Disability Insurance

Everyone deserves the opportunity to protect their quality of life and their future, and with disability insurance, you can. You can think of disability insurance as your financial safety net, giving you an earnings replacement if you’re not able to earn a paycheck due to illness or injury. We’ve laid out the cost-of-living analysis in Tennessee to show you the average expenses in the state and why disability insurance can give you peace of mind during unpredictable times.

How much does it cost to live in Tennessee?

Home to 6.772 million citizens, Tennessee has the 14th lowest overall cost of living when compared to all other states. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ data, goods and services in the state cost 10.1% less than they do on a national level.

Cost of Living Parameters

Housing & Rent

On average, Tennessee renters pay $841 per month, $182 less than the national average of $1,023. If you want to buy a house in the state, the typical home value is worth $158,600, less than the national median home value of $408,800.

Here are some stats on Tennessee mortgages:

  • Homeownership rate: 67.1%
  • Homeowner vacancy rate: 0.7%
  • Rental vacancy rate: 8.4%


In Tennessee, the average annual cost of infant care is $8,732—that’s $728 per month. Childcare for a 4-year-old costs $7,468, or $622 each month.

Here’s a look at the annual childcare costs from infant to college:

  • Infant: $8,732
  • 4-year-old: $7,468
  • School: 10,4072
  • College: $9,574
  • Utilities

Apartment utilities refer to the essential services required in a home such as gas, water, electricity, cable, and internet. A Tennessee resident can expect to spend up to $392 per month on apartment utilities on average.

Food & Groceries

A single adult in Tennessee spends an average of $3,214 on food each year, while a family of four's annual food cost reaches $9,282 These figures are based on a nutritionally appropriate diet purchased from a grocery shop and prepared at home.

The average price for eating out would be:

  • A basic meal with a drink at an inexpensive restaurant $13.80
  • Fast food combo (Big Mac etc.) $7.95
  • Bottle of Coca-Cola $1.97
  • Bottle of water $1.21

Grocery shopping in the state would cost as follows:

  • Milk (regular), (1 liter) $0.88
  • Loaf of fresh white bread (500g) $2.36
  • Rice (1 Kg) $3.40
  • Eggs (regular) (12) $2.75
  • Chicken fillet (1kg) $11.20
  • 4 Rolls of toilet paper $3.25
  • Hair shampoo $4.78


92.3% of commuters in Tennessee drive to work compared to 85.5% nationally. The average motorist in the state drives 12,261 miles per year. Considering the average fuel economy and average gas prices, a Tennessee motorist can expect to spend $999 on petrol alone in a year.

Other transportation expenditures, such as car insurance, also vary by state. According to Insure.com, the average vehicle insurance rate in Tennessee is $1,229, which is less than the national average of $1,517. According to EPI data, the average single adult in the state spends $10,142 on transportation each year.

Average Income & Taxes

The average yearly income of a single adult living in Tennessee is $62,477 and the state has a graduated income tax with rates ranging from 6.5%.

Most Expensive Tennessee Cities to Live in:

  • Brentwood
  • Franklin
  • Nolensville
  • Germantown
  • Mount Juliet

Why is disability insurance important to have in Tennessee?

As shown by the above cost of living breakdown, a steady income is required to live comfortably and worry-free. But sometimes you find yourself unable to work due to some sort of emergency, illness or accident. Whether you are a full-time employee or a freelancer, getting disability insurance is the first step towards financial stability and peace of mind.

What would happen if you found yourself unable to earn a paycheck because you were too ill or injured to work? According to a recent survey conducted by the personal financial website Bankrate, more than half of Americans (51%) have less than three months' worth of emergency funds. 

Medical bills are reported to be the number one cause of U.S. bankruptcies. One study has claimed that medical issues caused 62.1% of bankruptcies. Other studies show that over 2 million people are adversely affected by their medical expenses. If medical bills start piling up, you’ll no longer be able to support your lifestyle in other areas, especially if your income is on hold. You might find yourself unable to pay for utilities and rent, which could lead to foreclosure. Half of the foreclosures on conventional mortgages in Tennessee are caused by the disability of one of the homeowners. In fact, the foreclosure rate in the state reaches one in every 8,194homes.

