Asheville, North Carolina, is an attractive city and metro area that has something for everybody, including scenic mountains, live music, locally produced food and drink, and a vibrant arts scene. Asheville is the largest city in western North Carolina, with approximately 89,000 residents and a metropolitan area population of about 425,000. You’ll find Asheville tucked between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Great Smoky Mountains. Its location is one of the many reasons it made our list of the best places to live in North Carolina.
Due to the area’s popularity, rents are higher than national averages for the most part. On a scale where the national average is 100, the overall cost of living in Asheville is 106, compared to North Carolina’s ranking of 90.6. For the housing category, Asheville rates 124.1, while North Carolina ranks at 81. Rent affects the average cost of living in Asheville, but other factors include energy, food, health care, and transportation costs.