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Nashville's neighborhoods conjure up too many stereotypes to count. You've got hipster areas, preppy places, neighborhoods where college kids thrive, and of course, ghettos.
It seems as if there's a neighborhood for everyone in Nashville.
And while the city consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the country thanks in part to a strong economy and tons of entertainment, it's not all rainbows and sunshine in Nashville. Some neighborhoods aren't as great as others.
So the question arises, which Nashville neighborhoods are the worst, and which are the best?
Today, we'll use science and data to determine which Nashville hoods need a little tender loving care - the sore thumbs of the Nashville area if you will. Realistically, you can't expect all the neighborhoods to be amazing, although Green Hills ranks way above the rest.
We examined 80 of Nashville's neighborhoods to find out the worst places to live. These places don't quite measure up to Nashville's reputation.
So what's the worst neighborhood to live in Nashville for 2022? According to the most recent census data, Haynes Area looks to be the worst neighborhood in Nashville.
Read on to see how we determined the places around Nashville that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don't blame the messenger.
Once you're done, you can look at the bottom of the story for a complete chart of every neighborhood we looked at from worst to best. Looking for places to avoid outside of the city? You can also check out the worst suburbs of Nashville.
For more Tennessee reading, check out:
- Best Places To Live In Tennessee
- Cheapest Places To Live In Tennessee
- Most Dangerous Cities In Tennessee
The 10 Worst Neighborhoods In Nashville For 2022
The Haynes Area sits in the northern part of the city, built along a bend in the Cumberland River. However, this isn't the kind of spot that features a manicured tree-lined riverwalk. Rather, think run-down streets and unkempt trees.
The neighborhood suffers from significant economic hardships, with an unemployment rate of 10.0% and a median income of $33,328.
Haynes does have plenty of amenities, from restaurants to churches. If you want a special night out, the downtown attractions are just a short 15-minute drive away. Meanwhile, the neighborhood also sits along the border of the Hartman Park Regional Center.
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 12)
Median Home Value: $130,171 (20th worst)
Median Income: $33,328 (18th worst)
More on Haynes Area: Data
Talbot's Corner sounds like a small town. Like the kind of place where a kindly old grump runs the general store and the local police spend most of their time getting kittens out of trees. Sounds nice. What you actually get is an urban neighborhood dominated by highways, including the junction of I-24 and I-65.
Besides the lack of small-time charm, the area falls short in a lot of basic functions as well. Employment, safety, and schools are all suspect.
Still, there are benefits to life in Talbot's Corner. Sure, no quaint country store. But the neighborhood is littered by amenities. This means plenty of restaurants and parks. It's also a short ride to Nissan Stadium, home of the Tennessee Titans NFL team.
Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 13)
Median Home Value: $93,375 (7th worst)
Median Income: $35,011 (20th worst)
More on Talbot's Corner: Data
On the surface, Buena Vista Heights seems to have an excellent location. Just off the southern bank of the Cumberland River, it sits on the edge of a series of parks. Residents can take advantage of the Metro center complex or head over to the Ted Rhodes Golf Course for a day on the links.
So weekends in the area promise to be ideal. It's the rest of the week where things get sticky. That's when the neighborhood earns its ranking as the third worst place to live in Nashville for 2022.
Specifically, finding a job is tough. The unemployment rate hovers at 9.4%. Meanwhile, the available jobs don't pay enough, leading to a median income of $30,261.
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $99,250 (10th worst)
Median Income: $30,261 (12th worst)
More on Buena Vista Heights: Data
Located in South Nashville, just off of I-440 and a short drive from Trevecca Nazarene University, Woodycrest has an industrial character. Unlike many of the neighborhoods on this list, you can find a job relatively easily around here. That leads to a healthy unemployment rate of 3.2%.
Unfortunately, these gigs don't pay very well. The median income comes in at a measly $27,957. With this limited tax base, the local schools suffer as well.
Still, the neighborhood has its upsides. Even with the low incomes, the cost of living remains affordable. The median home price stands at $85,300.
Rank Last Year: 19 (Up 15)
Median Home Value: $85,300 (5th worst)
Median Income: $27,957 (10th worst)
More on Woodycrest: Data
You'd expect a place with the phrase "College Heights" in its name to have a significant focus on education. Bustling lecture halls and deep philosophical conversations while sitting on the sun-dappled quad. Not quite. In fact, one of the challenges of living in College Heights-Clifton comes from its substandard schools.
The underlying problem, though, stems from financial troubles. Just look at the unemployment rate, standing at 11.9%. Or check out the median income, a paltry $24,859.
