Living Here Guide

Union has more than good home prices

Thousands of people call Union County home while they commute daily to Charlotte. With good reasons – beyond the obvious ones.

You can find affordable homes in Stallings, Indian Trail, Hemby Bridge, Lake Park, Wesley Chapel, Weddington and Waxhaw. These towns are popular and growing. In fact, Indian Trail has surpassed Monroe as the Union County town with the highest population. Monroe is the county seat.

I’ve lived in Union County for more than two decades. I’ve seen more and more people come and seek homes in areas close to Charlotte. For a while, Union was one of the fastest-growing counties in the state and country. That has slowed, but people still frequently choose this county over other options.

So, if you’re looking for that small-town atmosphere, Union County has 14 municipalities that offer just that, and you’ll probably find something you like in each.

But other gems give this county charm.

There’s historic Waxhaw, with its oldtime, downtown atmosphere, which comes complete with a walking bridge across the railroad. You must see their Fourth of July Parade at least once.

There’s Wingate University, neatly tucked in the town that bears the same name. The university has become a regional force with its pharmacy school and a growing curriculum for those seeking work as health-care professionals. Wingate also recently opened a branch in Ballantyne, the highly popular development that runs right into Union County.

In this county, you’re also close to all the shopping you can handle.

If you live in Union County, you’re probably within a half-hour drive of Monroe Crossing Shopping Mall. You’re also probably within 45 minutes of Concord Mills, Carolina Place in Pineville and the new Tanger Outlet complex that recently opened in Mecklenburg County’s Steele Creek.

Also, you can get to the ever-popular SouthPark in less than an hour.

The outerbelt, Interstate 485, is the link, tying you to many of the popular destinations. You’ll need to know the freeway’s rhythm because, like Independence Boulevard, it jams during rush hour. But some things are changing.

As of May, the federal government has given approval for the Monroe Connector Bypass. That’s a key road that many say will improve transportation across Union County and bring in more business.

Bringing in business is crucial because the major portion of Union County’s tax revenue comes from homeowners.

The county recently raised property taxes, and a good bit of that will go to the schools. Many people moved to the county because of the schools. Most of Union County’s public schools have consistently shown high performance by state standards. However, a new administration is in its second year and a recent redistricting plan has caused unrest in key parts of the county.

Still, as you drive Union County’s rural roads – which mostly now are in the northern and eastern sections of the county, due to the constant building of new homes – you see cornfields, cattle pastures and natural habitats that signal a calmer, less-harried lifestyle.

And for thousands who call Union County home, that’s what they love about the place.