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Old 10-18-2012, 09:49 AM
 
11 posts, read 40,241 times
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Hello to all you Tennesseans!

My family and I are Floridians and are ready to kiss Florida GOODBYE! We wanted your opinion on where is the best place to relocate with a 10-yr-old. We currently live on a ranch and miss the city life. It takes me 45 minutes to get to work which is not ideal for someone who doesn't like to travel much. We are tired of living so far out and having to drive for a very long time just to go to the grocery store. We thought living on a ranch would be ideal for raising adoptive children but it's a lot of hard work and we want to downsize and basically simplify our lives. My husband and I would like to be in a place where we could easily find jobs, nice and friendly neighbors, have our 10-yr-old attend a good school and find a safe environment with low crime. We miss the city life but don't want to be smack in the middle of tourists either. We were thinking of Gatlinburg. I've spent some time on the Oberlin Mt and loved it. Loved the little shops in the village before one goes up the mt. I would love to work in one of those little shops. We have heard that in TN the jobs mainly go to family and their family members. Is this true? Are TN folks pretty accepting to nice family oriented Floridians relocating in their state and wanting to make a better life for themselves? As far as housing, we were looking at possibly purchasing a log home but I hear there's a lot of upkeep. Maybe we can find a nice condo. So, we would love to hear your opinions on these subjects and really appreciate your time spent reading my VERY FIRST THREAD!
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Old 10-18-2012, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Cumberland Co., TN
20,015 posts, read 20,519,392 times
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OK, just right out of the gate I dont think you can get a town more tourist than Gatlinburg.

TN is a long state with three distinct regions. Do some research on the geography. Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Chattanooga are the largest cities. This is generally where you will find greater job opportunities and better schools and at the same time higher crime. Im sure this is the same in every state. First thing you should do is check out jobs, then the school system and real estate. Get info from the local chamber of commerce, read the local paper and visit the area.

Ask yourself how you would answer these same questions for someone wanting to move to FL.
Are all Floridians of one collective mind? We can not tell you if your neighbors will be nice and welcome you with open arms.
Does all of Florida practice nepotism? I believe that exists within small businesses all over the world. Large companies and government jobs have regulations on such practices.

I dont mean to be harsh, but we get these general questions all the time and there is just no way to tell you where paradise is. We all want good jobs, good schools, low taxes with awesome services, wonderful friendly tolerant neighbors, no crime, etc. At least your not asking for mountain views with pristine streams and also fields for horses and a garden spot for under $100,000.

What is it that makes you want to move to TN and why do you want to leave FL?
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Old 10-18-2012, 11:46 AM
 
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Been in FL for over 20 years, tired of the heat, hurricane season, humidity, property taxes and living in a place where there are over a million folks in it (Jacksonville, FL). We have checked out the schools, employment, weather, real estate in several areas of TN (Gatlinburg, Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Chattanooga). There are pros and cons for all of them of course. Nepotism you ask??? Well, the reason why I asked is because when we were doing our homework on some of these cities, some folks posted that it was an issue and we wanted to test this question ourselves and see what responses we would get. I have some family in Sneedsville and we found it hard to believe that folks were like that in TN. When I visited several years ago (spent a week in Gatlinburg during a business trip), I found folks to be very pleasant. Sounds like from your suggestions we have been looking in the right areas excluding Gatlinburg though if you think it's more touristy than the others mentioned. Thank you for your information. I've noticed that you have sent your comments on several threads...thanks for being so prompt! Oh, and I left it out....yes, a mountain view would be nice! : )



