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Wilmington, North Carolina SperlingViews


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Jacksonville, FL

I have lived all over the country in big cities, NYC as well as smaller cities, Columbus, OH & Nashville, TN and I have to say that the comments about Wilmington being boring and the shopping being less than wonderful is far from the truth. The city is bordered on four sides by Market St., College Rd., Shipyard Blvd. & Carolina Beach Rd. Both Market St & College Rd. have every store you can possibly think of and it is all in a five mile radius.
Parks are beautiful, especially Greenfield Lake, which is a five mile around lake with beautiful foilage, wonderful birds as well as alligators (that can be viewed both with the naked eye or binoculars (for those faint of heart).
The beaches, both Wrightsville and Carolina Beach are probably 20 minutes away (at most) from anywhere in Wilmington.
The people, for the most part are very friendly & diversified, simply because most are transplants like myself from the north. If you don't come down here with a chip on your shoulder and realize that you are moving from a big city for the slower place and southern charm that Wilmington has to offer, than there is no reason why you wouldn't love it.

Housing, there is plenty and in this economy you can find either a nice house or apartment for such a reasonable price, it is really hard to imagine not moving here and then staying.

Before here, I live in Jacksonville, FL and I loved it very much. The beaches, the people, everything, but then it became too crowded and the prices went through the roof, which happens in great places. We don't have a big zoo, but we do have a family friendly zoo.

Come and visit and see for yourself. You will be pleasantly surprised, as I was.

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re: GREAT PLACE TO LIVE - 1/18/2010 - 3/21/2011
Ok..soo I am a traveler. I have been as far north as Barrow, Alaska and as far south as southern Texas. I have been blessed with many travel opportunities due to the simple fact that I know people all over the world. I am having a little trouble deciding where it is that I want to go next. I have 4 choice's right now. I just moved back to Oklahoma 2 month's ago and I just really can't stand it here anymore. Should have stayed in AK.. O well.. so I have cali,korea,japan or NC.. The one I was leaning to was NC but after reading these post's I am not sure that would be best. From what I have read the people sound racist and very old fashioned. I love life and I love people. I am a white guy 24yrs young so I don't think they would give me as much of a problem. Besides all of that I like to party and have a good time. Soo mu questions are.. 1: Alcohol. Is it allowed on the beach? 2: Partying. Is it allowed on the beach? 3: Are there pretty girl's in NC? ;) 4: What's the economy like there? 5: Are the police jerk's? 6: Would a 24yr old male enjoy his stay in Wilmington, NC? Thank you! I hope you all have great day's in the sun! -Eric

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re: GREAT PLACE TO LIVE - 1/18/2010 - 7/15/2010
My husband and I are thinking about moving to Wilmington. I think it has so much soul that you just dont find many places these days. I love the laid back atmosphere and the unique character. But, we are a bit worried that it does not have a whole lot to offer in way of entertainment besides the beach and riverwalk. Do you find a lot of people in their late 20's feel that way? We have been married for 6 years and are ready to start a family, so we are not really into the bar or club scene. We are looking for a community town, but also would like a place that has options. We would love to hear positive, but honest opinions from locals! Thanks!

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More Wilmington, North Carolina SperlingViews

Wilmington, NC

Relax, you're in the South now. - 6/22/2015

I get a chuckle out of the negative reviews here regarding Wilmington (especially the cultural aspects). Wilmington was just rated the best riverfront city in the country by USA Today. I have never experienced any real unpleasantness from anyone but visitors from the Northeast who are very tense from, well, living in the Northeast. As a former Yankee, I can sum it up for you: Wilmington is a great friendly little city on the coast in North Carolina that is 90% transplants and exploding with people fleeing the Northeast for a better quality of life. Many Northerners just can't handle the friendliness of the people here and have to find something about which to complain rather than being grateful for all the great things. The glass is either half full or you are a Yankee. As you read the reviews here, keep in mind that most people are coming here to escape the weather, tension and economies of liberal states. Expecting Wilmington to change for your tastes is such a silly Yankee idea. As such, some immediately love the laid back friendly lifestyle here, some take a while to relax and some just can't get along and complain until they leave. We love New Yorkers, for example, at least after they lose their arrogance and rudeness and realize that New York is not the center of the universe and they don't know everything. Enjoy paying less than your taxes were up North for a mortgage and wave back at others-they are using all 5 fingers and are genuinely friendly. Everyone is welcome here, just be nice if you can and quit complaining.

