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Old 11-23-2012, 04:33 PM
 
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My girlfriend and I are originally from North/South Carolina and we have been living out West for about 5 years. We are in our early 20's. We have lived in a few places along the west coast, including Los Angeles, Portland, San Francisco, and have rented a few places scattered along the west coast on the beach itself.

We are looking to find a stick-built home for ourselves on the coast. We don't have any kids except for our cats and dogs, and we don't plan on having any. We have been considering a few small southern North Carolina beach cities like Oak Island, Ocean Island, Sunset Beach, and Holden Beach. We are also open to Kure Beach, Carolina Beach, and Wrightsville. Nags head isn't out of the question either. We just don't know much about the outer banks.

We are pretty easy-going and don't go out to party at bars, but we would like to live somewhere that we have a chance to meet other young people to become friends and network with, dine out and have an occasional cocktail without being the only people under 60. I only say this, because I mentioned to my Step-dad, who lives in Holden Beach- that I was considering moving back, and he says we will stick out like a sore thumb, and that most the residents there are old retired folks. Nothing against old folks, just don't want to be too out of place.

I am a web-developer and she is a writer, so we work from home and can work anywhere in the world with an internet connection. We have an an annual income of around $107,500 so we can afford/would like to spend somewhere around 400-500k We want a place where we can live comfortably on the ocean and still have access to entertainment and recreation, and an organic grocery/market.

We aren't looking to live anywhere without a view of the ocean, so Wilmington isn't exactly what we are looking for. We are considering South Carolina, around the Charleston area, but we feel like North Carolina is a bit more progressive and liberal.

Anyway, all suggestions are welcome, we are looking to settle down back home near our families and it's important to us to live on the beach itself somewhere in North or South Carolina.

Last edited by GoingBackEast?; 11-23-2012 at 04:44 PM..
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Old 11-23-2012, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
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I think you would be fine with Wrightsville Beach, as the median resident age is 35.6 which is less than the state's median age of 41.9. Wrightsville also has a reputation as the young people's party beach. Kure Beach's median age is older at 53.6, and Carolina Beach is nearer average at 43.9 years.

You can check the rest of them with the main City-Data profiles, but I suspect that Oak Island and Sunset Beach are mainly older people. Nags Head would be too isolated in the winter for my taste, so i didn't check the median age of residents.

There are about a dozen food markets with organic food according to the online yellow pages, and the mainstream food stores like Food Lion and Harris Teeter have organic sections.

You can certainly find something in the $400-500K range. Perhaps not ocean-front, but one or two rows back. Detached ocean-front houses at Wrightsville run at least $1 million but there are duplexes around $800,000 and 2-br condos around $500,000.

Last edited by goldenage1; 11-23-2012 at 06:39 PM..
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
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If you go a bit further north to Topsail Island and Surf City, you will find the median age closer to 43 years. The ocean-front houses are more affordable than in Wrightsville, with many in the $400-600K range. There are far fewer condos here, and it is much quieter in the winter. There will typically be a few bars and restaurants open where you will find the few permanent residents hang out.There is also a smaller population of retirees. The options for organic food are limited to the grocery stores like Harris Teeter.

I reccommend you look seriously at Surf City and Topsail. I can DM you a few listings if you are interested.

You might also consider the Emerald Isle/Atlantic Beach area. It has more high-rise condos, but they are also more affordable.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:11 AM
 
Location: Surf City, NC
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I concur with Wrightsville or Topsail. If you can afford the higher price-tag, Wrightsville will be more convenient to the cultural amenities, shopping and services in Wilmington. I live on Topsail, I don't mind the drive, but sometimes I like a livelier atmosphere. Unless you've absolutely fallen in love with them, I wouldn't recommend the outer banks for full-time living. It's a long drive to urban amenities and services, and in summer you are over-run with tourists and traffic. I wouldn't dismiss the Charleston area just because it's in South Carolina. I love visiting Charleston, but I'm not familiar with the beaches there.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:29 PM
 
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All I have to add is don't ignore the sound side areas of the coast like MHC, Swansboro, Cape Carteret/Cedar Point and Bogue.
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:36 PM
 
Location: Greenville, NC
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If you're looking for liberal and progressive, then I would avoid Wilmington and probably the whole Crystal Coast area. Of the larger cities in NC, only Wilmington and Jacksonville went to Romney. The rest of them including Greenville and Fayetteville, went to Obama. The political North South line runs through there somewhere.
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Old 11-25-2012, 07:48 PM
 
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I'd say there going for Romney had more to do with the base of the area (Military and Retirees) than tea party far right Republican idealogy. In fact, the areas you say avoid (Wilmington, Jacksonville, and Crystal Coast) are in my experience the most liberal and progressive areas of Eastern NC.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoingBackEast? View Post
but we feel like North Carolina is a bit more progressive and liberal.
I would say overall NC is more progressive and liberal than SC. But the Republicans in West Coast states are like many Democrates in NC. I grew up in Eastern NC, lived on the west coast for 20 years, and have resided the last 5 in Durham, NC (which is one of the more progressive towns in NC). Chapel Hill is suppose to be the most liberal spot in NC... and it just does not compare to Portland, San Fran, or Seattle. And Eastern NC is much less progressive and liberal than Durham or Chapel Hill. So just know that your progressive/liberal meter will need to be reset in NC.

As others have said, do not discount homes with sound views. And keep in mind that NC Beaches are really just shifting sandbars... the ocean will eventually get all those homes. But you can have a sound view in places like Hampstead, Sneads Ferry, Swansboro, Morehead City, Beaufort and not be on a shifting sand bar.

I grew up near Topsail. Love that area.... to visit. There just isn't enough going on for me there. And I'm probably a bit older than you. I would highly recommend renting before you buy.
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Old 11-26-2012, 03:42 AM
 
Location: Greenville, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macjr82 View Post
I'd say there going for Romney had more to do with the base of the area (Military and Retirees) than tea party far right Republican idealogy. In fact, the areas you say avoid (Wilmington, Jacksonville, and Crystal Coast) are in my experience the most liberal and progressive areas of Eastern NC.
You'd say it and have no data to back up your assumption. The best that can be done is assessments of the potential military vote and it doesn't favor your presumption that the military swung the vote in those areas.

Military Vote Missing This Election
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Old 11-26-2012, 05:34 AM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
196 posts, read 499,853 times
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Wow, way to hijack a thread. If you want a very liberal state take a look at Maryland. As moderates we like the feel of North Carolina better, at least there is a viable two party system.

As for the original question. We are moving to Topsail Beach next year. We're under 60, but not by much!!

But there are some great restaurants on Topsail, or just off the island. Prices still tend to be depressed so you could certainly find a second row house with a beach view in your price range. Due to the relative proximity to Camp LeJeune you will find younger couples, etc., who go to Topsail to dine or have a drink, including market to table places.

The "shifting sandbars" comment is an oversimplification. Yes there are vulnerable areas on Topsail Island at the north end. but you can search for actual data. Here is a report to start with. http://www.protectthebeach.com/temp/...0paper-05e.pdf

There are hazards where ever people choose to live. We gladly accept the hazard of a hurricane once every couple of years for the ability to see the sun rise over the ocean and easily take a walk on the beach.

The suggestion to look at sound view places is a good one too. You can get water views, the ocean in the near distance, and remarkably good housing prices.
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