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Ask a Native - Is Knoxville a Good Place to Live?

Ask a Native – Is Knoxville a Good Place to Live?

Knoxville, TN, is a good place to live if you like to be happy.

Okay… so perhaps I’m a little biased, but I’ve been living in this area for years, seeing everything there is to see, experiencing the highs, lows, and flat middles of life in “The Marble City.” While I could easily present you with a glowing rave review and say everything is fine and dandy, I won’t do that. As an expert on Knoxville real estate, culture, and lifestyle, I’ll be honest.

And honestly? Knoxville, Tennessee, is an amazing place to live (aside from the seasonal allergies).

Nestled in a nook of Appalachia, this seat of Knox County buzzes along Tennessee’s famed river and is cradled by what we locals call the Great Smokies and the Cumberland Plateau. A valley city, Knoxville, Tennessee, offers tranquil riverbanks, bountiful fresh produce, and eye-popping foliage in the Fall.

Considering This Gem of Knox County, Tennessee?

Aside from its rare geographical attributes, this Knox County treasure boasts a rich cultural scene. The city is home to the University of Tennessee, infusing the area with youthful energy and intellectual curiosity. Meanwhile, the Knoxville Museum of Art, Tennessee Theatre, and other local venues keep the pulse pumping.

You’ve Never Experienced Southern Charm Like This

And it goes without saying, the people of Knoxville, TN, are truly delightful. They don’t call it Southern hospitality for no reason! Whether you’re immersing in concerts and festivals, working at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory or Knoxville Entrepreneur Center, or learning at the area’s public, private, charter, and technical educational institutions, you’ve gotta love living in Knoxville.

Oh, and did I mention the slow-cooked barbecue ribs and signature MoonPies? The southern cuisine of Knoxville, throughout the city center and beyond, is unlike anything your taste buds have savored before.

But enough tantalizing distractions! Let’s cover everything that makes living in Knoxville, from downtown Knoxville to all corners of the Knoxville area, so tasteful. 

Here are five reasons living in Knoxville, TN, is right for you.

From Uptown to Downtown Knoxville, The Prices All Around Are Hard to Beat

(1) From Uptown to Downtown Knoxville, The Prices All Around Are Hard to Beat

Who doesn’t like saving money without sacrificing quality? Especially in today’s economy? Depending on the data sources, the overall cost of living in Knoxville averages about 15% lower than the national average.

Is Knoxville a good place to live, you ask? Well, according to data analytics and trends from Payscale, the cost of housing is about 29% below the national average, the cost of utilities is 2% below it, and the price of groceries is 10% below the national average.

Meanwhile, the median home value in Knoxville, TN, is about $320,000, and the median rent is roughly $975 monthly.

Living on The Tennessee River Doesn’t Have to Be Expensive!

As you can tell, one of the standout advantages of living in Knoxville, TN, is its affordable cost of living. The city offers a low cost compared to many other major cities in the United States, which makes Knoxville an attractive destination for individuals and families looking for a high quality of life without breaking the bank.

Knoxville, TN, Is The Place to Be

As a former teacher and pro wrestler (yes, you read that right), my experiences before my real estate career have allowed me to fully savor the breadth and depth of Knox County. I’ve worked across socioeconomic divides and tax brackets and within and between various industries and occupations. In short, I know a thing or two about the area!

While an affordable cost of living is important, what about quality of living?

Turns out, living in Knoxville, TN, provides all the great amenities, features, and attractions of any big city magnet with the charming appeal of a small Southern town. Whether you’re considering Pigeon-Forge-Style cabins, beautiful mountain-view estates, waterfront homes, luxury properties, investment opportunities, or condos, I can help you find it and buy it!

(2) Bustling Business Opportunities and Career Accelerators

Is Knoxville, Tennessee, a good place to live?

According to a report from Knoxville-Knox County Planning, Knoxville, TN, reached over $13 billion in total retail sales in 2021 – despite a global pandemic! This figure is almost $4,000 more per capita from 2020, meaning that business is booming in Knoxville.

Of course, this comes as no surprise to most dwellers, as residents tend to experience the booming business sector daily. It’s no wonder, then, that U.S. News ranked Knoxville, TN, as the 17th best city to live in the country for young professionals.

When you factor in the cost of living, the diverse home selection (and median home price), and the numerous opportunities for career growth, the numbers add up!

A Great Place For a Life of Financial Freedom

Knoxville’s diverse and thriving business sector provides ample opportunities for economic growth and career advancement. The city has a strong presence in technology, manufacturing, healthcare, and education, offering a range of employment opportunities. The presence of reputable companies, research institutions, and entrepreneurial support systems creates a fertile ground for business ventures and professional development.