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Old 10-18-2012, 12:12 PM
 
11,604 posts, read 31,783,697 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3amigos View Post
Been in FL for over 20 years, tired of the heat, hurricane season, humidity, property taxes and living in a place where there are over a million folks in it (Jacksonville, FL). We have checked out the schools, employment, weather, real estate in several areas of TN (Gatlinburg, Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Chattanooga). There are pros and cons for all of them of course. Nepotism you ask??? Well, the reason why I asked is because when we were doing our homework on some of these cities, some folks posted that it was an issue and we wanted to test this question ourselves and see what responses we would get. I have some family in Sneedsville and we found it hard to believe that folks were like that in TN. When I visited several years ago (spent a week in Gatlinburg during a business trip), I found folks to be very pleasant. Sounds like from your suggestions we have been looking in the right areas excluding Gatlinburg though if you think it's more touristy than the others mentioned. Thank you for your information. I've noticed that you have sent your comments on several threads...thanks for being so prompt! Oh, and I left it out....yes, a mountain view would be nice! : )


2mares asked some very good questions and made some very good comments. As a general rule, the smaller towns will likely have more nepotism which is not necessarily a bad thing and not necessarily surprising. If I owned a business, I'd most definitely rather hire someone I know than an unknown outsider, all things being equal. The same exists pretty much anywhere, particularly in smaller towns.

There are plenty of ex-Floridians in Tennessee. Popular places are Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, the Tri Cities (Johnson City, Kingsport, and Bristol), and Cookeville/Crossville.

Your first priority should be getting jobs. The unemployment rate is the lowest in Nashville's suburbs, but the Knoxville metro area has the lowest unemployment rate among the state's metro areas (although not by much). Amazon has recently opened gigantic distribution centers in the Chattanooga and Nashville areas, and a huge Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga has spawned all kinds of automotive factory jobs.

Here's how the unemployment rates stack up for the above areas:

Williamson County (Nashville suburb) - 5.9%, 2nd lowest unemployment rate in the state (the lowest unemployment rate in the state is Lincoln County - 5.7% - which is a suburb of Huntsville AL)

Knoxville MSA - 6.9%
Nashville MSA - 7.2%
Kingsport-Bristol MSA - 7.6%
Johnson City MSA - 7.7%
Chattanooga MSA - 7.8%
Cookeville msa - 8.2%
Crossville msa - 8.9%

OK, having posted that, I dug a little further at the Tennessee Department of Labor and found some interesting stats. As of yesterday (October 17, 2012) here are the top 20 counties in the state with advertised job openings:

Davidson (Nashville) - 17,343
Shelby (Memphis) - 13,684
Knox (Knoxville) - 7,460
Hamilton (Chattanooga) - 5,823
Williamson (Nashville suburb) - 4,277
Rutherford (Nashville suburb) - 3,236
Montgomery (Clarksville) - 1,934
Madison (Jackson) - 1,878
Washington (Johnson City) - 1,730
Sullivan (Kingsport-Bristol) - 1,539
Sumner (Nashville suburb) - 1,149
Wilson (Nashville suburb) - 1,062
Anderson (Knoxville suburb) - 976
Bradley (Cleveland) - 877
Blount (Knoxville suburb) - 868
Maury (Columbia-Spring Hill) - 790
Putnam (Cookeville) - 789
Hamblen (Morristown) - 744
Sevier (Sevierville-Gatlinburg) - 732
Coffee (Tullahoma-Manchester) - 439
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Last edited by JMT; 10-18-2012 at 12:31 PM..
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Old 10-18-2012, 12:45 PM
 
11 posts, read 40,241 times
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Thank you very much. This is very informative info!
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Old 10-18-2012, 12:56 PM
 
Location: Cumberland Co., TN
20,015 posts, read 20,519,392 times
Reputation: 20379
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3amigos View Post
Been in FL for over 20 years, tired of the heat, hurricane season, humidity, property taxes and living in a place where there are over a million folks in it (Jacksonville, FL). We have checked out the schools, employment, weather, real estate in several areas of TN (Gatlinburg, Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Chattanooga). There are pros and cons for all of them of course. Nepotism you ask??? Well, the reason why I asked is because when we were doing our homework on some of these cities, some folks posted that it was an issue and we wanted to test this question ourselves and see what responses we would get. I have some family in Sneedsville and we found it hard to believe that folks were like that in TN. When I visited several years ago (spent a week in Gatlinburg during a business trip), I found folks to be very pleasant. Sounds like from your suggestions we have been looking in the right areas excluding Gatlinburg though if you think it's more touristy than the others mentioned. Thank you for your information. I've noticed that you have sent your comments on several threads...thanks for being so prompt! Oh, and I left it out....yes, a mountain view would be nice! : )


