The stretch of Topsail Island may be one single strip of shimmery sands, yet along these shores there are unique towns each with their own economic make-up. At the southern end of the island is Topsail Beach, a small coastal town that has a median household income of about $56,000. The top occupations of the area are in management, professional, sales and office positions. These are presumably held in either the retail trade or the field of arts, entertainment, recreation, and accommodation and food services, which are the top two industries of the area. The prominence of these two industries is due to the popularity of tourism in the town, and each experiences a hearty increase during the peak season.
Surf City holds one of the larger populations of the island chain with 2,057 residents. Citizens have an average household income of $40,500. The main occupations are again management, professional, sales and office positions, with the top industry of the town is educational, health and social services. Construction is also a large industry of the area, as the region is ever-expanding.
Farther to the north is North Topsail Beach, an island town where the average household income is around $53,000. Most of the occupations are held in the management and professional fields, with educational, health and social services being the leading industry. North Topsail also has an interestingly high amount of commuters in the area: roughly 60 percent of all employed persons commute to their jobs.
Holly Ridge, located just off the island, may have a small population, but it possess an impressive employment rate at 70 percent and a median household income of $25,600. Holly Ridge’s main industries are manufacturing, warehousing and transportation, which can all be attributed to one major business, Truss Building, Inc. The factory is responsible for the production and shipping of building structures and is also linked to the prominence of the second largest industry, construction.
The northern most town of the Greater Topsail area, Sneads Ferry has the largest population with 2,428 full time residents. Of this number, 72% are currently employed and the median household income is $34,500. The most commonly held occupations are in management, sales and professional positions. The largest industry is fishing and tourism related, with the arts, entertainment, recreation and accommodation and food services field. Educational, health and social services ring in second due to the demand placed on them by the larger population.