact, DH’s whole family is all up there). I find us NCers to be a pretty nice group of people and you shouldn’t have an issue fitting in. A lot of people move here from up north. I don’t live in the triad (cities) but out on the coast, so I can’t really comment on the job market – also because I’m self employeed.
You will most definitely find the housing prices to be insanely better than what you’re used to. My ILs pay taxes out the nose in NJ and are ours are nothing compared to theirs. We live in a coastal town so our housing costs are higher than other areas of NC. That being said, we still pay a fraction of what my ILs pay in property taxes.
Post # 9
Mr TTR & I travel to the US South a lot… and we love NC & SC.
As far as a place to live, I’d have to say that in our mind NC would have a slight edge over SC…
The climate isn’t quite so ideal as it is a bit more to the north… (lol, but then a few inches of snow now and then for a Northerner at heart, isn’t all that bad).
The State also has more of a “northern” feel to it, and a lot of people in the State come from elsewhere… this is especially so in the Cities in and around the Research Triangle (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill… and beyond East to Rocky Mt and West to Greensboro)
EVERYONE we’ve met has been nothing short of friendly & welcoming.
We love the Raleigh area…. so much here to see & do… and good if you happen to be a Hockey Fan. The PNC Arena (formerly the RBC Center) is an awesome venue.
I realize this doesn’t tell you a lot about “on the ground” issues like the Job Market, Economics, Housing, Politics etc…
BUT I thought I’d chip in and tell you how much we truly love the state… and we do know several Canadians who have moved to the area to take Hi-Tech or Medical / Research Jobs, and they all seem quite pleased (in so much as none of them plans to come back anytime soon)
Hope this helps,
Post # 10
@Aorta: wide open space! what we wouldnt give for that! oh and a break for the daily waste of time sitting in gridlocked traffic. i LOVE hot weather but im less than thrilled about humidity. thats what makes the heat unbearable.
@starfish0116: currently, unless we win the lotto, purchasing a home in NJ is out of the question (we rent a house from my dad now and our “rent” is the property taxes). Id be very excited to see a home within price range.
@This Time Round: thanks for your input! its quite a relief to hear so many people like the area and that the locals are friendly. we never encountered anyone rude, but i thought it may have been due to the fact that we were in a tourist area. glad to hear some of the ugly rumors are not true 🙂
Post # 11
@This Time Round: I actually like the climate here since we get four seasons, and we get just enough of each. This summer was probably one of the best summers we have had since it never got too hot, like I’ve seen in the past. I enjoy that we only get snow once or twice a year. Plus it’s great because we freak out when there are flurries and everything closes down (great when it is a weekday!) 🙂 We closed earlier this year when there was freezing rain in the morning, the ground didn’t actually ice. It was awesome!
@Pixie26: I should just make myself clear on the taxes, our taxes are probably cheaper than up north, but when I say we are one of the most taxed states, I mean NC will think of any little thing to tax. Like our highway usage tax, what is that used for when our roads are pretty crappy and they are taking years to finish interstate 485.
Post # 12
@Pixie26: Our taxes on our home are less than $2k a year (single family, 3 bedroom 1900 sq ft), our car tax is about $90 a year and our car insurance is super low compared to NJ (where my husband is from). We moved here 4 years ago and I love it because I get to stay home (this would’ve been impossible in Mission Viejo, CA). I think there is 1 native southerner on our street, everyone else is from Boston, upstate NY, NJ, Conneticut, etc. All the friends I know have had no problem finding jobs (one of them just moved from OH and is doing payroll/accounting for Belk). I think banking and IT are both pretty widely available jobs.
Post # 13
Commenting to follow, as we’ll be relocating for my SO’s new job in Charlotte!
Post # 14
Cary, NC = Containment Area for Relocated Yankees. There are a TON of northerners in the triangle area. Both my parents grew up in the north and moved down here in the 80s and love it.
Post # 15
I have lived throughout the triangle (Raleigh/Durham, NC) and love it here! The climate is nice, cost of living is cheap, and there are a lot of younger professionals and families in the area. The job market in my area is stable, but is especially good if you are involved in business/admin occupations or anything remotely technical. Both my FI and I work in software (he is an engineer and I am a customer service/marketing rep) and have no shortage of employment options.
You will not get a lot of flack for being from the north because there are so many Yankee transplants here already. Case in point, I moved here as a child from NY and FI moved from PA after college. If you go further out into the boonies, you may encounter some country folk who don’t take as kindly to city folk, but they are really the exception rather than the norm. I have been on the receiving end of negative comments like these, but this was years ago and the area really has changed culturally in recent times.
The cost of living is probably the best plus for us. You can get so much for your money down here. FI and I own an 1800 square foot house in the suburbs on 1/3 acre of land. We paid 175k for the house and pay $1800 per year in taxes and $500 per year in insurance. It’s awesome 🙂
Post # 16
I’ve lived in North Carolina for twenty years now. It’s not the North. People often get confused because it is called North Carolina. In fact, of the three people I know well who have moved to North Carolina in the last year hoping for a northern feel, one has already moved back, one is planning her move back to Maryland, and the other one likes it here. Sure, a lot of people from the North move here, but it’s still the South.
Please don’t trust the opinion of someone who has only visited North and South Carolina and has never even lived here.
I would pick that over South Carolina any day of the week. Generally, it is hot (up to 100 degrees) and humid in the summer time, very nice in the fall and spring, and cold but not too bad in the winter time. We have more taxes but we also have more services than South Carolina.
I currently live in Raleigh, but I’ve lived in Boone and western North Carolina and my husband lived in Charlotte for twenty years. Jobs are not easy to find here but not impossible. Both of us put in over 100 but probably closer to 200 applications before getting jobs in Raleigh. A lot of people are moving here. I would not suggest moving here unless you already have a job lined up. Unemployment is high here and wages are low. For example, starting salary for a teacher is $31k/year. They do not get a raise for the first five years. The state is doing away with the automatic 10% pay increase for teachers with masters as well. A lot of places will only start receptionists out at $10/hr no matter what kind of experience you have.
Generally, Southerners are really nice to your face but not so nice behind your back. It’s kind of a fake nice but you get used to it. Many people say hello to everyone and like small talk so get used to that. It’s actually kind of hard to make real friends here.
Everything also moves in a slower pace here.
I do love living in North Carolina but please don’t come here thinking that it will be the land of cheap living and great opportunities. I personally would not recommend moving here though.