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With the amenities of a medium sized city, but retaining the charm of a small town, everyone wants to be in Cary, NC! Year after year, Cary is wins top honors for such things as safety, family-friendliness and affordability. Cary’s natural and cultivated beauty, plenty of things to do, and great schools make it one of the best places to live in America! Every year, more and more people are moving to Cary, NC!
|Brookstone||Glenkirk||MacGregor West||Toscana||West Park|
|Cambridge||Greystone||Park Village||Upchurch Farms||Weycroft|
|Carpenter Village||Highcroft||Preston Village||Weldon Ridge||Windermere|
|Churchill Estates||MacArthur Park||Regency||Wellesley|
Cary is a town in Wake County, just west of the Capital, Raleigh, NC and just south of the city of Durham, NC. Cary is prized for it’s safety (it’s been called the Safest City in America!) and quality of life with it’s beautifully maintained roadways, parks and greenways as well as the city’s focus on art throughout it’s public spaces.
Cary’s growth has been careful and planned, ensuring that traffic patterns and green spaces continue to provide the lifestyle that Cary residents have loved for years.
While Cary has an extensive Greenway system, plenty of sidewalks, it is still somewhat spread out. If you come from a larger and denser city, you maybe used to being able to walk most places. Living without a car is not typical for Cary residents, but it can be done if you choose your home carefully. You may find it easy to live near your place of employment, schools, parks and recreation activities, places of worship, grocery stores and other types of shopping. However, you may not be able to find a home that is within walking distance of all of these places. If you are committed to living car-free, an occasional Uber will certainly be necessary.
Walk Friendly Communities recently upgraded Cary’s walkability status from Bronze to Silver. You can find a list of all the greenways in Cary, along with their trail length. For information about which greenways connect to which amenities, see here.
The Cary Bus system is part of the larger GoTriangle area wide bus service.
GoCary’s fixed route bus service consists of six routes: Except for the Maynard loops, all routes terminate downtown on Hillsboro Street beside the train station where connections can also be made with Triangle Transit Routes 300X and 301, as well as Amtrak passenger rail service. GoCary also operates the Saturday Triangle Transit 300 Route from the Cary Depot to downtown Raleigh’s Moore Square from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
All fixed route buses are equipped with wheelchair lifts, bike racks, GPS, automated bus stop annunciation system, and electronic fareboxes. Passengers can access real-time bus information system for all system routes by downloading the free Transloc App on their smart phones.
There is currently no light rail system in the Triangle area. Discussions about what part rail will play in the future development of transit in the Triangle has been a common refrain. Plans have been developed to expand our limited public transportation options in the near future.
In addition to future light rail options, Amtrak provides great options for cross-state travel, relatively inexpensively.
Cary to Charlotte is $28 one way. The Cary downtown train station is clean and pretty. You can find more information about routes and schedules at ncbytrain.org
Raleigh Durham International Airport is easily accessible from anywhere in Cary. It’s less than 20 minutes form almost all points in Cary to RDU.
RDU Airport is a smaller airport and very pleasant to fly in and out of. It’s small size makes it easy to navigate, rental cars are right on the property, there is plenty of close parking, and like everywhere else in the Triangle, it is clean and the people are friendly.
Many people are used to being zoned to one particular school in their neighborhood and everyone in the neighborhood goes to the same school. That’s not the case in Wake County. The Wake County school system is designed around having options. Each Wake County resident is assigned a base school. In addition to their base school, they have year round calendar options, charter school options and magnet school options. You can find links to the different calendar options here. For a detailed description of the difference between Charter, Magnet and Traditional Schools, see Charter, Magnet, Traditional: What’s the Difference?
Charter Schools are schools that are governed more like a private school than a traditional public school. The school board has limited oversight. The board of directors and headmaster have greater decision-making ability. There are fewer regulations. For example, charter schools are only required to have 50% of their teachers licensed through the state. This allows them to be more creative in their hiring, for example, by hiring a biologist from a local university to teach high school biology. Also, charter schools are not required to use the county approved curriculum and they do not have to follow Common Core standards. They must, however, take state EOG testing to ensure students are performing up to expected standards of learning.
Charter Schools are also not required to use the state curriculum, so they can incorporate other educational philosophies, such as Montessori, Classical or Waldorf.You can find a list of North Carolina Charter Schools sorted by county here.
The purpose of a Magnet school is to “promote diversity, reduce high concentrations of poverty and provide innovative and/or expanded educational opportunities“. Given those objectives Magnet schools are simply traditional public schools, using the standard Wake County Curriculum, which have a separate focus designed to attract students from wealthier neighborhoods into schools with socio-economically disadvantaged communities. The separate focus, or themes, are things such as Montessori, Leadership, Early College (providing up to 2 years of college credit before high school graduation for free), Technology, International Studies, Enterpreneurship and many more. And North Carolina has been overwhelmingly successful with their magnet program, providing award-winning educational opportunities for people across all income and ethnicities.
You can find a list of Wake County Magnet Schools here.
Overall, Wake County Schools perform very well, receiving an A- and ranking at #5 of 116 total school districts in the state of North Carolina.
You will be zoned to one particular school and it will likely be near where you live. However, due to the tremendous growth in the Triangle over the last 10-15 years, schools in the most popular districts frequently have enrollment caps. That means that even if you move into a particular district, you may be assigned to an overflow school. Here is a list of capped schools for the upcoming school year.
School capping can be a frustrating problem for new families moving into the area. Moving is a stressful time and throwing in that level of uncertainty with something as important as your child’s education can be scary. However, there is often an inordinate amount of weight given to getting into the “best” schools. As a mother of four children, I have had students in different Wake County Schools from Elementary to High School. I can definitely attest that the most popular school districts are not popular because they are better than the other schools. There are great schools throughout the Town of Cary. I wouldn’t be disappointed to be zoned to any school in Cary!
