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What Is It Like Living in Asheville, NC? – From Locals

Learn why we love living in Asheville, NC. Have all of your questions answered about things to do, the best Asheville neighborhoods, WNC weather, and the pros and cons of moving to Asheville.

We moved to Asheville, North Carolina in 2019 and have never regretted that decision. It’s also no secret that we moved to Asheville on a whim.

With our long weekend plans to Puerto Rico thwarted, we needed a backup plan. Why not visit Asheville? We both had never been but heard wonderful things.

What started as a whirlwind 3-day tour turned into the start of our move to Asheville in under two months. Who knew? Not us!

So, what pushed us over the edge to consider moving to Asheville? For one, we were New Englanders living in Florida, and Florida was just not for us.

Florida was hot, humid, and lacking in the culture we craved. We had lived in Central Florida for over 8 years. It was time for a change.

Two, we could both easily work in Asheville based on our jobs, and three, those gorgeous mountains.

Not to mention that we loved the foodie scene, endless hiking, beer, and mild seasons, including a vibrant fall.

Now that we’ve bought a house and have been living in Asheville for quite some time, we receive a ton of emails asking us what it is like living in Asheville, NC.

Why move to North Carolina? What are the best neighborhoods in Asheville? What do we do for fun? Is Asheville expensive? What is the political climate like?

Most importantly, what are the pros and cons of living in Asheville? Ultimately, is Asheville a good place to live?

After answering these questions individually over and over again, we figured it’s time for an article. Below find out why we love living in Asheville, NC along with our recommendations, advice, and personal experience.

We’ll hopefully make your decision about moving to Asheville a little easier and more informed. We also frequently update this article. Let’s get started!

Read more about the best Asheville neighborhoods.

Moving To And Living In Asheville NC with picture of downtown Asheville and Grove Arcade at sunset
We love living in Asheville, NC, and we hope that this guide answers all of your questions about life in Asheville and North Carolina. Is moving to Asheville right for you?

This post may contain affiliate links for products and services we recommend. If you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you, we will earn a small commission. Read the full disclosure here.

The Down Low On Living In Asheville, NC

Below are some of the most pressing questions that we receive in Uncorked Asheville’s inbox each week about living in and moving to Asheville.

Please keep in mind that these are just our opinions and experiences. Yours may not be the same.

We also do not have children and chose to buy a house before moving here. We flew up one weekend alone just to house hunt with an Asheville-based realtor. Our jobs remained the same with the relocation.

Battery Park Book Exchange Asheville NC with brunette man and woman holding hands and sitting on a couch laughing
We love sitting on the patio at the Battery Park Book Exchange in downtown Asheville. Champagne and used books are two of our favorite things. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.

Why Move To Asheville, NC?

We have always lived around the United States and elsewhere due to the nature of our jobs. For me, I’ve lived in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Indonesia, Florida, and now North Carolina. My husband can add Virginia and New York.

I’m not going to lie: I love living in Asheville, NC, and of course, I enjoyed CT — where I was born and raised. I am a sucker for seasons, outdoor sports, and a mix of city and country life.

What Is It Like Living in Asheville NC Hiking At Sam Knob with woman wearing a backpack and looking over a cliff
One of the reasons that we wanted to live in Asheville included the beautiful hiking trails. We love the North Carolina mountains and 360-degree views, such as those at Sam Knob at Black Balsam.

So why would anyone move to Asheville, North Carolina, like us and others? Based on the emails I’ve received, people love the appeal of the mild climate, great outdoors, and hip and growing city.

There are craft breweries on every corner. If you have food preferences or intolerances, the delicious Asheville restaurants will easily cater to you without rolling their eyes or messing up your order. I’m not sure we’ll ever eat at all of the cafes and restaurants.

Life In Asheville NC Brunch At Tupelo Honey Cafe with white brunette woman and plate of eggs holding up a mimosa
You will never go hungry or thirsty living in Asheville, NC. One of our favorite brunch spots includes Tupelo Honey in downtown AVL. They have the best cocktails and serve breakfast all day. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.

