Living in Raleigh

Are you moving to Raleigh, North Carolina? You are going to love living in our state’s capital. Raleigh has received numerous accolades for its outstanding quality of life. In fact, U.S. News & World Report in 2021 ranked Raleigh and Durham collectively as the #2 Best Place to Live.

Raleigh received the prestigious “Leading the Way Award” from ETC Institute in 2021 for being ranked in the top 10% of local governments in the US with regards to resident satisfaction with government services and customer service.

Plus, a poll at Men’s Health ranked Raleigh as the 3rd Happiest City in America.

In this post, we are going to share all you need to know about what it is like to live here. We’ll start out by going over some geography, and then we will discuss cost of living, employment, education, and more.



Triangle of North Carolina

The Triangle of North Carolina

In the heart of North Carolina is the region we call “the Triangle.” Why is it called the Triangle?

The answer is the presence of three prestigious academic institutions. North Carolina State University is located in Raleigh, University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill is located in Chapel Hill, and Duke University is located in Durham. If an imaginary line were drawn from each of these locations to the next, it would form a triangle.

The Lay of the Land in North Carolina

The Lay of the Land

Raleigh is the capital of North Carolina, and is located in Wake County. In Wake County there are several cities, townships and unincorporated communities.

There is, of course, Raleigh itself, which is mostly in Wake County, though a small part is in Durham County. There is also Durham, which is mostly in Durham County, with a small part in Wake County. Another community to know is Cary, which is located largely in Wake County, but with a small section in Chatham County.

Additional communities include Apex, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Morrisville (mostly in Wake County with a small part in Durham County), Rolesville, Wake Forest (mostly in Wake County with a small part in Franklin County), Wendell, and Zebulon (mostly in Wake County with a small part in Nash County).

Adjacent counties are: Granville County (to the north), Franklin County (to the northeast), Nash County (to the east), Johnston County (to the southeast), Harnett County (to the southwest), Chatham County (to the west), and Durham County (to the northwest).

Cost of Living in Raleigh NC

What is the Cost of Living in Raleigh?

We turn to Sperling’s Best Places for data on cost of living in Raleigh. Sperling’s has an index that places the USA average cost of living at 100. Values above 100 are higher than average costs, and values below 100 are lower than average costs.

On that scale, the site gives Raleigh an overall score of 102.3. That is extremely affordable considering that you are living in the state’s capital city. For most metropolitan areas, you will have to pay steep costs to enjoy what the city has to offer. But that is not so in Raleigh.

Costs that are lower than the national average in Raleigh include utilities, transportation, health and miscellaneous expenses. Grocery costs are close to average.

Housing Cost in Raleigh

What Does Housing Cost in Raleigh?

Housing is the only area with a significant increase over the US average. The median home cost in the USA is $291,700. In Raleigh, it is $346,600. Again, that is quite affordable for a vibrant city like this.

Employment Opportunities in Raleigh

Employment Opportunities in Raleigh

According to WalletHub in 2021, Raleigh is among the best cities for starting a career. That same year, Milken Institute rated the city’s economy as the 5th highest performing nationwide.

The USA median household income in 2019 was $68,703. The Census reports that between 2015 and 2019, the median household income for Raleigh was $67,266. So, that is really close to the national average.

Some of the top employers in Raleigh include the State of North Carolina, WakeMed, North Carolina State University, Wake County Public School System, UNC Rex Healthcare, the City of Raleigh, and Wake County.

Education in Raleigh NC

Raleigh Education

As you might have guessed based on the list of top employers above, education is a big deal in Raleigh and the Triangle.

If you have younger children, they will likely attend the aforementioned Wake County Public School System. A number of magnet schools, alternative high schools, and early college high schools are available as well. There are also a variety of charter schools and private schools. So, there are considerable options.

For higher education, students in this area may attend North Carolina State University, Wake Technical Community College, Meredith College, William Peace University, St. Augustine’s University, Skema Business School, Strayer University, ECPI College of Technology, Duke University, the University of North Carolina, and others.

Crime in Raleigh NC

Crime in Raleigh

On a scale ranking low crime at 1 and high crime at 100, Sperling’s sets the US average violent crime rate at 22.7. Violent crime in Raleigh is lower than average on that scale at 20.3.

Getting Around Raleigh NC

Getting Around Raleigh

It is easy to get around Raleigh and the Triangle using the system of interstates and US Routes that traverse the area.

