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One Year Later: Artie’s Observations on Moving to the Carolinas from New York

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

This article was originally posted as a comment from Artie on our “Dueling Carolinas Comparison” article (where you also find many other helpful comments). He provides so much detail we thought it would make a great blog article on his own, so with his permission we have done that. We also added some other relevant comments to add even more detail. Thanks Artie!

Originally I thought I was moving to Florida (Jupiter), but here I am in Cary, NC. I can’t speak specifically to the advantages of disadvantages of having chosen NC over SC. But I’m sure my wife and I could have been happy in any number of places in either state.

One Year Later
This past August has been our one year anniversary since we moved to our new home at the Carolina Preserve (CP) in Cary (aka Containment Area for Relocated Yankees) NC, The year has gone by quickly. We continue to be very happy with our decision to move here. We are continuing to find it just calmer, in many ways nicer, and simply a less stressful and easier way of life compared to Long Island. Of course, no longer choosing to work, or worse, having to work at a distasteful and unrewarding job, goes a long way in improving one’s mental outlook. However, add to this, the peace of mind that comes with getting away from from all the traffic congestion, higher costs, (especially RE taxes) and additional stresses that have come to characterize living in much of the metro NY area. We both feel very fortunate. That said, after over 55 years we will always consider Long Island our home. And, while there are always going to be some things we miss, we honestly don’t miss many of those things all that much. Remarkably, there is life beyond Long Island and NY.

Triangle Still Tingling
In spite of the continuing bi-polar ups and downs of the stock market and the continuing economic malaise affecting this country, the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill “Triangle” still appears to have a lot of activity going on. It’s not that this area is unaffected by what is happening in the rest of the country, (unemployment is an issue here, too), it just seems where we are in Cary (the middle of the “Triangle”) to be a bit less noticeable. There is still a lot of new road construction and housing development. I just read recently that there has been an uptick in home sales as well, which, if true, is a plus. Obviously, this area is continuing to grow and spread out in all directions. There seems to be more new stuff coming in all the time, whether it’s a new shopping center or a new restaurant opening up. We also think Wake Forest, NC is a lovely community. If we didn’t choose to move to Cary, we would have moved to Heritage Wake Forest.

We happened to choose to move to an over 55 “active adult” community (Carolina Preserve) for a variety of reasons (e.g. amount of amenities, activities, low home maintenance, ease of meeting other people in similar circumstances (meaning mostly retired), etc. CP is unique right now in this area but other similar communities are in the works.

The migration to this part of NC, seems to still be coming largely from the Northeast. The area not only attracts retirees, as more young working families with children living and moving into the area. For young people with families this area has to offer a calmer, easier, and more affordable life-style. I actually understand there is a need for school teachers down here because of the increasing number of school aged children. Your housing dollar certainly goes much farther considering what you can buy down here vs. Long Island. Cary’s real estate taxes, although considered high for NC, are still about 25% of what mine were in Westbury, NY – and I have a nicer, newer, and larger house here. This part of NC is actually a very pretty part of the country. I keep telling people that it’s not unlike some of the north shore and east end areas of Long Island only with nicer year round weather, bigger trees, lakes, parks, and more open space. The only downside to me is that the nearest ocean beaches are 2 hours away. While somewhat inconvenient, this isn’t terrible. We also have the mountains of Asheville about 4 hours to the West. There is considerably more open green space and rural (farm) areas. The roads and highways are a pleasure to drive compared to Long Island.

Research Triangle Park along with it’s high tech corporations including computer and software companies, medical related businesses, bio-tech companies and Federal agencies is the primary economic driver for many of the larger employers in the region. However, there are also all the colleges and universities, large medical institutions and research facilities, as well. Lastly, with Raleigh being the state capital, you have a lot of state jobs.

Staying Busy at Carolina Preserve
My wife and I have our separate and joint activities. Those include a variety of activities conducted at Bradford Hall, which is the Carolina Preserve’s club house and “centerpiece.” This is the 35,000 square foot facility which has a well equipped gym and both indoor and outdoor pools, bocce, pool tables, ping pong, tennis courts, exercise classes, etc. Various classes and clubs meet here all week long. Whatever your interests are, whether its golf, photography, poker (and other card games), the stock market, sporting events, yoga, crafts, wine, writing, photography, bowling biking, tennis, ping pong, swimming, exercise and dance classes you’ll find it here. If I want to hang out and see some younger people for a change and get tired of seeing the same people at the CP “senior” pool, we also have the use of the Amberly facilities, including another pool complex and gym (Amberly being a mixed age community), across the street. There are at least 100 activities and clubs. This is why I’ve said to a few of you, who feel compelled to tell me I have too much time on my hands: you can be as busy or not busy as you want to be.

