ABOUT THE CAROLINAS
Charlotte means many things to many people; southern hospitality, a city of trees, major league sports teams and a business community. Charlotte ranks #8 on Forbes List of Best Places for Business and Careers. With low housing prices, short commute times, a multitude of parks and greenways and great shopping that makes for an attractive city for families looking to raise children. At the same time, it is building the infrastructure -- roads, cultural institutions, etc. which are critical to future growth. The 16-county Charlotte region is home to eight Fortune 500 companies, 950 international companies and home to Charlotte Douglas International Airport (the nations 6th largest).Top industries in Charlotte include energy, banking and finance, aerospace and defense, life sciences and film production. The Charlotte region is a hub for NASCAR and motorsports and is home to more than two dozen colleges and universities. Renowned health-care systems and world-class cultural arts and recreational attractions add to a highly regarded quality of life.
The region is one of the fastest-growing metro areas in the country topping 2.7 million boasting an enviable quality of life. Adding to the region’s livability, the public transportation system continues to excite the masses. Light rail is funded to expand north to NODA and UNCC giving commuters 19 miles of service. The street car will connect adjacent neighborhoods from Elizabeth to the Center City and eventually west to Johnson C. Smith University. With a diverse mix of neighborhoods and communities, a vibrant urban core, an unparalleled park and greenway system, award-winning schools and an international business community -- nothing can be finer than living in the Carolinas.
To learn more about living in the Charlotte region, visit these helpful websites:
A Family Friendly Community
Charlotte is a veritable playground of family activity options with museums, cultural exhibits, performing arts organizations with youth programming, nearby zoos, outdoor recreation (including Lake Norman and Lake Wylie) and a myriad of parks including the US National Whitewater Center. The Mecklenburg County greenway system is quickly becoming one of the finest in the nation currently providing 37 miles of developed and 150 miles of undeveloped greenways. The Carolina Thread Trail is a regional network of over 500 miles of greenways and trails that reach 15 counties.
A comparatively low cost of living for a city with so many amenities have resulted in Charlotte frequently appearing on Best Places to Live and Work lists for many years running. Money Magazine ranked Charlotte # 1 in "Big City Bargains" based on housing affordability, economic strength, home price forecasts and livability in cities with populations of more than 500,000.
Finding The Best Schools
Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools
CMS serves more than 143,000 students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. As the 18th largest school district in the country, CMS has 164 schools and more than 18,000 employees. Unique options in the public school system include magnet and charter schools. Some facts about CMS include:
- Won the Broad Prize for Urban Education in 2011, which is presented annually to four school districts in the country for elevating achievement levels.
- Ranks in the top five school districts nationally for the number of National Board Certified (NBC) teachers. This certification is equivalent to the CPA exam for accountants or the bar exam for lawyers and documents a teacher’s skills.
- Offers nine magnet-school programs in 37 magnet schools.
- Other standout programs within CMS include Advanced Placement classes, arts education, character education, English as a Second Language, exceptional children, afterschool enrichment programs, and a strong emphasis on literacy and science.
York County Schools
York County’s largest school districts are Fort Mill and Rock Hill. Fort Mill was ranked number one by the SC State Department of Education and has 15 schools. Rock Hill has 27 schools and is growing rapidly.
Fort Mill Schools
The tradition of excellence, which grows richer every year, is a magnet for young families all over the country who want the best of all worlds – nice climate, good real estate value, low taxes and last but not least great schools. Fort Mill offers all that and much more and a decades-long surge in residential development that was only temporarily slowed by the Great Recession leaves the school district no choice but to keep up with a population expected to double to more than 40,000 residents in the next 10 to 15 years.
Rock Hill Schools
There are 32 K-12 schools in Rock Hill, SC, including 28 public schools and 4 private schools. Rock Hill public schools belong to two districts, SC Public Charter School District and York 3 School District.
