Located in Eastern Tennessee, Knoxville is one of the state’s largest cities. Popular for its active downtown, four distinct seasons, and affordable home prices, Knoxville is an increasingly popular destination for active adults. Besides this, retirees enjoy abundant outdoor recreation and natural spaces surrounding the city.
Climate & Geography
Knoxville’s climate is humid subtropical, characterized by warm to hot summers and cool winters. Rainfall is frequent in the summer and there is a small amount of accumulating snow in the winter. Residents can expect 204 days of sun each year.
The city is situated in the Great Appalachian Valley. The valley is broad and residents can see the Great Smoky Mountains to the east of the city. These mountain ranges help moderate temperatures, shielding the region from strong winds and severe storms. The Tennessee River also flows through the southern end of the city.
Recreation, Culture, & Entertainment
Knoxville is popular for its outdoor recreation and natural areas. Not only are there state forests and protected parks in the mountain ranges surrounding the city, there are several greenspaces within the city. Ijams Nature Center and Fort Dickerson Quarry both offer hiking trails and paddling.
Market Square is Knoxville’s cultural hub in the downtown area featuring festivals and events, a farmers market, boutique shopping, and local eateries. Residents looking for the arts can head to Historic Gay Street, the city’s theater district.
Other amenities include multiple golf courses, a local zoo, and several historical museums. The University of Tennessee also offers residents arts, cultural, and sporting events.
Cost of Living & Taxes
Knoxville’s overall cost of living is below the national average. Housing, utilities, groceries, and transportation are all well below average. Health care is the only factor that is above average.
Tennessee does not have a standard income tax, and therefore Social Security and any other form of retirement income is not taxed. Property taxes are low, and there are relief programs aimed at seniors. Sales taxes, on the other hand, are very high.
The Knoxville metro area ranks in the top 65 communities in the U.S. according to Gallup’s Well-Being Index.
Knoxville has three hospitals that are rated as high performing by U.S. News. These include University of Tennessee Medical Center (No. 1 in the area), Parkwest Medical Center, and Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center.