Asheville welcomes everyone. There is a vibrant LGBT+ community. Black Lives Matter murals covered the downtown buildings during peaceful protests.

The city is filled with beautiful street art and history. Our neighbors are both young and old.

Don’t get me wrong: you will run into a grumpy local here and there or see a Confederate flag on your way to Ingles. This is rarer in Asheville than in Florida.

Plus, we have Biltmore Estate, an arts district, and a liberal town in a fairly red state. Keep in mind that parts of Western North Carolina are extremely conservative.

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Why Live In Asheville?

Along those lines, why would anyone live in Asheville over another rocking and growing city like Nashville, Knoxville, Austin, Greenville, or Dallas?

I would advise that you visit the places you are comparing and spend as much time there as possible. Get a feel for the culture, the people, and what you personally value most.

Some places will have more traffic, fewer jobs, a higher cost of living, and different things to do for fun.

For us, we had some expected as well as oddball musts. We wanted a two-story home with a basement (Florida, remember?!).

Because I have ulcerative colitis and my husband has Celiac’s, we wanted a town that respected food intolerances; we love eating out every week. I also needed a strong GI office nearby.

Living In North Carolina Waterfall Hikes Linville Falls
We love the North Carolina weather and living in Asheville, there is never a shortage of waterfalls to chase. I can think of at least 70+ hiking trails around a 2-hour drive from AVL.

After living in such a flat state filled with suffocating heat and humidity, we hoped to see light snow again — but not CT blizzard-level. We also didn’t want to drive 1 to 2-hours to get somewhere like the dentist.

We love the outdoors and craved spending our autumns and summers exploring the waterfalls and swimming holes. I won’t lie, though, I questioned if I could live 4+ hours from the beach.

Plus, we desired a city with a diverse population. We found all of this in Asheville, along with endless things to do. This sounds cheesy, but we just knew in our hearts that Asheville, NC felt right for us.

Is Everyone A Hippie? Who Lives In Asheville?

I mean, if you aren’t at Trader Joe’s battling the crowds on a Friday night, you probably voted for Trump and hate polar bears. I’m kidding. Whole Foods and The Fresh Market are right there, too, on Merrimon Ave.

But no, not everyone is an *awesome* hippie or even young, a digital nomad, a liberal, or a retiree. Truth bomb, though: For 2020-2021, U.S. News ranked Asheville as the 8th best place to retire.

We do have a lot of golf courses… Man, I am so good at making raging stereotypes today!

Asheville NC Living Biltmore Estate with white brunette male and female drinking wine by fountain in Antler Hill Village, walking with umbrellas, and posing for a picture
Personally, we land in that median Asheville age, and one of us is a digital nomad. As Asheville locals, we are annual passholders to Biltmore (pictured above) and The NC Arboretum. We are also wine club members at Burnshirt Vineyards in Hendersonville and Marked Tree Vineyards in Flat Rock. Photos by Nick Levine Photography.

Asheville has quite a bit of diversity with a metro population estimated to grow to almost half a million by 2025. And yes, people both love and hate — really hate this fact — and argue fiercely about it on FB threads. The United States Census Bureau also reported that the median age in Asheville is 39.

Plus, we have the University of North Carolina Asheville — a liberal arts college — responsible for about 3,600 young adults. We early voted on this beautiful campus in 2020. And yes, North Carolina has early voting. We are a state to watch during elections.

Throughout the year, you will find a growing tourist population and snowbirds. Does this get to be a bit much? You bet.

But, tourists help the local businesses thrive — myself and this site included. Locals know the off-seasons and adjust accordingly.

You can read more Asheville, NC demographic information from the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. Census.

Save This Moving To Asheville Guide For Later

Living In Asheville NC Pinterest Pin with city of Asheville, North Carolina buildings and sun over purple mountains
Thinking about moving to Asheville, NC? Save our living in Asheville guide for later to make a better-informed decision.

