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Tellico Plains, Tennessee

Tiny Tellico Plains (population 950) sits where the Tellico River leaves the higher peaks of the Appalachians for its lower ridges and valleys in pretty southeastern Tennessee. The Cherokee National Forest and Great Smoky Mountain National Park are town neighbors.

This is a rural place, supported by agriculture and some tourism as visitors wander in on their way to the nearby wilderness areas. The Southeastern Foot Trails Coalition has designated Tellico Plains as a Trail Town, promoting its nearby 200 miles of hiking, backpacking, equestrian and mountain biking trails as a great way to explore the outdoors.

Tellico Plains' downtown is not fancy but has diners, a bookstore, gift shops and markets. Residents also enjoy a community center, a library, a farmers' market, a small museum and an arts center that showcases fabric artists, fine artists, book binders, local writers, and musicians. Vestiges of Appalachian mountain traditions are visible around town.

Cost of Living

Tellico Plains is an affordable small town with an overall cost of living 20% less than the national average.

The town is 11% less expensive than Port Charlotte, Florida, 13% less expensive than Norfolk, Virginia and 92% less than Ojai, California.

The median household income is $26,000.

Real Estate

The median home value is $139,128. This is a 6% increase over the previous year. For comparison, the national median home price is currently $248,850.

Estimates are that Tellico Plains real estate values will stay steady over the next year.

The median rental price is $525 per month.

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Growth

Tellio Plains has grown by 8% in the last decade.

Taxes

The combined sales tax rate for Tellico Plains is 9.25%. This is the total of state, county and city sales tax rates.

Tennesse has a 7% state sales tax on vehicle purchases and Monroe County tacks on another 2.25%.

The state has no personal income tax, but it does have a 5% tax on stock dividends and bond interest income (the first $1,250 is exempt for single filers and the first $2,500 is exempt for married filers). People who are age 65 or better and who earn less than $37,000 per year ($68,000 for married people) do not pay the tax on dividends and bond interest.

The property tax rate is approximately $768 in taxes per $100,000 of assessed home value. The annual taxes on a $139,000 home are approximately $1,067. People age 65 or better may receive tax relief on the first $28,300 of their home's market value.

Tennessee does not tax Social Security.

Desire a Nicer Home Without a Mortgage Payment?

If so, consider a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) for Purchase. This is a reverse mortgage that lets people age 62+ purchase a new home by using a reverse mortgage.

How does it work? Buyers must put down approximately 45% to 62% of the new home's purchase price, depending on the buyer's age and other factors. This money usually comes from the buyer selling his current home. The rest of the purchase funds come from the HECM loan.

For example, a person sells his home and nets $250,000 from the sale. With a HECM for Purchase Loan he can then buy a new $450,000 home by putting down $225,000 (50%), keeping $25,000 cash in his pocket and financing the remaining $225,000 home price with the reverse mortgage loan. Best yet, the buyer will have no monthly mortgage payments.

Talk to a reputable reverse mortgage lender for more information.

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