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Wilmington, NC

Amazing place to call home! - 4/14/2015

Wilmington, NC is a truly awesome place to live! Having lived here for over 11 years now, I'm pretty sure I'm never leaving :) Since Wilmington is a peninsula - it's surrounded by water! We have the Cape Fear River and historic downtown on one side while we have intracoastal waterway and the ocean of Wrightsville, Carolina and Kure beaches. The weather is pleasant here too - with all 4 seasons - albeit the winter is pleasantly short with barely a dusting of snow! We have history, culture, great schools, delicious restaurants, and a good sense of community here. I love it and I'm passionate about helping folks relocate to the Wilmington area. My husband and I work as a real estate team, If we can help any of you with an real estate related questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us! -Stef Archer #TeamArcher, RE/MAX Essential hello AT 910.777.2790

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Hampstead, NC

Jobs - 11/21/2014

Living wage middle class jobs are in short supply here. Few decent paying jobs here.

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Matawan, NJ

Neighborhoods of Wilmington - 8/21/2014

I’m a 65 y.o. male from NJ, about to retire and am considering Wilmington NC in which to retire. Made two trips there and am still impressed. I’m married, but wife might stay in NJ a while longer for business reasons. I need advice on neighborhoods, however. Whether it’s homes, apartments or condos. One big goal in retirement is to reconnect with people. I poured myself into my career, in order to become financially secure, but I’ve lost all/most friends along the way. In retirement, I want to volunteer, maybe get a “small” job and make new friends. I don’t want a development where half the people are UNC students and the other half are young, working families. I don’t hate golf, but I’m not an avid golfer at this point. Downtown appeals, but limited choices of housing. Might consider the beach, so that I could live there in the off-season and rent out in the summer, but I don’t want a ghost town existence. Anyone have some good advice?

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Wilmington, NC

Bashing Wilmington North Carolina is a sport for m - 7/5/2014

I don't get all the negativity about Wilmington. Perhaps it's to keep more people from moving here and clogging up the roads? I just moved here from a very large city in the Northeast and I'm impressed by the variety of live music here, including outdoor concerts at Greenfield Lake Amphitheater, that for 2014 includes Travis Tritt, Government Mule, Dweezel Zappa, Bruce Hornsby and more, plus film and theater at Thalian Hall, plus Art Garfunkel was just here performing. There's also Screen Gems Studios and the filming of movies and TV shows in the area. And there's also beautiful beaches on top of it! If you hate Wilmington so much, just leave and give the rest of us more space!

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Wilmington, NC

Hot Summers, Okay Winters - 6/8/2014

Winters here are milder than farther north, but not "beach warm." Summers are hot and sticky humid, even at night.

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Hammond, IN

Living and working - 3/27/2014

What is it really like for a single woman, 50's and still needing to work?

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Wilmington, NC

Living in Wilmington - 3/21/2014

I have lived in Wilmington, NC close to 2 years now. I moved from the Philadelphia area to attend UNCW here. There are a lot of pros and cons to living here. If you like the beach, you will love it here. If you like big cities and good food, Wilmington is lacking. The job market is OK, not great. I had a few friends move here unable to find a job in their line of work, so are waiting tables instead. I hear Wilmington has grown a lot compared to past years, but it is still not big enough for me. If you don't mind smaller places, it has lots of food options, shopping, affordable housing -- just don't expect a city!

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Wilmington, NC

High schools - 9/14/2013

Wilmington's High Schools are riddled with children who openly admit to substance abuse in one form or another - they are a friendly bunch though. My child's school is considered "a good school" according to all persons I asked, but the level of education is about 1 year below what my child was used to - she is a Junior doing Sophomore work.