Are The Locals Friendly?

Which always brings me to the uncomfortable question: Are the locals friendly toward newbies living in Asheville, NC? Do they want us there? Is there visible tension?

Lately, my inbox is flooded with specific questions about Californians and Floridians moving to Asheville, NC — there are a ton of us in my well-established, older neighborhood.

P.S. Technically, Tom and I are what North Carolinians call ‘halfbacks’ since we lived in New England and Florida first.

I had always heard that locals resented the influx of people moving in, the overdevelopment, and, rightfully so, the increased traffic.

There will always be heated debates over housing and congestion. Fall foliage tourist season is also…crazy.

Downtown Asheville Street Art with brunette woman in a dress standing on the stairs with the saying "Asheville loves you too."
This street art says it all to me: Asheville Loves You Too. Photo by Sarah Resta Photography.

We have never met anyone face-to-face that has expressed any concern for having us here. Luckily, new friends embraced us with open arms and tons of booze — transplants and locals, alike.

Asheville is full of transplants, and we made friends here easily.

We purchased a home in an established neighborhood — a ’90s home that needs major updating (popcorn ceilings, GAH). We work, eat, and spend our time and money in Asheville, giving back to local businesses and the economy.

Pros of Living In Asheville NC Grove Park Sunset with purple, pink and orange sky over downtown Asheville, North Carolina
Tourists and locals alike love catching a sunset at the Omni Grove Park Inn. The Grove Park Inn is our adult Disney World living here in Asheville. I highly recommend dinner and drinks at The Edison and catching their gingerbread displays in the winter. Or…sip a craft cocktail in front of the floor-to-ceiling stone fireplaces.

The only time I ever had someone say anything negative to us was on my other site, The Uncorked Librarian. I have one Asheville post up there.

Melissa told us to “go back where we came from” (um, do you mean my family’s homeland of Italy?) and that she didn’t want people “like us” here. Good lord. This was also between 2016-2020…

But, don’t forget that it’s super easy to hide behind a keyboard and an anonymous “f*cku@f* email address (not kidding) to troll and be ridiculously and unproductively mean.

Many appreciate the tourism that allows the businesses to grow while having such an eclectic and even international gaggle of residents.

Yes, like anywhere, places get crowded. This comes positives, too. It’s a cliched double-edged sword. The city wouldn’t be what it is today without so many people moving to Asheville.

What Is The Real Estate Market Like In Asheville?

When we first thought about living in Asheville, NC, we had no idea where we should look. Due to work, we only had one weekend to figure it out. Let me tell you, the real estate market in Asheville is hot. Homes go quickly.

Moving and Living In Asheville House hunting picture of the inside of a home we toured with a desk looking out at the trees through a floor to ceiling window
This was one of our favorite homes that we toured in Asheville. As a writer, I was smitten with these dreamy views.

In fact, we were touring a home when another realtor started yelling at ours because she jumped our time slot to put in an offer on the house for her clients. We didn’t want the house, but I had never seen anything quite like it.

I’ve heard that it’s no different in 2021, and 2022 will be just as competitive.

Our realtor warned us that we only had a few days to make buying decisions, and she was right: houses we toured that weekend were off of the market by Monday morning.

We had 4 amazing houses that we loved out of the 15+ we looked at. Luckily, we got our first choice — sans bidding war — and for a price that was fair…for Asheville. Overall, we had a lot of options with little stress.

North Asheville Library with bookshelves filled with books, big windows, and a computer
As a former librarian, I can easily say that North Carolina has a well-funded and amazing public library system. While we frequent Pack Library in downtown Asheville, the branches are tiny but just as efficient. North Asheville looks like a cozy log cabin filled with books (pictured above).

Please also remember that we don’t have kids — school districts didn’t matter to us — and we never considered renting. I have FOUR CATS. Plus, we owned a home in Florida and had a lot of stuff.