My wife keeps up with her personal training and enjoys hiking at one of the nearby parks quite a bit. She recently got her NC licensing requirements out of the way if she decides to use her LMT license (part-time). We both have become bowlers and enjoy biking from time to time. We have some great bike paths including the 26 mile American Tobacco bike trail. I’m continually trying to get back on track and get to the gym more frequently as I’ve run out of excuses. Over the last several months, I finally found some like-minded musicians to continue my illustrious rock n’ roll career at 61. With the arrival of the cooler weather (summer was HOT), I’m still planning to join all the golfers soon. However, getting this music project going has been my primary focus. And, of course, our two boys Tyler (Bichon) and Benny (Maltese/Shih-tsu) keep us entertained.

We continue to explore and check out new things whether that be a new restaurant, shopping or entertainment venue. More importantly, everyone right now is healthy and doing well. I also find I have been complaining a lot less – maybe I just don’t find as many reasons to do so. My wife is exceptionally happy to be living down here – she even tends to get overly enthusiastic – at times when telling others about how great her new southern life-style is. Consequently, I’ve started to refer to our NC home as “Polyannaville.”

Where We’ve Been
We covered a lot of ground this year traveling and taking advantage of the activities and places to visit in our adopted state.

Locally in NC:

Outer Banks
Bald Head Island

There are many concert and theater venues in the Triangle Are – some of the concerts and shows we attended so far include:

John Mellencamp – Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC)
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers w/ ZZ Top (Time Warner’s Walnut Creek Raleigh)
Jimmy Buffet (Time Warner – Walnut Creek)
Huey Lewis & The News – Koka Booth Amphitheater, Cary, NC
Music of Paul McCartney – Members of Beatle Mania along with Raleigh Symphony Orchestra – Koka Booth Amphitheater
Music of Queen – 5 Member professional rock band along with Raleigh Symphony Orchestra – Progress Energy Center, Raleigh
Cirque du Soleil – RBC Sports Center – Raleigh
In the Hood – B’way Show – DPAC
Billy Elliot – B’way Show – DPAC
Yes – DPAC
Rock of Ages – B’way Show – DPAC
Aretha Franklin- DPAC
Paul Simon – DPAC
American Idiot – Progress Energy Center, Raleigh

Comment from Rob
(This is a reprint of an interesting and relevant comment made by Ralph to the same article)
Hi Ralph, as promised here’s our impressions of a couple of retirement communities we visited in April last year. Best one we saw was Lake Point Landing 828 693-7800 33 Thompson St). It is behind a shopping center that has a large grocery store and many shops. It has independent through assisted living capability. Very new (last 3-5 years?) Several independent homes were for sale by owner. Depending on the home location, many had a view of the mountains (important to us). Very friendly folks at the office. We also looked at Carolina Village (828 233-0602) which is right next door. No mountain views, looked dark with dark brown shingles and siding on all apartments/residences. Looked older. We looked at White oak village (888 821-2934), looks like manufactured homes. Spring harbor is a rehabilitation facility only, no long term residences. We also looked at College Walk (in Brevard 100 N. College Row 800 280-9600 Very nice, much like Lake Point Landing except it is NOT close to shopping like Lake Point. Shopping is in Brevard, but didn’t see any walmart or large shopping center in Brevard. We are going back to look west of Hendersonville in late March. Will also look the other retirement communities we haven’t seen. at Hope this helps.

See also “Which is the Best Carolina for Retirement“, particularly the Comments

Comments: Please share your experiences or questions about living in North Carolina.

