Key findings

  • Cary has a Livability Score of 88/100, which is considered exceptional
  • Cary crime rates are 62% lower than the North Carolina average
  • Cost of living in Cary is 19% higher than the North Carolina average
  • Cary real estate prices are 97% higher than the North Carolina average
  • Rental prices in Cary are 33% higher than the North Carolina average

Best Places to Live in and Around Cary

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      Cary Real estate & Rental prices

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      Cary, NC

      A suburban city that offers numerous amenities to make residents and visitors feel at home, Cary is located in Wake County. This is a city that is located right in the center of political action in the state of North Carolina as well as numerous festivals and special events. Even though Cary can feel like the restaurants, homes, and shopping centers are close together, the friendliness that you'll experience from the residents and the variety of activities can aid in spreading out across the city.

      The real estate numbers in Cary are a bit higher than in other areas of the state and the nation. Homes are owned by most residents in the state with a small percentage being rented. Many of the homes that are owned are located in the rural areas of Cary with rentals being found mostly near the city. Owned homes are usually older and feature charming details that make them stand out instead of following a template design.

      When you're in Cary, you'll feel like you belong and like you're a part of a large family. From the greetings that you get while you're walking on the sidewalks to the events that are held for all ages, you're sure to fit right in as soon as you arrive. The Koka Booth Amphitheater is home to several musical events during the year as well as movies for the family. The Beer, Bourbon, and BBQ festival is also held at the amphitheater.

      The schools in Cary are exceptional. They are rated at a level above others in the state of North Carolina and offer a variety of ways for students to engage with each other whether it's through sports or academic clubs. Universities in the area include Duke and NC State. Even though there are several colleges and universities in and near Cary, the students tend to stay on or near the campuses.

      If you enjoy four seasons during the year, then Cary has just what you need. The winter season, although filled with a few inches of snow, is usually mild compared to states to the north of North Carolina. Hurricanes are sometimes a threat if they are in the Atlantic, which is something to keep in mind during the summer months. Spring weather is usually filled with warmth, and the fall season tends to be filled with colorful leaves on the trees.

      Since Cary is located close to larger cities, it's beneficial to have a car so that you can easily travel from one location to another. If you work in the city, you can park in one of the garages and walk to where you want to go during your lunch break. Garages are usually open on the weekend as well so that you can walk around the city with your family, enjoying the fresh North Carolina air and the beautiful views of nature.

      Top Rated Schools in Cary

      Name Grades Students Proficiency
      Mills Park Middle6 - 81,75084%
      Davis Drive Elementary SchoolKG - 590383%
      Mills Park Elementary SchoolPK - 596882%
      Panther Creek High9 - 122,71282%
      Davis Drive Middle6 - 81,35481%
      Green Hope High9 - 122,91681%
      Highcroft Elementary SchoolPK - 596481%
      Green Hope Elementary SchoolPK - 579480%
      See all Cary schools

