Overview of the Commercial and Residential
Real Estate Market in Tennessee


With a generally mild climate, affordable cost of living, and some of the most beautiful mountain ranges anywhere on earth, Tennessee is a welcoming state and popular retirement destination. With 6,549,352 people, it ranks 17th in population, according to the U.S. Census. The state's median home value ($139,200) is well below the national median home value ($176,700). Tennessee has a median household income of $44,298. The state has eight cities with a population above 100,000; two of those have more than 500,000 residents. At 653,450 people, Memphis is the largest. It has a median home value of $95,900, a median household income of $36,912, and just under 27 percent of residents below the poverty level. Nashville has a population of 634,464 and a median home value of $165,200. Its median household income is $46,686 and the homeownership rate is 54 percent.

Much of the state's $233,997 billion gross state product comes from manufacturing and farming. The entire state weathered the recent recession much better than many parts of the country and Nashville is currently seeing a strong real estate market for both residential and commercial. An increasing population of young professionals fuels a need for affordable apartments. Forbes calls Nashville one of the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the United States, and 1 million people are predicted to move to the area in the next 20 years. Rent for Class A office space reaches $35 per square foot in some areas of the city. According to commercial real estate firm Colliers, the Class A vacancy rate is about 5.4 percent and the Class B vacancy is at 9.6 percent.

Office Rental and Executive Suites in Memphis, TN

How to Become a Realtor in Tennessee

Headquartered in Nashville and operating under the Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance, the Tennessee Real Estate Commission oversees the licensing of real estate affiliate brokers and real estate brokers in the state. They require applicants for an affiliate broker be at least 18 years old and successfully complete the 60-hour commission-approved class on real estate fundamentals and principles prior to passing the state exam. Real estate brokers must be at least 18 years old, complete 120 hours of approved real estate courses, of which 30 hours cover office/broker management, and have 36 months experience as an active affiliate broker. Tennessee requires brokers complete an additional 120-hour post-licensing course within three years of being licensed. Real estate agents licensed in another state may apply for a non-resident license. You must still pass the Tennessee state law section of the exam for the type of license you hold in your home state.