Tennessee is a diverse state that offers something for every type of retiree. There are small agricultural communities, charming mountain towns and major metropolitan areas. Residents enjoy an abundance of amenities, cultural attractions and museums, and sports and music have an important place in the state, which has been named one of the most tax-friendly areas for retirees. Seniors also enjoy a pleasant climate that’s more comfortable than the typical American city. These are just a few of the reasons why seniors represent 16.7% of the state’s 6.8 million residents. By 2030, nearly one in three of the state’s residents will be aged 60 or older. This means that demand for long-term care, including independent living, is increasing.

Seniors who want to enjoy a maintenance-free lifestyle and might need personal assistance in the future are ideal candidates for independent living. These age-restricted communities are usually part of larger retirement facilities that offer multiple levels of care. The median cost of independent living in Tennessee is $2,848 per month. Although this is slightly higher than the national average, it is significantly more affordable than other forms of care. This guide features information about regional prices, payment options and government agencies that can help with independent aging.

The Cost of Independent Living in Tennessee

Note: Independent Living is similar to Assisted Living but without personalized supportive care, so it usually costs between 30% and 40% less per month. Since there isn’t any authoritative cost data available, we established an estimated cost of care for Independent Living by subtracting 35% from the cost of Assisted Living in the 2021 Genworth Financial Cost of Care Survey.

Nationally, the average cost of Independent Living is $2,925. Tennessee’s average cost statewide is $257 less per month than this average. However, many of the surrounding states have a lower average monthly cost than Tennessee. North Carolina is closest in cost at only $61 less per month, while Arkansas has a cost that’s $224 lower. Three states with much lower average costs include Georgia, Alabama and Kentucky, which cost less than Tennessee’s average by $370, $391 and $427, respectively. 

$2668

Tennessee

$2925

The United States

$2607

North Carolina

$2444

Arkansas

$2298

Georgia

$2277

Alabama

$2241

Kentucky

Within the state, the average cost of Independent Living widely varies among popular cities, and many are higher than the state average. Kingsport has the highest average at $2,889 followed by Chattanooga at $2,743 and Memphis at $2,730. The state’s capital and most populous city, Nashville, is lower than the state average but only by $3 at $2,665 per month. Knoxville’s cost is lower than the state average by $183, while Clarksville’s average is $578 lower. 

$2889

Kingsport

$2743

Chattanooga

$2730

Memphis

$2665

Nashville

$2485

Knoxville

$2090

Clarksville

Senior care options in Tennessee also widely vary, with Adult Day Health Care being the lowest cost option at $1,733 and Nursing Home Care the highest cost option at $7,148 for semiprivate rooms or $7,665 for private rooms. Assisted Living has an average cost of $4,105 in Tennessee while in-home care runs $4,576 per month for either Homemaker Services or Home Health Care. 

$2668

Independent Living

$4105

Assisted Living

$1733

Adult Day Health Care

$4576

Homemaker Services

$4576

Home Health Care

$7148

Nursing Home Care (semiprivate room)

$7665

Nursing Home Care (private room)

Can You Use Medicare or Medicaid to Pay for Independent Living in Tennessee?

Unfortunately, you cannot use Medicaid and Medicare to help pay the monthly fee for residing in an Independent Living community. For seniors who need help with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), there may be financial assistance programs available to help cover the cost of care in Independent Living. For more information about financial assistance for those who need a higher level of care, read our guide to Assisted Living in Tennessee.

Read on for more information about using alternative means to make Independent Living more affordable, such as retirement funds, the sale of a home, etc.

Paying for Independent Living in Tennessee

Payment options for independent living are more limited than other forms of long-term care because the services they provide are social or recreational, rather than medically necessary. Most seniors pay for independent living out-of-pocket using investments or retirement income. Long-term care insurance can pay for some supportive services, such as help with shopping, errands and transportation, but it won’t cover room and board. Those who need extra funds to pay for monthly fees or move-in expenses might consider applying for a reverse mortgage. Our page on independent living options provides more information about what to expect.

Independent Living Resources in Tennessee

Tennesseans have access to a number of free resources to guide them through the aging process. The following organizations can help seniors find long-term care, transportation, personal assistance and healthy aging programs in their area.