How Do You Choose An Asheville Realtor?

We will say that choosing a realtor in Asheville is tough. Some are pushy and clearly out for their bottom line. Some have even been rewriting and copying some of our website posts as their own to lure you in…

Even because of this moving to Asheville post, many have reached out and asked to ‘work together.’ Sounds nice until they aggressively harass you.

We liked our realtor — who found us what we needed in the time that we needed it. If you drop me an email — hello (at) uncorkedasheville (dot) com — I’ll be more than happy to recommend them.

What Are The Best Neighborhoods To Live In Or Look At In Asheville?

Where should you consider living in Asheville? These are the best neighborhoods directly in Asheville.

We looked at downtown Asheville, Fletcher, Arden, Weaverville, Black Mountain, North Asheville, West Asheville, East Asheville, and Biltmore Forest & Village along with a few other obscure neighboring towns.

Things To Do Living In Asheville NC pleb urban winery with vibrant pleb logo and three glasses of red wine
Asheville is both classy and hipster. Each neighborhood offers something unique. In West Asheville, you can find wine in the land of beer enveloped amongst vibrant street art, a riverwalk, artists’ studios, and breweries.

We did not look at Asheville’s Historic Montford District or Grove Park Area because I have a feeling our budget was lower than those gorgeous beasts. You can find 1 to 2 million+ houses in Asheville. We have historic homes, too.

As for the suburbs, Fletcher and Arden have great houses for slightly less — the ones we saw tended to be more up-to-date — and you got more for your buck. Those towns are under a 15-minute drive into the downtown area.

North Asheville Neighborhood around Beaver Lake with pond, walking trail, and houses
In North Asheville, locals enjoy walking the Beaver Lake Bird Sanctuary and 2-mile Perimeter Trail. Nearby, you can explore the free Botanical Gardens at Asheville. You can read all about Asheville’s parks and gardens here.

Hendersonville, which we love, is a great option too, but it’s about 45-minutes away from parts of Asheville with the costs and crowds slowing increasing.

If you work in downtown Asheville, the commute will suck. Traffic has been hideous out that way lately. I-26 is always under construction.

We ended up close to downtown, which meant that we paid for it. We snagged a beautiful house that needs hellll…I mean, love.

Our HVAC and water heater both blew our first month here. The roof quickly followed. Anyone want to fix our double decks?

Never Miss Another Asheville Update

Are you tired of generic Asheville travel itineraries? Do you want to experience the magic of Asheville like a local?

Grab our free Asheville Favorites checklist today, including restaurants, breweries, and hiking. Plus, get local updates straight to your inbox. Sign up here.

Is Living In Asheville, NC Expensive?

According to the U.S. Census from 2014-2018, the median house costs $242,500. Mmmm, I think that’s changed a lot in the past two years… People are asking a lot for their non-updated houses and getting it.

The Census also pegged the median income around $48,000 — I cannot attest to this one; our salaries are independent of location.

Asheville NC Sunset
This is an unedited Asheville sunset. Every night, the mountains change colors as the sun dips below them. This is the view from our Asheville neighborhood. Imagine having this painting in your backyard, every day.

We know people who rent both houses and apartments. It’s doable, and it’s not CT. When people complain about how pricey it is here, I think about my CT nonprofit salary, renting there, and TAXES…

Plus, it depends if you have a job already. Some people move here in the blind: no home, no work, no clue… That’s cool, too. We prefer to know our budget and look around.

If you don’t have these luxuries of already having work lined up or the chance to find housing beforehand, you can still find a mix with an open mind.

How Do You Get Around In Asheville?

While Asheville has some form of public transportation — a bus system — most people get around by car. If you live and work outside of the city, I’d say it’s fairly essential that you have a car. Most of America is like this, though.

We always half-heartedly joke that the older city structure is not prepared for our big SUVs. Some of the streets are super tiny with thin lanes, the parking spots are impossibly small, and those hills get me. The potholes are for real.

