Best Charlotte Suburbs To Live For 2020


We analyzed over 41 places around Charlotte to identify the most in demand places to live.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the best Charlotte suburbs.

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Big city living isn't for everyone--but at the same time, urban areas certainly have their perks.

There's the culture, the food, the arts, the food, the energy, and you know, the food. But there are drawbacks. There's traffic, expensive parking, expensive housing--pretty much, expensive everything, depending on which big city you're looking at.

But that's where the suburbs come in--they have all of the benefits of being near big cities, without actually having to be big cities.

Of course, not all suburbs of Charlotte are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado...

What's the best suburb of Charlotte? Davidson ranks as the best suburb of Charlotte for 2020 based on the most recent Census and FBI data. If you happen to be a resident of Davidson, you're probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We'll tell you what makes each of these 10 Charlotte 'burbs better than the rest--but first, a bit about our methodology.

Note: This result may differ from our state wide data as we did not include commute times and crime for this analysis to allow for a larger selection of suburbs.
Or feel free to check out some more reading about North Carolina:

The 10 Best Charlotte Suburbs To Live For 2020

Davidson, NC

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 12,666
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $128,255
Unemployment Rate: 3.2%
Poverty Rate: 3.0%
More on Davidson: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Davidson is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Charlotte area. We'll tell you the good about "Awesome Davidson."

Everyone here is rich; families average $128,255 a year, which is the 3rd highest in the Charlotte region. And only 3.15% are out of work. Homes average more than $423,000 each.

Review Of Davidson by HomeSnacks User

ive. Does have some problems, but at least it has not run all its middle class and minority people away like Davidson. Lived in Davidson from 1980 to 2015. Loved it! Well, loved it most of the time. Was a great small town for most of that time, but in the last 10 years or so, my ability to live there was not financially viable.

Couldn't retire there.

When I moved to Davidson, I might see a dozen cars between Exit 30 and Sunset Road. I am happy that Davidson is moving in the direction their citizens embrace. Change is always happening. And I am sure my friends, long time residents and new arrivals are thrilled to be there.

Tega Cay, SC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 9,954
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $123,564
Unemployment Rate: 5.3%
Poverty Rate: 0.7%
More on Tega Cay: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Tega Cay is the second best 'burb we looked at near Charlotte for 2020.

It ranks 4th for incomes in the area and only 0.82% of residents lack insurance, good for 1st best.

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 6,298
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Income: $178,194
Unemployment Rate: 3.1%
Poverty Rate: 2.3%
More on Marvin: Real Estate | Data

Here in Marvin, it's really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you'll see in the Charlotte metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in Marvin.

Weddington, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 10,574
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Income: $132,587
Unemployment Rate: 2.7%
Poverty Rate: 1.7%
More on Weddington: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Weddington ranks as the 4th best suburb of Charlotte for 2020.

You won't find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Weddington and the schools are some of the best around.

Review Of Weddington by HomeSnacks User

Chapel Hill - Born and Raised - we are snobs because we lived in ShangriLa.

However....it has turned into a bad bedroom community of Raleigh. It is also infiltrated with Yankees. 40 years ago, it was a great town.

Now it s***s....except for the Heels!

Carrborro - The place is a dump. The people are not snobs at all. They are gay, and maybe snobbish in the gay community, however not relevant to anyone else. People in Chapel Hill do not even go to Carrboro....ever.

Cornelius, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 28,649
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Income: $88,366
Unemployment Rate: 4.0%
Poverty Rate: 7.4%
More on Cornelius: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Cornelius.

Cornelius gets kudos for having the 7th most expensive homes in the Charlotte area, where houses sell for an average of $292,400. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Matthews, NC

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 31,400
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 2)
Median Income: $78,971
Unemployment Rate: 3.4%
Poverty Rate: 6.2%
More on Matthews: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Matthews is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here's why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 3.38% which is 8th best in the area.

According to online reports, Matthews is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Charlotte area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Waxhaw, NC

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 14,383
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 1)
Median Income: $107,356
Unemployment Rate: 4.1%
Poverty Rate: 3.6%
More on Waxhaw: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Waxhaw.

Waxhaw schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it's only 19.4 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Huntersville, NC

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 54,572
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $97,320
Unemployment Rate: 3.7%
Poverty Rate: 5.2%
More on Huntersville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Huntersville is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 5.9% of people lack insurance, good for 12th in the area.

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 8,633
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Median Income: $120,673
Unemployment Rate: 3.6%
Poverty Rate: 0.9%
More on Wesley Chapel: Real Estate | Data

Is 'Everything Better In Wesley Chapel?'

Almost.

It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it's really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 15,240
Rank Last Year: 9 (Down 1)
Median Income: $82,753
Unemployment Rate: 3.9%
Poverty Rate: 6.4%
More on Stallings: Real Estate | Data

And rounding out the top ten for 2020 is Stallings.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It's far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Charlotte for 2020

Figuring out the best suburbs around Charlotte was pretty simple; we just needed to list several things that people like, and then find out which cities have the most of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High Median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

Then we used the newest American Community Survey data for 2014-2018 to research each suburb.

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Charlotte.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 41 suburbs to evaluate around Charlotte.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 41 in each category, where 1 was the "best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index the "Best Suburb near Charlotte." We're lookin' at you, Davidson. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the best of the best. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Welcome to the Best Charlotte 'Burbs of 2020

We said it once and we'll say it again--life in the big city isn't for everyone. At least not all the time.

So if you're hankering for some of the amenities of a larger city like Charlotte, but don't want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more North Carolina reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Charlotte Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Davidson, NC 12,666 $128,255
2 Tega Cay, NC 9,954 $123,564
3 Marvin, NC 6,298 $178,194
4 Weddington, NC 10,574 $132,587
5 Cornelius, NC 28,649 $88,366
6 Matthews, NC 31,400 $78,971
7 Waxhaw, NC 14,383 $107,356
8 Huntersville, NC 54,572 $97,320
9 Wesley Chapel, NC 8,633 $120,673
10 Stallings, NC 15,240 $82,753
11 Harrisburg, NC 15,269 $100,399
12 Fort Mill, NC 15,924 $81,401
13 Indian Trail, NC 37,983 $79,010
14 Lake Park, NC 3,753 $74,716
15 Mooresville, NC 37,165 $67,656
16 Mint Hill, NC 26,168 $70,425
17 Unionville, NC 6,826 $74,706
18 Stanley, NC 3,643 $50,179
19 Cramerton, NC 4,312 $74,980
20 Pineville, NC 8,574 $48,324
21 Belmont, NC 11,768 $70,506
22 Midland, NC 3,499 $64,325
23 Mineral Springs, NC 2,956 $74,318
24 Concord, NC 89,729 $63,707
25 Mount Holly, NC 15,305 $55,880
26 Landis, NC 3,092 $53,223
27 Rock Hill, NC 71,903 $46,792
28 Hemby Bridge, NC 2,044 $62,143
29 Wingate, NC 4,078 $41,875
30 Locust, NC 3,351 $55,893
31 Ranlo, NC 3,556 $47,500
32 Gastonia, NC 75,138 $46,301
33 Kannapolis, NC 47,553 $52,980
34 York, NC 8,062 $39,021
35 China Grove, NC 4,177 $47,639
36 Lowell, NC 3,612 $50,868
37 Clover, NC 5,955 $44,337
38 Dallas, NC 4,650 $37,048
39 Monroe, NC 34,679 $47,303
40 Kings Mountain, NC 10,955 $40,639
41 Lincolnton, NC 10,678 $35,902

How Is Your Town In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.