One of the reasons Cary is such a great place to live is because of the wonderful opportunities to enjoy this well-planned and beautiful community. The following is meant to give you a good overview of the types of things there are to do in Cary. This list is by no means exhaustive!
The Cary Theatre is a renovated historic theatre in downtown Cary. The theatre was originally designed for both live performance and film. The Cary hosts local playwrights, local filmmakers, indie films and live music. It’s proximity to The Pharmacy Bottle and Beverage and Crosstown Pub and Grill make for a pleasant small town evening.
The Koka Boothe Ampitheatre is a mid-sized outdoor venue overlooking Symphony Lake. With popular artists from numerous genres, NC Symphony performances and cultural displays such as the annual Chinese Lantern Festival, Koka Boothe has something for everyone!
The Cary Players are a community theatre group that perform seasonally at the Cary Arts Center. Performing such classics as Guys and Dolls, A Christmas Story and Oklahoma!, you are sure to be delighted and entertained.
If you desire larger professional productions, you can find them nearby in Raleigh and Durham. The Duke Energy Center in Raleigh is less than 20 minutes from most points in Cary. And Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC) is also 20 minutes or so.
Pharmacy Bottle & Beverage, The Cary Theatre
If you have kids that are interested in theatre, Cary Youth Theatre is the prefect place! Kids can participate in classes and camps, audition for the stage or design team or just take in a show!
Soccer – North Carolina Football Club – NCFB is a professional soccer team based in Cary, NC, playing in the North American Soccer League. The team plays its home games at WakeMed Soccer Park, where they have played since 2007. The team’s colors are Atlantic blue, cardinal red, and Southern gold. The current head coach is Co
Hockey – Carolina Hurricanes – Just over the Cary city line in West Raleigh is the PNC Arena, home of the Carolina Hurricanes hockey team.The Carolina Hurricanes are members of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League.
Baseball – Minor league baseball is just a short 20 minute drive away from Cary, NC. The Durham Bulls, a Triple-A minor league baseball team that currently plays in the International League. The Bulls play their home games at Durham Bulls Athletic Park located in the downtown area of Durham, North Carolina. The Bulls Athletic Park lies at the center of the American Tobacco Campus in Durham, the entertainment district of downtown Durham.
Tennis – Cary Tennis Park is one of the largest public tennis facilities in the Southoutheast. In true Cary fashion, the facility is accentuated by scenic bridges and beautiful landscaping.
Cary Tennis Park features 25 outdoor courts and 7 covered courts, a ball machine, a pro shop, comfort stations, locker rooms with showers, and a double-sided backboard.
You can find rates of use here.
Cary NC Swimming – Many subdivisions in Cary have their own private pools. However, for those that don’t have a community pool, or who prefer a longer swim season than most pools offer, there are plenty of year round swimming options to choose from.
Swim team is a popular summer activity for children and the community pools almost always have swim teams that compete against other neighborhood teams.
Popular swim clubs in Cary include,
Triangle Aquatic Center – The #1 venue for aquatic events in the state, Triangle Aquatic Center is home the TAC Titans, a top-50 ranked USA Swim Team with 600 swimmers, most of whom live in Cary.
Hiking & Biking
Cary is a great location for families commuting to different areas. Centrally located, Cary allows families heading in different directions every day to limit their commute times. From central Cary, commute times to major employment centers are as follows:
Chapel Hill – 30 Minutes
Durham – 24 Minutes
North Raleigh – 24 Minutes
Downtown Raleigh – 18 Minutes
Research Triangle Park – 15 Minutes
If you are trying to decide on a home location with multiple schools, places of employment and places of worship to consider, my MLS app will allow you to input multiple commute locations and maximum commute times desired for each location to create a Venn Diagram. The diagram will give you a target area on which to focus your home search and automatically pull up all homes for sale in your desired search area.
The real estate market is robust in Cary, offering a range of housing in all price points. There is no “nice side” of town in Cary. North, south east and west sides of Cary all have access to great amenities, schools and shopping. View the Top Appreciating subdivisions in Cary here.
Cary, NC has seen a lot of growth since 2010, with the population increasing almost 20% in that time from 135,000 residents to 162,000 residents in 2016.
The average price for existing homes in Cary is around $390,000. The average price for new construction in Cary is $467,000
July and August can be rather steamy in Cary, NC but we make up for it with a beautiful fall, winter and spring. And with the mountains and the beach only a short drive away, hot summers can be downright pleasant!
July is the hottest month with an average high of 90° and an annual average precipitation of around 23 inches. We rarely get snow in Cary, but when we do get winter precipitation it usually comes in form of ice. Unlike areas with heavy winter precipitation, a slight icing usually will cause delays and road closings. Because it’s so infrequent, we don’t really sweat it. We take a snow day and enjoy it!
Future Job Growth 46%
Sales Tax 6.75%
Income per Capita $42,000
Income Tax Rate 5.75%
Cary’s downtown has been the focus of much attention over the last few years. It has received a complete renovation, including new cobblestone walks, a pedestrian-friendly design and a new park across from the Cary Arts Center. Punctuated by murals, statues and other artistic elements, visiting downtown is a pleasant and inviting experience. A new multi-story library and parking garage will soon replace the 1970’s, ivy covered building…sniff, sniff.
The data on this website is updated daily. Information Deemed Reliable But Not Guaranteed. The listing firm has attempted to offer accurate data, but buyers are advised to confirm all items. IDX data information being provided is for consumers' personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing.
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