People drive pretty terribly here too — it’s not MA, but it’s close. I will get trolled for that truth bomb. Add in a parking lot, and drivers love to speed and weave. Plus, the tourists do some wild maneuvers in the fall over those dang leaves and when they are lost.

Life In Asheville NC Blue Ridge Parkway with mountains and sky
Life in Asheville, NC is all about those picturesque mountains. We love driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway, which is a two-lane and 45mph road filled with scenic overlooks, waterfalls, and endless hiking trails. In the fall, you cannot miss the breathtaking foliage.

You will use your parking (emergency) brake in Asheville. Hills are plentiful.

Note that within my first two weeks of living in Asheville, NC, my car had been scraped from other’s doors and bumpers. It’s become a fact of life.

I will also add that when you head downtown, you will end up paying for parking in a lot, at a meter, or in a parking garage. They are fairly priced.

In tourist season and on weekends, spots fill up, but usually, we find something without having too much road rage. You just need to learn where to go and where not to go.

What Is The Weather In Asheville and North Carolina Like? How Are The Seasons?

We love the weather in Asheville. We’ve seen all four seasons and find the AVL and Western North Carolina weather to be pretty mild. I am not going to go all Weather Channel stats on you because that is boring.

Moving To Asheville North Carolina Weather Craggy Gardens sunset in the spring with fuchsia flowers
In the spring and summer, Asheville is filled with gorgeous wildflowers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at places like Craggy Gardens (pictured above). Don’t miss the colorful Biltmore blooms, too.

I will say that unlike other places we’ve lived, Asheville gets extremely foggy. Our mornings are much darker. It’s the mountains.

Some winters, we see snow flurries as early as October — they are beautiful. Our cats were mesmerized by their first snow, ever.

We usually don’t have snow stick for more than a few hours but it can. Occasionally, you will see more snow, especially in the mountains. In 2020, we had a rare white Christmas. Schools and roads will close.

Living in Asheville NC In The Winter Looking Glass Falls with snow and ice
In the winter, Asheville may see some snow and ice, especially in the higher elevations. In fact, Looking Glass Falls got its name because of the way the waterfall looks when it freezes.

It also gets icy in the winter, and while we have had a few nights drop into the 20s, the 30s to 50s are our usual Asheville winter weather. Parts of the Blue Ridge Parkway will shutdown.

The spring and fall are pretty mild. Compared to Florida, it still rains here a lot. We feel the gloom of less sun. The fall in the mountains and along the Blue Ridge Parkway compete with our New England home. STUNNING.

Living In Asheville North Carolina Fall Things To Do Graveyard Loop with brunette white male hiking on a path through foliage
One of the major pros of living in Asheville, North Carolina is our mesmerizing fall foliage. We cannot get enough of all of that eye candy. One of our favorite fall hikes near Asheville is Graveyard Loop (above), which has two waterfalls.

Summer may hit the high 90s, but again, it’s not Florida. For us, the North Carolina weather is a mix of New England meets Florida. Sign me up.

What Can You Do For Fun In Asheville?

Gosh, what can’t you do in the city of everything? Living in Asheville, NC means that we are NEVER bored. Don’t miss our main page with things to do, including waterfalls, hikes, and shopping→

Also be sure to check out our huge list of the best things to do in Asheville.

We are annual passholders to Biltmore. When not visiting the house, we go for their great exhibitions — they just showcased Downton Abbey period clothing — the 22-miles of trails, winery, and dining. Biltmore also hosts concerts and seasonal events.

Of course, we eat out a lot and love hitting up the boozy scene. Yes, there are breweries, wine bars, dive bars, and places to sip craft cocktails like the Grove Park Inn and Cultivated Cocktails.

You have Sierra Nevada and New Belgium as bigger names, too. Many breweries have live music on the weekends.