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Greenville, NC

HELP, Husband may relocate to Wilmington!!! - 6/17/2013

Hello everyone. I desperately need some input on the Wilmington area. My husband, myself, and our 2 children (8 & 6) currently live in Greenville, NC. My husband recently interviewed with a company in Wilmington and I need to find out more about the area. We visited this past weekend and were not immediately impressed. After reading the reviews on this site, I am absolutely petrified to move to the Wilmington area and I am extremely worried about my children.

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Ophelia N.
Wilmington, NC

Best thing about living here....the weather! - 3/2/2013

Two defining characteristics of the Southeast NC coast: sunny and breezy. The winters are mild, in the 40s and 50s most of the time - sometimes warmer - with a few dips into the 30s and 20s at night. Snow is rare, if it does happen its a small amount (half an inch or less), doesn't stick to roads and is gone within hours. It is humid here year-round, which could be a con for some people since the summers can get very sticky. However, multiple beaches are very close!

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Irving, TX

Humidity - 1/13/2013

Although the snow misses this little nitch the humidity is unbelievable. It rivals what I remember of S. America and there is no breeze unless you are on the beach.

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Rocky Point, NC

Traffic, No/Low Paying Jobs, High Cost of Living, - 9/1/2012

Although I was born in PA, I grew up right here in Wilmington after my family moved to town when I was only 6 years old. Needless to say, Wilmington has changed a LOT! The town was not designed or laid out well for the extreme growth that it has seen over the past 25 years. There is not a whole lot to do here, besides visit the beach or go to a bar downtown. No real live music without being required to make the two hour drive to Raleigh to see a show. Traffic is terrible at most times during the day. The job market here is absolutely terrible. I spent over two years without steady, full-time employment, until about two years ago. Due to this now being a tourist and college town, most jobs are service-oriented, such as hotels, restaurants, etc. The pay scale is terrible, with employers not typically wanting to pay anything above $25-30,000 per year, since we have such a huge, constant influx of college kids that they can hire for minimum wage, even with a college degree or many years of experience in your field. The cost of living has skyrocketed in the past 10 years or so. If you rent a home or condo/apartment, expect to pay upwards of $1000 per month for anything decent. I was surprised to notice, while reading through the previous reviews of Wilmington on SperlingViews, that no one had yet mentioned the terribly corrupt police force and court system in this area! I have traveled extensively throughout the US and have yet to encounter another place where the police so openly harass the citizens and abuse their entrusted authority. What makes it worse is that the court system is just as corrupt, seemingly working together with the police officers to funnel as much money as possible out of the pockets of the hard working citizens, without any sort of recourse available. For example, they often set-up what they claim to be "DWI Check Points" at all times of the day/night/year that stop every single vehicle and check the licence/registration/insurance of the driver, as well as running the record of everyone in the vehicle. Don't be fooled, these so-called "DWI Check Points" are yet another guise to generate revenue for the corrupt system; charging an extremely small number of drivers with DWI, while issuing citations for anything and everything else that they possibly can. Seat belt tickets, lapse of insurance, a burnt-out light, possession of a firearm or drugs, an old warrant, perhaps just because they "suspect" you of whatever crime they can conjure up between one another...anything at all to generate revenue. A routine check point will issue somewhere around 400-500 citations in any given afternoon or evening, out of which perhaps 5 will be DWI citations. It has become commonplace to read about these same officers beating citizens or otherwise using excessive force. Not too long ago, a young teen boy was shot and killed when officers busted into his home and hastily mistook the video game remote control he had in his hand at the time as a gun. This all occurred after they found pictures online of him holding what appeared to be a gun. No crime had been committed. The officers that shot the boy were never tried or convicted of any crime at all, but were rather simply transferred to another department and the incident was quietly swept away. These sorts of things happen on a regular basis here in Wilmington. There are a lot of great people in the area, but making a life here is difficult. Not only are good jobs seldom to find and the cost of living high, the "good ole' boy" system is still very much in play. Honestly, I am MUCH more concerned and terrified of being harassed/beaten/robbed/killed by the police as I make my daily commute to work and back home each day than I have ever been of having those kinds of things committed by some lurking criminal. In all of the years that I've spent in this town, there has never been anywhere near the amount of any type of crime (violent or otherwise) necessary to ever come near justifying any need for the insanely large and powerful police force that is run in Wilmington. Think twice before deciding to move here, unless you have a good job lined up already and housing within a very short driving distance of that job. It would be very wise to set back $500-1000 in savings that you can readily access when the time comes to pay off fines and court costs (AKA "Bribe Money").

