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Old 03-28-2013, 10:44 PM
Location: Suburbs of Washington DC
5 posts, read 12,118 times
Reputation: 19


I always hear that Charlotte is a wonderful area for young families, but how about for single people in their 20's?

I'm a female in my early 20's and recently moved back in with my parents in the Washington DC Metropolitan area (Northern Virginia, currently). Cost of living is very high here and I have moved out once on my own in this general area, but would really like to get out of the hustle and bustle as well get back out on my own again, in a new area!

I have many friends and family members that have visited Charlotte and/or plan to live there as well, but I am looking for outsider's prospective from people that DO/HAVE live(d) there. I do not yet have a job set down there as I am planning to make the move in many months down the road. But I know that while cost of living is less in Charlotte, my income would also drop a bit. So I'm hoping it would safe to say I could afford $800/month for a 1BR/studio apartment for rent. Is that reasonable for a fairly safe area? How about location? Being a single person in my early 20's, I would greatly prefer to live in a location near restaurants, nightlife, entertainment, etc. as well.

Aside from location, I was wondering what general life is like in Charlotte. I like the outdoorsy lifestyle, with at least some parks near by as I have a dog too. Are the lakes within reasonable distance to make a day trip? If not, are there any rivers near by? How about hiking? I've always loved living in a really diverse area. Is it safe to say Charlotte may be considered fairly diverse?

Any input GREATLY appreciated!!
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:39 AM
3,184 posts, read 6,843,342 times
Reputation: 1818
Charlotte has it all. Its a place where winners win and losers lose. Its a place where you will find plenty of jobs if you dont mind food service and begging for tips with no company paid insurance,holidays, vacation, or profit sharing and part time hours . People moving here really should bring their job with them . Real jobs are hard to find here,Even people with college degrees are working at Lowes and Home Depot and McDs,,,,,But come on down and have some fun...Fun we got .................but most of it cost money
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:54 AM
328 posts, read 589,695 times
Reputation: 284
A few thoughts:

- For that price range, you can absolutely find a studio or 1/br apartment in CLT in a nice area. My first apartment there was around $640 for a really large 1br. I also have friends who found spots in some really desirable neighborhoods (Elizabeth, Myers Park) for less than $800. Especially coming from Northern Virginia, you may be surprised at the relatively lower cost of rentals. That's my experience.

- I moved to CLT in my early 20's as well and really fell in love with the place. Yes, it's a great city for families, but being great for families and great for singles isn't mutually exclusive. I found that there were a lot of transplants my age who were really open and friendly. It took me no time (less than a couple of months) to feel like I had built a solid social network, and I moved there knowing absolutely no one. There is a lot going on all the time, it seems, and really nice restaurants/bars/venues that are frequented by folks in their 20's throughout the city.

- It sounds like you are being smart about the move - i.e. considering saving and trying to get a job before coming down. It is true that the job market is tough (though I would argue improving by the week). However, for what it may be worth, I moved down during the height of the recession in 2009 for an internship and ended up staying bc I was able to find jobs in my field. So it is possible, as long as you are actively researching and networking as you go along. A lot of folks talk about the scant job market here - which is good to convey to potential newcomers - but I don't want it to give you the impression that you couldn't find a job here at all.

- At the risk of sounding overly enthusiastic (though it is sincere), Charlotte is a wonderful city to call home. It is livable, bright and sunny, and still so young. I never once felt bored and I was totally aware of how high my quality of life was while I was living there (which is rare, because usually that realization comes after you've left a place). I totally took a chance on CLT, and it was the right decision to make. I hope if you end up here you find the same.
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:29 PM
15,086 posts, read 11,787,355 times
Reputation: 7297
c'mon down... your dream job probably won't be your first job though.
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Old 03-29-2013, 03:54 PM
186 posts, read 416,667 times
Reputation: 209
You might like Cornelius if you want access to lots of parks and access to the lake. There are several apartment communities (and probably condos for rent too) within walking/biking distance to lakefront parks. Ramsey Creek Park has a dog park and is on the water, I always see tons of people walking/running with dogs at Jetton Park. And two new parks, Robbins and Westmoreland Athletic have opened within about 2 miles of these. Legacy Cornelius is brand spanking new but is at the top of your budget, but there are a couple of others close by. Beware though, if you ended up working in Uptown, its a long commute - 30 min on a good day, 60+ on a bad day - but how bad this is depends on your perspective. 30 minutes is nothing to some people. This area has a wide variety of people, retirees, young professionals, young families, families with high school kids, college kids (Davidson College is just a couple miles north). Nightlife and actives have multiplied in the past few years, the city is much more hopping than it was just a few years ago with new entertainment venues and many more good restaurants. You don't mention your profession but the big employers are the school district, Duke, BofA, Wells Fargo, IBM, CHC, Lowes and many more. There are many jobs for college grads and highly skilled people, but the process can be long and frustrating, employers take their sweet time and you have to be persistent and tenacious. Good luck!
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Old 03-29-2013, 07:37 PM
Location: Huntersville
14 posts, read 20,165 times
Reputation: 15
For 800$ a month you could probably rent a 3 bedroom house. If you try to live downtown Clt then it's gonna be 800 minimum for a 1 bedroom
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:08 PM
Location: Suburbs of Washington DC
5 posts, read 12,118 times
Reputation: 19
Please excuse the delayed response. But I GREATLY appreciate all of the feedback!

This is about what I was expecting to hear. My friend who is just accepted a job offer down there recently went to visit and loved every bit of her trip!

It's looking like I am going to be making some trips down this summer to check it all out!
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