Resource
Contact
Service
(866) 836-6678
The Commission on Aging and Disability funds a number of statewide programs that support older adults who want to age independently. It focuses on physical fitness, fall prevention and nutrition as ways to promote seniors’ health and well-being. The commission provides informational services and connects residents to home- and community-based services, such as those offered by TennCare CHOICES or the National Family Caregiver Support Program.
(877) 236-0013
District ombudsmen serve as a liaison between seniors, long-term care providers and state agencies. They provide informational assistance, advise residents on their rights and mediate disputes. Services are available to seniors, as well as friends and family members, who have questions about long-term care options, admissions, transfers, residents' rights and billing issues. They also handle questions about Medicare and Medicaid coverage.
(615) 936-1499
The Center for Quality Aging at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center is an innovative research institute that studies geriatrics in all parts of the health care system, including hospital and acute care, residential senior living communities and long-term care facilities. It provides information for patients and families in partnership with the Pat Summitt Foundation. Families can contact the center to schedule a memory loss evaluation or to speak with a geriatric case manager, psychologist or palliative care provider.
(877) 801-0044
For seniors who are new to Medicare or have questions about their coverage, the State Health Insurance Assistance Program can provide free, unbiased information. Counselors offer plan comparisons and detailed information about Original Medicare, Part C Advantage Plans, Part D prescription drug coverage and long-term care insurance. Many seniors qualify for financial assistance programs that lower their premiums and copays.
(615) 741-1585
Retirees who want to remain active and involved in their community can explore volunteer opportunities offered by the Commission on Aging and Disability. Seniors can help others by providing volunteer rides, delivering Meals on Wheels, packaging pantry boxes or making telephone reassurance calls. Training programs are available to individuals who want to work as a volunteer ombudsman or Medicare counselor.
(866) 836-6678
Tennessee has nine Area Agencies on Aging and Disability that serve seniors, caregivers and disabled adults in designated counties. These nonprofit government-backed organizations fund local senior centers, meal delivery programs and paratransit systems. They offer information, assistance and case management services to promote healthy, independent aging. Seniors can also apply for Medicaid waivers and in-home assistance through their AAAD.

COVID-19 Rules for Independent Living in Tennessee

The following information is based on research done on several government websites, including tn.gov. These rules apply to Independent Living Communities and other types of senior living facilities. We’ve most recently updated this data on 2/15/2022, but since COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving pandemic, contact your local senior living facility or Area Agency on Aging for more specific and up-to-date information.

Visitation Policies

Rules for Tennessee Communities

Are loved ones allowed to visit to provide emotional support?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are relatives allowed to visit for end-of-life care?

Yes

Are residents required to quarantine after visiting with a loved one?

No

Are visitors required to wear PPE (including masks) in order to visit residents?

Yes

Are non-medical contractors (such as hairdressers and entertainers) allowed in senior living facilities?

Yes

Are visitors checked for elevated temperatures?

Yes

Are visitors required to answer questions about health, travel, and potential virus contact?

Yes

Outings & Social Activities

Rules for Tennessee Communities

Are residents allowed to leave (errands, visiting family, etc.) for non-medical reasons?

Yes

Are residents who leave required to quarantine when they return?

No (Conditions Apply)

Are senior living communities required to cancel all group outings?

No

Are residents allowed to eat meals together in a common area?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are residents allowed to gather in common areas for group activites?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

COVID-19 Safety Measures for Staff and Residents

Rules for Tennessee Communities

Are staff members regularly required to do a temperature check?

Yes

Are staff members regularly tested for COVID-19?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are staff members members regularly required to do a health and safety screening, including questions about travel, contact with positive cases, etc?

Yes

Are residents regularly screened for COVID-19 symptoms?

Yes

Are residents regularly checked for elevated temperatures?

Yes

Are residents regularly tested for COVID-19?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Find Independent Living Communities in Tennessee

Use the tool below to find Independent Living Communities near you – if you’d like to search in a specific city in Tennessee, simply put that in the search bar below.

Holiday Windlands South

3800 Sam Boney Dr, Nashville, TN, 37211

I moved into Holiday Windlands South. There have been so many staff shortages that you don’t get the services that are advertised, like cleaning or transportation. They just started back with transpor … (read more)
I moved into Holiday Windlands South. There have been so many staff shortages that you don’t get the services that are advertised, like cleaning or transportation. They just started back with transpor … (read more)

Clarendale at Bellevue Place

7632 Highway 70 South, Nashville, TN, 37221

My dad moved into Clarendale at Bellevue in February 2020. He is quite happy and the family is very grateful to the staff and facility for providing such wonderful services. He lives in a very large … (read more)
My dad moved into Clarendale at Bellevue in February 2020. He is quite happy and the family is very grateful to the staff and facility for providing such wonderful services. He lives in a very large … (read more)