Posted by John Brady on February 11th, 2012


  1. I live in a +55 gated community in Central Florida. The #1 disadvantage I see is the home owner association cost…$4,000 per year. Neighbors are great and cost of living in Florida without income tax is nice. HOA costs and restrictions suck big time.

    by Ted Wolfe — February 15, 2012

  2. Thank you, Artie! You seem like the admirable type of yankee, one not trying to change things until they’re identical to where they came from.

    by John — February 15, 2012

  3. Why do folks think this is a great life style ?. It reminds me of being on a tread mill, or like a hamster in an exercise wheel. All that effort and you get nowhere. There are many that think retirement is as Artie describes, but as time pases they realize its not for them. Now if you can find someone like that to tell there story, I’m shure many would be interested. I’d help you out, but my story is only just begining. ( thats why I’m at this web site )

    by Dave — February 15, 2012

  4. Obviously, we are all uniques and desire different things in retirement. Making the best selection by reading community reviews from others can shorten our list of places we would like to visit before making what I believe is one of the most important decisions in our lives. I found the reviews helpful, as I’m sure they were intended. Thanks Artie!

    by David Clark — February 15, 2012

  5. I’ve looked at Carolina Preserve quite a few times as I have relatives in the Raleigh area and we go to the beach at Emerald Isle. I just think the prices for their homes are extraordinarily high given the decline in the real estate market. I’m sure it seems reasonable to you after Long Island, but for someone from Minneapolis, it seems very high.

    Can you comment on how the property values have held up? It’s nice to be able to interact with an actual resident as opposed to sales people.

    by Linda Jessen — February 15, 2012

  6. Linda, I was very fortunate to get out of Dodge (aka NY) when I did. Nothing was moving in the housing market at the time. I was fortunate to be able to sell my house on Long Island in 3 months. The way things were going in my neighborhood, I thought I’d have to wait 3 years and was actually gearing up to wait. Housing prices were (and still might be) declining on Long Island. As it turned out, the timing just worked for us. We had to scramble and move faster than I had anticipated. During our second visit to the CP, we were fortunate to find three or four suitable resales. We actually found a few that were bigger homes than I would have built had we decided to build new. Even better, the prices were around the price as the smaller (but brand new) models we looked at. The folks we bought our house from apparently had to move down to Florida because of some family distress. Consequently, I got a deal. So, while I didn’t get top dollar for my house in New York, I made up for it in the move to NC. Since that time, the prices seem to have stabilized and are holding their own if not actuall notching up a bit. I think the prices are holding up better in the CP than other places in this area for several reasons. Right now, the CP, which is a Del Webb community, is unique in the area. It is the only active adult community of it’s kind right now. In addition, we have the use of all the CP ammenities AND those of neighboring Amberly (the mixed age community) across the street. It’s true that in some cases, the same money you spend in the CP could buy you a bigger house with more property elsewhere. However, at this stage of my life, I don’t want to deal with all the extra maintenance. The town of Cary, also, tends to be pricier than surrounding towns. The biggest factor is that you don’t get anything close to the laundry list of amenities that come with this community right now. Interestingly enough, there is new Del Webb community in the works nearby. The CP is supposed to top out at around 1400 homes, which is relatively small compared to some of the larger “active adult” communities I looked at, especially some of those we looked at down in Florida. So, supply and demand may be a factor in this pricing equation, as well. For the record, I believe they are working on the last phase of development now at the CP.

    by Artie — February 15, 2012

  7. All these people coming from New York will find almost anything better than NY for retirement. But before deciding on NC, people need to consider the state’s budget, infrastructure and illegal immigrant problems – problems with which NC has not dealt effectively and problems which will impact the state taxes they pay; NC state taxes will continue to go up. Spend some time reviewing the states at the Pew Center on the States. NC doesn’t get a very high rating.

    by carol — February 16, 2012

  8. Hi Ted I see your post we are also looking at Central Florida around Ocala are you any where close. We would like to get some feed back on areas in florida as this might be where we will land. Can you give us any insight on your area or others that you know of. Thanks Brad

    by Brad — February 16, 2012

  9. Carol,I’m curious to know where you live now. Are you in NC or looking for a landing spot like the rest of us? I currently live in PA and I have lived in many other states along the way. I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no perfect place. In the 20 years I’ve lived here, my taxes have gone from $400 to $4000! The state is in financial trouble, the schools are over built and are now forced to cut staff and programs, our roads are ranked worst in the nation. I guess we all just have to weigh the pros and cons and what is most important to each of us and our lifestyles.

