About Carteret County

Carteret County is located on the coast of North Carolina and comes with some great benefits!

If you’re looking for low property rates and beautiful living, choose Carteret County! We’ve consistently had the lowest county property tax rates in all of North Carolina. We also have one of the highest-ranked school systems in North Carolina with the second-highest average SAT and ACT scores in 2018.

When it comes to healthcare, we have one of the best performing rural hospitals in the United States and ranks among the top 100 rural hospitals in America. We have also enjoyed a partnership with the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and the UNC Cancer Care.

For those interested in marine sciences, Carteret County is home to once of the largest concentrations of marine scientists and researchers in all of the United States. We’re proud to be the home of the Duke University Marine Laboratory, the University of North Carolina Institute of Marine Sciences, the North Carolina State University Center for Marine Sciences and Technology, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) Beaufort Laboratory, plus other marine sciences and fisheries research facilities.

Are you ready to find your new home on the Crystal Coast?

A Home for Military Families

With our proximity to the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point— which is the largest air station in the United States Marine Corp— we are the perfect home for military families.

Cherry Point is programmed to become the largest Marine Corps airbase for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter by 2025.

A Place to Retire

Realtor.com recently ranked Morehead City as the sixth-ranked fastest-growing retirement hot spot in the country.

Retirees can save money and improve their quality of life by relocating to the Crystal Coast.

Activities for Everyone in Carteret County

Are you ready to move to a place you actually want to live? Are you ready to relax and enjoy ocean sunrises and sunsets instead of your long commute time to and from work?

Choose the Crystal Coast!

Because the Crystal Coast is an amazing place to live, our slice of paradise is recognized by others for what we have to offer.

The Crystal Coasts boasts something for everyone, including:

  • 85 miles of beautiful sandy beaches
  • World-class fishing and SCUBA diving
  • Miles of trails for hiking and biking
  • The Cape Lookout National Seashore
  • Croatan National Forest
  • Home to three of the top 20 most visited North Carolina attractions

Find your slice of paradise in Carteret County. Not sure where the best place for you to live is? Our team of experts is here to help you find your perfect next home.

Our Accolades

We think Carteret County is an amazing place to live— and we have the awards to prove it! We have:

  • The South’s Best Small Town — Beaufort — voted #1 by Southern Living magazine
  • One of the South’s Best Pubs — The Backstreet Pub, located in Beaufort — voted #3 by Southern Living magazine
  • The Carteret County Public School System — among the best performing schools in North Carolina, ranked 2nd in 2018 for SAT and ACT scores
  • Carteret Health Care — one of the highest-ranked hospitals in NC and recognized as a Top 100 Rural & Community Hospital in the U.S.
  • One of the nation’s largest clusters of marine research (Duke, North Carolina State University, University of North Carolina and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA))
  • Emerald Isle was ranked the best beach in North Carolina by USA Today in 2018
  • Carteret Community College has been designated as a Maritime Center of Excellence by the U.S. Maritime Administration

Data Center

See what makes Carteret County different!

  • Population – 70,216
  • Median Age – 47
  • Workforce – 32,858 (2017), and 75% work in the county
  • Median Family Income – $64,859
  • Per Capita Income – $32,777
  • Education – 90% high school graduates, 27% bachelor’s degrees
  • Taxation – $0.31 county rate (per $100), 100% valuation
  • Size/Density – 506.2 square miles, 136.1 residents per square mile
  • Households – 30,000 households
  • Household size – 2.5 persons per home average
  • Climate – Average Annual High: 71.4 degrees, Average Annual Low: 55.8 degrees