A lot of people still think that the need for disability insurance is not top priority, thinking that disability rarely happens, and when it does, it’s only caused by serious accidents. But did you know that up to 90% of disability cases recorded are due to illness, not injury?

Getting a private disability income insurance should be on top of your to-do list because life is unpredictable and your income shouldn’t be.

Does Tennessee have state disability insurance?

Only 5 states in the U.S. require companies to provide their employees with disability insurance coverage that includes benefits for accidents or illnesses sustained outside of the workplace. Unfortunately, Tennessee is not among these states.

A claims examiner at Disability Determination Services (DDS), a state entity, determines if you are disabled in Tennessee. When DDS gets your Social Security application, it takes around three months to make an initial decision. DDS approves only around one-third of the applications it receives. If your application is denied, you can ask the DDS to reconsider it. If DDS again declines your application, you can request a hearing before a judge at a Social Security hearing office. In Tennessee, getting a hearing date can take up to 14 months. In Tennessee, Social Security judges grant payments in more than half of the cases they consider.

In Tennessee, the federal government pays the entire SSI benefit (up to $771 per month in 2019). Unlike most other states, Tennessee does not supplement the federal SSI payment with a state contribution.

What qualifies as disability in Tennessee?

If you have disability insurance provided by your employer, make sure to double check the criteria in the agreement that qualifies you to receive disability benefits when you’re unable to work. Some of these criteria can include the following: 

  • You are unable to perform the Substantial and Material Duties of your Regular Occupation as shown on the Schedule and; 
  • You are under the Regular Care of a Physician appropriate for your disabling Sickness or Injury and; 
  • There is no reasonable simplified worksite modification(s) that would allow you to perform one or more of the Substantial and Material Duties of your regular job.

How can I easily get disability insurance in Tennessee?

Seeking a private disability insurance policy is the easiest option in Tennessee. Here at Asteya, we offer disability insurance (or disability income insurance as we like to call it) that’s simple, fast, and affordable. Our 100% digital process means we don’t tire you out with proof of income, medical exams, phone interviews, or wait times. Click here to get a quote, or contact us for any inquiries.

Who qualifies for disability insurance in Tennessee?

Most insurance policies are bought to protect homes, vehicles, and health, but our most valuable asset tends to get neglected: our income. 70% of working Americans live paycheck to paycheck, with little savings to buffer the financial burden of a disability that leaves them unable to work.

At Asteya, we offer a variety of disability income insurance policies. Please visit asteya.world for more details on the eligibility of our product offering.

How much does disability insurance in Tennessee cost?

Protecting your income shouldn’t be a luxury, so here at Asteya, we’ve created affordable and easy solutions that won’t drain what you’re trying to protect (your income!). Our prices start as low as:  

  • Permanent Disability Income Insurance: starting at $6.05/month
  • Long-Term Disability Income Insurance: starting at is $5/month

The bottom line

On average, living in the state of Tennessee will cost you $3,124 per month, give or take – that’s a lot of expenses! You've invested a lot of time and hard work in building a life that works for you, and your hard work should not go to waste due to an accident or illness. That’s why you should protect your lifestyle and your income with disability insurance.

If you're still on the fence about whether disability income insurance is for you (hint: it is), here are a few extra points to consider while thinking about it:

  • Asteya’s applications are 100% digital. We don't require blood tests or doctor's appointments, unlike other insurers and we'll just ask you a few minutes of questions to determine your best policy.
  • Get paid out directly on an approved claim, and spend without restrictions once it's in your bank account.
  • We've made our Income Insurance as inclusive and accessible as possible. From corner store employees to corner office executives, our products were created to fit every budget and lifestyle.

How do I get disability insurance?

Get a quote from Asteya in seconds and go from applicant to insured in minutes