The 10 Best Charlotte Suburbs To Live For 2021


We analyzed over 41 places around Charlotte to identify the most in demand places to live.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2021. This is our seventh time ranking the best Charlotte suburbs.

Big city living isn't for everyone--but at the same time, urban areas certainly have their perks.

There's the culture, the food, the arts, the food, the energy, and you know, the food. But there are drawbacks. There's traffic, expensive parking, expensive housing--pretty much, expensive everything, depending on which big city you're looking at.

But that's where the suburbs come in--they have all of the benefits of being near big cities, without actually having to be big cities.

Of course, not all suburbs of Charlotte are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado...

Here are the 10 best suburbs to live around Charlotte for 2021:

  1. Davidson
  2. Tega Cay
  3. Marvin
  4. Weddington
  5. Waxhaw
  6. Stallings
  7. Huntersville
  8. Wesley Chapel
  9. Matthews
  10. Cornelius

What's the best suburb of Charlotte? Davidson ranks as the best suburb of Charlotte for 2021 based on the most recent Census and FBI data. If you happen to be a resident of Davidson, you're probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We'll tell you what makes each of these 10 Charlotte 'burbs better than the rest--but first, a bit about our methodology.

Note: This result may differ from our state wide data as we did not include commute times and crime for this analysis to allow for a larger selection of suburbs.

Feel free to check out some more reading about North Carolina:

The 10 Best Charlotte Suburbs To Live For 2021

Davidson, NC

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 12,735
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $124,853
Unemployment Rate: 2.8%
Poverty Rate: 3.2%
More on Davidson: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Davidson is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Charlotte area. We'll tell you the good about "Awesome Davidson."

Everyone here is rich; families average $124,853 a year, which is the 4th highest in the Charlotte region. And only 2.83% are out of work. Homes average more than $448,300 each.

Tega Cay, SC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 10,412
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $130,918
Unemployment Rate: 5.0%
Poverty Rate: 0.3%
More on Tega Cay: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Tega Cay is the second best 'burb we looked at near Charlotte for 2021.

It ranks 3rd for incomes in the area and only 1.01% of residents lack insurance, good for best.

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 6,553
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $206,469
Unemployment Rate: 2.4%
Poverty Rate: 2.0%
More on Marvin: Real Estate | Data

Here in Marvin, it's really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you'll see in the Charlotte metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in Marvin.

Weddington, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 10,794
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Income: $136,891
Unemployment Rate: 1.9%
Poverty Rate: 2.1%
More on Weddington: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Weddington ranks as the 4th best suburb of Charlotte for 2021.

You won't find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Weddington and the schools are some of the best around.

Waxhaw, NC

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 15,237
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Median Income: $111,642
Unemployment Rate: 3.2%
Poverty Rate: 3.3%
More on Waxhaw: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Waxhaw.

Waxhaw gets kudos for having the 6th most expensive homes in the Charlotte area, where houses sell for an average of $329,400. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 15,554
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $85,193
Unemployment Rate: 2.1%
Poverty Rate: 4.4%
More on Stallings: Real Estate | Data

Stallings is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here's why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 2.1% which is 4th best in the area.

According to online reports, Stallings is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Charlotte area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Huntersville, NC

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 55,980
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Median Income: $102,016
Unemployment Rate: 3.4%
Poverty Rate: 4.2%
More on Huntersville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Huntersville.

Huntersville schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it's only 13.8 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 8,974
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 2)
Median Income: $124,760
Unemployment Rate: 3.1%
Poverty Rate: 1.0%
More on Wesley Chapel: Real Estate | Data

Wesley Chapel is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 5.04% of people lack insurance, good for 9th in the area.

Matthews, NC

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 32,044
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 2)
Median Income: $84,594
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 6.1%
More on Matthews: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is 'Everything Better In Matthews?'

Almost.

It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it's really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Cornelius, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 29,256
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 5)
Median Income: $90,542
Unemployment Rate: 3.9%
Poverty Rate: 7.6%
More on Cornelius: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2021 is Cornelius.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It's far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Charlotte for 2021

Figuring out the best suburbs around Charlotte was pretty simple; we just needed to list several things that people like, and then find out which cities have the most of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High Median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

Then we used the newest American Community Survey data for 2015-2019 to research each suburb.

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Charlotte.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 41 suburbs to evaluate around Charlotte.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 41 in each category, where 1 was the "best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index the "Best Suburb near Charlotte." We're lookin' at you, Davidson. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the best of the best. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Welcome to the Best Charlotte 'Burbs of 2021

We said it once and we'll say it again--life in the big city isn't for everyone. At least not all the time.

So if you're hankering for some of the amenities of a larger city like Charlotte, but don't want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more North Carolina reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Charlotte Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Davidson, NC 12,735 $124,853
2 Tega Cay, NC 10,412 $130,918
3 Marvin, NC 6,553 $206,469
4 Weddington, NC 10,794 $136,891
5 Waxhaw, NC 15,237 $111,642
6 Stallings, NC 15,554 $85,193
7 Huntersville, NC 55,980 $102,016
8 Wesley Chapel, NC 8,974 $124,760
9 Matthews, NC 32,044 $84,594
10 Cornelius, NC 29,256 $90,542
11 Harrisburg, NC 15,806 $108,942
12 Fort Mill, NC 17,692 $91,061
13 Mint Hill, NC 26,697 $75,084
14 Indian Trail, NC 38,822 $83,905
15 Cramerton, NC 4,359 $84,598
16 Mooresville, NC 37,835 $69,188
17 Lake Park, NC 3,798 $76,267
18 Unionville, NC 6,959 $80,151
19 Pineville, NC 8,749 $52,967
20 Oakboro, NC 2,004 $60,833
21 Stanley, NC 3,679 $55,733
22 Midland, NC 3,622 $68,125
23 Landis, NC 3,099 $69,083
24 Belmont, NC 12,054 $71,650
25 Mount Holly, NC 15,610 $60,574
26 Concord, NC 91,980 $67,984
27 Mineral Springs, NC 3,008 $70,250
28 Wingate, NC 4,258 $50,583
29 Rock Hill, NC 73,334 $50,444
30 Ranlo, NC 3,604 $56,800
31 Locust, NC 3,297 $54,710
32 Gastonia, NC 75,887 $49,460
33 Kannapolis, NC 48,630 $53,365
34 China Grove, NC 4,189 $51,658
35 Lincolnton, NC 10,832 $37,027
36 Lowell, NC 3,640 $53,810
37 Clover, NC 6,135 $50,511
38 York, NC 8,144 $39,969
39 Monroe, NC 35,105 $51,754
40 Dallas, NC 4,696 $42,606
41 Kings Mountain, NC 11,028 $39,195

How Is Your Town In ?

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Need help figuring out where to move? Email YouTube star Nick Johnson at [email protected].

It's $200 for a phone consultation, and you'll go over politics, weather, cost of living, schools, culture and more to discover which city is the PERFECT place for your family to move to.

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.