Read more: Asheville’s Wineries | Best Breweries | Delicious Distilleries | Favorite Restaurants

Pros of Moving To Asheville DuPont and Hooker Falls in the fall
DuPont State Forest is home to numerous waterfalls and is less than 45-minutes from Asheville. You can picnic, hike, see the falls, and just enjoy the great outdoors. Pictured above, explore Hooker Falls, which is also a swimming hole.

Hiking in the gorgeous mountains is a must, and DuPont State Forest — home to The Hunger Games waterfalls — is nearby. We love the Blue Ridge Parkway and all of its picnic spots and mixed-level hiking grounds.

We head to The North Carolina Arboretum every winter for their Winter Lights Festival. Plus, Asheville has a ton of parks and gardens in the city.

The River Arts District is home to local art shops, urban street art, breweries, and a winery.

You can drive to Hendersonville for their three big wineries and amazing downtown. We still need to explore all of our neighboring towns.

For our Asheville fall bucket list, we love picking apples, eating cider donuts, and getting lost in a bamboo forest.

Basically, I sum up our experience as hike, eat, drink, repeat.

Read More: Top Hiking Trails | Stunning Waterfalls | Picnic Spots To Love | Mountain Biking

What Are The Pros and Cons Of Living In Asheville, NC?

What Are The Cons of Living In Asheville?

The Airport

The regional airport is great, but we are used to MCO and direct international flights to Dubai, Reykjavik, and Dublin. We travel a lot so AVL adds time and layovers.

A plus: Allegiant is one of the major domestic airlines that flies out of AVL and is a low fare carrier. Delta, American, and United are the legacies that fly out of AVL, too.

You can drive to Charlotte, but you’ll still find yourself with an extra leg — and sometimes it’s cheaper to fly out of AVL. Newark is also one of our newer international options, but you have to fly there first. We have friends that drive to Atlanta, too.

Things To Do In Asheville, NC Silo
The famous Asheville silo changes phrases fairly often, but it always gives off those hipster vibes. You may see the silo driving into Asheville from I-26W to I-240E on the bridge or while you are in West Asheville.

The Traffic & Congestion

I-26 always seems to be under construction. Sometimes traffic can be horrific. There are a ton of trucks at the craziest hours of the day.

During rush hours and prime times, the roads get congested and parking can be harder.

Tourist Season

We love that tourists add a vibe to Asheville and put money into the city. But, they do clog up and swarm the downtown, too.

Rocket Fizz in Downtown Asheville
Downtown Asheville is full of fun finds. We wandered into Rocket Fizz to discover every flavor of soda imaginable plus candy from our childhood. Beer-flavored jelly beans, anyone?

Overall, we just know to make reservations in advance, go out on ‘off’ nights or times, and avoid certain areas at particular times. The Grove Park Inn in December is like Disney on Christmas Day. The BRP in the fall is sheer chaos on weekends.

What Are The Pros of Living In Asheville, NC?


We just love the culture and diversity in Asheville. You can enjoy the art museum, learn about the history of Biltmore, and eat and drink locally. The community is educated, active, and engaged. We have fabulous local bookstores and libraries.

Things To Do

As mentioned above, there are tons of things to do in Asheville for everyone. I barely scraped the surface. Find hiking, live music, art, educational lectures, food, theater…you name it!

We’ve also traveled over to TN for day and weekend trips to places like Clarksville (5.5 hrs), Nashville (4.5 hrs), Dollywood (2 hrs), and Knoxville (2 hrs). We’ve been meaning to get out to the beach to see places like Hilton Head and revisit Charleston, too.

The Mountains

Lastly, we love living in Asheville for those stunning mountain sunsets. George Vanderbilt built his retreat here and put Asheville on the map because he thought the mountains were healing and peaceful. He was so right.

If you are visiting AVL to scope out Asheville living, here are a few of our hotel recommendations:

Aloft – Downtown Asheville  – Located in the heart of downtown Asheville, the Aloft hotel is newly renovated — as of 2020. Vibrant local murals, updated rooms, and sprawling public areas greet visitors. Did I mention their rooftop pool overlooking the mountains? As community members, we work with Aloft for both of our websites.

