Hampstead: A Sound Choice for Convenience and Pleasure
Hampstead was once just a small fishing village and a whistle stop alongside the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, but today it is one of the fastest growing areas in Southeastern North Carolina. Its population currently hovers near 12,000 residents, reflecting a growth rate of 12.8%.
Situated on a scenic sound, Hampstead looks across the sound to Topsail Island. It is close to the beach and just a short jaunt (20-25 minutes) to downtown Wilmington, NC. Hampstead borders Highway 17, which connects Wilmington to Jacksonville, NC (about 30-40 minutes away). Highway 17 is being upgraded to a four-lane coastal highway that will stretch from Virginia to Florida.
Hampstead is the largest of many small communities that make up Topsail Township in Pender County. Newcomers of all ages are making this little waterfront community their permanent home because they appreciate the affordable lifestyle and quiet atmosphere just minutes from all of the conveniences and attractions of the neighboring cities.
Lifestyle and Leisure in Hampstead
Hampstead offers access to a variety of historical and natural attractions. Poplar Grove Plantation is Hampstead’s most popular historical attraction. One of the oldest existing peanut plantations in North Carolina, Poplar Grove opened as a museum in 1980. The mansion is on the National Register of Historic Homes and has been preserved as a shining example of a successful farming family homestead typical of the 1800s era.
With its roots as a fishing village, there are plenty of leisure activities for those who love the water: enjoy the pristine Topsail beaches; cruise the Intracoastal Waterway; or fish for your dinner. Naturally, Hampstead is equipped with a full-service marina and a boatyard. Hampstead is one of a few local villages that stake a claim to the title of "Seafood Capital of the Carolinas". Each September brings the Spot Festival, a long-held tradition that celebrates one of the most abundant and favorite fish in the area (5500 pounds of it, to be exact!).
Golf is king here, with more than a dozen golf courses within a 10-minute drive. The greens in Hampstead remain quite affordable as compared to neighboring Brunswick County and Myrtle Beach. Belvedere Plantation is the area’s most sought after destination. Topsail Greens offers budget golfing, while Olde Point Golf and Country Club and the links course at Castle Bay offer mid-range golf courses.
The Hampstead community also hosts many events to help its citizens and promote local businesses. Relay For Life is an annual walkathon sponsored by local groups to raise money for the American Cancer Society. The Hampstead Expo is an event sponsored by the Greater Hampstead Chamber of Commerce in order to spotlight local merchants and encourage residents to support their local businesses.
Garden centers abound in Hampstead, allowing local green thumbs to take full advantage of the area’s 248 growing days per year. Several varieties of flowers bloom all winter, and numerous shrubs and trees retain their foliage year-round.
Economy and Government of Hampstead
The community of Hampstead first gained fame in the late 1700s, when it served as a temporary home for the first president of the United States. When residents say, "George Washington slept here," they mean it. He bunked in a local public house in 1791 on his tour of the Southern states. In honor of his visit, the Washington Oak, an oak tree was planted as a monument by the Daughters of the American Revolution in 1925. It is still a massive live oak, and the centerpiece of the town.
With Hampstead’s rapid population growth, commercial trade is strong. The recent widening of Highway 17 to four lanes attracted several national chain restaurants to the area. Pender County is presently developing and expanding its county water system for the Hampstead area and is planning to add a sewer system in the near future. Additionally, the North Carolina Department of Transportation has proposed a bypass around Hampstead that will tie into the new I-140 bypass around Wilmington to the south and west.
Retirement in Hampstead
With a mild climate, neighboring beach communities, and abundant recreational opportunities, Hampstead, NC is attracting retirees in ever-increasing numbers. The average summer high temperature is 88 degrees, the average winter low is 36 degrees and the overall average for the year is 64 degrees.
An abundance of activities delight both retirees and their grandkids alike! In fact, newcomers of all ages are making the quaint little waterfront community their permanent home. Although progressive and growth-oriented, Hampstead is a unique blend of the graciousness and gentility of the South and the cosmopolitan influence of new residents from across the nation. The resulting ambiance is delightfully relaxed, but upbeat.
Real Estate and Housing in Hampstead
Hampstead is unique in that all its golf courses are surrounded by different housing sub-divisions or communities. The housing available in said communities varies greatly. Topsail Greens offers manufactured housing while Olde Point is well known for its large million dollar homes.
But houses lining the four golf courses aren’t the only real estate options in Hampstead: Some homes front the waterway; others sit on the numerous creeks in the area, and still others offer acreage in the country. Additional choices include beach-community condominiums and low-maintenance town homes.
There is a strong upswing in the development of retirement communities, many of them with golf courses, tennis courts and swimming pools. For example, Eagles Watch is situated along the Old Topsail Creek and Nixon’s Mill Creek in Hampstead. It is a conservatively developed 130-acre coastal community nestled among ancient cypress trees. Eagles Watch guarantees both country club amenities and the preservation of its natural resources including the eagles for which it is named.
Other subdivisions include: Coastal Plantation, Middle Pointe Village, Whitebridge, Washington Acres, Sloop Point, Deerfield Estates, Forest Sound and Hickory Point.
Whether you choose a million dollar property on the waterway or low maintenance patio home; whether you prefer waterfront views or rolling countryside; you’re guaranteed to find relaxed ambiance, convenience, and a “sound” choice in Hampstead. If you would like to own a property in this thriving community-focused area, please contact us today.