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Cost of Living

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Tennessee’s quality of life is high, and its cost of living is low.

Tennessee ranked second for the lowest cost of living in the nation for the second quarter of 2014. Our Cost of Living Index is 10.7% below the national average.

In other words, on average, housing, food and groceries, transportation, utilities, healthcare and miscellaneous expenses such as clothing, service, and entertainment are less than the national average.

Let’s compare, by the numbers:

Composite Index – 89.9
Grocery Items – 93.5
Housing – 76.3
Utilities – 91.8
Transportation – 93.8
Healthcare – 89.4
Miscellaneous Goods and Services – 95.4

Check out the numbers for yourself. Use the ACCRA Cost of Living calculator below and compare our 16 Retire Tennessee counties to your community.

Cost of Living Index Calculator

Property Tax

Tennessee has no state property tax. Property taxes are locally determined and collected.

Sales Tax

The Tennessee state tax is five percent on food and food ingredients and seven percent on all other tangible personal property, unless specifically exempted. There is no tax on prescription drugs. Tennessee cities and counties have the option of imposing an additional local option sales tax. Visit the Tennessee Department of Revenue to obtain more information about Tennessee taxes.

Income Tax

There is no state personal income tax in Tennessee. However, there is the Hall Income Tax, strictly on interest from bonds and notes and dividends from stock. Beginning with tax year 2012, the annual Hall Income Tax standard income exemptions for taxpayers 65 years of age or older increases from $16,200 to $26,200 for single filers and from $27,000 to $37,000 for joint filers.

Local Tax

Local taxes are set by the local government.

Pension Tax

Retirees can nurture their nest egg by relocating to a state with lower taxes. Tennessee has a perk for retirees: Dividends and interest are the only forms of income that Tennessee taxes.