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Wilmington, NC

Recreation? - 8/26/2012

OK, let's be real here. There is nothing cultural to do here. There's no professional sports teams, no real convention center or stadium to attract rock bands- you know, professional rock bands? The "museum" doeesn't have any real exhibits that travel from city to city. Have I left anything out? Oh, resturants, most are small locally owned varieties of fried food, you know traditional "southern" food. How about smoking everywhere you go, including the jerk on the road who sticks his hand out the window with the cigarette in it, so we all have to breathe it in. Do they realize the smoke blows right back in the window anyway? So, in a nutshell, let's review, DON'T MOVE HERE if you want to have fun or do anything after dark or cultural. How about earning money? Unemployment ranks among the highest in the nation, and most jobs are service driven. I am an RN and have been out of work on several occassions and it has taken me a few months or more to find work because if you don't work for the local hospital, yes there's only ONE HOSPITAL, and if you don't know someone or "volunteer" there like so many RN's apparently do in order to get a real job aren't going to make it. There are a few crappy and horribly run nursing homes filled with some really crazy people, and I'm not talking about the patients here... If you rank going to the beach as your number one thing to do day and night, you are set- move here and enjoy, but if you wznt to earn money, have fun and meet quality people, look elsewhere and do not move here. I now have to sell my house and cut more losses and I am really researching my next move much more carefully.

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Wilmington, NC

Happiness depends on where you live in Wilmington - 1/11/2012

I concur with many of the other reviewers about interaction with the natives. I'm a native of North Carolina but I lived in NY for 30 years. The nastiness you get from the natives here in Wilmington is largely a result of the changing economics and demographics of this area. People who lived here for generations have been uprooted from their homes by developers through their political connections and displaced by Suburban sprawl. Cost of living has increased significantly here while working class wages and employment opportunities have fallen. Their resentment however misplaced falls squarely on the newcomers. Just like living in NYC If someone gives you a hard time give it to them right back, you will get more respect. Crime is largely theft due to the poor employment opportunities for low income people and substance abuse. Personal safety is no worse than any other urban area. Like any city you learn where not to go and when not to be there. I live near downtown and crime has not been an issue for the 7 years I have been here. One car broken into last year has been the extent of it on my street. I like living near downtown, We are in an older neighborhood adjacent to GreenField Lake Park.It is very artsy and liberal so newcomers are well accepted. We have friends and neighbors from all over the economic,racial and social spectrum. For us it was a welcome change from living in uptight NY suburbs. We also don't encounter the traffic congestion that the suburbs experience Banking,groceries,bars and restaurants are within walking/biking distance. I like sailing and this area is just fantastic for sailing! Same goes for fishing or just laying on the beach. Very costly to live on the water here. It's best to buy a good trailer that is easy to launch from atone of the numerous free boat ramps.

