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Eastern Tn or Western Nc?

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I am born and raised in MN and finally ready to get out. My fiance and I were recently in Hickory Nc visiting family and thought that area may be a good place to try next. In doing some research, the Johnson city area of Tennessee looks like it could also be a good place for us. I am a welder, but I also have sales experience so I would most likely be looking for work in one of those fields. We would like to get a house with some acreage out of town but not completely in the boonies. We are planning to garden and have some animals.
Is one side of the state line better or worse in any way than the other, ie: property taxes(I know Tennessee has no state income tax which if a +) , home prices, schools, climate, soil, restrictions, hunting, fishing, or any other way you can think of?

Thanks in advance for any input.

Morning Sunshine:
only one comment about your question (since I have visited neither location nor have an opinion).  You said you and your fiance(e?) are looking in that location.  Might I suggest you research and think about Homeschool?  Then it doesn't matter what the schools are like.  Because frankly, right now, the Feds are looking to run all the schools across the land, so it won't matter where you live: all schools will be equally dismal as they comply with DC to get $$$

Morning sunshine, 
Thanks for your input, and I agree. However, my fiance is not on board. we have had several discussions but she, at this point, is still somewhat in the dark as to the reality of how bad or schools are. I plan to slowly keep trying to open her eyes, but at this time I am the breadwinner and so it would be on her to do the schooling and some battles you are just better off not fighting. I still have 2-1/2 years until our son starts school so hopefully I can get her convinced by then, or it may take a year or two of him being in the schools to change her mind. So at this point or move is going to be somewhat based on school district. It's a step in the right direction and almost no place can be any worse than the Minneapolis school system.

We're here in Hickory NC and Love it. Very conservative county (Catawba).  Good schools. Good place to be near rivers mountains and not too far from coast. Not the best economy but plenty here to do with your trade. Good luck!

Either western NC or Eastern TN is a good choice. Prices around Ashville are still high so I would avoid that area. Just across the line in South Western VA is a good choice too. I know a good realtor if you decide to look in VA.


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