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Charlotte Apartments | A City Survives the Perfect Storm

People are paying attention to Charlotte. In these uncertain times, the capital of North Carolina remains an attractive place to live, balanced with big city living and small town appeal, Charlotte is a city on the rise.

This national financial hub is home to big names like Wachovia and Bank of America, but the oak-tree-lined city is also a great place to launch and grow a small business.

Regional organizations such as the local Small Business and Technology Development Center, the Inventors Network, and the Central Piedmont Community College's Center for Entrepreneurship supply a mix of mentoring, networking and technical assistance to innovative entrepreneurs, especially those in the finance and technology fields. To help develop the city's biotech industry, a research complex sponsored in part by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte is set to open its labs this year to scientists and startups involved in healthcare and nutrition research.

Charlotte's vibrancy and employment opportunities attract young professionals from around the state and help the city retain many of the graduates streaming out of 19 nearby colleges and universities. But as the city's population has increased, so has its cost of living. Some neighborhoods like Ballantyne, Cotswold, and Plaza Midwood offer affordable options.

For sports entertainment, Charlotte residents can snag tickets to Carolina Panthers football games and Nascar races. The city also features a number of premier golf courses including the exclusive Quail Hollow club, where Tiger Woods has played. The Blumenthal Arts Center hosts touring musicians and Broadway shows throughout the year. For those who prefer outdoor recreations, the Great Smokey Mountains offer hiking, rock climbing and white-water rafting, while residents turn to Lake Norman for fishing, sailing and water skiing.

Apparently, there's just something about North Carolina. For the second year in a row, America's best city in which to live lies within its borders, according to Relocate-America.com's annual list.

This year, Charlotte, N.C., is in the top spot, the site announced this week. Last year's winner was Asheville, N.C., which slipped to No. 7 on this year's list.

"North Carolina is very active on our radar," said Steve Nickerson, president and CEO of HomeRoute. "It continues to get a flood of interest from all over."

HomeRoute is the real estate firm that operates Relocate-America.com, a source of community information and real-estate resources for those who are relocating. Each year, the site ranks the top 100 places to live in the country.

Areas need to be nominated on the site in order to be eligible for the list; more than 2,000 were nominated this year, Nickerson said. Special efforts are made to prevent spamming campaigns from influencing the results, he added.

But the site's editorial team also takes into account an area's growth, its educational and employment opportunities, crime rates and housing options before granting it a spot in the top 100. Environmental highlights also play a role, with a city gaining points for good air and water quality or the strength of its recycling efforts, Nickerson said.

Home-price appreciation does get some consideration, however it's only one piece of the analysis, Nickerson said -- explaining why some struggling real estate markets in California and Florida, for example, still made the top 100. Areas that offer a comfortable climate and economic opportunity tend to be the most sought-after communities on the site, he said.

Charlotte's diversity of housing options and home affordability were two of the reasons users nominated the city, Nickerson said. The city's strong economy, boosted largely by the banking industry, was another selling point.

So there you have it, if you're looking to rent, no place is better than CharlotteArticle Submission, NC.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Michael Russell writes about a variety of subjects. This article discusses moving to Charlotte. For more information about Charlotte apartments, visit Apartment Finder.



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