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The Cost of Living in Nashville, TN

Despite Nashville's rapid growth and increasing national prominence, the city has managed to retain one of its most appealing qualities: an affordable cost of living. While the city's surging popularity has led to rising housing costs, Nashville's cost of living remains relatively low compared to other major metropolitan areas. This balance of growth and affordability continues to draw new residents and businesses to Music City, where an exciting lifestyle and career opportunities come at a price that still allows room for music, food, and all the city has to offer. Far from being priced out, Nashville continues to hit the right notes when it comes to balancing a big-city feel with a small-town budget.

How Does Nashville's Cost Of Living Compare To Other Cities In The U.S.

In a recent study, Nashville ranked #23 out of 75 cities with the highest cost of living. The overall expenses for living in Music City overtook popular destinations like Dallas and New Orleans. However, if you're comparing Nashville's prices against any of the top 10 cities listed above, Nashville checks in far below.

Nashville's cost of living index:

  • Cost of living: 101. 4

  • Median household income: $46,758

  • Median home cost: $262,000

  • Inexpensive Restaurant (meal for one): $14.50

  • A gallon of milk: $3.30

  • A gallon of gas: $2.30

What Is The Cost Of Living Index?

Pinpointing the real estate market's precise ebb and flow can be a bit challenging. Fortunately, there are reliable sources constantly keeping track of it all, so we don't have to worry our pretty little heads about missing any critical data!

The cost of living should be taken into account as it can significantly impact your monthly budget. The national average is set at 100, meaning places with lower indexes than that tend to be more affordable, while those above represent pricier options.

Below is the U.S national averages:

  • Cost of living: 100

  • Median household income: $53,482

  • Median home cost: $231,200

  • Inexpensive Restaurant (meal for one): $15

  • A gallon of milk: $3.24

  • A gallon of gas: $2.61

Food Cost In Nashville

Compared to the national average, the price of groceries in Nashville measures at 102, or 2% higher than the national average. This number is based on the most common grocery staples. On average, a gallon of milk will cost you around $3.30 in Nashville.

If you're looking for ways to save on groceries in Nashville, one of the best strategies is shopping seasonally, taking advantage of sales and promotions with stores like ALDI, Piggly Wiggly, or United Grocery Outlet. Even a little effort, such as clipping coupons, can go a long way! A single resident typically needs between $168 - $357 per month, while families might spend up to an average of around $900 monthly -- but those amounts could be reduced with smart choices at any local grocery store.

Healthcare Cost In Nashville

Nashville is known for some pretty fantastic healthcare programs. Healthcare in Nshville is 3.3% below the national average. A monthly premium for one person in Nashville lies anywhere from $235-$500 depending on you needs and coverage. For a family of four, the cost falls anywhere from $1,350-$1,650.

Transportation Cost In Nashville

Nashville's population has far exceeded the number of people the city originally planned for. Sometimes getting around town can be a bit frustrating since the infrastructure has not caught up to the amount of people it supports.

The bustling city of Nashville is a car-centric metropolis, with most residents relying on their vehicles to navigate the area. Though gas and car insurance prices are reasonable, hovering around $2.30 per gallon and $1,338 per year for full coverage policies, these costs can still add up significantly for families and individuals. While rates fluctuate based on various factors, Nashville's rates are slightly more affordable than the country's average, offering welcome savings for many who call the city home. Overall, cars remain an integral part of life for those living in and around Nashville.

Cost Of Utilities In Nashville

The cost of utilities in Nashville is largely in line with national and statewide averages, though individual bills may vary based on personal factors. While utility companies set baseline rates for services, additional costs are determined by the specifics of one's home, family size, and usage habits. For the typical Nashville resident, monthly utility expenses are reasonably comparable to those of Americans overall and other Tennesseans, with only minor disparities on average. The nuances of individual utility bills ultimately come down to the particular circumstances of a home and the people who live there.

Housing Cost In Nashville

The price of Nashville real estate fluctuates dramatically based on location, property type, and style. Whether you dream of a sprawling estate in the countryside or a chic townhouse in the heart of the city, Nashville has a wide range of housing options to suit any budget or lifestyle. According to recent data, the median price of a single-family home in Davidson County is over $415,000, but prices soar for coveted properties near downtown Nashville or its trendy neighborhoods. Stylish condos and townhomes offer a more affordable entry point, with an average price of $371,996, while the average family home fetches over $550,000. From modern to historic, Nashville's dynamic housing market holds hidden gems at every turn.

While Nashville's housing market is increasingly competitive, savvy homebuyers can still uncover hidden gems in Music City's blossoming neighborhoods. Though home prices in Nashville outpace those in other parts of Tennessee, they remain relatively affordable when compared to other major metropolitan areas. For those willing to venture into Nashville's next big 'hoods before they explode, the rewards can be substantial. Deals on hip properties are available for those in the know, allowing one to get into Nashville's red-hot real estate market on the ground floor.

Nashville Rental Market

The bustling city of Nashville offers newcomers an affordable rental market. While studio and one-bedroom apartments in major metropolises may cost an arm and a leg each month, Music City welcomes residents with open arms and reasonable rent prices. Between $1,000 and $1,400, you could land a cozy apartment all your own and still have plenty left over each month to enjoy the local honky tonks and hot chicken. Forget the steep prices of New York or San Francisco that could set you back more in rent each year than a down payment on a house in Nashville. This southern gem is a welcome reprieve for the budget-conscious renter looking to put down roots in an exciting new place.


A life without state income tax means more financial freedom for residents of Tennessee. Each paycheck goes further when a larger percentage is kept in people's own pockets, allowing for more spending power and savings opportunities. While sales taxes in the state are moderately higher to account for the lack of income tax, the trade-off of keeping more hard-earned money may be worth it for many. The vibrant city of Nashville features an attractive overall tax rate that, coupled with an income tax exemption, paints an appealing financial picture for those looking to call Tennessee home.

In Davidson County, the urban communities tax properties at a rate of $4.221 per $100 of assessed value, while the rural communities tax at a lower rate of $3.788 per $100 of assessed value. For residential properties, the assessed value is determined as 25% of the appraised market value. These property tax revenues help support essential public services that residents and businesses across the county rely upon daily.

In conclusion, Nashville may be known as the Music City, but it's also a city that's growing rapidly, with a cost of living to match. While it's still more affordable than some of the biggest cities in the country, it's important to be aware of the expenses that come with living in Nashville.

By doing proper research, budgeting accordingly, and possibly making lifestyle changes, it's possible to live comfortably in Nashville without breaking the bank. With its vibrant culture, thriving music scene, and booming job market, Nashville is a great place to call home, but it's important to be realistic about the costs associated with living here.

So whether you're already a Nashville resident or considering a move to the Music City, take the time to evaluate your budget and make informed decisions about how you spend your money. With careful planning, you can enjoy all that Nashville has to offer without sacrificing your financial well-being.


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