Hampton Inn And Suites Asheville Biltmore Area  – Although this hotel is on busy Brevard Road – NC-191 – across from the Asheville Outlets, it’s one of our favorites before living in Asheville. Clean, updated, and in the middle of everything, you can access downtown, Biltmore, and the Blue Ridge Parkway fairly quickly. Plus, you can grab a quick breakfast with tons of food options nearby, especially if you want a hiking lunch for the road. We are obsessed with grinders at the nearby Apollo Flame Bistro. It’s a dive, but it’s our dive.

1898 Waverly Inn Bed and Breakfast — While house hunting, we stayed at this sweet B&B in Hendersonville, NC (35-40 mins from Asheville closer to DuPont State Forest). We loved their social happy hour and friendly hosts. Say hi to Mike for us! You can walk into downtown Hendersonville, and don’t miss Umi Sushi. Hendersonville is its own hip little town.

Omni Grove Park Inn – Did you know that F. Scott Fitzgerald stayed at the Omni Grove Park Inn? We love the Grove Park Inn for its delicious restaurants, events, and out-of-this-world sunsets.

The Village Hotel on Biltmore Estate or The Inn On Biltmore Estate – For real Asheville, NC living, don’t miss a stay at Biltmore to see how the Vanderbilts wined and dined. Biltmore is America’s largest home filled with history, gardens, restaurants, and hiking trails.

See our Top Places To Stay in Asheville.

Don’t miss out on these Asheville properties on, too.

Still Considering Moving To Asheville, NC? Save This Post For Later

Pros and cons of living in Asheville, NC Pinterest pin with Blue Ridge Parkway and downtown Asheville cityscape at sunset
Are you or someone you know thinking about moving to Asheville, NC? Save our FAQs about living in Asheville, NC for later on Pinterest.

What Did We Miss About Moving & Living In Asheville, NC?

I love living in Asheville–and I say this often. Moving here was the perfect choice for our family.

Do you have any more questions about what it is like living in Asheville or North Carolina? Did we miss anything that you want to know? We still need to explore more of NC, for sure.

We have also tried our best to answer the questions we get from readers, and I hope these FAQs help you evaluate your moving and living options. You may have a completely different experience living in Asheville, but we wanted to share ours to help guide you.

This post originally published on February 18, 2020 and has been updated for 2021.

Where Should You Head Next?

If you are planning a quick trip, check out this short Asheville itinerary.

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Ultimate Guide Of Things To Do In Asheville, NC
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Asheville By Season

Fall In Asheville
Winter In Asheville

Areas In & Around Asheville

Best Neighborhoods In Asheville
Asheville’s Prettiest Neighborhood: Montford

Other Areas You Might Want To Move To In Western North Carolina

Black Mountain Guide
Hendersonville Guide
Weaverville Guide

Asheville local

Saturday 23rd of October 2021

Unlike the others who have commented, I am not thrilled about posts like this one. I was born and raised here and due to gentrification, I am being ran out of my home and can no longer afford to live here. If you were born here and raised poor then you would understand the struggle. These mountains were my playground and now they are being destroyed. I can't enjoy things like hiking like I used to because of the influx of people. Driving is a nightmare. Nothing is like it used to be. Locals are being polite, we don't really want more people moving here. I used to love downtown and now I avoid it.


Thursday 30th of September 2021

I wrote and posted a comment but found only my name in this section, so it seems it didn't get through. I realize you decided to buy right off the bat, but I want to rent for a year to scope out places and wait for real estate prices to come down. If you have any tips for how to find a rental from long distance or during a brief hunting stay in Asheville, I'd love to read them. Thanks for your very helpful site and for any info you might be able to provide!


