By Meg Dickens
Johnson County took center stage on talk show Daytime Tri-Cities’s Real Estate Today segment on September 9, thanks to Mountain City native and real estate agent Jessica Harkness. Harkness and interviewer Amy Lynn visited a property in Butler, Tennessee, to discuss the benefits of living in the mountains and developing areas.
“It’s great being in the mountains,” Harkness said while explaining how her perspective changed after seeing her home through a friend’s eyes. “It wasn’t until then that it really hit me that I live in this gorgeous part of the country, and it’s just breathtaking.”
Small town living and its benefits seem to be growing in popularity, and Johnson County appears to be receiving some attention. One example was its feature in national magazine Medium. Contributor Lauren Lovett explained that many people leave more populated urban areas to find a “kinder, gentler place to live.” Johnson County seems to fit that description according to Harkness, and Lynn echoed the sentiment.
“The Mountain City area is a very small town so, if you go into a grocery store or a restaurant, you’re almost guaranteed to see someone that you know,” Harkness explained. “You don’t have a lot of neighborhoods, so it’s more of family farms or family acreage. For me, living in the neighborhood was like being with my family. It’s a very close-knit community.”
Statistics also back up the area’s rising popularity. According to Harkness, Butler’s property value “ went up tremendously” in the last few years. Butler’s property value near Watauga Lake seems to be one of the most popular points. Harkness referred to the lake as “a hidden jewel that people now are finding out about.”
“It’s very desirable for people,” Harkness explained while describing the features of the area. “A lot of people like the seclusion of this area and being able to just kind of live a laid back lifestyle.”
Jessica Harkness grew up in Mountain City, Tennessee. She spends her free time with her family and friends. Harkness loves being outdoors, walking her dogs Yoshi and Milli, and spending time with her husband Kevin and daughter Nadia. Her hobbies include running, shopping, and reading. Harkness works for Evans and Evans Real Estate. Find out more about Harkness and the area at zillow.com. You can also contact her directly at (423) 291-9584 or [email protected]