North Carolina is best known as the Tar Heel State, but many are familiar with other famous North Carolinian fun facts.
Like the number of fun things to do, see, and eat: the Outer Banks, the Blue Ridge Mountains, NASCAR, college basketball, and BBQ just to name a few.
There is some pretty good pig pickin' in the Tar Heel State and it wouldn't be right if we didn't mention the BBQ battle between Western and Eastern North Carolina. East says vinegar based is best and the West says they'll stick to their red sauce. We'll let you be the judge.
And when a Tar Heel needs something cold to wet their whistle after their favorite BBQ, they don't need to look any further than one of North Carolina's finest craft beers. It is to no avail that the Tar Heel State boasts the largest number of craft breweries in the American South with more than 260 breweries. No complaints here.
In North Carolina, you choose a NASCAR driver and a local college team like you choose Coke or Pepsi. Allegiances to universities like UNC, Duke, and NC State are born every day. Sometimes families are divided because rivalries run deep.
US News ranks The Tar Heel State 23rd in public safety. The Tar Heels like to think that Barney Fife had something to do with that. However, while not every city in North Carolina can be compared to Mayberry, there is a lot of competition.
So, grab yourself a glass of fresh sweet tea and enjoy some deep porch sittin' while we take a look at North Carolina's Safest Cities.
What city is the safest place to live in North Carolina for 2019? Well according to the FBI data we crunched, Pinehurst is the safest place to live in North Carolina if you care about low crime.
I'm sure it is no surprise to the residents of Pinehurst that they ranked number one.
It is, however, very crowded at the top: the list of safe and comfortable places to live in North Carolina is quite long.
So, read on to see how we crunched the numbers and how your city compared to the top ten.
Note: Lumberton and several other mainstays on this list did not report data to the FBI last year, so they will not appear in the data.
For more reading on safe places to live in and around North Carolina, check out:
While there are surveys and public polls on what cities in a state are the safest, we didn't want to rely on speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from the FBI's most recent report of crime (Sept 2018) in North Carolina.Specifically, we analyzed the FBI's Uniform Crime Report which summarizes the number of property crimes and violent crimes in each city per year. We used two criteria:
For example, there were a total of 135 crimes committed in Pinehurst which had a reported population of 16,145. That means the number of crimes per capita is 0.0084 which translates into a 1 in 119 chance of being the victim of a crime.
We only looked at cities that have populations of more than 5,000 people reported to the FBI in 2017. This left us with a total of 99 of the biggest cities in North Carolina to rank.
We ranked each city for each criteria from 1 to 99 where 1 in any particular category is the safest.
Next, we averaged each places two criteria to create a Safety Index. We crowned the place with the lowest overall Safety Score "The Safest Place In North Carolina".
The safest city, based on our criteria, is Pinehurst. The most dangerous city in North Carolina? Whiteville, where residents had a 1 in 10 chance of being the victim of a crime.
Note: This report is not an analysis of the effectiveness of local police departments, nor does it reflect the fact that people from out of town may come into a community and cause a crime. It simply looks at where crimes occurred most frequently, based on a city's population.
Welcome to Pinehurst, the safest place to live in North Carolina for 2019.
Pinehurst managed to topple Holly Springs this year and claim the number one overall spot in the Tarheel State thanks to the second lowest property crime rate and third lowest violent crime rate in the state.
So you know what that means? You can leave your car unlocked and doors open when you go out for your daily round of golf.
And make sure to stop in at Betsy's for a crepe. I literally drive an hour each way at least twice a year to eat breakfast there -- it's awesome.
Holly Springs has been dethroned for the first time in a couple of years, but still manages to rank as the second safest city in North Carolina.
A slight increase in violent crimes did the trick, but it's still WAY safe to live here compared to most every other place in NC. And the property crime rates are still super low.
As a forebear of places to come, Holly Springs is a suburb of Raleigh right in the middle of the state. By the end of this article, you'll have read a line similar to that many times over.
Starting a back-to-back string of college towns, Elon cracks the top three for the second year in a row.
