A thriving community outside of Nashville, Rutherford County is the fifth-most populous county in Tennessee. But while its large population is definitely a contributing factor to its growth and success, Rutherford County boasts other accolades that are drawing young professionals and families alike to put down roots.

Countywide, Rutherford County has been named the #2 “Best Counties for Families,” #3 “Best Counties to Live,” and #4 “Best Counties for Young Professionals” in Tennessee the state of Tennessee by Niche. These rankings are determined by considering factors such as jobs, schools, housing, diversity, and nightlife – all of which Rutherford County scored an “A” or above.

Rutherford County also includes the charming, Southern towns of Smyrna, La Vergne, Eagleville, and Waterhill. But for years the county seat – Murfreesboro – has been Tennessee’s fastest-growing major city and one of the fastest-growing in the country. Even more impressive, Murfreesboro was named the #1 “Boomtown in America” by SmartAsset Advisors and among the “Top 100 Best Places to Live in America” by Livability.

Why is Rutherford County receiving such recognition? Here are 5 reasons:

  1. Affordability & Housing
  2. Job Opportunities, Growth
  3. Strong K-12 Schools, Higher Education Options
  4. Food, Entertainment, & More

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Affordability & Housing

Rutherford County’s neighbors – Nashville and Davidson County at-large – are becoming well-known for rising home prices due to high demand and low inventory. Murfreesboro, on the other hand, is ranked as the #1 “Most Affordable City in Tennessee,” with Smyrna coming in at #2. WalletHub even ranked Murfreesboro #13 as a “Best Place to Buy A House,” behind only a few major Texas suburbs, Nashville, and Durham, North Carolina.

It is likely due, in part, to how Murfreesboro has adequately kept up with and planned housing solutions for its increasing population. Over a recent five-year period, Murfreesboro’s housing units increased by 21.15%. Today, the median home value sits at roughly $234,700, and the median rent is $1,117.

Job Opportunities, Growth

Rutherford County is not only an enticing suburb for its proximity to Nashville’s careers but also  for the variety of excellent job opportunities it has right at home. Aviation, business, education, health care, manufacturing, finance, and supply chain industries are but a few of the industry choices Rutherford County residents have to choose from. These include but are not limited to:

  • Aviation: The Smyrna Airport, Tennessee’s busiest general aviation airport, has seen an increase in corporate aviation, cargo, and flight training and is currently assembling a 10-15 year plan to accommodate expected growth.
  • Business: Amazon Fulfillment, Advance Auto Parts, Hot Topic, Saks Fifth Avenue, Conn’s HomePlus all have fulfillment and distribution facilities in Rutherford County.
  • Manufacturing: Nissan, General Mills, and Mayday Brewery are among the top manufacturers in Rutherford County and Smyrna.
  • Education: Middle Tennessee State University is Tennessee’s largest undergraduate university in the state, and Rutherford County’s 50+ K-12 schools offer numerous job opportunities, as well.

Also of note is Rutherford County’s low unemployment rates. Smyrna’s unemployment rate is the lowest at 2.4%, and both Murfreesboro and LaVergne’s unemployment rates are 2.6%.

Strong K-12 Schools, Higher Education Options

Parents and families have a plethora of educational options through Rutherford County Schools (RCS). And Rutherford County’s top-rated public and private schools put the community’s students at the front of the class.

  • Elementary Schools: Mcfadden School of Excellence, a K-5 magnet school in Murfreesboro, is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the #1 Elementary School in the state. Discovery School in Murfreesboro, a K-6 magnet school, is not far behind as the #3 Elementary School.
  • Middle and High Schools: A number of Rutherford County’s middle and high schools are ranked as the top schools and standardized test scorers in the Midstate area.
  • Private, Parochial Schools: Rutherford County offers a number of private and parochial schools including Bill Rice Christian Academy, Lancaster Christian Academy, Middle Tennessee Christian School, Providence Christian Academy, and Saint Rose Catholic School.
  • Excellent Career Pathways: The district’s high schools partner with Motlow State Community College and MTSU to offer students career & technical education (CTE) pathways and dual-enrollment opportunities.
  • Higher Education: Middle Tennessee State University offers 140+ undergraduate programs, 100 graduate degree programs, and enrolls one of the most significant numbers of adult learners among locally-governed institutions. Motlow State Community College and Tennessee College of Applied Technology also have several campuses in the area.

Food, Entertainment, & More

Last, but certainly not least, Rutherford County is not short on food, family entertainment, or fun!

There are delicious and diverse dining options, and nearly limitless outdoor and recreation activities. As for shopping, the Avenue Murfreesboro – an extensive shopping and dining experience – the Stones River Mall, and Colonial Town Park (Smyrna) all attract shoppers from around Rutherford County.

As the hometown to MTSU, Murfreesboro gives its college students – and middle-aged fun-lovers – the big-city amenities and nightlife. Hop Springs Beer Park just east of Murfreesboro is one such hangout spot with its 60-barrel brewhouse and outdoor amphitheater for concerts, not to mention its 18-hole disc golf course, 5-kilometer walking trail, and dog park.

Even with its big-city offerings, Murfreesboro holds true to its small-town charm and family-friendly feel. The Rutherford County Square on Main Street in Murfreesboro, for example, is an epicenter for the community with its local restaurants, Saturday Farmer’s Market, and other frequent community events.

Rutherford County is the fastest growing county in the state because of our top-tier educational institutions, diverse and thriving economy, supportive business environment, and welcoming community beaming with activity for neighbors of all ages. Discover how Rutherford Works can work for you as you plan your move.