Tennessee is one of the fastest growing states in America, with a population increase of almost ten percent since 2000. Tennessee is known as a tourist destination but now many retirees are flocking to the state in search of a low cost of living and access to great healthcare. The population of Tennessee is over six million, increasing annually, fueled by incoming Baby Boomers and retirees from the north, California and Florida. Nashville is one of the fastest growing cities in the nation and over 12 percent of the population is over the age of 65.
The state has a lot to offer including beautiful lakes, rivers and national parks. Whether your ideal retirement includes outdoor recreation, fine arts, culture or sports, there is something for everyone in Tennessee's active adult communities. A vibrant music scene and long history steeped in tradition have drawn retirees from all regions of the country. The state boasts one of the largest urban centers in the country is accessible in less than a day s drive, making it an ideal retirement destination that is close to friends and family. Major medical centers, top-notch colleges and universities and active civic organizations further enhance Tennessee's age-restricted and age-targeted communities that offer a great sense of community for citizens young and old.
Climate & Geography
The climate in Tennessee is mostly humid subtropical, except in the higher Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountains. Temperatures average in the mid 80s in the summer and mid 50s in the winter. Active adult communities in Tennessee have nights that are cooler in the eastern portion of the state. Winter in the higher elevations is cool and can drop to freezing. The Gulf of Mexico creates much of the climate in the state, bringing winds that drive the fifty inches of rain each year.
The state is covered with mountains and valleys along tributaries of the Tennessee River and the Tennessee River Valley. The Blue Ridge Mountains are not well populated, and are protected by the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Western Tennessee is the area most likely to attract tornadoes, with an average of fifteen per year. There is not much snow, but fog can impede travel, especially in the mountains.
Recreation, Culture & Entertainment
Tennessee's active adult communities live near areas that are rich in history and are filled with culture, recreation and social opportunities. The largest city is Memphis, but the best-known city is Nashville, the music capital of the south and the home of Elvis Presley s Graceland. Many Civil War battles were fought in Tennessee, the most of any state, including the famed Battle of Murfreesboro. After the war, a Tennessee Democrat became Abraham Lincoln s Vice President: Andrew Johnson. The Civil War battlefield of Shiloh is preserved and open to the public for exploration.
For music lovers, the three cities of Nashville, Memphis and Bristol provide venues to hear country music, soul, blues or rock and roll. Bristol is known as the birthplace of country music and the home of the Carter family and Tennessee Ernie Ford. Nashville is known for the Grand Ole Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame, and is nicknamed Music City, USA . Memphis is the birthplace of the blues, rock and roll, and it's the home of B.B. King. Gospel Music also abounds in Tennessee s Bible Belt. Active Adults have plenty of entertainment options around the entire state.
55+ communities in Tennessee are an outdoor enthusiast's paradise. Bass fishing is a favorite pastime in the state s numerous lakes and rivers. Hikers enjoy the Appalachian Trail as well as the 54 State Parks. In the midst of its beautiful mountains and river valleys, Tennessee is also home to over 8,000 caves, which provide adventures. World-class whitewater rafting is available in the Cherokee National Forest. There are numerous campsites located just a short drive from both Nashville and Memphis. With its year-round mild climate, Tennessee provides a great environment for active seniors to enjoy.
Cost of Living & Taxes
Those seeking to live in active adult communities in Tennessee will find that cost of living favorable. Cost of living for the state is about 10 percent lower than the national average.
Income tax in Tennessee does not apply to salary or wages, but it does apply to income from stocks, bonds and notes. Interest receives a $1,250 exemption per person. Sales tax in the state is 7 percent, but food is at 5.5 percent, and local areas add to the state tax. An inheritance tax is imposed on estates larger than one million dollars.
Tennessee provides great healthcare for its citizens. Their numerous hospitals and its supportive government create a positive atmosphere for the flourishing of healthcare. Numerous hospitals provide patient care, including the famed Vanderbilt Medical Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. The Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge was named the top hospital in Tennessee for two years in a row. They also earned a national award of excellence in heart failure treatment. Active adults in Tennessee's retirement communities are nearby top healthcare options.
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