What $549,900 can buy in Sumner County

Nashville Tennessean

Published 5:00 a.m. CT Sept. 29, 2020



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71 Blue Ridge Trace, Hendersonville 37075

Year built: 2003

Square feet: 3,929

Price: $549,900

Description: Single-level living with four bedrooms, five bathrooms and outdoor space that backs up to horse pasture. Home has irrigation system, outdoor lighting, instant hot water, ice machine, custom built-ins, central vacuum, outfitted to charge electric vehicles and a dumb-waiter to help bring up groceries from a 2,700 square foot unfinished basement.

71 Blue Ridge Trace, Hendersonville 37075 (Photo:

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184 Rock Bridge Road, Gallatin 37066

Year built: 2002

Square feet: 4,291

Price: $549,900

Description: Three-bedroom, three-bathroom home has flexible floor plan. Home has oak staircases, balcony, fireplace and architectural ceiling. Main level master has en-suite bath. Home has kitchen pantry, center-island, double ovens, granite and eat-in breakfast area.

184 Rock Bridge Road, Gallatin 37066 (Photo:

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150b Trivett Drive, Portland 37148

Year built: 1969

Square feet: 4,817

Price: $549,900

Description: Home on 14.7 acres has five bedrooms, four bathrooms, beams, five sets of French doors, terracotta floor, wood burning fire place. FP. Home has two-story shop and shop equipment available.

150b Trivett Drive, Portland 37148 (Photo:

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Homes prices are crazy, but I want to drain my savings and buy

Dear Penny,

I live in the Philadelphia suburbs. I recently retired as an orchestra teacher in the public school system. I will be on Medicare in December.

I sold my large home and live in a modest apartment for $1,300 per month rent. So I’m comfortable financially and easily making ends meet.

HOWEVER, I really want to buy a small home. The real estate market is off the charts right now and prices are insane. I would also use most of my savings and have a mortgage. My payments would be about the same.

I have $200,000 in an IRA invested in stocks and bonds, $14,000 in a Roth IRA that I just opened last year and $80,000 in savings. I am debt-free and own a brand-new car.

I am collecting a monthly pension of $3,000 and $2,000 in Social Security after taxes and Medicare supplemental payments. My pension plan is a defined-benefit plan with a $900,000 death benefit.

Can you offer any advice as to whether or not I should buy a home?


Dear M.,

You can clearly afford to buy a home.

Normally I’d start the finger-wagging if you told me you wanted to spend most of your savings for a home purchase.

If you were still working, I’d ask you what would happen if you lost your job. And if you were a retiree who depended mostly on investment income, I’d warn you that a stock market crash could temporarily wipe out much of your nest egg.

But you have no debt and $5,000 of monthly after-tax income that’s guaranteed for life. Your income isn’t contingent on a salary or the stock market’s performance. So you can afford to spend a lot of your savings to buy a home.

Plus interest rates are historically low. That’s

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3 expenses people don’t consider when they buy a second home

Personal Finance Insider writes about products, strategies, and tips to help you make smart decisions with your money. We may receive a small commission from our partners, like American Express, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

As with any home, the costs of a second home don’t stop at the mortgage.

There are a lot of costs associated with owning a second home, and you’re responsible for anything that comes up. You’ve probably considered the costs of property taxes and HOA fees for your second home, and factored those things into your budget when deciding how much you can afford to spend on a second home.

But, there are some expenses you may not have thought of that will apply to your second home. Here are three expenses you should consider before making the leap to a second home. 

You may need to increase your life insurance and disability insurance coverage

If you haven’t considered how owning a second home could affect your life insurance and disability insurance coverage, you probably should. 

Mortgage debt should be factored in when deciding how much life insurance coverage you need. Buying a second home could mean taking on a second mortgage, so you’ll want to make sure that your life insurance coverage is high enough to cover both home payments, if necessary. But, increasing your coverage amount could mean adding to your monthly cost for life insurance.

Similarly, disability insurance can help you pay the bills each month if you become disabled but rely on an income to make ends meet. It can provide a replacement income to pay the bills if you’re ill, injured, or otherwise unable to work. While it’s sometimes offered through your workplace, that coverage often isn’t enough.

“Have enough disability insurance that you can

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