    by cherie — February 16, 2012

  10. I have lived for 36 years in NC. I was born and raised in the Central Valley (San Joaquin Valley) of California in a small oil town 80 miles sw of Fresno.
    At 61, I can say that where each of us retires really depends on who we are and what we want. I moved to Raleigh from Jacksonville, NC in 1988. I have seen so many changes in the time that I have lived here–changes for the better. North Carolina is a beautiful state with much to commend it. Much of the comments I have read from others, that NC is more progressive than SC, etc., I have found to be true. NC has a unique history. Its nickname, earned in colonial times, was “The Rip Van Winkle” state. It was considered backward and unprogressive. Back then most of the state was a pine forest, so towns, roads, every accomodation had to begin with felling trees. People oriented to their town or county. When I moved to Jacksonville, NC in 1976, it felt as though Raleigh was in another state. Local news was very local. It was as if the rest of the world was “out there” someplace and didn’t matter. I lived “Down East” until 1988 when I moved to Raleigh. One of the biggest changes has been the fact that more people have come from other states than were born in NC. For generations, NC had the most static population: no one moved into NC, and no one moved out. The Research Triangle Park has slowly changed everything. This area has come a long, long way. My hope is to work where I am until I am 66 and have a part time job until I am 70 or as long as I need or want it. My daughter, son-in-law and grands are here in NC, so one would think that I would want to retire here. However, my biggest problem with NC is the humidity. I simply wilt in the summer. My dream has been to get back out west into the blazing sun, open spaces and dry heat. In 2007, my best friend moved from Wake Forest, NC to Artesia, New Mexico, and I have been exploring New Mexico ever since. I love the southwest, and I love New Mexico. I am not sure how all of this is going to play out for me. However, I would not discourage anyone from checking out NC as a place to retire. I don’t think that there is a more beautiful place to be in the Spring, and life here is getting better and better. As people have commented, NC does have its challenges, with unemployment still at 9.9%, etc. But, it is all in what one is looking for. Congratulations, Artie on you and your wife completing your first year in Cary (I love Cary). I wish you and her many more.

    by Nancy — February 17, 2012

  11. 2 questions: Approximately what percentage are singles living at Carolina Preserve. What is the name and location of the upcoming Active 55+ community nearby to Cary? Enjoyed the articles very much. Thanks!

    by Sandy — February 25, 2012

  12. […] further reading: Artie’s Observations: Moving from NY to the Carolinas Nine Things Betty and Jim Learned Hop on Jay Michaels’ Retirement Tour Bus (Part 1 of 2) […]

    by » Latest Scouting Reports from Our Members: Florida and Texas Topretirements — December 4, 2012

  13. Nancy I enjoyed reading your comments. We are looking more to the western part of NC. Do you have any suggestions from your experience of the state? We usually vacation in that area and enjoy it all. We are not at all interested in an adult community yet that is what is talked about on so many of the sites.
    We go to towns but just don’t know how to decide! Artie you had a lot of great info also. Any encouragement and info would be greatly appreciated!

    by Virginia — April 14, 2016

  14. Very good article Artie! My husband and I live in North Florida and are considering moving to the Wake Forest/Raleigh area to be closer to our daughter and grandchildren who live in Virginia. I would very much like to hear your or anyone else’s thoughts on the area now in 2016. Our major concern, being from north Florida, is dealing with the ice and snow during the winter. Also has anyone had difficulty finding medical care that accepts Medicare? Was it difficult to find doctors and how did you go about finding one? We will know absolutely no one in the area. I would appreciate any advice!

    by Cathy W — April 15, 2016

  15. Maybe I can respond somewhat to Virginia and Cathy W. I found Artie’s article to be interesting and agree with what he says for those interested in a retirement community environment in central NC. We live in a private home at least 20 minutes from anywhere about 25 miles west of Cary — 2 1/2 – 3 hours to the beach and 3 -5 hours from the wide range of western NC mountain options. (I would also add that east TN also has great retirement options for those interested in the NC mountains — and no income tax but about 8-9% in sales taxes.)