If you want to use public transportation, you can take the bus operated by GoRaleigh or the GoTriangle commuter bus.

The city is also a welcoming place for cyclists and pedestrians.

There is more good news in the form of low commute times. Sperling’s says that the US average one-way commute time is 26.4 minutes. But the average time to commute one direction in Raleigh is only 23.4 minutes.

According to Sperling’s, 78.5% of people in Raleigh drive to work alone, and 8.9% carpool. 7.1% work from home, and 2% use public transportation. It is likely work at home figures have increased since the pandemic.

Weather in Raleigh NC

How is the Weather in Raleigh?

Living in Raleigh, you can expect summertime highs of around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, and winter lows dropping to around 30 degrees Fahrenheit.

There are about 46 average annual inches of rain and about 4 inches of annual snow. So, four distinct seasons await you.

The site has a comfort index where the most comfortable locations score a 10. The US average is 7. Raleigh’s score is 7.5, so it is a more comfortable climate than the US average.

Leisure and Entertainment in Raleigh NC

Leisure and Entertainment in Raleigh

Even though Raleigh is not a major tourism hotspot, it easily could be. There is so much to see and do, no matter what you are interested in.

If you are into museums, just a few to check out include the African American Cultural Complex, the Contemporary , and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences.

Love sports? Some local teams to follow include the Carolina Hurricanes, North Carolina FC, North Carolina Courage, and Carolina Mudcats.

If the outdoors are more your thing, there are more than 8,100 acres of park land in Raleigh alone, and even more beyond.

You also can enjoy delicious local eateries, boutique shops, and nightlife.

Move Into Your Raleigh Dream Home

Can’t wait to call the highly rated city of Raleigh or the surrounding region your home? The Martini Mortgage Group is waiting to welcome you and help you find a suitable home loan. To begin, please call at (919) 238-4934 to schedule your consultation. We work with homebuyers and homeowners throughout North Carolina as well as the states of South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Tennessee and Virginia.

See What Our Clients Are Saying About Us

Casie Gray
Casie Gray
00:34 03 May 22
Kevin and his team (Logan and Keith) helped us every step of the way and it was like having your uncle and cousins help you. They were very personable and would call and answer any question we had. We just moved here from Georgia and we're thankful to have such warm, professional friends help us through the stressful process of buying a house. 10/10 ❤️
John Sisler
John Sisler
13:21 18 Mar 22
Kevin handled our work professionally and promptly.After explaining some options, that I was unaware of beforehand, Kevin helped us to get a far better deal than I could have on my own steam.Absolutely recommend!
Chris Brady
Chris Brady
17:20 17 Mar 22
You could not find a more efficient, competent, and (surprising to say) fun place to help you with your financial arrangements. These are top-notch professionals and I would recommend them to anyone.
Kendra Davidson
Kendra Davidson
01:46 08 Mar 22
Kevin is the absolute best. Not only at what he does, but also at providing critical advice and top referrals. Working with him on our mortgage was a wonderfully learning process and also fun. Would not hesitate to work with him again!
eric leder
eric leder
20:07 07 Oct 21
Kevin is a awesome, I truly appreciated his professionalism and candor throughout the entire process. It was always wonderful to talk to him on the phone and his guidance was extremely helpful and on point. As a first time home buyer, Kevin made the whole process seamless and easy to understand, which allowed me to be confident in my decisions.Thanks Kevin!
Don Rose
Don Rose
11:01 05 Oct 21
Everyone was knowledgeable, patient and kind. Very easy to work with.
Peter Clayton-Luce
Peter Clayton-Luce
16:31 03 Aug 21
110% Recommend the Martini Group. They did an excellent job ensuring our loan was good to go for closing time. They were very knowledgable and helpful with all my questions. Will definitely be back for my next one! :)
yolanda davis
yolanda davis
03:55 08 Jun 21
Kevin and his team were fantastic. Even though we had to have an extension, him and his team pull through for our family and got our mortgage approved and processed in an exceptional timely manner. We greatly appreciate their hard work and we will be using them for all future needs.
Bruce Parmly
Bruce Parmly
17:27 30 Mar 21
As our culture becomes increasingly more self-focused it is so refreshing to find an organization that truly understands the word Caring, and you are it!
Lee Rogers
Lee Rogers
13:51 02 Mar 21
Very impressed with this group. Great communication and guidance throughout made for a smooth process and very satisfied with rate and costs. Highly recommended.