Best and worst states to retire: Traditional retirement hotspots fail to crack Top 10

Best and worst states to retire: Traditional retirement hotspots fail to crack Top 10

eTN:

New Hampshire is the best state to retire, according to a new Bankrate.com report. Colorado, Maine, Iowa and Minnesota comprise the rest of the top five.

The study examined eight key factors which were weighted in line with a nationally representative survey of non-retired U.S. adults. From most to least important, the categories were: cost of living, healthcare quality, crime, cultural vitality, weather, taxes, senior citizens’ well-being and the prevalence of other seniors.

New Hampshire ranked in the top five for seniors’ well-being (second-best), crime (third-lowest) and healthcare quality (fourth-best). It scored sixth-worst for weather yet still took the top overall spot thanks to its strength elsewhere.

Arizona, Florida and Nevada are popular retirement destinations, however, none cracked the top 10. Arizona came in 12th (while it scored lots of points for weather, it failed to make the top 10 in the other seven classifications). Florida was 17th (it has the nation’s highest percentage of residents age 65 and older but didn’t sniff the top 10 in any other area). And Nevada was nowhere close to the top (#44). It rated very well for weather and taxes but was pulled down by the nation’s worst healthcare quality and its fourth-highest crime rate.

Alaska came in last overall and in two of the eight categories (weather and the percentage of senior citizens). It was also dragged down by the second-highest crime rate, the third-highest cost of living and the fifth-worst score for healthcare quality. West Virginia is the second-worst place to spend one’s golden years, followed by Arkansas, New Mexico and Louisiana.

The study found about half of non-retired U.S. adults would consider moving to a different city or state when they retire. The percentage is greatest among millennials (58%) and falls to 46% of Gen Xers, 37% of Baby Boomers and 12% of the Silent Generation.

“What people think they want in retirement may not end up being what serves them best over the long run,” said Bankrate.com analyst Claes Bell, CFA. “It’s about a lot more than sunny skies, beaches and golf courses. As you get older, practical considerations like healthcare, taxes and proximity to family and friends become much more important.”

Rank

State

Cost of living

Weather

Health care quality

Crime

Tax

Culture

Senior

Well-being

1 New Hampshire 40 45 4 3 7 6 14 2
2 Colorado 33 20 7 26 16 9 46 3
3 Maine 38 44 1 2 35 19 2 11
4 Iowa 14 36 9 15 20 35 9 10
5 Minnesota 30 47 3 14 43 7 34 4
6 Virginia 31 16 16 5 23 14 42 29
7 Massachusetts 45 29 5 17 40 3 24 9
8 South Dakota 26 40 18 20 3 34 20 15
9 Wisconsin 24 42 2 16 46 29 22 6
10 Idaho 5 31 20 4 22 42 37 19
11 Utah 16 19 8 24 30 20 49 7
12 Arizona 28 2 26 38 15 39 12 12
13 Nebraska 12 28 17 18 21 31 32 20
14 Vermont 43 49 15 1 39 4 4 22
15 Pennsylvania 35 35 14 12 36 22 5 21
16 North Dakota 25 48 22 11 18 25 30 5
17 Florida 27 18 30 39 17 24 1 16
18 Delaware 34 24 6 40 37 28 7 25
19 Rhode Island 42 26 10 9 42 21 11 17
20 North Carolina 19 11 12 29 33 40 29 26
21 Wyoming 15 41 44 8 2 23 41 35
22 Michigan 18 43 19 22 26 36 18 27
23 Texas 11 5 35 34 5 30 48 36
24 Kansas 8 14 24 32 29 41 33 33
25 South Carolina 29 7 11 44 9 45 15 30
26 Oregon 39 22 27 27 41 12 10 13
27 Tennessee 6 15 38 46 4 8 25 45
28 Missouri 9 23 23 41 25 27 19 41
29 Montana 32 46 34 28 12 26 6 24
30 Alabama 7 13 25 42 13 47 21 44
31 Washington 37 32 31 36 24 15 39 18
32 Connecticut 47 30 21 7 49 10 17 14
33 Ohio 17 38 32 23 32 32 16 43
34 Illinois 21 33 33 21 47 17 40 37
35 Georgia 13 8 36 35 19 37 47 40
36 Hawaii 50 17 13 43 38 5 8 1
37 New York 46 37 39 13 50 1 28 32
38 New Jersey 41 27 29 6 48 18 27 31
39 Indiana 4 34 37 30 28 44 35 39
40 Maryland 44 21 28 31 44 13 43 23
41 Mississippi 1 9 49 25 10 50 36 42
42 California 49 1 42 33 45 2 45 28
43 Oklahoma 3 6 43 37 11 38 31 48
44 Nevada 36 4 50 47 8 11 38 38
45 Kentucky 10 25 41 10 27 46 26 49
46 Louisiana 20 12 40 48 6 43 44 46
47 New Mexico 23 3 47 50 14 33 23 34
48 Arkansas 2 10 45 45 34 48 13 47
49 West Virginia 22 39 48 19 31 49 3 50
50 Alaska 48 50 46 49 1 16 50 8

 

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