8 Communities in Charlotte
Located in Central North Carolina, Charlotte is a popular destination for retirees seeking an active city. With no shortage of outdoor recreation, shopping, and city-wide events, paired with its temperate climate and access to transportation, Charlotte has all the sought-after amenities for active adults.
Climate & Geography
Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina and continues to grow. Without any significant bodies of water or geological features near the city center, the city keeps developing and growing, making it a transportation hub of the south.
The city has a humid subtropical climate and experiences all four seasons. Summers are humid and hot, and winters are cool to mild, experiencing freezing temperatures just a few times a year. Nearby mountains in the northwest tend to regulate winter temperatures. Charlotte is in the pathway of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, and therefore experiences higher than average rainfall, but still has over 219 days of sunshine each year.
Recreation, Culture, & Entertainment
Retirees looking for outdoor recreation can find it all in Charlotte. Park Road Park, a 120-acre landmark, has eight basketball courts, two horseshoe pits, six baseball fields, five picnic shelters, volleyball and tennis courts, hiking trails, and an 11-acre lake.
Slightly smaller Freedom Park also has athletic fields, volleyball and tennis courts, and a seven-acre lake with several paved trails. Southeast Charlotte is home to multiple golf courses.
Charlotte hosts several popular yearly festivals, including the Charlotte Renaissance Festival, the Taste of Charlotte, and the Moo and Brew Fest, an annual craft beer and burger festival. There are also several history and art museums, including the NASCAR Hall of Fame, as well as two major-league sporting teams (the Charlotte Panthers and the Charlotte Hornets).
The SouthPark area has upscale shopping and dining, and there are several local breweries around the city. Beer lovers can enjoy regular city-wide brewery tours to visit them all.
Cost of Living & Taxes
Although North Carolina has a lower cost of living compared to the U.S. average, Charlotte is slightly higher. This is mainly due to the cost of housing, but health care and transportation are above average as well. Groceries and utilities, however, are far below the national average.
North Carolina is moderately tax-friendly to retirees. It does not tax Social Security benefits, but does fully tax pensions, IRAs, and 401(k)s. Properties are taxed at a flat rate of 5.5 percent, and sales tax in Charlotte is 7.25 percent.
Unlike many states, groceries are taxed, but prescription medicines are exempt from the sales tax.
The Charlotte area ranks in the top 60 communities of Gallup’s Well-Being Index.
There is one nationally ranked hospital in Charlotte, Atrium Health’s Carolinas Medical Center, which is also the No. 4 hospital in the state. Other U.S. News high performing hospitals in the city are Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center, CaroMont Regional Medical Center, and the Carolinas Healthcare System Pineville.