11 Best Places to Live in Tennessee

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This southeastern musical state offers a lot to the birthplace of country music and is home to celebrities like Elvis Presley and even Taylor Swift. It ranks high in the livability index with good reason. Laden with artistic sceneries, rich culture, great hospitality, and low living costs, it is hard not to fall in love with this place. 

Here we discuss in depth the best places to consider if you are thinking about settling down in this beautiful state.


The beautiful, quaint and peaceful city is located slightly southeast of Memphis. It has been ranked the No.1 best place to live in Tennessee for two consecutive years, and with good reason. With good job opportunities, the highest income and the lowest crime rate in the state, you must keep Germantown on your shortlist of possibilities.
The housing is affordable (with an average house price of $288,500), and the schools have the most substantial ratings near the city with multiple opportunities for enjoyable nightlife.


Despite being a town, Smyrna, TN, is home to numerous parks and nature reserves with plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation. Thus, if the outdoors is your calling, Smyrna might be the place to settle down and spend your days in peace.
The second best place to live is in Rutherford County; this Nashville suburb is home to 49,552 people and diverse communities. Only 30 min from Nashville and with light traffic, commuting is pretty straightforward. The homes here range from affordable to fancy, so you have plenty of options available to make your pick.
The median rent is also low at $1,033, and the median household income is $62,635. You may think this is low, but the cost of living is standard as well. The biggest employer in this town is Nissan North America, so there is no shortage of job opportunities.
The schools in Smyrna, TN, are also among the most reputable, and the environment is excellent for both families and retirees. The low crime rate is also a bonus for residents to feel safe and navigate easily around town.

Signal Mountain

This sparsely populated (8,539) mountainous region is aptly named. Home to Chickamauga Creek and Mountain Opry and located along the Tennessee River and Walden Ridge, this is the perfect place to live if you wish to spend your days hiking and biking trails.
The low population also contributes to the low crime rate and the high living costs. Mountain homes are fantastic, and Signal Mountain is a great place to live if you can afford it.


Dubbed “the city of Burning Faith,” this Nashville suburb has a thriving job market, and the unemployment rate is well below the national average. The hardworking people of Brentwood take pride in having the lowest percentage of their population on public assistance. 

They are also the most educated, with many residents having bachelor’s and master’s degrees well above the national average. 

Oak Ridge

Occupying the east side of Tennessee in Anderson County, Oak Ridge is about 25 miles outside Knoxville. This historically rich city was built as part of the Manhattan Project funded by the federal government. Their presence is still visible through the Y-12 National Security Complex and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, both of which are the major employers in the area. 

The population of 29,300 enjoys the lowest crime rate in the state and the lowest rent ($732). Home prices average $149,800, which is all the more reason to set your roots in this picturesque city.


This suburb of Memphis is located 30 miles outside the downtown area. One of the most affluent areas near the big city, 48,000 makes around $110,084 on average. The homes can cost around a staggering $272,800, but the affordable living costs coupled with the gorgeous houses in the state’s most desirable areas more than makeup for it.


With a bustling population of 68,500, this town is located in the desirable Williamson County. Compared to Brentwood, the median home value is lower, at $321,400, but the average household income is considerable at $85,670.
Home to historic sites related to the Civil War and over 200 eateries serving delectable dishes from all over the nation and abroad, Franklin caters to both history buffs and foodies alike. Named the “Best Southern Town” by Gardens & Gun Magazine in 2014, the reputation of Franklin speaks for itself.


Returning to Williamson County, this small Nashville suburb is the opposite of Franklin population-wise. However, don’t be discouraged by the low population of 6,400. This is a tight-knit community and is home to many growing families.
Its position between two of Tennessee’s most extensive metro areas, Murfreesboro and Nashville, contributes to its pricey properties averaging $316,200. Nonetheless, the booming economy, excellent schools and a comfortable income ($108,549) make the homes a worthwhile investment. 

Spring Hill

Just 25 minutes south of Franklin along I-65 is the youngest city of the state, Spring Hills. Spring blooms throughout this place, as evident by their high performing schools, low poverty rate, high employment rates, and high median income.
With the population’s median age being 33, Spring Hill is aptly named and is an excellent place to search for a partner to settle down and start a family. 


You may be tempted to stay in this moderately populous city of 59,102 for its incredible Southern hospitality. But if that isn’t enough to convince you to move to this Green Bottom community, then low living costs surely will.
The most affordable place to live on this list also boasts the lowest median home prices at $185,100. The crime rate being 14 per cent below the national average is a bonus and adds to the already bustling quality of life. On the downside, though, unemployment rates are the highest in this list at 4 per cent, so you might want to confirm your job before moving here.


This Sullivan County town is witnessing a considerable boost in social aspects and livability, making it the perfect spot to open a business.
About 10 miles along the Virginia state line and with a modest population numbering 53,000, Kingsport boasts access to 15 state parks, six lakes, and five national parks. This has contributed significantly to its tourism, making it the state’s hottest tourist destination.
Other major employers in the town and those associated with tourism are the Eastman Chemical Company and Wellmont Health System.
With an average rent of $582 and homes selling for $135,700 on average, Kingsport is a comfortable place to settle down with your family.


Moving to a new place is easier said than done, especially if you have a family. Many factors need to be taken into consideration, including housing, living costs, job opportunities, and most importantly, schooling and the general quality of life. The above list was compiled with those specific factors in mind.
Before you put down roots, a careful decision will help you live comfortably in the long run. The places mentioned here are some of the best if you look to settle down in Tennessee.
No matter where you choose to set up your house, make sure it is a collective and informed decision for everyone involved to allow a smooth transition into a new chapter of your life’s journey.

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