The Chamber of Commerce may have a different list of perks but these are among my favorites.
1. No local or state income tax.
That alone seems to be enough incentive to make people want to make the move, especially if you live in states such as California (13.3%), Oregon (9.9%) or New York (8.82%). Tennessee does have a “hall tax,” a 4% tax on interest and dividends for 2018–not on wages or tips; it decreases 1% each year until it’s obliterated by 2022.
2. Lower cost of living.
It’s all relative, right? The bad news: since it gained “It City” status, the cost of living in Nashville rose faster than other major cities in recent years, due primarily to a tight housing market. From April 2015 to April 2017, the median list price for a home rose by almost 30 percent, from under $260,000 to nearly $340,000. The so-called “live comfortably” income reached $70,015 for 2017. (Source: GObankingrates.com)
The good news: Nashville is still pretty affordable with a rate of 4% below the national average. Rent is 29% lower and consumer prices are 12% lower than in L.A. Comparing Nashville to New York City, rent there is 104% higher and consumer prices are 38% higher.
3. Free college tuition.
Once Tennessee residency is established, high school graduates are eligible for Tennessee Promise which provides the first two years of college free at a number of state and private institutions. Our state was the first to offer this widely heralded educational opportunity. We’ve also added college program targeting adults called Tennessee Reconnect.
4. Four seasons.
Yes, it can get hot here…or cold. But our average high is 69.7°F and our average low is 48.8°F–pretty moderate compared to most places. We typically get a little snow (and unfortunately, ice) each winter which gives way to a glorious springtime. Summer can be on the humid side but then comes our finest season–the resplendent autumn.
Just show a form of identification that verifies that you are a resident of Davidson County (a driver’s license, for example) and you’re eligible for a library card. In addition to the basics, you can access ebooks, eAudio books, free and legal song downloads from the Sony Music catalog as well as streaming albums, TV shows and movies. In 2017, they dropped fines for overdue materials.
All of the branches host concerts, author visits, seminars and forums. The downtown aka main library hosts its Salon 615 series which brings in nationally recognized authors such as Anne Lamott, R.L. Steine and Dan Rather.
It’s also home to Wishing Chair Productions, our nationally recognized puppet company. In addition to classics, the repertoire includes original productions. Each summer, the downtown plays host to the annual Nashville International Puppet Festival. If you have children, it’s a must-go.
6. Free live music.
It’s everywhere, starting with the airport and spreading across parks, public areas, hotels, bars and sidewalks. Plus, the quality is primo–even our street musicians has some serious chops.
7. Lakes and rivers.
Swim, fish, ski, cruise, even sail along our scenic–and abundant–waterways including Percy Priest, Old Hickory Lake and the Cumberland River. Whether you prefer walking in a creek or zooming along in a speedboat, we’ll make a splash with you.
8. Easy access via highways.
Wanna little road trip? With three interstates crossing through the city, you can be in the Smoky Mountains, Memphis or Atlanta in 3.5 hours, Birmingham in 2.75 hours and Louisville in 2.5. Okay, there is a downside; Destin, FL and Gulf Shores, AL, our nearest beaches, are 7 hours away.
Are you cashing in on local savings? Check out these easy ways to save money.