One of the tougher things about moving to a new city: finding your place, literally and figuratively.
We all have different wants, needs and preferences, and ideally, we want to live in a neighborhood that plays to those things. It’s finding where you fit — your comfort zone, the place that makes you feel most at home.
With so many people relocating to Nashville in recent years, this is a topic we end up tackling a lot, specifically with new residents who want to buy a home in Nashville, but aren’t 100 percent sure what their right neighborhood fit is. It can be a particularly tricky/stressful process for folks who are moving here because of a job, and need to find a home quickly, doing most of their househunting remotely. Nashville MLS listings are great househunting tools, but they generally don’t offer a deep dive into the surrounding area.
We’re longtime Nashvillians, and longtime Nashville Realtors, so helping Nashville househunters find a neighborhood that suits them: right in our wheelhouse.
Are you finding yourself in that situation? We’d be more than glad to dig deep with you, introduce you to different Nashville neighborhoods that suit your needs, and show you some homes for sale in those neighborhoods. But for an easy intro, these are the Nashville neighborhoods we’d particularly recommend, based on different top priorities:
What you’re looking for in a new Nashville home:
If you’re drawn toward more urban-style living — the ability to rarely get into a car, outside of maybe your daily commute — there are a few Nashville neighborhoods that offer a close approximation. But our top pick would likely be The Gulch. With a Nashville-bred green grocer, restaurants, shops and live music just steps away — and all that downtown Nashville has to offer just a quick bike or scooter ride away — The Gulch is one of the few parts of town that bears bigger-city density, and feels genuinely walkable. Its housing options tend to fit that vibe too — you’ll find lots of high-rise condos (many in buildings with serious amenities and serious views).
If you ask people who’ve been in Nashville a while where the families with kids tend to settle, they’ll likely nod toward Williamson County. It’s been a longstanding trend, and it’s still true — a lot of families do gravitate toward Brentwood and Franklin, with their manicured subdivisions and high-rated schools. But that doesn’t mean Nashville has a lack of areas suited for families — we have plenty of picket fences and dog parks to go around. One of our top picks for families with school-aged kids: leafy Green Hills. It’s a beautiful part of Nashville with a mix of older and newer homes, an engaged community and high-end shopping and dining nearby, and it offers some of the highest-ranked public schools in the city, too.
We’re really partial to historic homes around here — we work inside a circa-1910 home with exposed brick and soaring ceilings, and we recently undertook an almost year-long restoration and renovation project in Belmont. Looking for older homes with stories to tell is a passion at ACRE, and if you’re looking for a historic property, we can find fantastic pockets all around Nashville, East to West, North to South. But if we have to pick a favorite pocket, it’s Lockeland Springs in East Nashville, a tight-knit community that’s filled with charming old Victorians and bungalows and cottages, many bursting with original charm.
Food, drink and nightlife
The food scene in Nashville has grown so much that nearly every part of town has high-rated picks to offer, from casual barbecue to high-end dining. Still, some parts of Nashville have become more of a food and drink destination than others. And we’d honestly struggle to pick a favorite — East Nashville gets a lot of our dining dollars, and so does West Nashville, around The Nations (close to our Ashland Place listings). But if we’re pointing a food-obsessed Nashville homebuyer toward must-look neighborhoods, we absolutely wouldn’t skip Germantown, which just keeps growing as a food and drink hotbed. It’s where Nashville’s first James Beard award-winning chef, Tandy Wilson, centers his business, with City House and the brand new Mop/Broom Mess Hall, plus it’s home to the eclectic Germantown Cafe, stylish Butchertown Hall, upscale bistro SILO, rustic Italian standout Rolf and Daughters, refined American spot 5th & Taylor and so, so much more. It’s also one of Nashville’s more walkable neighborhoods, and has an inspiring mix of historic properties and new builds.
Peace and quiet
Some of us are drawn to live among hubbub, others just want a sleepy, calm place to call home. We have lots of favorites in this category too, but a couple of standouts: Old Hickory Village, a historic community tucked up on the lake that feels like Nashville’s own Mayberry; and Donelson, just over the river from East Nashville, stocked with cute ranches on large pieces of property, in a part of town that’s close enough to everything, but far enough to allow for quiet and calm.
Have some more specific needs, or want to dig into some different Nashville communities a little deeper? We’d love to help. Reach ACRE here, and tell us what you’re looking for in a new Nashville home!
Listings via MLS, not under agreement with ACRE and/or Benchmark Realty, LLC, except where noted.