15 Worst US Cities for Retirement: 2016

Some cities make life difficult for retirees or just don't have much to offer them.

Six of these cities came from a single state. Six of these cities came from a single state.

Some cities, even those loved by younger residents, make life difficult for retirees or just don't have much to offer them. Here are 15 of those cities as ranked by Bankrate.

(For some better picks, check out the 15 Best US Cities for Retirement: 2016.)

Of course, many retirees look for family or good weather to decide where to settle in their golden years. Many times that works, but in using eight measurements: cost of living, crime rates (both violent and property), well-being of seniors, walkability, taxes, health care quality, weather and culture, Bankrate added a multidimensional way to search for the right spot – or not — to retire. Of the 200 cities it measured, here are the ones that ranked lowest:

A statue of the Spirit of Victory in Bushnell Park in Hartford. (Photo: AP)

15. Hartford, Connecticut

Despite being the capital of Connecticut and, following the Civil War, the “richest city in the United States,” today this “insurance capital of the world” is one of the poorest cities in the nation with three out of every 10 families living below the poverty line. The only positive Bankrate found was great walkability. Negatives include high cost of living, high crime rate, average well-being for seniors, very high taxes, below average health care, below average weather and average local culture.

The Ontario City Library. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

14. Ontario, California

More of a gas stop while driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, this Southern California city has two things going for it: good weather and low crime rates. However, it has very high cost of living, below average well-being, average walkability, high taxes, below average health care quality and poor culture. Grab your gas receipt and keep driving.

East Hartford on a Connecticut map

13.  East Hartford, Connecticut

Apparently even worse than Hartford is East Hartford, which has high cost of living, average well-being, below average walkability, very high taxes, below average health care quality, below average weather and average local culture. On the positive side, it has low crime rates.

Proctor's Theatre on State Street in Schenectady. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

12.  Schenectady, New York

Just trying to spell the name might be a hint, but this upstate New York city on the Mohawk River, about 20 miles from the state capital Albany, shouldn’t be high on any retiree’s list. The city of 66,000 has high crime rates, below average well-being, very high taxes, below average health care quality and poor weather. That said, it has average cost of living, good walkability and average local culture.

Riverside skyline. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

11. Riverside, California

Named for its location along side the Santa Ana River, Riverside is a large community just 60 miles west of L.A. Although it has low crime rates and good weather, the negatives are glaring: very high cost of living, below average well being, below average walkability, high taxes, below average health care quality and poor culture. That said, it’s a quick drive to Big Bear to ski and to Palm Springs to golf.

Times Square, New York City. 

10. New York

Perhaps it was the price of “Hamilton” tickets that put it over the top, but New York, despite being one of the most exciting places to live, especially when young, is pricy for those on a pension. Bankrate found it had very high cost of living, below average well-being for seniors, very high taxes, below average health care quality and below average weather. That said, it does have low crime rates, great walkability and great culture.

Little Rock River Market District (Photo: AP)

9. Little Rock, Arkansas

The Arkansas state capital, located on the Arkansas River, is a mixture of positives and negatives for retirees. Problematic: very high crime rate, poor well being for seniors, below average walkability, below average culture. However, it has a low cost of living, average taxes, good health care quality and good weather.

Worcester City Hall (Photo: AP)

8. Worcester, Massachusetts

Other than walkability, this city 40 miles west of Boston has many negatives for retirees, as seen by Bankrate, including high cost of living, high crime, below average well being, high taxes, average health care, poor weather and below average culture.

The Troy waterfront along the Hudson River. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

7. Troy, New York

Located on the eastern bank of the Hudson River, and part of the Capital District (near Albany), Troy is another city with good walkabilty and little else, according to the Bankrate survey. Negatives include: high crime, below average well being, very high taxes, below average health care, poor weather and just average cost of living and local culture.

Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo.

6. Buffalo, New York

Famous for its multi-foot snow storms (“poor weather”), Buffalo is on Lake Erie and has some stunning neoclassical, beaux arts and art deco architecture. Despite that, Buffalo has a high crime rate, below average well-being of seniors, very high taxes, below average health care and below average culture. It does have a low cost of living and “great” walkability.

Cheektowaga town hall. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

5. Cheektowaga, New York

Poor New York cities, they are getting hammered in this survey. A suburb of Buffalo, this town lies between it and Niagara and hosts the local airport.  It’s one of the worst cities to retire due to below average well being, below average walkability, very high taxes, below average health care, poor weather (“winter”) and below average culture. That said, it does have a low cost of living and low crime rate.

Downtown San Bernardino. (Photo: AP)

4.  San Bernardino, California

San Bernardino, despite its scenic mountain views, is really a crossroads to Las Vegas or Palm Springs. It has the Southern California weather working for it (“good”), but cost of living is high, crime is high, well-being and walkability are below average, taxes are high, health care is below average and culture is just poor.

Yale University in New Haven.

3. New Haven, Connecticut

Back to the east cost, New Haven has “great” walkability, but the attraction to retirees stops there. It also has a high cost of living, high crime rate, poor well being, very high taxes, below average health care quality, below average weather and below average culture.

River Street in Downtown Milford. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

2. Milford, Connecticut

Like New Haven, Milford has high cost of living, poor well being, below average walkability, very high taxes and below average health care, weather and culture. On the upside, it has low crime rates.

Maid of the Mist boat at the base of Niagara Falls. (Photo: AP)

1. Niagara Falls, New York

Wow, even having a natural wonder of the world in its backyard can’t keep this town from being rate by Bankrate as the worst city for retirees. Negatives include a very high crime rate, below average well-being, very high taxes, below average health care and culture and poor weather. Of course, it has a low cost of living and a good walkability rating. At least newlyweds like it.

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