Moving to Winston-Salem, NC

Thinking about moving to Winston-Salem?

You’ll be in good company. Between 2010 and 2016, more than 12,586 people have moved to Winston-Salem, an increase of 5.5%. New residents are attracted to Winston-Salem’s sense of community and love of art.


Winston-Salem is home to 242,203 Winston-Salemites. With an area of 132.4 square miles, Winston-Salem has a population density of 1,829 persons per square mile, which makes it less dense than many other cities of comparable size.

The Winston-Salem, NC Metropolitan Statistical Area boasts a population of 662,079 people, of which Winston-Salem proper’s population makes up 37%.


Affordable housing is one of best things Winston-Salem has going for it. The median home value in Winston-Salem is $124,700, -38% below the US median value, according to Zillow. The median price per square foot in Winston-Salem is $77. Over the past 5 years, home values in Winston-Salem have increased by 3%.

Renters in Winston-Salem will also have an easy time finding affordable housing. The median rent in Winston-Salem is $995 per month, which is 30% lower than the US median. Over the past year, rental rates in Winston-Salem have increased by 0.2%.


The Winston-Salem area economy is growing strong. The Winston-Salem metro area’s GDP grew by 17% between 2011 and 2016, from $24.5 billion in 2011 to $28.7 billion in 2016, a total increase of $4.2 billion. The metro area has a per capita GDP of $43,419. According to the US Census Bureau, the median household income in Winston-Salem is $44,311, 25% lower than the national median. Winston-Salem’s unemployment rate is 4.1%.


The average annual temperature in Winson-Salem is 59.55 degrees. The average annual low temperature is 49.4 degrees, while the average annual high is 69.7 degrees. Winson-Salem’s hottest month is July, during which the average high temperature is 89 degrees, while the coldest month is January, when the average low drops down to 30 degrees.

Winson-Salem sees an average rainfall of 46.93 inches per year. July is the wettest month, with an average rainfall of 5 inches, while February is the dryest month, with an average rainfall of 3.19 inches.


Winston-Salem, NC has an annual violent crime rate of 6.01 violent crimes per 1,000 residents, which is higher than the national median of 3.8 in 1,000. Its property crime rate is 42.92 crimes per 1,000 residents a year, which is higher than the national average of 26.

Traffic & Transportation

Traffic is not as big of a problem in Winston-Salem as it is in many other US cities. According to a survey conducted by INRIX, the average commuter in Winston-Salem spends 8.8 hours in traffic each year, with about 3% of their time commuting in a traffic jam, a lower portion than average among US cities.

Walk Score gives Winston-Salem a walk score of 23.

Cost of Living

Winston-Salem is a relatively affordable place to live with a low cost of living. According to the  Bureau of Economic Analysis‘s Regional Price Parity survey, which takes into account cost of living metrics including the price of goods and services and housing, Winston has a regional price parity of 89.4.


The median age in Winston-Salem is 39.4 years. 48.2% of the population in the Winston-Salem metro area is male, while 51.8% is female. 6.9% of the metro population is foreign-born.

In terms of racial demographics, Winston-Salem is 46.9% Non-Hispanic White, 13.9% Hispanic, 34.2% Black, and 2.2% Asian.

87.5% of those over the age of 25 in Winston-Salem have a high school diploma, a lower rate than nationally. 34.3% of those over the age of 25 have a bachelor’s degree, which is higher than the national rate. 13.4% of residents have an advanced or professional degree.

In the 2016 presidential election, 43% of Winston-Salem voters voted for the Republican nominee, while 53% voted for the Democratic nominee.