Friday 1st of October 2021

Hi Mike -- All comments go into a queue, which is why you didn't see it post right away. We monitor for spam, etc. I'll respond to your initial comment. Thanks so much!

Mike Ashby

Thursday 30th of September 2021

Hi Christine. Thanks for this very helpful guide to all things Asheville. I realize you bought your place right away, but I'm moving to Asheville from Arizona and want to rent a place in Asheville or nearby for a year before buying; I figure that's a good way to check out all the areas and maybe find that real estate prices have come down by then. Do you have any tips besides your mentions here as to how best to find a rental either long distance or during a brief stay in Asheville for a hunt? Much appreciate any further info you might be able to provide. --Mike


Friday 1st of October 2021

Thanks, Mike. My friends here rent around, and I, unfortunately, don't have too much advice there. I do know that rentals vary in price (some being a tad much for WNC) and that the city is constantly building new complexes right now. I'd take a look around the River Arts District, Woodfin, and West Asheville for the newest buildings/openings. I think North Asheville around UNC might have some rentals, too. If you are coming in for just a long weekend, there are Airbnbs on the city outskirts where allowed as well as cabin/cottage rentals. I hope that helps. Have a great weekend, Christine


Monday 20th of September 2021

Tourism has ruined Asheville !! Building hotels one after another. I miss 20th century Asheville. And I moved to Weaverville after 50 years.


Tuesday 21st of September 2021

I hope you are enjoying Weaverville -- it's a great little mountain town. Tourism certainly has its pros and cons -- and I hope that Asheville, city planners, residents, and visitors can find a healthy and sustainable balance.


Sunday 22nd of August 2021

This is such an awesome post with such great info!! I lived in NJ for most of my life and south Florida for about 10 years. I now live in Marin County in CA. It is beautiful out here, I hike all the time and the weather and farmers markets fill my soul, but my rent empties my bank account and I'm tired of it. My brother and sister in law recently moved to Asheville and love it. My concern are the grey skies, far from the beach, and no farmers markets (at least not compared to CA). Do you find that these things really weren't an issue for you? I know you worried about the beach. Also, is there good local healthcare, like a hospital, or do you need to drive pretty far? Living so far from a city would be a big switch for me, but I am pretty tired of CA draining me.


Tuesday 24th of August 2021

Hey Amy, Thank you so much! I'm so glad that your family loves Asheville.

We are most definitely far from the beach -- which I miss. I think the closest beach is 4-ish-hours away. We've been meaning to plan a trip to the beach but then the pandemic happened.

I don't mind the lack of beaches since the mountains and waterfalls make up for it. Plus, we can hop an Allegiant flight to the Florida beaches pretty easily.

The weather is a tad gray here, especially compared to Florida. The darker mornings get me, personally, until the fog burns off. However, I love that I can enjoy four seasons and much cooler weather. The Florida humidity was not for me. Our fall is just absolutely stunning here in Asheville. I love a light dusting of snow in the winter. And we do get sun for a lot of the year -- just not as much as Florida. I appreciate the milder summers and more outdoor time.

We have some farmer's markets plus endless speciality stores, which helps. That and the plethora of restaurants we can eat at with food intolerances is huge. Plus, there is such a diversity in type of cuisine. I love it.

We have Mission Hospital in Asheville -- and that's pretty much the big one unless you drive to Charlotte. Thankfully, we haven't been yet. I love my eye doctor and dentist.

I do struggle with my GI office as it's the only one in town (and I have serious GI health issues). However, I'll take it. I think our healthcare is mostly better here than Florida but not quite as good as CT, if I'm being honest. Someone will read this and troll me for being a New England snob lol.

All my doctors are about 10 minutes tops driving distance, which is SO nice. In Florida, I drove an hour for some.

Asheville is quite a bit smaller as a city, and eventually, you do feel it. However, that part doesn't bother me since we can travel all over from Asheville. You can see Knoxville, Nashville, etc or head east. There is tons to explore, and Asheville has a lot to do, too.

I hope that helps!