Best Retirement States There are many magazine articles and web sites that list 'best states for retirees' but before you decide to take the top ten states listed, stop for a minute and ask yourself, "What are you looking for in a place for retirement?".
Many lists assume that low taxes are the most important thing to ALL retirees and so they make their list of Best Retirement States by taxes only. Taxes may or may not be most important for you. If you have a large pension and will receive high social security and expect to buy an expensive home, then tax saving may be among your priorities. But if your pension and social security is modest and you expect to rent or buy a modest home, then TAXES may not be your biggest concern. Do not be fooled into 'just going along' with the crowd. This is your retirement; not that of someone else.
HEALTH CARE. How is your health? Do you have any medical conditions that could mean that health care facilities will important to you? Will your new community have enough General Practitioners or Gerontologists to meet your needs? Before you make any final decisions about moving, you might want to ask your current physician(s) about any city or town you are considering.
If your health care providers do not know the area, they can probably suggest some ways to check out local heath care facilities - numbers of physicians in relation to total population, numbers in any specialties you might need. Health care should be a prime consideration when you are planning. Many people make a point of visiting the health care facilities in any area they are considering.
TRANSPORTATION You may be driving now but someday longer trips will become a problem. And for many elders any driving becomes a problem as they age.
One of the great advantages of living in a city is that they often have reliable and inexpensive public transportation. Some towns and cities offer free passes or low cost tickets to retirees. If you expect to live into your 90's having reliable local transportation will be essential. Be sure to check this out when considering Best Retirement States and cities before your relocate.
CRIME The Best Retirement States are those with areas of low crime. You could be in the prettiest area, with the lowest taxes but if crime is a major problem, this may not be the place for you. Criminals are known to prey on the old. More than one retiree has become a 'virtual prisoner' in a home because of local crime. And crime often follows drug use so getting the statistics on addiction, drug sales and/or use is important.
CLIMATE, TOPOGRAPHY Many 'snow birds' who have traveled to Florida or other Southern States for years find that year round living in the South is NOT for them. Summer heat and humidity can leave elders trapped at home and the cost of air conditioning can be prohibitive. Some retirees find that having two homes or apartments is what they really want. Some couples continue their annual 'snow bird' trip well into their 90's.
LIKELIHOOD OF NATURAL DISASTERS needs to be checked when searching for the The Best Retirement States. Living in a tornado belt or on a flood plain or near an active earthquake fault may make sense where you are young but as you age, dealing with natural disasters becomes more and more stressful. Go online to check for 'weather and natural disasters' within 20 miles of any place your are considering.
CULTURAL RESOURCES, RECREATION It is one thing to watch T.V. or use Skype to visit 'face to face' via your web cam but what about parks, restaurants, sports, theaters. What is it that you enjoy. Some retirees head to places where major league teams do their off season practice and games. Ticket prices are low and there is usually a 'sport community' available for their Best Retirement States.
But if you are into opera, ballet or theater you either need a city or university nearby, IN recent years more and more retirees are choosing College towns for their retirement.
hose who are serious about pursuing a long desired degree, they are choosing paces where colleges or universities offer Best Retirement States that offer college scholarships for Seniors (A degree is over worth over a $100,000 dollars and free tuition can be a a big incentive for Best State Retirement
FITTING IN SOCIALLY, POLITICALLY, RELIGIOUSLY, CULTURALLY You want to be realistic about your adaptability. More than one retiree who decided to 'retiree abroad' has found that after a year or so, living the expatriate life was just not for them. They wanted, they needed a bit more familiarity of language, customs and friends. But the same thing can happen in the States. Getting to know the community before you commit yourself is important. Remember that in retirement you do not have the support of a work environment. It is your neighbors and friends who are your whole community.
Finally, there is the question of cost of living (including housing and taxes). The Best Retirement states will be those which you can afford. Click on Retirement living taxes by state
You may want to check out: College Town Retirement
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