HICKORY, N.C. — As cost of living is getting more expensive nationally, a new report by U.S News reported the Town of Hickory ranked the No. 1 for "Most Affordable Place to Live" in the nation.
Pinching pennies and price hikes are the norms in the Queen City, but an hour away outside the hustle and the bustle, you'll find the Town of Hickory. Antony Gaglia, owner of Carolina Crafted Creamery and Carolina Candle and Co. said Hickory is the prime spot for a start-up.
"I don’t think I could have two businesses in any other city," Gaglia said.
When it comes to real estate, Katie Keisler with Realty Executives in Hickory said you're not breaking the bank.
“Hickory provides a high quality of living for a low cost of living," Keisler said.
It's a cost of living so low it's being recognized. According to a new report by U.S News, the Town of Hickory is the most affordable in the nation.
The town also ranked 31st best place to live and 45th best place to retire.
Keisler said it also comes down to bang for your buck.
“We’ve had a lot of people relocating here from Florida and New York and they are finding their dollar goes further here," Keisler said.
While things are cheaper, Hickory Mayor Hank Guess said what qualifies as "affordable" depends on who you ask.
"The folks that have been here for a while might not recognize that to the same extent as people who just move here from far away," Guess said.
Canopy MLS released stats in May of 2022 showing the average single-family home price per square foot in Charlotte compared to Hickory. Hickory came to $174 per square foot, while Charlotte came to $252 per square foot.
Canopy MLS added that 10 years ago, Hickory's average per square foot was $82.
Mayor Guess has lived in Hickory for over 50 years. He said he can acknowledge things are more expensive, but still relatively cheaper in comparison.