Home to Elon University, you can be sure your college aged kids are safe here -- it ranks in the top five for both categories of crime we analyzed.
And don't be fooled by the seeming higher than average poverty rate -- those pesky college kids can't technically work full time jobs which messes with the national statistics.
Elon is located basically at the midway point between Greensboro and Durham off of route 40.
Let me say that I'm totally biased in favor of Davidson -- it's an awesome little college town on the north side of Charlotte. I suggest you spend a day walking around campus, eating on main street, and just taking it all in.
IMO, it's the ideal place to live in the state based on my six plus years living here.
And, since it places fourth here, you also know it's safe. It has a top safety rating for both violent and property crime.
So pack your bags and feel confident in your move to Davidson -- if you can afford the price of entry to this safe haven.
Speaking of pricey places -- Cary is basically as pricey as they come in North Carolina (which isn't all that pricey compared to the rest of the country) -- but well, well worth it.
Cary ranked as our best place to live in North Carolina for 2018 and finished in the top ten nationally. It's also one of the most expensive places in the state.
But all those money signs equal safety as Cary has one of the lowest property crime rates you'll find and a top ten violent crime rate.
Located Southwest of Raleigh, it's probably the nicest 'burb around. Make sure to stop by La Farm bakery -- I love the monkey bread, but most people rave about the white chocolate baguettes.
While you might think Apex has the apex of living, it always seem to be just a notch behind Cary in our rankings.
And while Cary is the probably the nicest 'burb around, Apex might give it a run for its money in some ways.
The city of some 40,000 plus people has less violent crime, but a bit more property crime than it's neighbor. It also costs a bit less to live here, doesn't rank quite as high on our other rankings, and has a longer commute to Raleigh.
Some might call Apex UNC-Chapel Hill to Cary's Duke.
Rolesville is the seventh safest city on our list and the fourth Raleigh suburb.
While this suburb is a little more out in the boonies to the northeast of Raleigh, it still packs a safe punch for a city of its size. It has the second safest violent crime rate in the state, so you don't have to worry about getting in a fight with your neighbors.
The median income in town stands at $91,000 and the median home will set you back $259,000. That's actually pretty cheap for a median income that high (anything under 3 to 1 home price to income is solid).
Stopping the streak of Raleigh suburbs is Fletcher, a safe town on the west side of the state.
Unlike all those fancy burbs, you can actually afford to live here. And that's great news because it has the lowest violent crime rate in the state which helped propel it into the top ten for the first time. It's one of two new cities in the top ten.
Interestingly, compared to other states, North Carolina's safest cities are really stable from year to year.
I'll let you guess what city Wendell is a suburb of... and it's not a trick question... yep... Raleigh. The fifth and last time we see a Raleigh 'burb.
A smaller, less well known suburb, Wendell sky rocketed up the rankings to number nine this year from twenty-five last year. That's a sixteen position jump for those playing from home.
The town deserves this spot as it has the seventh safest violent crime rate and a well above average property crime rate. Seems like the town has figured some secret out these last couple of years.
Stallings rounds out the top ten safest cities in North Carolina for 2019.
A Charlotte suburb that's basically in South Carolina, the city of over 15,00 boasts a very low property crime rate and basically resembles the fictional Pleasantville. It has a Family Night once a year in September, a town wide easter egg hunt, and a Christmas tree lighting.
If you're looking to snuggle up in your afgan, drink some tea, and feel safe and sound in your home with your family, then Stallings has your name written all over it.
Looking at the data, you can tell that Pinehurst is as safe as they come, according to science and data.
But as most North Carolina residents would agree, almost every place here has its safe and not safe parts. So just make sure you're informed ahead of time.
Here's a look at the most dangerous cities in North Carolina according to the data:
|Rank||City||Population||Violent Crimes Per 100k||Property Crimes Per 100k|
|2||Holly Springs, NC||34,897||45||908|
HomeSnacks is based in Durham, NC.
We aim to deliver bite-sized pieces of infotainment about where you live.
We use data, analytics, and a sense of humor to determine quality of life for places across the nation.