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Richlands, NC

A Diamond In The Rough? - 10/23/2011

We moved to Richlands NC from Phoenix AZ about 3 months ago. WE came to escape the heat, the bleaching, skin stripping sun and arid lung burning air of the 5-6 month Phoenix summer. WE seem to have accomplished this, seeing 80's and 90's through the summer and mostly partly cloudy days and rain. It has been an adjustment, coming from a city that had possibly every major chain in the US, several large malls and every convenience that you could think of, a walk, or a short car ride away, to live in the country, a few miles from a small town. Jacksonville, 15 miles away, has a small mall, but several of the big box stores and is still trying to develop some shopping and entertainment diversity. The supermarkets and even Sam's club, offer a limited range of beer for example. National lager brands tend to dominate the beer selections. Bud, Coors, Miller etc. This is an indicator of the population, mostly young Marines who have yet to develop an appreciation for anything else. Shopping in Sam's club the other day, I inquired as to why the beer selection was so limited? The answer was that most of the folks who shop there do not want the variety and there is little call for anything else. (Sort of narrow minded and sad really). There are a few bars around Jacksonville and disappointingly nothing in Richlands. The notion of a community focal point where you can drop in and have a beer while meeting your neighbors, is lost, or perhaps never was a part of this society. So, then there's Raleigh, well we drove through Raleigh yesterday and Cary. Nothing to inspire us there. Raleigh downtown is typically full of govt and office buildings. Almost grid like streets, narrow and old. Cary downtown was smaller and 'apparently' meant to be more 'upscale' but also lacking. Both are mostly boring really. The leafy suburbs are at times almost claustrophobic and driving through many of the more 'apparently' select neighborhoods, feels underwhelming and frankly, although the sun was shining, it was lifeless and depressing. Then we drove to Wilmington. Old town is old and in need of repair / renovation in many parts. Some buildings and homes have been maintained and / or restored. It's a mish-mash neighborhood. The Presbyterian church for example looks impressive. Some of the houses around it though are feeling their age. Maybe it's quaint or chic to live there? Likely an investment neighborhood since it's deemed historic? The crime / roudiness reports make it appear like a pretty punkish neanderthal night scene. Or are the views of many folks wrong? The sprawl of urban development is actually remeniscent of parts of Phoenix metro. It is good to see that there is more of an eclectic variety of stores on our first glance. Something that Jacksonville may eventually offer? Together with the climate and the boast of a 'brew-pub' and a quieter Irish pub, Wilmington does seem to be developing more cultural entertainment diversity? Then after reading the many comments preceding mine today, I have quiet reservations. For although it is a developing town, it appears that it may be hamstrung by narrow-mindedness and ignorance. So, should we move to what 'appears' to be an upcoming town, or should we stay amongst the gentle folk of Richlands who have been welcoming with open arms, even though we have to travel to access everything?

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Wilmington, NC

Quality of lIfe in Wilmington not what it appears - 8/10/2011

When we first visited Wilimington in the early 90's it appeared to be a great place to live. Climate is, of course, much better than the northern state we came from and the beaches are beautiful and uncrowded compared to the north. Unfortunatley, the people were not, and still are not, tolerant of northerners (or anyone not born in Wilmington) unless you are a tourist spending money. They are very welcoming at that stage, but move here and it is a different story!! Cost of living is actually higher than what we left when you factor in the wages. In addition to the low wages, the work ethic is non-existant and anyone who tries to actually do their job is shunned or forced out. So....while the climate is great and living here appears great - look further before making the move. We wish we would have stayed tourists - once a year or so and are making plans to move on soon.

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Wilmington, NC

Climate isn't everything - 6/3/2011

The Climate in Wilmington is great....roses in march and flowers all year long, but climate isn't everything. When considering this town please also consider the state of consciousness of the residents of this area...many are still fighting the civil war and are not too welcoming. Due to it's closeness to the beaches there is also the constant influx of weekenders and vacationers many of who do not care if they "dirty" up the town......and finally please look at the crime rates and the areas of crime. Been here 4 1/2 years..and live in a great neighborhood and still have to deal with crime issues even here. Therefore, please weigh your priorities and dont get blinded by the sun.

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Wilmington, NC

New Hanover County NC........not so inexpensive - 3/10/2011

I moved to New Hanover County NC with my fiance. He told me how much more affordable the cost of living was compared to where I previously lived, outside of Washington DC, Calvert County MD. Upon moving to Wilmington, I discovered my car insurance carrier would not even insure my car in New Hanover County NC. In fact NOE of the auto insurance carriers I have had in the past that I like, would cover my car.... AND I have a perfect driving record. No tickets, no accidents. They just will not sell car insurance in New Hanover County. When I finally did find an acceptable carrier, my premiums went up 40%. My health insurance QUADRUPLED!!!!! The cost of my HSA for the exact same coverage and deductibles went from $150 a month BC/BS of DC to $600 a month BC.BS of NC. Insurance in New Hanover county is thru the roof, because it is a coastal area. If I lived in either Brunswick or Pender counties (tow neighboring counties) the premiums are less. Overall, NC has proven to be more expensive than whre I loved outside of Washington DC.

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Wilmington, NC

Low Pay and no Jobs - 1/25/2011

I have lived here for 5 years now and the job market sucks!!!. Low pay and the good old boys network is alive and well here. I am ready to leave...

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