      Cary Reviews

      Write a review about Cary Tell people what you like or don't like about Cary…
      The definition of artificial.
      I guess I can say that Cary is a nice place to live if you don’t care about character or charm to a city. It’s a rich suburb for middle age families. A lot of outdoor things to do, dining, and other things. For me though, this place is so new and built up, I wouldn’t even consider living here. There’s no charm to living here. In addition, the people who call Cary home are, let’s just say, definitely not southern hospitable. In fact, I’d be offended is someone ever said Cary was a southern town.
      7 -9
      I want to Move to Cary NC
      I want to move to Cary NC for lots of reasons It's great to raise a family it has low crime great schools affordable housing everything is a great stat for this place except the cost of living although the houses look clean and this city proper looks modern or new there are hardly any vacant homes in Cary NC which is why I want to Move to Cary NC so that's all I got!
      5 -3
      so simple to figure out if you look at all the other bad reveiws
      so funny how when you look at all the reviews for a place, its always a constant theme around here. nobody can take away the beauty of this place! but positively this is exactly where it ends!!!!! and the constant theme is the character of the people being bland,,,,, but what it really is, that this place was the birthing ground of every soul in this country who could absolutely give a crap about anything but themselves,,, the reviews always say slow.. its not slow!!! its I don't give a crap about you or hurring, cause I don't give a crap about anything, having owned a business here and dealing with vendors , workers, and suppliers, it is a CONSTANT THEME HERE, nobody gives a crap about anybody but themselves here, its in there walk, its in there talk, its in there facial expressions, its in every facet of everything here from gas stations to restaurants. absolutely nobody has any personality here,,,, because they do not want to, they are the most lifeless careless souls around, it will wear you down like a lead blanket, so depressing. this place was founded on affordable housing and tech, many years ago, there is nothing here anymore, houses are around 500k, Raleigh has absolutely nothing to excite anybody, durham same, beach is 2 hours away. and the mountains 4 hours away with no skiing. you wanna talk about a sinking ship, run from this place as fast as you can if you are a person who gives a crap about anything
      17 -24
      I Love Kickboxing
      The I Love Kickboxing gym in Cary NC is amazing!!! The trainers are skilled, motivating, and make me feel like even I can do it!!! The other gym members are a great community of support as well. I am looking forward to my next fun and challenging class...Bring it on!Oh ya, and Cary has been an awesome place for my husband (works in IT), myself (works in healthcare), and our 2 young children (tons of daycare options and a fantastic public school system)!!!
      4 -5
      Nice for NE for anyone else!
      Comparing this area to Atlanta or any other city with tech jobs where there are suburbs with diversity and lots of retail..this place is horrible. Morrisvillem, next to RTP, is a 75% Indian community. There is a mass exodus of North-easterners to the area with 40+ moving here everyday so there is now an approved light-rail started. This growth has resulted in avg. of 30 acres of land destroyed daily. There must be over 200 apt. complexes in the RTP area and the rest 3 story condos and townhomes/patio homes in the $300k+ price range. The single family homes in Cary in the good school areas are over $500k and NONE of them have yards! None of the subdivisions have swim/tennis or playgrounds. There are no community pools or water parks so if your community does not have a pool(most do not) you are out of luck. Since CARY stands for "containment area for transplanted yankees", there are 2 Wegmans being built and 50-60% of the pop. is NE. The schools in Wake County cannot keep up with this growth so the elem/middle schools are a mix of year-round and traditional. If you get a year-round school in West Cary as we did, your child will be on 1 of 4 "tracks" with a schedule of 9 weeks on/3 weeks off on "track-outs" all year long. So every 9 wks. you have to find a "track-out" camp to send them to for about $200-400/wk if you work. If you have a child in middle school, they may be on a different "track" schedule. High schools are traditional since they cannot accommodate sports on this type of schedule. Then you have constant rezoning of schools every year. Our elem. school was zoned for Mills Park Middle and was rezoned for West Cary Middle the next yr. We would have not been happy had we purchased a home versus renting. In the RTP area you have 2 Target shopping centers and 1 movie theater....nothing else. Raleigh is a large town, not a city, so you do not have any ammenities for the 15-30 mile drive. No hospitals or access to healthcare either have an ER-plex in Brier Creek and in Apex. Not to mention the maddening planes overhead from RDU. You will not be happy here unless you are leaving a high cost of living area such as NYC or San Francisco. Singles will die of boredom here.
      5 -14
      The best city to live
      I REALLY LOVE THIS PLACE AND I'M SUFFERING RIGHT NOW BECAUSE I HAVE TO GO DUE TO A JOB TRANFER. I HAVE BEEN HERE SINCE FEBRUARY 2009 AND I JUST FALL IN LOVE WITH THIS TOWN. I NEVER SAW AN UNIQUE BEAUTY AND CLEANNESS LIKE THE ONE THIS PLACE OFFERS. I also fall in love with the awsome people I met here that I'll never forget. A place where values such as respect and courtesy still present. I hope with all my heart that I can return with my family to live here again. I love you Cary NC And I'll never forget this place that was part of God's plan for my life. Where I lived the most beautiful moments of my life.
      4 -1
      Cary, North Carolina: The Best of Both Worlds
      I moved to Cary ten years ago and find it a delightful place to live. Cary is a prosperous suburb with the largest retail shopping area in the state of North Carolina. A great attraction is Koka Booth Amphitheater in Regency Park. This beautiful outdoor venue is beside Symphony Lake, surrounded by towering pine trees. The city of Cary is home to the USA Baseball National Training Complex. Outstanding players come from across America to participate in the program. Every summer, the largest arts and craft show in the southeast fills the streets of our picturesque village-like downtown. Lazy Daze accepts only the finest craftsmen. They come from many states to display their wares.

      To me, Cary is the best of both worlds. Living here provides the opportunity to enjoy a friendly, small-city type atmosphere, but also have the resources of the state capital nearby. State science, history, and art museums, fairgrounds, IMAX Theater, NC State University, and much more are only a few miles away.

      Occasionally, the traffic can be heavy in Cary. Some mid-summer days are warmer than we prefer, but there is never a reason to be bored.
      5 -4
      Source: The Cary, NC data and statistics displayed above are derived from the 2016 United States Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS).