Key findings

  • Knoxville has a Livability Score of 66/100, which is considered average
  • Knoxville crime rates are 59% higher than the Tennessee average
  • Cost of living in Knoxville is 8% lower than the Tennessee average
  • Knoxville real estate prices are 18% lower than the Tennessee average
  • Rental prices in Knoxville are 2% lower than the Tennessee average

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      Knoxville, TN

      Rocky Top Tennessee is the battle cry for the 175,000 plus who call Knoxville home in respect to the Tennessee Volunteers' fight song. On game day, Rocky Top can be heard playing on repeat as the football team takes on all foes from the Southeastern Conference. This riverfront city is one of the most beautiful in the entire state, and it is the perfect place for people who are looking to rent or buy a home since it offers great living at an affordable price.

      The city is named after a former Secretary of War who was instrumental to helping President Washington get America up and running. Today, Knoxville is an eclectic city that has a mix of college vibe with professional working class. Getting around Knoxville is easy with a car, and many of the students in the area prefer to get around campus and town on a bike or via their own two feet. For those who are looking for a public transit option, Knoxville Area Transit offers a number of busses and shuttles to get people from point to point. Five major freeways all converge in Knoxville making it easy to get from the city to other key points in Tennessee and beyond.

      Home prices in Knoxville are in line with other cities in the state, and buyers or renters will likely be able to choose from a number of homes at their price point. Fort Sanders, Old City, and West Point are just three of the many neighborhoods that offer good communal living in Knoxville. The city is also known for the quality of its education system. Some of the top schools in the area are Faragut Middle School, Rocky Hill Elementary, and Hardin Valley Middle School.

      Convenant Health and Tenneva Healthcare are two of the area's largest employers. The university also provides a lot of jobs to both students and long-term Knoxville residents. The Sunsphere is probably the area's most interesting attraction. This observation tower provides amazing views of the city below, Neyland Stadium, and the river that cuts through the heart of Knoxville. The Knoxville Zoo is an attraction that is a big win for children. Those who want to get away from the stress of the office or a classroom can head to Ijams Nature Center where they can enjoy a hike along the bank of one of the areas most beautiful lakes.

      Knoxville is a little oasis surrounded in a beautiful forest that is awash with the color orange thanks to the Vols. Renting or buying a home in Knoxville is a good investment due to the high quality of life that the city is able to provider for all of its residents.

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      Knoxville Reviews

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      Very Underrated City
      When people think of Tennessee, they often think of Nashville, Memphis, and probably Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg. However, as a resident of Knoxville, I can assure you it is an underrated city. The people here are wonderful. Yes, some are rather close-minded, however they are friendly to everybody even if they don't agree with some of your beliefs. The country side in North Knoxville up near Union County (Union is a terrible place to live, by the way) is absolutely beautiful. There's a reason East Tennessee is known for its scenery. We don't have many attractions as far as theme parks and such go, however we have a great assortment of parks and the Smoky Mountains are about a 30-45 minute drive from here. Downtown Knoxville also is home to the sun sphere and World's Fair Park after hosting in 1982. Our downtown area is very alive and fun. Market Square in downtown Knoxville has many restaurants and shops, as well as many activities that are hosted there such as the Dogwood Arts Festival which is held annually. Our restaurants are decent for us not being a massive city. We are home to Pizza Palace, which was featured on "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives." We have restaurants such as Louis which is a classic Italian restaurant which is beloved among all residents. Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy's, even got his start in Downtown Knoxville at Regas Restaurant along with the major Italian families in Knoxville. Our nightlife is pretty decent. Most of our major bars, restaurants, and clubs are along Gay Street and other areas in the downtown area and Old City. The major shopping mall in Knoxville is West Town Mall which is a hot spot for everybody's shopping, however we don't have many high-end stores such as Gucci or Louis Vuitton. Knoxville is split into different neighborhoods and communities, mainly consisting of the countryside communities such as Gibbs and Halls, the wealthier neighborhoods such as Fountain City, Karns, Farragut, Turkey Creek, etc. Then you have the rougher side of Knoxville such as Lonsdale and East Side. The crime there is pretty high compared to other parts of Knoxville, but still great people and an improving area. It's not the people's fault, rather the community's. Finally, our education is very good. We're a university town, home of UT. We have magnet schools such as L&N Stem which has a 100% graduation rate and other magnet schools such as CMA. Our public schools are pretty average, some better than others. All in all, Knoxville is a great town located near many hot spots such as Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville, etc. Very underrated city.
      2 -3
      Do NOT move to Knoxville if you're single and over 30
      Knoxville is a good place for families raising young children (especially for those who have extended family in the area and are highly religious, and preferably Southern Baptist). However, if you are a single person over 30, you are not going to like Knoxville. Basically, you will be a second-class citizen here because everything revolves around families and children. Also, if you are not Southern Baptist, you will soon tire of living in the Bible Belt. I have to keep my car radio off because of all of the screaming preachers on various stations. Another problem with Knoxville is that it is highly provincial. The people here act as though they've never been out of Knox County. Maybe they haven't. There's not much here in the way of sophisticated performing arts or anything else with class. Well, the Biscuit Festival is coming up. Yawn . . . . Someone once described Knoxville to me as "a pleasant purgatory." That sums it up exactly. I expect to be out of here in two years, fortunately.
      8 -8
      Things to see, but
      I like this city because there are things to see and do that are free, like the community park and trails and things like that. But I can't get over the lack of keeping the streets clean. People here are nice, but it is an average neighborhood nonetheless. Not much of a southern charm for this city, in regard to looks and some of the attitudes you will encounter here. Driving through is alright though, because it is a faster route to other areas in Tennessee. Sure there are things you can see here, like dinner shows and movies, but for attractions and a good time (with views) I would recommend Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.
      4 -2
      Knoxville, TN - Nature, Hiking and More!
      Knoxville, Tennessee is a city that has been recognized as the state capital during two separate periods of time. Knoxville's placement on the Tennessee River makes it an ideal industrial port. The University of Tennessee is located n this town, giving citizens access to great football games all season long at beautiful Neyland Stadium. Old City, the site of the 1982 World's Fair is another popular location for visitors to the town. Ramsey and Mabry-Hazen houses are two of the big attractions in Knoxville from the World's Fair that can still be seen today. They have actually been listed on the National Historical Register because of their reference to the past.

      Knoxville is a wonderful city for nature enthusiasts because of it's close proximity to the Smoky Mountains naional park. It is also very close to the Appalachian Trail, a hiking trail that stretches thousands of miles across the eastern United States. Knoxville, Tennessee is a city that is filled with nice people, good restaurants, and great scenic beauty. Whether as a place to make a home or to take a vacation, Knoxville is a great choice.
      2 -3
      Source: The Knoxville, TN data and statistics displayed above are derived from the 2016 United States Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS).