Tar Heel Baby
Okay, let us do a little review. I am Retired & Lovinit! And I want you to be also. I am planning on relocating and I am having a hard time figuring out where I want to go. I believe that you might be in the same situation or will be. So I decided to write this blog series to help you and I to make a decision about retiring and relocating. I chose the following ten places and I have investigated them based on several must-haves
· New Jersey
· North Carolina
· Other Countries
Just in case you have not read the five previous posts of this blog series these are my must-haves
· Warm climate
· Does not tax my pension
· Near or on the beach or lake
· A short drive to a major hub airport
· Low cost of living
· Safe living
· Affordable housing with great amenities
Number six on my list is North Carolina known as the Tar Heel State. I will have to find out why it is called that. My mother and brother originated from Kinston, North Carolina. I have a long time friend who relocated from Brooklyn, New York to Hollister, North Carolina and she loves it! My former sister-n-law lives outside of Charlotte, North Carolina, she has been there for over fifteen years. She is originally from Brooklyn, New York also. However, I will not be writing about Kinston, Hollister or Charlotte North Carolina.
North Carolina is 3.7% cheaper than the national average cost of living and the home prices are lower. North Carolina is listed as number 23 on the lowest cost of living states in the United States. North Carolina is a popular place for baby-boomers. Baby boomers are those born between the years1946 and 1964. North Carolina is considered one of the top states for retirees to live. In 2015, North Carolina was named as a “Certified Retirement Community”. It has become more popular to retirees than Florida.
In 2014, North Carolina changed its tax laws. North Carolina has fairly low taxes. The state of North Carolina does not tax Social Security. There is a flat rate of 5.75% on your income tax. Each individual receives a $7500 deduction when filing his or her taxes. North Carolina does not have an inheritance or an estate tax. State sales tax is 4.75%. Property taxes are fairly low compared to property taxes in the North Eastern states. They are definitely a lot lower than where I live now, New Jersey. There is a program for those 65 and older that caps property taxes at 4% or 5% of your income.
North Carolina offers a little bit of everything both geographically and culturally. There are three hundred miles of barrier island beaches, two national seashores and idyllic villages in the Eastern region. It has large cities, tall mountains and towns in mountainous areas.
I prefer to be on or near the beach. The coast is cooler in the summer but warmer in the winter than the rest of North Carolina.
Therefore, I have chosen New Bern and Wilmington as cities that I will focus on in North Carolina. I will begin with New Bern, North Carolina.
New Bern, North Carolina has a humid subtropical climate. That means that the summers are hot and humid. New Bern is prone to frequent afternoon thunderstorms. Spring and Fall are usually mild with fall foliage occurring from late October to early November. The winters in New Bern are moderately mild and dry with a little snow. New Bern is a riverfront community and has been named one of the “Top 10 Coastal Towns Where You Can Afford To Retire”. There is an old fashioned southern charm with the friendly warmth of a small town. There are award winning medical facilities. There is golfing, cultural opportunities, riverfront outdoor activities.
I was able to find several apartments and houses for rent. The rent ranged from $700-$1300 for a three bedroom, two bathroom with 1200 square feet.
These were all on or very near to the beach. New Bern does not have a major hub airport. Relocating to North Carolina means that you would have to take a driver’s license test, even if you have a driver’s license in your state. There are neighborhoods that are very safe and other’s not as safe.
Wilmington, North Carolina is more expensive to live in than New Bern, North Carolina. Wilmington is a peninsula. Wilmington is the eighth most populous city in North Carolina. Wilmington’s culture is very unique. There is a large population of Northeasterners who have relocated here. You can find foods as many cultures and you can find in New York City. Downtown Wilmington boasts over 300 restaurants. There are many shopping options.
Wilmington, North Carolina does not have a major hub airport. You will have to fly to another city if you want to fly to other countries. I was able to find reasonably priced housing. For example, I found a three bedroom, two bathrooms, not far from the beach and 1185 square feet. The complex has a pool, a gym and a washer/dryer hook up in the apartment.
Wilmington has a humid subtropical climate. Spring is from February until early May. Summer has a high humidity with high temperatures of 90 plus and lows of 70-75. Winters are mild with little or no snow.
There are other cities in North Carolina that fit my must-haves. I chose Wilmington and New Bern because they seem to fit best. Of course when I narrow my list down I will have to visit these places. I hope that this has been beneficial to you.
See you in two weeks!!!