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Old 07-15-2017, 10:02 AM
 
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Hello, all - hoping to get some feedback from those of you who have retired to the Wilmington coastal area of NC. I have been reading some of the threads, but many of them are a few years old that discuss the topic with details. We are in our sixties, not golfers but like being in a golf club community. We moved to the Jacksonville area of Florida 2 years ago - thought this would be our forever home, but just too hot here and really don't care for Florida. I would love to hear what other have to say about the area - we will be coming up in September to begin our search. Many thanks!
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Old 07-15-2017, 11:54 AM
 
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Hi JEM50,

My wife and I retired 4 years ago, we currently live in Northern Virginia, and are in our early 50's. We decided two years ago, to move near a beach somewhere in NC, after we fell in love with the outer banks. The outer banks is a great place to visit, but it wasn't someplace that we considered as an option to live there full time. We found that it's just too touristy 9 months out of the year, and it's somewhat expensive to buy a home on one of the islands.

So we began looking at all of the coastal areas of NC and SC, ultimately focusing on the southeast corner of NC. We spent about a year researching and made 4 trips overall down to the area in and around Wilmington. On our first trip, we started looking at Myrtle Beach. We stayed there one night there. We cut our trip short it was so bad. There isn't enough money to get me to live there full time, it's a touristy zoo. We have a friend that lives there full time. Only because her parents retired there, she moved to Myrtle as well, but she doesn't like living in that area.

On our way back from Myrtle, we detoured into Wilmington for a few days, and began looking at that area. We looked at Top Sail/Pender county, and north of Wilmington out towards Castle Hayne, and took a second several day trip to that area. We thought the area was OK, but it wasn't exactly what we were looking to find. We determined that it's more younger family oriented, than for retirees, and we were looking for a place that was more oriented towards retirees.

On our last two trips, we turned our focus south of Wilmington, and found we really like that area the best, especially as we got closer to the NC/SC border (Holden Beach/Sunset Beach/Carolina Shores/Calabash/Ocean Island Beach) area. It's rural enough to not be plagued with tourist overload issues, although it can get busy during the summer. However, the average full time resident age is about 60.

We originally bought a building lot this spring, with plans to build a house. However, that ended up being not too cost effective. It's difficult to find a builder that charges less than $170 a square foot to build in the area, whereas spec homes can be had from $100 to $170 a square foot. We placed a contract on new constructed house last month in Sunset Beach, and will be moving permanently there by the end of the year.

IMO the areas south of Wilmington are the best bet. There is a new hospital in Supply, NC and most major shopping is found in Shallotte. There is available new construction, with some single family homes starting in the high 170's. The area around Holden Beach is more low country than say the areas of Ocean Isle and Sunset Beach.

Ultimately, after performing research for two years. IMHO, the areas of Ocean Isle Beach, Sunset Beach, and Calabash, between the ICW and Route 17 are the nicest.

Good Luck, Jim
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Old 07-15-2017, 01:55 PM
 
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All good choices!
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Old 07-15-2017, 03:13 PM
 
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Hi,

There's a local buyers' agency realty company that was very helpful to us (I don't work for them or get compensated for recommending them!). Carolinaplantations.com has descriptions, data and videos of most of the active adult communities in the area on their website. We found the website to be VERY helpful as we narrowed the search. Then we toured the area with an agent (3 times, actually). There was no pressure; just good, free advice. Good luck!
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Old 07-15-2017, 05:17 PM
 
Location: Leland, NC
54 posts, read 38,967 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jflanagan View Post
Hi,

There's a local buyers' agency realty company that was very helpful to us (I don't work for them or get compensated for recommending them!). Carolinaplantations.com has descriptions, data and videos of most of the active adult communities in the area on their website. We found the website to be VERY helpful as we narrowed the search. Then we toured the area with an agent (3 times, actually). There was no pressure; just good, free advice. Good luck!
I agree about Carolina Plantations. Melissa set us up with 'discovery packages' to stay at a few plantations while we were down there, and spent all the time we needed to look at whatever resales or new construction we wanted to see. No pressure and very good advice.
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Old 07-16-2017, 06:51 PM
LLN
 
Location: Upstairs closet
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Just keep health care high on the list of your priorities. It is easy to disregard, but in all likelihood, one day it will become important.
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Old 07-17-2017, 04:37 AM
 
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,257 posts, read 19,791,183 times
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Just keep health care high on the list of your priorities. It is easy to disregard, but in all likelihood, one day it will become important.
I will second that. Wherever you land, look at the supply of cardiologists and other "geriatric" specialists available in the community as well as convenient access to a hospital.
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Old 07-17-2017, 05:21 AM
 
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Thank you, everyone, for your comments. I do have much research to do and certainly, want to make the right decision. I thought the home we are in now would be our forever home! As for healthcare, it is very high on the priority list and always has been. I am a retired nurse and know the importance of good healthcare as we age. If anyone can comment on the status of the healthcare systems in an around the Wilmington area, I would greatly appreciate it.
BTW, I am finding Carolinaplantations.com very helpful - again many thanks.
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Old 07-17-2017, 06:11 AM
 
6,800 posts, read 4,443,919 times
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Originally Posted by JEM50 View Post
Thank you, everyone, for your comments. I do have much research to do and certainly, want to make the right decision. I thought the home we are in now would be our forever home! As for healthcare, it is very high on the priority list and always has been. I am a retired nurse and know the importance of good healthcare as we age. If anyone can comment on the status of the healthcare systems in an around the Wilmington area, I would greatly appreciate it.
BTW, I am finding Carolinaplantations.com very helpful - again many thanks.
New Hanover Regional Medical Center is a very good regional hospital system. In Brunswick County, Novant Brunswick Hospital is an very good small hospital. Novant is an excellent health care system.
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Old 07-17-2017, 12:19 PM
 
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Another possibility is a great hospital on the SC line at Little River. We live in Sunset Beach and were taken there when my wife had an emergency issue. Interestingly, the ambulance was from Brunswick County. The response and service/care were excellent. I don't remember the name of the hospital but was right on Route 17.

walessp
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