Although your idea of retirement may involve staying in the comfortable home you’ve been in for years, your city/state may actually not be the best place for your level of retirement savings and income. If you’re thinking of retiring soon, you might want to reconsider relocating to a more beneficial retiree-dollars state. You may be surprised where they are…
Are You Living in the Best State for Your Retirement?
Many people think of “retirement states” as Florida or Arizona. Yet, those states have a fairly high cost of living and their crime rates have skyrocketed in recent years. So, if you’re willing to widen your horizons, and have a sense of adventure in your retirement, you might take a look at relocating to one of the top 3 states recently judged by Bankrate as the best states to retire.
1. Tennessee. Home to Dollyworld, Graceland, the Grand Ole Opry, and numerous beautiful state parks and natural attractions, Tennessee has one of the lowest costs of living in the country and a mild –to-warm year-round climate. It has low taxes, lower utility rates than most southern states, lower home costs than many other states, and has a decent public transportation system throughout the state. It also offers top notch healthcare services like the University of Tennessee’s Medical Center that’s ranked #2 in adult care specialties; the Nashville VA Medical Center that’s affiliated with Vanderbilt University’s School of Medicine and Meharry Medical College; Bristol Regional Medical Center that’s ranked among the top 100 hospitals in the country for neurosurgery and trauma care, in addition to many others. The one drawback that Tennessee may have to anyone thinking of relocating there is a growing crime rate.
2. Louisiana. Home to the world renowned city of New Orleans and its annual Mardi Gras celebrations, beautiful bayous, cultural attractions, sportsman activities (fishing, hunting, boating), and interesting mix of French, Indian and Spanish culture, Louisiana offers a laidback, very warm, Florida-like climate. It also offers a low cost of living, low taxes, and lower-than-national-average housing costs. Louisiana also is home to one of the most respected universities in the country, Tulane, and is attached to an incredible medical center and school of Medicine. There are also several other world-class medical centers in Louisiana – the Lallie Kemp Regional Medical Center, and the hospitals of the Louisiana State University Healthcare System. Since Hurricane Katrina, Louisiana has been on an upward mend with big plans for growth in future industry and construction. But, like Tennessee, it does have a little problem with a growing crime rate as well.
3. South Dakota. Well, not all retirees want to move to year-round warm climate and South Dakota may be just the answer to those who like 4 season changing temperatures. Winters are cool and snowy with the average nighttime temperature about 5.6 in January. Summer days can be pretty warm – up to 86 – with very little humidity. But, one of the major attractions of South Dakota is its all-out beauty. Its home to some of the most beautiful national parks on the planet throughout the Black Hills Badlands and has some of the most beautiful vistas anywhere. It also is host to several national monuments – Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Memorial, the Sitting Bull Memorial, and part of the Lewis and Clark trail. For retirees considering a completely new adventure, South Dakota won’t disappoint. It also offers retirees a low cost of living, very low taxes, lower than national average housing costs, AND a very low crime rate. There are also high quality healthcare services throughout South Dakota in the Avera and Sanford Health systems. For those who like an artistic culture, South Dakota is also home to music (jazz, blues, opera) festivals, the world-renowned Aberdeen Film Festival, theatre, and many Native American (Lakota tribe) arts, activities and commemorations.
In addition to these top 3, there are also many other states judged by Bankrate and Sperling’s to be amongst the best in the nation for retirement. They include Kentucky, Mississippi, Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Nebraska and North Dakota. So, retirement may mean that you broaden your horizons and look into possibly relocating to one of these retiree-friendly states. Of course, you’ll want to weigh a lot of factors – moving away from kids, grandkids, friends, relatives or even your long-lived in home may be difficult for you. Will the amount of money you save with the move really be that significant to make it worth your while? Talking to a retirement advisor, family and friends can help you sort out all these issues and help you get the best value, and happiness, out of your retirement.
The Best States for Retirement Aren’t What You Think, http://money.cnn.com/2013/05/06/retirement/best-states/index.html
South Dakota, http://www.blackhillsbadlands.com/home/thingstodo/parksmonuments/crazyhorse
The 10 Best States for Retirement, http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2013/05/06/the-10-best-states-for-retirement