Harmony at Bellevue

8234 Highway 100, Nashville, TN, 37221

We visited Harmony of Bellevue. It was an excellent facility. It’s clean and new. It has beautiful accommodations, and the personnel is great. Shannon is the director. She’s very helpful, informative, … (read more)
We visited Harmony of Bellevue. It was an excellent facility. It’s clean and new. It has beautiful accommodations, and the personnel is great. Shannon is the director. She’s very helpful, informative, … (read more)

Upside Nashville

516 Lea Ave, Nashville, TN, 37203


Abe’s Garden Community

115 Woodmont Blvd, Nashville, TN, 37205

My mother has been a resident of Abe’s Garden Community for 11+ years. She moved there based on the experiences of another long-time resident and we are so glad this is the home she chose! She is in … (read more)
My mother has been a resident of Abe’s Garden Community for 11+ years. She moved there based on the experiences of another long-time resident and we are so glad this is the home she chose! She is in … (read more)

Richland Place

500 Elmington Ave, Nashville, TN, 37205

My mother-in-law was at Richland Place. It’s a nice and clean place. They provided her with good care.
My mother-in-law was at Richland Place. It’s a nice and clean place. They provided her with good care.

Sycamores Terrace Senior Apartments

1427 Lebanon Pike, Nashville, TN, 37210

I am enjoying Sycamore Terrace Senior Apartments. The staff are friendly courteous people. The location and grounds have a very relaxing and calm environment. I highly recommend this location to anyon … (read more)
I am enjoying Sycamore Terrace Senior Apartments. The staff are friendly courteous people. The location and grounds have a very relaxing and calm environment. I highly recommend this location to anyon … (read more)

Blakeford at Green Hills

11 Burton Hills Blvd, Nashville, TN, 37215

My mother-in-law has lived at Blakeford for four years. One of the major reasons she chose it, was because the food and dining experience was excellent. She loved the food when she first moved in but … (read more)
My mother-in-law has lived at Blakeford for four years. One of the major reasons she chose it, was because the food and dining experience was excellent. She loved the food when she first moved in but … (read more)

Holiday Windlands East

200 E Webster St, Madison, TN, 37115

My father is a resident of Holiday Windlands East. The people were friendly. I had lunch with them, and the food was good. Unfortunately, though, since that time, they’ve had some prolonged problems w … (read more)
My father is a resident of Holiday Windlands East. The people were friendly. I had lunch with them, and the food was good. Unfortunately, though, since that time, they’ve had some prolonged problems w … (read more)

Sage Hill Maybelle Carter

208 West Due West Ave., Madison, TN, 37115

Sage Hill Maybelle Carter was a nice facility. However, it’s not what my dad needs at this time. I was met by a woman who was in charge of the intake of new residents and she was very engaging and tal … (read more)
Sage Hill Maybelle Carter was a nice facility. However, it’s not what my dad needs at this time. I was met by a woman who was in charge of the intake of new residents and she was very engaging and tal … (read more)

Harmony at Brentwood

9045 Church Street East , Brentwood, TN, 37027

I checked out Harmony at Brentwood. It was very nice. It was a couple of years old. The rooms were a little pricey. Of course, they have the exercise and the laundries. They have a library, they have … (read more)
I checked out Harmony at Brentwood. It was very nice. It was a couple of years old. The rooms were a little pricey. Of course, they have the exercise and the laundries. They have a library, they have … (read more)

Charter Senior Living of Hermitage

4131 Andrew Jackson Parkway, Hermitage, TN, 37076

I toured Charter Senior Living of Hermitage and I was very impressed with that. I liked that a lot. The rooms in the independent living area are big; each one is as big as a small house and there’s p … (read more)
I toured Charter Senior Living of Hermitage and I was very impressed with that. I liked that a lot. The rooms in the independent living area are big; each one is as big as a small house and there’s p … (read more)

Southerland Place

200 Winners Circle South, Brentwood, TN, 37027


The Heritage at Brentwood

900 Heritage Way, Brentwood, TN, 37027

The Heritage at Brentwood is very upscale. We did not find negatives. There were plenty of activities. It’s just such a change in lifestyle for us at this point so we have decided to postpone it. They … (read more)
The Heritage at Brentwood is very upscale. We did not find negatives. There were plenty of activities. It’s just such a change in lifestyle for us at this point so we have decided to postpone it. They … (read more)

Grace Healthcare of Whites Creek

3425 KNIGHT DRIVE, Whites Creek, TN, 37189

Most of the staff there is nice, but there are a few workers that are extremely unprofessional, which makes the whole facility unprofessional. My granny was there before she passed away, and the only … (read more)
Most of the staff there is nice, but there are a few workers that are extremely unprofessional, which makes the whole facility unprofessional. My granny was there before she passed away, and the only … (read more)