The best places to retire in the US have a lot to offer from affordable housing to beautiful weather to great access to medical centers to high quality of life. However, choosing the best places to retire can be a challenge considering the fact that there are many to choose from. That’s why we are here. We have compiled a list of the best places to retire in the US. In doing so, we take in consideration several factors including whether the city/state is affordable, whether it is a tax-friendly state, the percentage of senior citizens, the weather, outdoor/recreational activities, etc.
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How we determine the best places to retire?
The main factors retirees consider when choosing where to spend their golden years are: 1)affordable housing; 2) good health care; 3) low cost of living; 4) and tax-friendly states. Typically, retirees list affordable housing as one of their priorities when choosing the best places to live. That is, they’re looking for cities where the average home price is below or near $350,000.
Likewise, low cost of living is high on retirees’ best places to retire. With the rise of inflation, it can be worrisome for some retirees. Choosing a city with a low cost of living will help you keep rising prices in check. Also, state taxes can eat away your savings. So, choosing a state with no income tax should be high on your list as well. Most of the best places to retire suggested below are tax-friendly.
***Next Steps: Planning for Retirement can be overwhelming. We recommend speaking with a financial advisor. This tool will match you with up to three advisors.
Here’s how it works:
- Answer these few easy questions about your current financial situation.
- Sit back while our tool matches you with up to three advisors who can provide expertise based on your specific goals. It only takes a minute.
- Check out the advisors’ profiles, interview them on the phone or in person and choose who to work with in the future.
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The Best Places to retire in 2022
No doubt, the best places to retire in the US are in Florida. This is because of the weather, affordable homes, low tax rates and high percentage of senior citizens. However, do not discount other cities in other states. Factors such as happiness, desirability, quality healthcare makes these cities/states as appealing as Florida and potential places to retire. Below is a list of the best places to retire in the US.
Nevada is among the best places to retire in the USA. This is because it is a tax-friendly state. The state of Nevada has no taxes on income or social security benefits. Moreover, when you withdraw money from retirement accounts and pensions, the state does not tax you at all. This is significant as it leaves extra cash in your pocket in order to leave a comfortable retirement.
In addition to the tax-friendly environment, what makes Nevada one of the best places to retire is the fact that there is a high percentage of seniors in several cities of Nevada. This means that you’ll have several retirement communities to choose from and many peers to spend your retirement with.
Do you have questions about retiring in another state? A financial advisor can help.
New Hampshire, just like Nevada, is a tax friendly state. Thus, it ranks high in our list of the best places to retire. New Hampshire does not have a state sales tax or an earned income tax. However, it does tax dividends and interest, and the property tax can be high. Here are some potential cities to retire in New Hampshire:
- Manchester (high quality of life, job opportunities, access to health care, discount season passes to people age 65 and older at the city-owned McIntyre Ski Area)
Number 3 on our list of the best places to retire is Idaho. The reason is because the state has so many great opportunities for outdoor activities. So, if you like to be or remain active during retirement, Idaho is for you. The cities in Idaho suggested below offer this active lifestyle.
Not only that, Idaho has other perks that make it the best places to retire. For example, there are a lot of medical facilities and a senior population, which means that you’ll have a lot of choices to choose from. Here are the best cities in Idaho to retire:
- Sandpoint, Idaho (good for biking, boating, and even skiing; several recreation centers; a ton of stuff to do, i.e., the Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society’s arboretum, the Bonner County History Museum and regular farmers’ markets.
- Idaho Falls, Idaho (again good choice if you’re an active retiree; access to the Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, a number of National Forests and Jackson Hole
Without a doubt, Florida is the ideal place to retire. Endless summer, beautiful beaches. While Florida is great, some of the cities in the state might not be the best places to retire — unless you’re a multimillionaire. Some cities like are quite expensive. And to enjoy the standard of living in these cities, you would need a lot of money in retirement savings. Potential cities to retire in Florida:
- Orlando Florida (best for theme parks, convention centers and resorts; low cost of living; college town – the University of Central Florida; Walt Disney World; and Universal Studios Florida);
- Ocala, Florida (best for leisurely horseback ride through nature trails, lively equestrian events and competitions; reasonable cost of living and low housing costs, which appeal to retirees on a fixed income)
If you love nature, then you’re going to find that South Carolina is one of the best places to retire. South Carolina has several lakes and mountains. So, there are a lot of opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking and boating. The state also has some of the lowest property taxes in the nation. However, cost of living can be a challenge. Here are some of the best places to retire in South Carolina:
- Myrtle Beach (best for housing; high percentage of retirees and several medical facilities; the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel; access to 100+ golf courses, a variety of shopping and restaurant destinations )
- Seneca, South Carolina (good for outdoor activities; high percentage of seniors, so you’ll have good company with your peers; access to major attractions such as the World of Energy museum at the Oconee Nuclear Station and the African-American-themed Bertha Lee Strickland Cultural Museum)
Tennessee offers so many perks, making it one of the best places to retire. For example, the state has some of the best scenic mountain landscapes, hiking trails, historic museums, etc. Tennessee also ranks well in terms of tax-friendliness. It does not tax earned income but will tax dividends and interest. Tennessee also does not tax retirement plan income. So, your 401k plan can go a long way. Below is a list of cities to retire in Tennessee:
- Nashville, Tennessee (good for country music lovers, life performances at the Grand Ole Opry and visit the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, college town: Vanderbilt University and Tennessee State University.
- Knoxville, Tennessee (best place to explore outdoors; access to the Ijams Nature Center and Great Smoky Mountains National Park; college town – University of Tennessee; low cost of housing: $833 median monthly rent, $1223 median monthly mortgage cost.)
Last but not least, Pennsylvania makes the list of best places to retire in the US. That is because the state has so many perks that make it worthwhile for retirees. For example, the state has so may small towns and cities where there are several medical centers. That means, you won’t have to wait too long to see a doctor. Also, withdrawals from 401ks and IRAs taken after 59 1/2 are generally exempt from state income tax.
- Scranton Pennsylvania (best for low cost of living: median monthly rent is $789 and median monthly mortgage is $1294; your best TV show: the Office.
- Media, Pennsylvania (ranks fifth in the nation; small town – 5000 people; many medical centers)
The Bottom Line
The best places to retire in the US are not all concentrated in Florida. While Florida has some of the best qualities retirees usually look for such as beautiful weather, other states offer some qualities as well. Whether you are wealthy or middle class, the cities mentioned above offer some of the best options. They include oceans, lakes, rivers, recreation centers, low property taxes, low cost of living, great access to healthcare facilities, etc. These are all compelling reasons to consider retiring in these cities.
To really help maximize your retirement savings, consider working with a financial advisor. An advisor can help you invest smarter and build a financial plan that helps you reach your goals and accounts for things like the estate tax. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.