Knoxville feels like the perfect combination of a bustling city and quiet suburbs — that's because you can experience both within the same town. This city has become more prominent in regional and national news as a great place to live. U.S. News ranked it as top 25 metro area to live in this year because of its growing economy and job market, affordable cost of living, and access to plenty of natural and cultural hot spots. If Knoxville is on your list as a future hometown or you're planning to temporarily move to Knoxville for your job, it helps to know the area's pros and cons. Keep reading to learn what we love best about living in Knoxville, along with a few potential cons to keep in mind.
Pros of living in Knoxville
#1: Lots of access to nature
#2: Vibrant Arts Community
When you think of Knoxville, you might not immediately picture a vibrant arts and culture hub. However, this "Scruffy City" has so much to offer in terms of artistic experiences. Knoxville proudly hosts a plethora of festivals that celebrate music, arts, and culture, including the renowned Dogwood Arts Festival and the Big Ears Festival. These events showcase the city's creative spirit and provide unforgettable experiences for attendees. If you're a fan of live performances, Knoxville won't disappoint. The historic Tennessee Theatre and Bijou Theatre stand as iconic venues, hosting a diverse range of shows that captivate audiences. Additionally, the city boasts the First Friday Art Walk, Beck Cultural Center, Strong Alley murals, and the Emporium Center, forming a constellation of art-related venues and experiences. It's no wonder that Knoxville recently earned the impressive title of the fourth-best arts district in the country, according to USA Today's 10 Best People's Choice ranking.
#3: Diverse job opportunities and a strong economy
Cons of living in Knoxville
#1: High temperatures in the summer
When there's a breeze or some shade — or if you're enjoying a comfortable indoor environment with air conditioning — the summers are bearable. But expect short springs, very cold winters, and long, sweaty summers.
#2: Limited public transportation
If you're moving to Knoxville, having a car is extremely helpful. With a car, many residents have pleasant commutes because of the well-planned roadways and easy access to Interstates 40, 640, and 75. The major highway hub provides fast commutes and an easy start or end to any road trip.
#3: Heavy focus on football
How does this impact life in Knoxville? To start, it flavors the restaurants and bars you'll find all around town — not just the ones near campus. You'll find dozens of sports bars, restaurants that keep the game on all season long, and frequent mentions at most live events. The topic may frequently come up around the water cooler or during small talk.
If you're not used to a college town, you may notice a bit of a college town vibe. But Knoxville is over 98 square miles. Once you start exploring, you'll find plenty of areas that don't focus on football. Many residents consider this a small gripe compared to the advantages Knoxville has to offer.
Moving to Knoxville
Learn more about the different neighborhoods: Knoxville real estate agents can provide information about the various neighborhoods of Knoxville and the surrounding suburbs so you can zero in on homes in the right location with your desired amenities nearby.
Experiment with your commute: If you don't plan on having a car, opt for centrally located neighborhoods with the best walkability and transit options for your lifestyle. Alternatively, if you have a car, drive around and see if you're comfortable with the driving times.
Get a guide: Knoxville has a rich history, but it's also constantly changing and developing. As local experts we can help you learn about the area, find what you're looking for, and match you with homes in your budget, style, and parameters.