There’s a the age old question everyone thinks about when they decide to move to a city in Tennessee:
Should I buy a place or rent?
Well, we aren’t here today to solve that problem for you exactly. We are just assuming you’ll do the right thing and a buy a place 😉
And while we are happy to tell you the best place to live in Tennessee, this analysis is going to tackle the question of the best place to buy a house as an investor. That is we are going to try and determine the up and coming cities in the Volunteer State.
To do that we are going to look at places in Tennessee that are growing faster than average, but where home prices are below average. In every day terms, the “deals”.
The best deal in Tennessee at the moment? That would be Shelbyville according to our analysis.
Here’s a look at the top ten places to buy a home in Tennessee for 2019:
- Shelbyville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- La Vergne (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lenoir City (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Fairview (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Harriman (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Nolensville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- McMinnville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lebanon (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Murfreesboro (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Mount Juliet (Photos | Homes For Sale)
The methodology that wen’t into this can be a bit complicated, so we’ll break it down for you in as much detail as we can below.
If you’re not worried about finding a deal on good places to live, check out the most expensive places to live in Tennessee and, for those of you on a budget, the cheapest places to live in Tennessee.
For more Tennessee reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Tennessee
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Tennessee
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Tennessee
How do you determine the best places to buy a home in Tennessee for 2019?
We were in real estate for almost five years and have been working on this site for another three. Suffice is to say, we’ve put a lot of thought into what goes into finding a good place to buy a home.
So all that thinking has come to this moment where we get to spell out how we’d approach finding an up-and-coming place to live in Tennessee. Put differently, the analysis will try to find places in Tennessee with undervalued homes relative to pent up demand.
To do that we looked at the most recent American Community Survey Census data for 2013-2017 and compared it to the previous vintage (2012-2016). Specifically, we used the following criteria:
- Y-o-Y Change In Population (People want to live here)
- Y-o-Y Change In Median Home Prices (People are willing to pay for it)
- Home Prices Relative To The State Average (It’s still kinda cheap)
We want places that are growing, have seen home prices increase in recent years, and are still “cheap” for Tennessee with the following caveats:
- Home prices had to be within 20% of the state average (Much lower than that and you get to some of the more dangerous places)
- Home prices increased in the last year, and
- Above 5,000 people (Bigger cities have more data points)
So of the 427 cities and towns in Tennessee, only 95 places made it through our initial filters to even be considered.
We then ranked each place from 1 to 95 for the criteria mentioned above with 1 being the best for that criteria. We averaged the rankings to create a “best place to buy” index with the place having the lowest index being the best.
Turns out that Shelbyville is the best potential gem in the not-so-rough in the Volunteer State.
Read on for more on these places.
Native Americans were living in the Lenoir City area for thousands of years before the arrival of the first European settlers. On Bussell Island, which lies across the Tennessee River to the south, archaeologists have discovered evidence of habitation dating to as early as the Archaic Period. The island is also believed to have been the location of “Coste,” a village visited by Hernando de Soto in 1540. The Cherokee called the Lenoir City area Wa’ginsi, and believed it to be the home of a large serpent that brought bad luck to anyone who saw it. By the early 19th century, an early East Tennessee pioneer, Judge David Campbell, had laid claim to part of what is now Lenoir City, where he had built a log cabin and a gristmill.
Fairview was incorporated on July 28, 1959, under the Uniform City Manager-Commission Charter as set out in Tennessee Code Annotated. Fairview was originally known as “Jingo.” Fairview city limits is located about one mile southwest from the Nashville-Davidson County line and has two interstates passing through it. With an average elevation of 800 feet above sea level, Fairview is about 150 feet higher than Nashville and surrounding suburbs which gives Fairview the advantage of being less flood prone.
Harriman was founded as a Temperance Town in 1889 by temperance movement activists led by New York-born minister and plant manager Frederick Gates. Seeking a land venture that could attract industrial and economic development while avoiding the vice-driven pitfalls of late 19th century company towns, Gates and fellow prohibitionists chartered the East Tennessee Land Company in May 1889. In subsequent months, the company acquired several hundred thousand acres of land around what is now Harriman, including the plantation of Union Army colonel and state senator, Robert K. Byrd. The company’s early investors included 1888 Prohibition Party presidential candidate General Clinton B. Fisk, who served as the company’s first president, Quaker Oats co-founder Ferdinand Schumacher, and publishers Isaac K. Funk and A. W. Wagnalls.
William Nolen, his wife, Sarah, and their five children were passing through the area in 1797 when their wagon wheel broke. Forced to stop and survey his surroundings, Nolen noted the rich soil and abundance of natural resources, and decided to make Nolensville his home. William Nolen purchased a portion of a land grant to Jason Thompson on which Nolensville was later built. In the early 19th century, a large migration from Rockingham, North Carolina, brought the Adams, Allen, Barnes, Cyrus, Fields, Glenn, Irion, Johnson, Peay, Scales, Taylor, Vernon, Wisener, Williams, and other families to the area. Built along Mill Creek, the town was incorporated in 1839.
The city was incorporated in 1801, and was named after the biblical cedars of Lebanon. Local residents have called Lebanon “Cedar City”, mostly a reference to the abundance of cedar trees in the area. The city is home to Cumberland University, a small, private four-year liberal arts institution.
In 1811, the Tennessee State Legislature established a county seat for Rutherford County. The town was first named “Cannonsburgh” in honor of Newton Cannon, then Rutherford County’s member of the state legislature, but it was soon renamed “Murfreesboro” for Revolutionary War hero Colonel Hardy Murfree. Author Mary Noailles Murfree was his great-granddaughter.|As Tennessee settlement expanded to the west, the location of the state capital in Knoxville became inconvenient for most newcomers. In 1818, Murfreesboro was designated as the capital of Tennessee. Eight years later, however, it was itself replaced by Nashville.
Mt. Juliet was formed in 1835 and incorporated as a city in 1972. According to the Mt. Juliet Chamber of Commerce, the name of the town has two possible explanations. One theory is that the town was named for Julia Gleaves, a person who was renowned for taking care of those in need within the community. The most widely accepted story is that Mt. Juliet is named for the Mount Juliet Estate, a manor house in County Kilkenny, Ireland. It is the only U.S. city with this name. I grew up there and an older gentleman that knew the local history told me that during prohibition the area was referred to as “Mint Julip” due to a brothel and speakeasy north of town. Later it was changed to Mount Juliet as that was a much more polite name. Unfortunately I have no verifiable source for this information.
There You Have It – The Best Places To Purchase A House In Tennessee for 2019
There’s our analysis of the best places to buy a house in Tennessee. And, to be clear, we aren’t necessarily saying these places are the best places to live, just that it looks like they might be in a couple of years based on the data.
In fact, every place in the following table meets our criteria, so even though it may not look super long, remember we started off with all 427 places in the state.
So if we’d could rent or buy in these cities, we’d definitely buy.
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