    Winters in central NC vary widely from year to year. This year we had virtually NO snow/ice and night temps only dropped below 20 a few times. Day temps around freezing are most common. Snow/ice even when we get it is mostly (except for the rare 10-year or more event) a one or two-day phenomenon. But NC doesn’t have the budget or equipment to really deal well with winter weather — it’s just too infrequent. Mostly we stock up and plan to wait for the melt in a day or two. The two previous years here were “hard winters”. Several snow/ice events of 2 – 5 days with COLD temps down into teens (mostly) and even single digits a few time. I can’t remember such a hard winter since 1991-92, but there have been two (I think) “big” snow events since then — 7 inches to a foot — which caused low sun warming so took longer to melt and warm up. I don’t think winter in central or eastern NC is anything to fear — just pay attention to the forecast if it concerns you. Main roads are usually cleared quickly — back roads and country roads may never be plowed. Winter in the mountains can be much more like Maryland winters, though the snow melts more often. Cathy W., usually when the cold polar weather drops down to envelop NC (like in winter 2015), you in N. Florida get hit too — we might be 5 degrees colder.

    Virginia, the NC mountains offer so many varied options it’s hard to describe it in the same breath. With more than 250 miles of NC/TN border along the Blue Ridge and elevations from 1500 to over 4000 feet all along that stretch, there are vast differences in temps and snowfall and even seasonal changes all within, literally, any 30 mille or 30 minute area. The mountains are typically 10 – 15 cooler than central NC (3 – 5 hours travel by car). The mountain communities are also vastly different from place to place. More touristy areas like Asheville and Boone (with their UNC-campuses) will appeal to many like me. You can go to a more normal rural area (with or without significant tourism in most of the larger small towns (Brevard, Banner Elk, West Jefferson, Hendersonville, Black Mountain, Blowing Rock and on and on). Live in town, you get seasonal tourists — live outside town, you might never even notice. Go few miles to any of the many tiny communities and can be in true backwoods Appalachia — or in an artists’ enclave. To each his own.

    I realize that this is almost as confusing as it is helpful, but you are talking about some of the most diverse residential options within a relatively small area that exist anywhere in the country. I think that is much more true than in rural VT, NY, etc. CO/UT/MT/TX are also very diverse, but in vastly huge areas. In NC, you can drive over the mountain (may take a while depending on the road and weather) and be in a completely different cultural and facilities region. 30 miles can take you an hour to travel — or 30 minutes by the local 4-lane.

    Living in central NC, we have relatives who live in various parts of the NC mountains. We well know and appreciate all these areas for what they are. NC (except for typical university area or some urban enclaves) is mostly quite conservative — come here to enjoy that or to help change it — your choice. I recommend that you don’t base your opinion on any state on what the media says about the politics — but especially NC. A community or an incident may fit that media description, but it is probably a unique situation and time.

    by Rich — April 20, 2016

  16. Rich – thank you very much for the weather information for the Triangle area in NC. At least I now know what to expect. Another question I had was whether or not it was difficult to find a family physician and the availability of Medicare there or even how to find a doctor when you know no one in the area. I read an article that stated 73% of the population in the Triangle was under 45 years old which makes me wonder if doctors accepting Medicare is a problem there. I had heard it was. I tried calling around to different offices and our insurance company but ended up going around and around with no information. I would appreciate any information you or anyone else could give me.

    by Cathy W — April 21, 2016

  17. Hi Rich,
    So nice to be reading you again! I always enjoy your posts, and the time and effort you put into them. What’s your take on Big Stone Gap in Virginia? Am i getting too rural? It seems quite appealing. On my trip last year i didn’t get beyond Abingdon; went into Tennessee, NC, and GA from there.

    by ella — April 22, 2016

  18. We would like to move from NY and retire near Wilmington NC. Any suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated.

    by Carol — April 23, 2016

  19. We are also considering a move from central Florida to the Triangle area to be closer to our son and his family. One of our concerns is the cost of living . Does anyone have any idea how much more it would be to live in NC.. Our cost of living in Florida seems so much less. We looked at the Arbors (Del Webb) and in one year the prices of homes have increased about $30,000. Any info would be appreciated.

    by maryann — April 24, 2016

  20. Maryann – we have done a lot of research on the cost of living in the Triangle area. We found that homeowner and car insurances were much less than here in Florida and that helps negate the other increases. We also found you get more bang for your buck in Wake Forest. Cary is very expensive. We considered Del Webb and not only did the house prices increase but the list price is just for a basic house with laminate counters, tile floors, etc. By the time we added a few upgrades the homes were way out of our price range. As stated above we have not been able to get any information on how easy it will be to find a good family physician who accepts Medicare. The ones we have contacted there do not accept Medicare. That is a huge concern for us.