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Pilot Flying J, the U.S. Department of Energy, Covenant Health, U.S. Cellular, and Clayton Homes are just some of the major employers in Knoxville, TN. 

Are you considering living in Knoxville? One of the many Knoxville, TN, pros is work opportunity.

No Shortage of Jobs in Knoxville, TN

No Shortage of Jobs in Knoxville, TN

What drives you? Are you interested in accounting firms, law firms, consulting companies, and marketing agencies? How about advanced manufacturing in aerospace, automotive components, and chemical production? Would you rather be a techie in software development and information technology services at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory?

How about tourism and hospitality or a job working for the reputed University of Tennessee?

Regardless of vocational or career objectives or preferences, you’ll be right at home in Knoxville, TN. From the downtown area to the outskirts, Knoxville, Tennessee, is a worker-friendly town!

Don’t know if you’ll be able to work in a similar career field or find new work you’ll love while living in Knoxville? Let me ease your concerns. My Knoxville Relocation Guide has you covered!

(3) Love Socializing and Going Out? Living in Knoxville is Flat-Out Fun!

At the end of the – or start of the night – what would any city be without lively nightlife and vibrant daytime attractions? As a people person, I know what it’s like to crave socialization and love a good time interacting in cool places with unique… characters.

That’s why I highly recommend checking out ‘the scene’ in Knoxville.

When people ask me, “Is Knoxville a good place to live?” – the answer’s easy! The social scene in Knoxville speaks for itself. And how loudly it speaks depends on your preference and pursuit. Whether you’re seeking cultural experiences, live music, sporting events, or local gatherings, Knoxville has something for everyone.

From Themed Festivals to Crowded Stadiums and Theaters, Knoxville’s Got It

Knoxville is renowned for its year-round calendar of festivals and events celebrating art, music, culture, and community. The Dogwood Arts Festival is a highly anticipated event showcasing the beauty of blooming dogwood trees and featuring art exhibitions, live performances, and cultural experiences. Meanwhile, the Knox Asian Festival brings together diverse communities, highlighting Asian cultures through traditional dances, music, martial arts, and authentic cuisine.

These cultural experiences are just another item on the list of Knoxville, TN, pros.

Do You Fancy Live Music Venues and Theater Acts?

Knoxville is also a hub for eclectic music enthusiasts, offering an array of venues and genres to suit every taste. The historic Bijou Theatre, with its intimate atmosphere, hosts musical performances, stand-up comedy acts, and theatrical productions. The Tennessee Theatre, a beautifully restored architectural gem, brings world-class concerts, Broadway shows, and classic film screenings to the heart of Knoxville.

Smaller venues like the Open Chord and Preservation Pub provide platforms for local musicians to showcase their talents, offering music lovers a lively and engaging atmosphere.

You Can’t Go Wrong With Big Sports Cities

When you really want to turn up the volume and get the adrenaline pumping, visit a sporting event. As you may know, Knoxville is a sports-loving city, and residents rally behind their teams enthusiastically. Neyland Stadium, the home of the University of Tennessee Volunteers football team, becomes a sea of orange on game days, creating an electrifying atmosphere as fans cheer on their beloved team. Over at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum, you can enjoy some heat on the ice with The Knoxville Ice Bears professional hockey team.

These sporting events bring people together while fostering a strong sense of city pride and camaraderie. If you’re a sports fan like me, you’ll absolutely love the atmosphere!

Keeping It Local: Community Gatherings and Neighborhood Hotspots

Keeping It Local: Community Gatherings and Neighborhood Hotspots

But what if loud stadiums, dazzling theater performances, and wild festivals aren’t your thing? If you still like to get out and about but in a more low-key environment away from foot traffic, Knoxville, TN, has something for you. Living in Knoxville makes it easy to link up with residents and visitors alike.

In the downtown area, Market Square, the vibrant center of Knoxville, hosts events such as art exhibitions, outdoor movie screenings, and seasonal celebrations like the Christmas Market and the Sundown in the City concert series. These gatherings provide opportunities for residents to connect, socialize, and forge lasting relationships.

Different Styles. Different Neighborhoods. But Always Great Vibes.

You can also partake in neighborhood hangouts. Most residents love living in Knoxville because of its charming and close-knit neighborhoods. Each neighborhood has its own unique character and social niches. The Old City, a historic district with cobblestone streets, is known for its trendy bars, live music venues, and art galleries, attracting a young and energetic crowd.

By comparison, the Bearden area offers a laid-back atmosphere with popular local restaurants and cozy coffee shops, the perfect place to sip and munch!

