Author Topic: Living in North Carolina - Raleigh area  (Read 1721 times)

junk4c2

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Living in North Carolina - Raleigh area
« on: June 13, 2016, 10:27:26 AM »
Anyone living currently or lived in North Carolina research triangle area? We are evaluating of moving out of midwest to somewhere with less taxes and better air quality and climate. Raleigh suburbs is one place that seems to have good balance of reasonable home prices and good schools, but still few questions linger:

- How are the local people - I have been to NC, SC and surrounding states many times - my hope is that Raleigh area is different from the rest of it due to all the universities and tech companies. I do not want to end up living among "righteous" people with "traditional" values - looking for community which is more about families, education,compassion and less about church events  and what color you are.

- How is air quality - I have a kid with asthma and one of the reason we are looking to move is allergies and my belief that high concentration of cars, planes and people is contributing to it. I know allergies are based a lot on micro climate, but how is the air quality in general - any concerns?

- How are schools and education system in general - looking for any input on both sides of the scale - for kids in gifted programs as well as kids with special needs. I do not want to end up paying for private schools or homeschooling.

- how are taxes compared to other places - where I am right now we pay highest combined taxes in the nation - highest property tax, high sales tax and all the other "taxes" - a lot of them attached to cars, like tollways and stickers

-is tech job market still good, or should I consider other areas like Charlotte? I work for multinational corporation and most probably can continue to work for it, but in case I would like to switch jobs how are the opportunities - it used to be called "east coast silicon valley", but lately it is getting overshadowed by places like Seatle, Austin and even Charlotte.

-Traffic and other things that I should consider - I read that traffic could be brutal there - with kids I can't completely get rid of car, so I expect to be driving them to sport practices and so on.

Thank you!








asauer

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Re: Living in North Carolina - Raleigh area
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2016, 12:42:44 PM »
I've lived in the RTP area for 25 years and I hope to never move.  Below are my responses to your questions:

How are the local people - I have been to NC, SC and surrounding states many times - my hope is that Raleigh area is different from the rest of it due to all the universities and tech companies. I do not want to end up living among "righteous" people with "traditional" values - looking for community which is more about families, education,compassion and less about church events  and what color you are.  {RTP, Charlotte and Asheville are the liberal bubbles where people are nice but not super bible-belty.  However, this is still the south.  You will still encounter social conservatism just like anywhere else in the US, but especially outside of these 'bubbles'.  Yes, church is a big thing down here but very few people are pushy about it.}

- How is air quality - I have a kid with asthma and one of the reason we are looking to move is allergies and my belief that high concentration of cars, planes and people is contributing to it. I know allergies are based a lot on micro climate, but how is the air quality in general - any concerns? {Air quality is good most of the year but July-August tend to be 'red' months and April is a nightmare for seasonal allergies- imagine a green film of pollen everywhere!}

- How are schools and education system in general - looking for any input on both sides of the scale - for kids in gifted programs as well as kids with special needs. I do not want to end up paying for private schools or homeschooling. {If you're comparing RTP to the rest of the state- it's really good- check out the year-round option, it is utterly fantastic.  However, if you're comparing it to the US, eh.  It's ok.  NC doesn't pay it's teachers.  However, there are TONS of enrichment programs/ camps/ magnet programs that you can take advantage of that are wonderful due to all the universities, tech and bio-tech}.  On the college side, we have more 4 year universities per capita than any other state (hello in state tuition!)}.

- how are taxes compared to other places - where I am right now we pay highest combined taxes in the nation - highest property tax, high sales tax and all the other "taxes" - a lot of them attached to cars, like tollways and stickers.  {Taxes, and most importantly, cost of living is lower than most states}.

-is tech job market still good, or should I consider other areas like Charlotte? I work for multinational corporation and most probably can continue to work for it, but in case I would like to switch jobs how are the opportunities - it used to be called "east coast silicon valley", but lately it is getting overshadowed by places like Seatle, Austin and even Charlotte. {yep!  Still booming.  Tech and bio-tech are still hot thanks to all the universities!}

-Traffic and other things that I should consider - I read that traffic could be brutal there - with kids I can't completely get rid of car, so I expect to be driving them to sport practices and so on. {It really depends.  If you decide to live in North Raleigh but work in Chapel Hill, you're going to rot and die on I-40.  If you live more centrally, you're fine.  I live in a suburb south of Raleigh and adjusted my work hours to be 7am-4pm to avoid traffic.  However, I've worked in Atlanta, L.A. and Dallas and Raleigh traffic doesn't even come close.}

There are some additional perks of living in this area: 1. TONS of FREE family and adult activities all the freaking time! 2. Very big outdoor culture so lots of green spaces  3. You are 3 hours from the mountains and 2 hours from the beach!