If you like mountains then best stick to Knoxville or Chattanooga. I would say the Knoxville area would be the best bet for you to explore. IMO Gatlinburg is the epitome of tourist ville. Knoxville is close enough for lots of visits. Im not sure what the job market is like in Gatlinburg. My son is working in the area near there now and is loving being in the mountains. Im beginning to think he may not want to come back home. As far a schools, JMT would be the one to ask. As stated about jobs, yes you will find most small family businesses hire family members. Local politicians tend to place family members in those political jobs when they are voted in office. Small town politics. Seems to me thats how it is everywhere. In the real world, many jobs are not really given based solely on credentials.
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Old 10-18-2012, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
22,533 posts, read 46,084,101 times
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Fabulous answers from my two compadres! The only thing I would add at this time is that I am from Florida. I lived in Orlando and then in the Fort Myers-Naples corridor for about nine or 10 years. I've lived in Knoxville for the past seven years and I am ecstatic! I love the schools - I have a 12-year-old - and I have never had a tough time finding a good job here. In fact, at my current position I would declare it the best job I ever had. I'm almost 51 so this is not my first rodeo. The job market is very good here and the people are absolutely delightful. I love the weather as well.

And I agree that Gatlinburg is tourist central for Tennessee. Don't fall into the trap of going on vacation, wanting to move there and then doing it. That's almost always an enormous mistake. You'll romantacize the move - much like transplants to Florida do - only to find the prices high, the jobs low paying and the traffic horrendous.

If you have any more questions do not hesitate to ask.
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Old 10-18-2012, 03:12 PM
 
11,604 posts, read 31,783,697 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hiknapster View Post
And I agree that Gatlinburg is tourist central for Tennessee. Don't fall into the trap of going on vacation, wanting to move there and then doing it. That's almost always an enormous mistake. You'll romantacize the move - much like transplants to Florida do - only to find the prices high, the jobs low paying and the traffic horrendous.

If you have any more questions do not hesitate to ask.
VERY sound advice. Vacationing in Gatlinburg can be fun and romantic. But living there is entirely different. It is beautiful in Gatlinburg this time of year, but a million other people think the same thing and clog the roads for weeks on end. Simple things like a quick trip to the grocery store or the dry cleaners are practically impossible in Gatlinburg for much of the year.

Since public schools are a concern, I'm going to recommend Knoxville and Johnson City. East Knox County, in particular, is gorgeous and very rural, but just 15-20 minutes to downtown Knoxville yet offers plenty of mountain scenery. Johnson City (100 miles northeast of Knoxville) is also at the foot of mountains and has excellent schools. I personally prefer Knoxville, but the OP might want to check out Johnson City, too.
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IMPORTANT READING:
Terms of Service

---
its - possession
it's - contraction of it is
your - possession
you're - contraction of you are
their - possession
they're - contraction of they are
there - referring to a place
loose - opposite of tight
lose - opposite of win
who's - contraction of who is
whose - possession
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Old 10-18-2012, 04:27 PM
 
11 posts, read 40,241 times
Reputation: 15
You guys are the BEST! This is excellent information and I'm hitting the websites now regarding Knoxville. Hats off to all of you especially hiknapster! Thank you for adding that you were from Florida...that certainly helped with our decision. So, we start our homework. I'll let you know if we have any more questions. Thanks again and have a wonderful evening! : )
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Old 10-19-2012, 05:55 AM
 
Location: West Knox
371 posts, read 597,235 times
Reputation: 292
Another vote for east Tn/Knoxville. But you need to visit and see if it's a good match for you.

We retired from the DC area and this area is a refreshing breeze.
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