There are 23 Rock Hill elementary schools, 10 Rock Hill middle schools, 6 Rock Hill high schools and 46 Rock Hill preschool schools.
Union County Schools
Union County public schools is the sixth largest school district in North Carolina. It is comprised of 53 schools with over 40,000 students.
Private (non-public) schools and charter schools make up a significant part of Mecklenburg County’s educational landscape. In fact, more than 26,000 students are enrolled in 80 private schools and charter schools in the county. This growing system includes elementary, middle and high schools with various religious affiliations as well as independent institutions. Information on private schools and how to select an independent school is available from the North Carolina Association of Independent Schools or the North Carolina Division of Non-Public Education. A comprehensive list of private and charter schools within Mecklenburg County is available here. For additional information, please visit these sites:
One of the most significant changes in public education in recent years has been the growth of the charter school movement. Charter schools are public schools that are liberated from some of the traditional school regulations required by the state. These schools are bound by charter agreements granted by local school boards. If they don't meet the requirements of their charter, they can be shut down. Charter school enrollment is voluntary and is not governed by neighborhood boundaries, which means your child can choose to attend any charter school within your district.
Please visit these sites for additional information:
Whether you’re seeking an undergraduate or graduate degree, training for career advancement or looking for enrichment courses through continuing education, you will find schools to meet your needs. Besides traditional weekday programs, many institutions offer evening or weekend programs for adult students with full-time jobs.
Links to Institutions in the Charlotte area:
About The Carolinas
Charlotte was nicknamed the ""Queen City," in honor of Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, the queen consort of British King George III during the time of the city's founding. The Carolinas were originally known as the Province of Carolina and were divided into two different states in 1729. The coastal Carolina region was settled by Europeans over a century before the inland regions and was influenced by the culture of the Caribbean, especially Barbados. Like much of the South, the Carolinas have been agricultural with major crops including cotton, rice and tobacco, and for furniture and textiles. Because of North Carolina’s place in history as the U.S. epicenter for furniture and textiles, the state has has a more significant industrial base than most Southern states. Industrial development early on created comparatively strong infrastructure. Established infrastructure along with the region’s beautiful climate, idyllic location between beach and mountains and relatively low cost of living have made the region an attractive home to dozens of Fortune 500 companies, international businesses and regional headquarters. Charlotte continues year-after-year to make top places to live lists and is one of the fastest growing cities in the nation.
Things To Do In Charlotte
Charlotte is the geographical center of the south, the focal point of rich traditions and diverse lifestyles, where fabulous museums, art galleries and theaters abound. Our major and minor league sports teams are many; the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte Bobcats as well as The Charlotte Knights baseball and The Charlotte Checkers hockey. Charlotte is home to Nascar racing and the Wells Fargo Championship Golf Tournament. Local attractions include the Nascar Hall of Fame, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Concord Mills, the National Whitewater Center, Carowinds, Lake Norman and Lake Wylie. The region is also the transportation hub for US Air and the sixth largest passenger airport in the country providing international accessibility. Enjoy taking a ride on the trolley, light rail or greenway bike path. Sample your way through the myriad of eclectic dining spots from white table cloths to the red and white check of Carolina barbeque.
Relocating to the Charlotte region? No problem. Do you want a team that has spent most if not all of their lives in Charlotte; brokers who know the neighborhoods, culture and business environment better than any other company; who can connect you with any resource you need? That’s us!! We will combine our intimate knowledge of the best Charlotte has to offer with your individual needs as they relate to lifestyle, schools, commute and resale value. Our connections run deep. Need temporary housing, a recommendation for a restaurant, advice on where to shop, or maybe a babysitter?
You will find that moving to the Charlotte metro area is large and diverse. Whether you want views of the city skyline, the brick home in an established neighborhood, the condo on the light rail line, rambling home on a horse farm, cozy cottage on the lake, home on one of the many golf courses …. Charlotte has it all and we at Richards Properties are committed to making your dream home come true in a seamless transition.