Still, there are benefits to life in College Heights-Clifton. Located along I-40 in the western part of the city, the neighborhood sits along Boyd Park.
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $113,033 (14th worst)
Median Income: $24,859 (7th worst)
More on College Heights-Clifton: Data
However, if you're not a college kid getting an allowance from mommy and daddy, making ends meet in Hadley Park becomes a chore. The unemployment rate stands at the relatively healthy 5.3%. But the available jobs pay very little. The median income hovers just below $25,000. As a result, it's tough to make ends meet. Even the relatively cheap $96,233 median home price becomes difficult to swing with salaries that low.
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $96,233 (9th worst)
Median Income: $24,831 (6th worst)
More on Hadley Park: Data
Centered on the triangle formed by the intersection of Lafayette St. and 2nd Ave., Southside really isn't that far south. However, it does stand just south of center of the city, a short drive from the attractions that make Nashville famous.
Yet, this prime location doesn't save Southside from ending up as the number 7 worst neighborhood in the city. Why? Well, like so many other spots on this list, a weak economy weighs the area down. You've got an unemployment rate just under 10% and median income that hovers at a puny $23,372.
At least housing is cheap. The median home price in the area comes in at just $42,700.
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 4)
Median Home Value: $42,700 (worst)
Median Income: $23,372 (4th worst)
More on Southside: Data
Set in the northeast part of the city, Heron Walk is sandwiched into a bend in the Cumberland, bounded on two sides by the river. The name hints at natural splendor and leisurely strolls in search of stately birds. And, in fact, the neighborhood sits near plenty of green spaces, including Stones River Park to the southeast and a couple of nearby golf courses. A little further down the road, you'll hit Andrew Jackson's Hermitage, the former home of the 7th President of the United States.
But none of these attractions are actually within Heron Walk. Here's what you'll find in the neighborhood itself: an elevated unemployment rate of 6.8% and an anemic median income of $35,658.
Rank Last Year: 20 (Up 12)
Median Home Value: $119,423 (16th worst)
Median Income: $35,658 (2worst)
More on Heron Walk: Data
Absent the institutions of higher learning to give the economy a boost, North Fisk suffers from a dreadful financial situation. The unemployment rate pushes into double digits and the median income hovers at $26,328. And, while we're talking about the nearby colleges, most of the local public schools leave much to be desired.
Still, the influx of college kids does have some benefits. The area boasts a hopping nightlife, with plenty of amenities, like coffee shops and restaurants.
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 3)
Median Home Value: $95,267 (8th worst)
Median Income: $26,328 (9th worst)
More on Osage-North Fisk: Data
Four Corners is shaped more like a triangle. Go figure. The neighborhood largely fits into the intersection formed by the Murfreesboro Pike and the Hobson Pike, in the southeast part of Nashville. Take a quick ride down the Hobson Pike, across the J. Percy Priest Reservoir, and you're out of the urban hustle, able to sample a touch of the wilderness in places like Couchville Cedar Glade State Natural Area.
You might need the escape. Stay in Four Corners and you face serious problems. Sure, the median income sits at a robust $55,798. But these good-paying jobs are difficult to land. The unemployment rate comes in at 7.1%. Also, more than the other neighborhoods on this list, you'll find yourself pretty far from the city center. Getting to downtown will take about a half hour.
Rank Last Year: 21 (Up 11)
Median Home Value: $152,200 (33rd worst)
Median Income: $55,798 (46th worst)
More on Four Corners: Data
Methodology: How we determined the worst Nashville neighborhoods in 2022
To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what places have the least amount of those things. We threw the following criteria into this analysis in order to get the best, most complete results possible. We used this set of criteria for each neighborhood in Nashville:
- High unemployment (Less jobs)
- Low median income (Less pay)
- Low population density (No things to do)
- Low home values (No one's willing to pay to live here)
- High crime (Estimated)
Then, we ranked each neighborhood in Nashville, Tennessee for each of these criteria from worst to best.
Next, we averaged the individual rankings for each criteria into a "Worst Score".
The neighborhood with the lowest "Worst Score" ranks as the worst neighborhood of Nashville.
Read on below to learn more about these terrible places around Nashville to live. Or skip to the end to see the list of all 80 neighborhoods ranked from worst to best.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased. Hold on to your pants.
Summary: The Worst Neighborhoods Around Nashville
Well there you have it -- the worst of the neighborhoods in Nashville with Haynes Area landing at the bottom of the pack.
As we mentioned earlier, the neighborhoods in Nashville aren't all bad. Green Hills takes the cake as the best place to live in Nashville.
We ranked the neighborhoods from worst to best in the chart below.
For more Tennessee reading, check out: