Living Inside or Outside the Beltline

Looking to Move to Raleigh?

Pros and Cons of living “Outside” the Beltline


Living Inside or Outside the Beltline, that is the question?

Raleigh is one of the hottest cities in the United States due to the affordable real estate, temperate climate, and urban feel with all the staples of country living. When looking at homes in the Raleigh area, many locals refer to the geographic locations of a home in regards to its location to the 440 Beltline.


What is the 440 Raleigh Beltline?

The 440 Beltline is comprised of two circular roads, an inner and outer ring. Built in the 1960s, the original highway that circles Raleigh’s epicenter was given the name the “Inner” and “Outer” Beltline. The 440 Beltline has since been renamed to East I440 and West I440, even though it goes north and south for a majority of the route in either direction. It’s easy to get confused – go in the wrong direction, and you might find yourself on a very long detour. Whether you call I440 the “Inner” or “Outer” Beltline or refer to it by direction, Raleigh provides potential home buyers with a little bit of everything when it comes to real estate, recreation, and work.


Pros of Living Outside the Beltline

Now that you have a better understanding of how Raleigh is divided into living “inside” or “outside” the Beltline, we can dive into the pros and cons of each area. The pros of living outside the Beltline cater to a much more relaxed pace of life where all your needs are met but you don’t have to deal with the city center.


  • Peace and Quiet

Life outside the Beltline is much more quiet and suburban than life inside the beltline. There are several beautiful neighborhoods that offer less hustle and bustle but still provide access to parks, green spaces, and great schools.


  • Excellent shopping

North Hills, Crabtree Valley Mall, and Brier Creek are just a few of the excellent shopping areas outside of the Beltline.These locations all contain great shops, boutiques, and restaurants but tailor themselves to families. From outside concerts in the summer to better parking options, the ambiance is top notch.


  • Food

Raleigh is home to some of the best food in the country and the food scene has gained national recognition in recent years. If you live “outside” the Beltline, you can find everything from good old-fashioned chicken and waffles to Carolina-style barbecue to burger-sushi to craft beer…the options are limitless.


Cons of Living Outside the Beltline

With every “pro” comes some element of a “con”! While living outside the Beltline is great for some, others want the hustle and bustle of living at the city’s center. If that type of lifestyle is appealing, then living “inside” the Beltline is more your style.


  • Nightlife

While life outside the Beltline may be great for families and folks more settled in their lifestyle, young singles may find it lacks a nightlife scene and the opportunity to connect and socialize. Living “inside” the Beltline provides you with an abundance of restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and museums. From enjoying Raleigh’s craft beer and cocktail scene to embracing the local history, “Inner” city life is much more interesting and fast-paced.


  • Driving (and parking)

Life in the sprawling, suburban “outer” Beltline allows for 100% free parking with limited concern for finding a good parking space. However, if you choose to explore downtown, especially on a weekend night, be prepared to pay for parking on the street or in one of the many parking garages. If fighting with traffic and paying a million dollars to get an UBER to enjoy downtown life is not your thing, it may be worth your time to look for homes “Inside” the Beltline to cut down on your driving and the cost to enjoy the city.


  • Public transportation

Raleigh’s public transportation system leaves a lot to be desired. Most people drive from place to place, but for individuals without personal vehicles or who like to walk most places, life outside the Beltline might prove to be isolating.


The Bottom Line

There are pros and cons to living anywhere, so it is important to understand what you want out of your home’s location. When it comes to Raleigh, the location debate has a direct correlation to your geographical location to the Beltline. Whether you are an “Inner” or “Outer” personality, there is one thing for sure…living in Raleigh is a great choice for anyone looking to enjoy a small southern city steeped in charm and modern essentials.


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