You’ve seen these lists before: Best places to live in North Carolina, Most Beautiful Downtowns, etc., etc. But all of them focus on major cities and towns in the Tar Heel State and no one pays attention to the little guy.
Well, that’s all about to change as we put together a list of the best small towns in North Carolina based on numbers–not opinions or hearsay.
We’ll dive right into our methodology in the next section; but first, we thought you might just want to know which places in North Carolina ranked the based–you know, based on science.
Before we get to the top 20, here’s a look at the 10 Best Small Towns To Live in North Carolina for 2018:
- Wrightsville Beach (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Royal Pines (Homes For Sale)
- Biltmore Forest (Homes For Sale)
- Trent Woods (Homes For Sale)
- Avery Creek (Homes For Sale)
- Fearrington Village (Homes For Sale)
- Weaverville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Bermuda Run (Homes For Sale)
- St. James (Homes For Sale)
- Jame (Homes For Sale)
If you live in one of these small towns like Wrightsville Beach, chances are, you’re not surprised. After all, you know how great you have it.
But for the rest of you–keep reading and we’ll get to just why these small towns made our list.
For more reading on the Tar Heel State check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In North Carolina
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In North Carolina
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities In North Carolina
How We Determined The Coolest Towns In North Carolina
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent data from the Census’s 2012-2016 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:
- Population Density (Higher is better)
- Lowest Unemployment Rates
- Housing costs (Higher is better. More demand.)
- Adjusted Median Income (Higher is better)
- Highly Educated Adults (Higher is better)
- Insurance Rates (Higher is better)
- Commute Times (Lower is better)
We looked at places with populations lower than 5,000 people and greater than 1,000, of which, there were a lot – 295 to be exact.
We then ranked each place in each category with scores from 1 to 295, averaged them out, and the lowest scores went to our Best Small Towns in North Carolina. Top of that list — Wrightsville Beach.
Keep reading to find out more about our top 20 best small towns in North Carolina.
1. Wrightsville Beach
2. Royal Pines
3. Biltmore Forest
4. Trent Woods
5. Avery Creek
6. Fearrington Village
8. Bermuda Run
9. St. James
11. Laurel Park
12. Southern Shores
13. Lake Park
15. Flat Rock
16. Blowing Rock
18. Pine Knoll Shores
19. Whispering Pines
Science Can Tackle Any Issue, Even Small Ones
We said it once and we’ll say it again — this list: it’s just science. We did the research, we crunched the numbers, and it turns out, these 20 small towns in North Carolina are the best, in which to live.
And who can argue with that?
If you’re curious, here are the worst small towns in North Carolina:
- Stony Point
- Rich Square
- East Spencer
For more North Carolina reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In North Carolina
- These Are The 10 Fastest Growing Cities In North Carolina
- 10 Safest Cities in North Carolina
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In North Carolina
- 10 Worst Places To Live In North Carolina
Detailed List Of The Best Small Towns In North Carolina
|18||Pine Knoll Shores||1,420|
|82||North Topsail Beach||1,104|