    by Cathy W — April 24, 2016

  21. Carol, I have two suggestions both just outside of Wilmington. Brunswick Forest is a beautiful community with great amenities and reasonable prices. Compass Pointe is a little bit further out, fantastic amenities but more costly. I have noticed an lot of the people living there are from the NE. This is Parade of Homes weekend so we visited Compass Pointe. The quality of workmanship was excellent. Many of the same builders build in Brunswick Forest. Both are large communities but not 55+ communities however they both cater to 55+

    Hope this helps….

    by Dick — April 24, 2016

  22. The only problem with living in these communities is that you are across the river and would have to cross the bridge into Wilmington several times a week. This can sometimes take “forever”, just kidding, but it can take some time.

    by Dick — April 24, 2016

  23. So I was considering a move from NY to SC so florida is cheaper then SC…I thought it wasthe other way around

    by Don — April 24, 2016

  24. North Carolina has beautiful and varied natural settings. In visiting, I’ve found the autumns and springs quite pleasant. Like it or not, some aspects of retirement involve the political tolerance levels in an area. We are moderate to progressive in our outlook and have found a great deal of places in the south conservative and parochial in outlook. That wasn’t for us. But it may be just right for others. We ultimately bought in and are retiring to Palm Beach County, Florida. It’s a very diverse place with a very wide range of home prices, including some real bargains in condos. The cultural attractions are too numerous to mention and the political vibe is a mix of moderate to progressive, unlike most of the rest of the south. One commenter here mentioned choosing NC over SC because SC seemed quite conservative. NC has become considerably more conservative in its laws over the past couple of years and that turned us off to considerring living out our senior yeasrs in the state. But that might be just the reason that others might like it. It depends on your perspective. But if you’re a political moderate in the south, you may have to keep your mouth shut a lot.

    by Clyde R. — April 24, 2016

  25. Dick, thank you for the feedback. We have been in the Brunswick Forest area and do like it. I will research Compass Pointe.

    by Carol — April 25, 2016

  26. Cathy,
    Thank you so much for the information. It is a difficult decision. We have lived in Florida since 1973. There is a lot of building going on closer to my son in the Hillsborough area…. which is outside Chapel Hill. Ideally we would love to rent for 2 to 3 months a year in a 55 plus active community. Temporary rentals in that type of setting are hard to find….they probably do not exist…evertyime we visit we check things out. For now we will just continue to travel back and forth.

    by maryann — April 25, 2016

  27. Three years ago we bought a home in Brunswick Forest, we are retiring in June but at this point not selling our house on Long Island. Three years ago Compass point only had 60 houses built vs over 700. Compass point finished their pool last year still do not have a 18 hole golf course complete. Brunswick Forest opened the same time as Compass point but had their amenities complete, 18 hole golf course, now 3 pools, fitness center, clubhouse tennis/ pickle ball courts, miles of biking, walking trails and dog parks. In the front of the community we have a brand new Lowes supermarket, Cvs, and many restaurants along with medical offices that I could walk to or a short drive. Compass point has no commercial store if you need milk you have to drive to a “backwoods” type store in the area. As far as the traffic the area expanded faster that the thought so by the end of this year route 17 will go from 2 to 4 lanes with other roadwork being done in the area too. I have no trouble going back and forth to Wilmington I just try to avoid the rush hour times now. As far as price Brunswick Forest has all price points townhouses in the 200’s range to golf course homes in the 800’s range something for everyone.

    by Barbara — April 25, 2016

  28. Barbara,
    Thank you for the information on Compass Pointe. That is very helpful. We were hoping to find a home under 10 years old, 200-250K range. Brunswick Forest seems to fit the bill. What are the nicer areas and how close to the beaches?

    by Carol — April 26, 2016

  29. Barbara, I agree that Compass Pointe is further away from shopping, restaurants, etc. I personally would choose Brunswick Forest for that reason. Your facts are a bit dated…. Compass Pointe now has over 540 homes built with over 50 under construction and 800+ lots sold. The golf course opens in the Spring and most amenities are completed except the lazy river. I got my info from Compass Pointe and from driving around last weekend, I would agree.

    Brunswick Forest was started in 2007 while Compass Pointe was started in 2008.