As you can see, Knoxville is a leader among cities due to its distinct social and cultural offerings. Restaurants, festivals, live music events, sports enthusiasm, local gatherings, and neighborhood hangouts make this place truly one of a kind. The colorful tapestry of social experiences is something you can only find living in Knoxville.

(4) Living in Knoxville is Living in Nature – Soak Up The Country!

Are you still wondering, “Is Knoxville a good place to live?

While the answer varies based on your preferences, if you enjoy the outdoors, the answer is a resounding YES. Living in Knoxville, TN, is all about living amid incomparable natural beauty. It’s a great place to escape the shops, restaurants, and human traffic and get out into the great beyond.

Biking, hiking, running, and walking trails abound!

From the majestic Great Smoky Mountains to the winding Tennessee River, the region offers myriad natural experiences that leave a lasting impression. The awe-inspiring Great Smoky Mountains National Park awaits just a short drive from Knoxville. With over 800 miles of hiking trails, this national park features lush trees, cascading waterfalls, and scenic vistas.

It’s a paradise for outdoor activities!

Cades Cove, a picturesque valley within the park, invites visitors to explore historic cabins, bike along scenic roads, and spot wildlife like deer and black bears. Feel free to pluck a flower or examine a beautiful plant – no property crime here!

As long as your seasonal allergies don’t go crazy, you’ll love your adventure in the Great Smokies near Knoxville.

Natural Wonder Meets Urban Wilderness When Living in Knoxville

Natural Wonder Meets Urban Wilderness When Living in Knoxville

One of many Knoxville, TN, pros, these unique outdoor adventures only get better. When you explore Tennessee’s famous river, don’t miss out on water-based activities like boating, kayaking, and paddleboarding. Locals often take advantage of the river’s tranquil waters to go fishing or enjoy a leisurely cruise aboard riverboats.

Don’t want to travel far from the city but want to escape the hustle, bustle, and traffic of living there?

You’re in luck! Knoxville boasts a unique feature known as the Urban Wilderness, an expansive network of natural areas and recreational trails that seamlessly blend with the city’s urban landscape. Spanning over 1,000 acres, this outdoor playground offers an array of opportunities for outdoor adventures.

Knoxville Residents Love Their Great Outdoors

Visitors can also explore the Ijams Nature Center, an urban oasis that offers educational programs, birdwatching, and even a treetop adventure course. And if you’re willing to travel just north of Knoxville, Norris Dam State Park showcases the region’s stunning beauty and rich history.

When you seek outdoor activities, walking trails, and expansive wildlife, Knoxville’s natural wonders invite you. Explore, seek solace, and forge a deep appreciation for the beauty of this state.

Fly into Mcghee Tyson Airport and see the town and country for yourself. Just remember to monitor those seasonal allergies!

(5) Some of The Best Public Schools and Private Institutions Around

Is Knoxville, TN, a good place to live?

Aside from nature, social fabric, cost of living, and business opportunities, Knoxville also makes life great with top educational institutions. According to Public School Review, Knoxville has 83 public and 49 private schools. The Knoxville public schools exceed the state’s average proficiency scores in reading and math and have an overall average ranking of 7/10, placing them among the top half of all the state’s public schools.

The college town of Knoxville is probably best known for the University of Tennessee (UT), Knoxville. Aside from Neyland Football Stadium, one of the largest college football stadiums in the U.S., the school also offers many incredible educational opportunities. Among the list of Knoxville, TN, pros are UT’s significant contributions to scientific discoveries, technological advancements, and societal solutions.

The school is home to several renowned research centers and institutes, such as the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the Bredesen Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Graduate Education, and the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation. UT’s research initiatives span various fields, including energy, advanced materials, biomedical sciences, cybersecurity, and sustainable agriculture.

The university’s alumni have achieved notable success, including Pulitzer Prize-winning authors, CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, astronauts, and government leaders. The strong alumni network provides valuable connections, mentorship opportunities, and a sense of pride and camaraderie among college students and graduates

Are You Considering Living in Knoxville?

Are You Considering Living in Knoxville?

Living in Knoxville offers a full range of lifestyles. Do you want a remote mountainous retreat? Are you looking for a top school for your young high school grad? Do you prefer safe and secure gated communities with such exclusive property, crime is the last thing on your mind?

How about top-notch business possibilities in manufacturing, health care, technology, and education?

Do you find the gorgeous Southern weather and nature irresistible?

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“Haley Jones Homes” isn’t just a name or marketing gimmick. I’ve been living in Knoxville – and around Knoxville – for years. With connections across industries, a love for people near and far, and on-the-ground information you can’t get elsewhere, I’m your go-to Knoxville realty expert.

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