Why people are moving to Wake and other neighboring counties in droves


The current number of 67 people moving into our neighborhoods every day is expected to go up in the coming months.

Here’s the theory:

Based on SmartAsset’s calculation, if you live in New York right now, and are making about $75,000 to $80,000 a year, you would only need to make about $60,000 in Raleigh to have the same standard of living. Obviously, you need to make a little more if you want to buy a house and have some saved money to put a down payment on a house, but you get the point. That gap has widened. Not only that, but Wake’s median income has risen to $80,000, buoyed by companies such as Fidelity, Credit Suisse, IHS Markit, Red Hat/IBM and others. Population density is playing a bigger role in people’s choices.

We are hearing that executives of some large companies are beginning to move to the area well ahead of companies that are still headquartered elsewhere. That’s because of the accepted work-from-home policy by most large companies. This trend was not prevalent before, so what we are beginning to notice is more and more mid-size and larger companies are moving HQ operations to places that offer workers and executives more flexibility. Anecdotally, we knew that was the case but now we are seeing it in the numbers.

For private equity principals, real estate developers and venture capitalists, this is an opportunity – the potential of attracting new skills and talent and not having to break the bank in the process.
That median income curve for Wake, Orange, Johnston and other Triangle counties will flatten eventually if the economy starts shedding jobs or if we are not able to keep up the pace of adding jobs and inching toward full employment. Right now, that scenario is far away.

Currently, these cost-of-living numbers show us that our population growth and the strain on our infrastructure is not ending anytime soon.

Sougata Mukherjee is editor-in-chief of Triangle Business Journal. Reach him at