When it comes to planning your retirement, deciding where you’ll spend it is as important as figuring out how you’ll spend it. Some states offer an affordable cost of living and property prices that can stretch your fixed income further, while others offer safety and and senior active community. To make the choice easier, Blacktower Financial Management ranked the suitability of every state for retirement by factoring in recent data on crime, cost of living, the population of people 60 and older, property prices, and life expectancy from sources including the U.S. Census Bureau and the FBI. Read on to find out which states rounded out the top 10.
The birthplace of sliced bread and the country’s leading corn producer. Iowa is also the top-ranking destination for people aged 60-plus, who make up 22.4 percent of the state’s population. It scored better than average across all ranking factors from crime to life expectancy, and with an average property price of $173,561, it also boasts the eighth-lowest property prices.
While it boasts the fourth-highest life expectancy of any state, at 80.7 years, living in “The Star of the North” never gets old for its over-60 crowd, which makes up just more than one-fifth of the population. Even with access to over 15,000 scenic lakes, homebuyers only drop $248,037 on the average property.
Whether you’re kayaking Lake Champlain or taking a tour of the Ben and Jerry’s factory, Vermont offers retirees the peace of mind of a low-crime location. Its violent crime rate of only 165.8 crimes per 100,000 residents makes it the second-safest state in the country, and the average resident lives to the ripe old age of 79.9.
Retirees move to “American’s Dairyland” not only for the cheese! There are great hiking opportunities and well-attended festivals like Summerfest, as well as a low average property price of $211,102 and a thriving 60-plus community amounting
One of a dwindling minority of states where you can scoop up property for under $200,000, Nebraska offers budget-conscious homebuyers a bargain on houses—its average property price of $179,168. It boasts eight state parks for outdoor lovers, yet its cost-of-living index of 92.3 makes it cheaper than such affordable southern haunts such as Louisiana and South Carolina.
The words “Famous Potatoes” have graced vehicle license plates in this state since 1957, but Idaho is perhaps even more famous among seniors for affordable living and safety. Its cost-of-living index of 93.8 puts it on par with low-cost Louisiana in everyday expenses, and at 226.4 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, it features the sixth-lowest crime rate of any state.
Seniors needn’t look over their shoulders while navigating the 3,478 miles of pristine coastline in Maine, which has the lowest crime rate in the country given its 121 violent crimes per 100,000 residents. Picking up a property will cost you a slim $229,824 on average in the state known for its lobster, lighthouses, and an over-60 community that makes up over a quarter of the population.
Even retirees who have never set foot in New England can quickly find their tribe in the tenth least-populous state in the country, where folks 60 and over represent 23.5 percent of the population. At 198.7 violent crimes per 100,000 people and no sales tax, the wallet-friendly state also has the third-lowest crime rate of any state.
Related: 20 Places with (Almost) Zero Crime
If Florida’s sunshine, beaches, and theme parks don’t lure you, its low property prices and lack of income tax might. Seniors can snag a home for only $256,977 on average, and given that people 60 and older make up 25.6 percent of the population, you’ll be in the company of countless others enjoying their golden years.
Unlike South Dakota, North Dakota imposes an income tax on its residents, but makes up for it with a low average property price of only $208,697. What’s more, its cost-of-living index of 98.5 makes it cheaper than even Texas or Georgia, and its famous reservoir, Lake Sakakawea, has more shoreline than California’s Pacific Coast.
Home Sweet Home
Consider these senior-friendly states for when you can finally put an end to the 9-5 and kick back and relax.
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