Where you retire will make an immense difference in how much you have available to spend.
Will you drop a major portion of your fixed retirement income on taxes, a high cost of living or some other expense in your retirement home, or will you be able to get by thriftily on Social Security and your pension or other annuity?
The answer could lie in TheStreet.com’s list of the 11 best states in which to retire if you’re determined (or obligated) to live on a fixed income.
Take a look at the following slides and the article below. (Photos: Shutterstock)
The cost of living here is 11 percent above the national average, but health care costs save it, since they’re 3.4 percent lower than the national average.
In addition, Social Security isn’t taxed, giving retirees a leg up.
You’ll be pleased to know that the cost of living here is 4 percent lower than the national average.
And there’s another advantage: Utah is second in the country for overall health for retirees over the age of 65.
Not only does Tennessee not have a state income tax, its cost of living is 12 percent lower than the country’s average.
8. SOUTH DAKOTA.
Another low-cost-of-living state, South Dakota comes in 4 percent below the national average.
In addition, there’s a zero-percent tax on retiree income, residents don’t get nailed with inheritance taxes, and the average annual resident income is just $43,000.
7. NORTH DAKOTA.
Like its more southern companion, North Dakota has a low cost of living, although it’s a tad higher, at 1 percent below the national average, than South Dakota’s.
But North Dakota also has low health care costs and low state income taxes, with rates ranging from 1.1 percent to 2.9 percent.
6. NEW HAMPSHIRE.
For a state on the East Coast, New Hampshire has a (relatively) low cost of living, says the report, at only (!) 18 percent above the national average.
Still, it has the seventh-lowest tax burden in the country, which is no small thing, and offers proximity to plenty of big cities for those who crave a little more excitement from time to time.
Cut 5 percent from the national average and that’s the cost of living in Idaho.
Health care costs are relatively low, too, and the average annual income is just $40,000—giving retirees on fixed incomes a bit of breathing room.
And housing is affordable, too, with the average home coming in $176,000 below the national average.
You will need a decent income to retire here—its cost of living is 87 percent higher than the national average—but if you need health care, average costs here are 11 percent below the national average.
And, come on, Hawaii!
Plus you get to enjoy that feeling of exotic travel every time you island-hop to, say, Kauai, Oahu or Maui, without spending to go someplace else exotic like Bali.
Median incomes here run around $26,000, which should see you through many years without breaking the bank.
And the cost of living is 7 percent below the national average.
In addition, housing, health care and recreation come with low costs that should keep you both comfortable and healthy, as well as entertained.
No state tax, a cost of living that’s only 1 percent above the national average and plenty of entertainment within easy reach—whether it’s theme parks, beaches or Daytona.
And you may laugh at those senior “early bird specials”—but if they keep your personal cost of living down, you might change your attitude.
Yes, the state has a state tax, but the top rate is 5 percent, so it’s not crippling.
The cost of living is 13 percent below the national average, which is pretty impressive, and median income is $24,000—something other states can only envy.
The report points out that that means a retirement income of $48,000 is going to go pretty far, especially when the state also boasts costs for golf, dining, taxes, housing and even medical care that are among the lowest in the nation.
So maybe you didn’t save as much as you intended for retirement. Or maybe you’ve just decided to simplify your life in retirement and eliminate all the nonessentials.
Where you retire will make an immense difference in how much you have available to spend. Will you drop a major portion of your fixed retirement income on taxes, a high cost of living or some other expense in your retirement home, or will you be able to get by thriftily on Social Security and your pension or other annuity?
The answer could lie in TheStreet.com’s list of the best states in which to retire if you’re determined (or obligated) to live on a fixed income.
According to the report, there’s a major disconnect in the U.S. retirement market, and it’s dividing the country by dollar signs.
Sadly, some of the states at the bottom of the list for financial reasons—high taxes, high cost of living, etc.—offer some of the great cultural or geographic assets in the country, like New York and California, but you won’t find them on this list.
Instead, you’ll find states with their own attractions that manage to offer a cheaper way to live.
Here are the 11 states TheStreet.com says offer the best financial advantages for retirees on a fixed income. They’re in reverse alphabetical order, as TheStreet.com presented them, so you get to pick your own “best.”