The town of Brevard, North Carolina consistently ranks near the top of popular lists of “best retirement communities” and “best places to live, work, and play”. Located in southwestern North Carolina on the border with Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina, this small town is surrounded by the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. It has a small town environment plus many friendly people who will welcome you to town. Not to mention that you get to tell your friends you now live in Transylvania (County, that is). Brevard is nicknamed "The Land of Waterfalls" due to the many waterfalls in the area. The nearby Pisgah National Forest is a major tourist attraction. Brevard College and its music programs are another plus for this community.
Brevard is a small friendly town with a downtown you can easily walk around and greet your neighbors. The town has about 7,000 people. There is much to like as a retirement community. Tourist attractions and recreational activities include biking, hiking, fishing, kayaking, etc. North Carolina’s moderate climate is another attraction. Although tourism provides some jobs for retirees, the quality and quantity of jobs is limited. Brevard is located in the county seat of Transylvania County. Photos of Courthouse and Brevard College courtesy of Wikipedia.
Watch this short Youtube video prepared by Transylvania Economic Alliance:
Where to Retire in Brevard and Home Prices
Retirees can live in town or in one of the many active adult communities in the area (see Active Adult Communities link at top left). College Walk has independent and assisted living. In early 2020, Zillow reported the median home value was $239,711. Conestee Falls is a huge all ages development outside of town where most of the residents are retirement age. Deer Lake is in town and features one story living. There are condos in the area but the emphasis is on single family homes.
What is special about Brevard
Friendly small town. 250 waterfalls, including Looking Glass Falls and Sliding Rock. Pisgah National Forest (470 miles of hiking trails), plus several other state forests and nature reserves. Unusually strong musical and cultural programs. Four annual street festivals
What is not special about Brevard
Not for those looking for an urban environment.
It is cooler here in winter than the rest of North Carolina. The area is experiencing tremendous growth. There are a lot of tourists but that translates into a bustling downtown with many good restaurants. It is not an exciting town, but it is solid.
Who will like retirement in Brevard
Retirees will like living here because it has beautiful natural surroundings and friendly people. People move here from all over the country, especially the midwest. For small town lovers who are interested in music and the arts, this place is tops. The average age in Brevard is fairly high, about 44. Use this link for a page that explains the various types of retirement communities
Local economy is driven by
Tourism, performing arts, government, construction. In years past Olin and other large companies had thousands of employees in the area. Fortunately tourism and retirement have taken up most of that slack, although the jobs are probably not as lucrative.
Climate and Physical Environment
Brevard is located near the Pisgah National Forest in southwestern North Carolina. It has a moderate climate and great environmental beauty. Due to its elevation it is considerably cooler here than in the rest of North Carolina.
Restaurants & Cultural Scene
The Brevard Music Center is one of the country's top summer music teaching and performance institutions. That is one reason why Brevard's music and arts community is so strong. Brevard College is a 4 year college with a nationally-recognized program in music. Its Porter Center for the Performing Arts, along with the Transylvania Community Arts Council, bring a full schedule of cultural events to town. The Tinsley Museum and Research Center offers exhibits. There are 8 art galleries in town, along with the Brevard Little Theatre. Mayberry's is a casual restaurant downtown with very good food.
Crime in Brevard is lower than the national average.
Transylvania Community Hospital is a full service hospital.
Cute small town, best suited to retirees who are...
* Recreational outdoors persons
* Political liberals
* Lovers of fine arts
Those retirees that don\'t necessarily meet these criteria but still desire relative proximity to the amenities of the City of Brevard might best locate outside the city limits. This will give you the following advantages...
* Half the property taxes of living in town.
* Chance to encounter a more conservative mindset among the more rural population
* A more rural lifestyle with all that entails including both pros and cons.
Individuals concerned about medical issues might prefer living east of Brevard, including the Pisgah Forest area, which is closer to Transylvania Regional Hospital and concentration of medical offices as well as closer to the next largest city, Hendersonville.
Some of the more picturesque countryside is located south along Highway 276. The planned communities of Connestee Falls and Sherwood Forest provide housing options ranging in price from $110,000 for fixer uppers to well over $500,000, with most homes in the $200,000 to $300,000 range. But there are significant HOA fees, especially in Connestee. Lesser priced homes can be found a short distance off of 276 and 64 in the low $100,000 range.
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