LAST REVIEWED Jun 08 2020 8 MIN READ
By The Human Interest Team
If you’re looking for the perfect place to retire, it’s helpful to do some research so you can pick a place that fits your long-term desires and needs. Luckily, there is no shortage of information about the advantages and challenges for retirement folks in each state. Keep reading to find out the criteria used by Wallet Hub, Bankrate, and Money Rates to determine their retirement-friendly rankings for all 50 states.
Best States To Retire: Wallet Hub’s Ranking
When it’s time to decide your ideal place to retire, it’s important that you take certain things into consideration, like access to health care, your quality of life, and the area’s affordability. Wallet Hub ranks the best states for retirees based on a scoring system that takes into account these factors and 44 other key indicators that relate to these elements. The scoring has a total of 100 points: 40 points for affordability, 30 points for overall quality of life, and 30 points for health care. Here is Wallet Hub’s ranking, with brief descriptions of the top five states:
Florida: Florida received the top ranking for retirement-friendly states with an overall score of 63.02. This great score is largely because of the state’s excellent affordability and quality of life, for both of which Florida ranked in the top five. The Sunshine State’s healthcare ranking rests in the middle of the list at number 26.
Colorado: Not far behind Florida, Colorado earns the second spot with a score of 60.99. Though the state’s affordability and quality of life are ranked in the top 20, its health care ranking is among the best in the country.
New Hampshire: New Hampshire’s great health care and quality of life rankings gave the state an overall score of 59.25.
Utah: Utah placed in the top 20 states for every category, resulting in an excellent ranking and a total score of 58.33.
Wyoming: The Equality State earned a score of 58.17, due to its affordability and overall quality of life.
South Dakota: 56.49
South Carolina: 55.02
North Dakota: 54.75
North Carolina: 52.14
New York: 47.57
West Virginia: 45.38
New Jersey: 45.06
Rhode Island: 43.49
New Mexico: 43.33
Best States To Retire: Bankrate’s Ranking
Bankrate created a ranking of the best retirement-friendly states in the country based on factors like wellness, weather, culture, crime, and affordability. Here’s a look at the rankings with brief explanations for the top five picks:
Nebraska: Nebraska is likely a surprising choice for the number one spot, especially when you consider that it has an average temperature of 49 degrees, but the state ranked well in all of the other measures, specifically for wellness and affordability.
Iowa: As far as affordability goes, Iowa is close to the top of the list. Additionally, the Hawkeye State scored surprisingly high for its culture, but there were other areas where it was outperformed.
Missouri: Despite its affordability and moderate climate when compared to other states, Missouri places at number three on the list because of its lower scores in overall safety, wellness, and culture.
South Dakota: Aside from the weather, which has an alarming average temperature of 46 degrees all year round, South Dakota ranks better than almost every other state. Most notably, the state ranks surprisingly high for its culture. This is undoubtedly largely due to the fact that it boasts the second-highest number of recreation, entertainment, and art businesses per capita.
Florida: Retirees have flocked to the Sunshine State for a long time, and for good reason. Aside from boasting a wonderful warm climate, Florida has a great deal of culture, including theme parks and the arts. Additionally, there is a large population of fellow retirement-age folks, giving you a great community to surround yourself with.
Best States To Retire: Money Rates’ Ranking
For Money Rates’ ranking of the best states to retire, they used categories like the state’s general popularity with older residents, weather conditions, local economy, personal security, and health care conditions. They based the rankings for each category on data gathered from the Centers for Disease Control, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Here is a look at how each state ranked with a brief description of the top five states:
Florida: Florida’s ranking should come as no surprise because of its high score for popularity, weather conditions, and health care. It is important to note, however, that the Sunshine State did have a violent crime rate that was a bit higher than most other states.
Iowa: Despite its frigid average temperatures, Iowa continues to do surprisingly well on retirement rankings, especially in the health care category.
Arkansas: Though violent crime rates are a concern here, Arkansas boasts incredible affordability because of its low property taxes and cost of living.
Oklahoma: One of the contributing factors for Oklahoma’s impressive ranking is the state’s high percentage of nursing home capacity.
Idaho: Idaho continues to do well in categories like the local economy, personal security, and healthcare despite being one of the coldest states in the country.
South Carolina (Tie)
Though there is plenty of information out there to help you decide the ideal state for retirement, the decision is ultimately yours. Just make sure that you choose a location that aligns with your unique needs, desires, and goals. Be sure to check out or retirement planning resources to help answer your retirement questions.
The Human Interest Team
We believe that everyone deserves access to a secure financial future, which is why we make it easy to provide a 401(k) to your employees. Human Interest offers a low-cost 401(k) with automated administration, built-in investment advising, and integration with leading payroll providers.