    I’m not sure what you meant about route 17 expanding from 2 lanes to 4 as the road has been 4 lanes for years. They certainly are not planning to have 4 lanes in each direction.

    by Dick — April 26, 2016

  30. We moved into Carolina Preserve in Cary NC 2 years ago after looking at a couple of retirement locations. We found a house we really liked that had a basement with a wooded and mostly private back yard. It was exactly what we were looking for. The amenities at Carolina Preserve are fantastic and they had everything we wanted or needed. Neighbors and most everyone here are friendly, we have no issues with any of that. However, what has been a huge disappoint is the ARC and HOA here. We chose this house because of basement, privacy and nice backyard with a relatively large concrete pad that we thought would be excellent for a hot tub. We were told while we were in the buying process that we would have to apply for approval after closing and it shouldn’t be a problem if we put up a shade to block any view. Nobody from the street could of seen it, just 1 bathroom window from out neighbor could possibly see a portion of it unless the shade was down. The member of the ARC who is now on the HOA stated “we are the good guys and I will work with you”. None of that happened at all. After we closed on the house the very next day the same guy rejected our request along with another request to put in an INVISIBLE underground fence for our dog. None of the ARC welcomed us to the neighborhood. They all had frowns on their face and it was very disappointing to work with them. We submitted the 30 pages of photos and wording that was required from the ARC and our neighbors approval to no avail. They changed the HOA guidelines after we moved and said we would need to build an attached room to the house that would cost $25000 or more and then wouldn’t say it would be approved but for us to submit again. We didn’t do that. We have lived in a couple of neighborhoods with million dollar homes and never had any problem with our other HOA’s. The large whirlpool at the clubhouse when it is working is a joke. You are lucky to have 2 jets on you. I have some back issues and really thought we could enjoy our retirement soaking in a hot tub that we have seen in other retirement areas. I am friends with the Chief of Police in Morrisville and he wrote a letter of recommendation and they just laughed and ignored it. Luckily demand for houses in this neighborhood is high and we were able to sell our house easily and now look forward to retiring in a different neighborhood. Maybe some or most people might find this not of interest to them, but to us it was a huge deal and we thought we were misled on the purchase of this house. It is a great neighborhood but for us its like Mayberry with Barney, Goober and friends running the ARC and HOA. Really need to get “Andy” or a sensible person to lead the HOA and ARC. Maybe we should of requested a huge fireplace like the one off of Del Webb visible from the street that a resort would be proud to have. Probably a HOA/ARC member house. SMH

    by Jay — September 14, 2016

  31. Great post. I have recently moved to NC and it has been a huge adjustment. Good just different, I am from CA and it was just a different culture there, I have really loved getting to know and experience NC, I live in Wilmington and I have really enjoyed seeing the older homes and classic feel of the neighborhoods here. We opted to build a home but even still NC has really felt like home in such a quick time frame.

    by Mary — January 16, 2019

  32. Great post by Jay. I would want to put in the endless pool which is about the size of a hot tub but reading your post, I now feel I would have to forget CP. Thought the Triangle area would be a good option as close enough to OBX where I have a condo for Spring & Fall getaways, great medical care, great Vetinerary hospital, and a decent sized city. Originally from North Shore of LI, but moved to Richmond 20+ yrs ago (major culture adjustment) and not wild about being landlocked and only one ‘pure 55+’ community here. Also humidity is a killer here as it is in most places off the coast, and too many ice storms and power outages. Wilmington too small a city and 5 hrs to the OBX. As long as I have to give up the condo, I thought I would just head down to JAX, FL. Great medical care and a few 55+ communities there, good airport, abundance of things to do in the city, No state income tax is a wash with the higher sales, gas and RE taxes (and maybe those dreadful CDD Fees) so a bit more expensive than Richmond area. Really tough to find the right spot but these posts help.

    by Suse — February 13, 2019

  33. Suse;

    Concerning JAX Fl, check out nocatee at in the Ponte Vedra area, about 20 miles south of JAX. We have been there several times as a potential retirement site and like it.


    by Ed Spinella — February 13, 2019

  34. Looking to relocate to the RTP frpm PA area in about 6 months. Have visited 3x & are honing in on Carolina Preserve, Heritage Pines , Briar Chapel and Carolina Arbors.

    Trying to discern the health of the HOAS of these places and finding its not that easy to do. Can anyone who lives/lived in any of these communities comment?

    I do have concerns about the humidity but we’ll prob do our “summer birding” in July & Aug to the Northwest to escape.

    Thanks so much! Pat from PA

    by Pat L — November 17, 2019

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