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Ranking of Best and Worst States for Retirement

Saturday - April 3, 2021


  • Do you agree with the list below?
  • If you want to share, no pressure as usual, what number is your state? Mine is 39, yikes. Use to live in 5 and yes, the retirees/snowbirds run this state/lol
  • Any plans to relocate? Me, no. Thought about moving back to Florida when I retired last July 2020. My only child lives there but not interested in the heat = high air conditioning bill 😞
  1. Nebraska
  2. Iowa
  3. Missouri
  4. South Dakota
  5. Florida
  6. Kentucky
  7. Kansas
  8. North Carolina
  9. Montana
  10. Hawaii
  11. Arkansas
  12. Wisconsin
  13. North Dakota
  14. Vermont
  15. New Hampshire
  16. Alabama
  17. Texas
  18. Idaho
  19. Mississippi
  20. Wyoming
  21. Oklahoma
  22. Tennessee
  23. Massachusetts
  24. Michigan
  25. West Virginia
  26. Ohio
  27. Rhode Island
  28. Georgia
  29. Indiana
  30. Connecticut
  31. Maine
  32. Delaware
  33. Colorado
  34. Pennsylvania
  35. Utah
  36. Lousiana
  37. New Mexico
  38. Arizona
  39. Virginia
  40. Minnesota
  41. South Carolina
  42. New Jersey
  43. California
  44. Oregon
  45. Nevada
  46. Washington
  47. Illinois
  48. Alaska
  49. New York
  50. Maryland



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Friday - April 16, 2021


Do you feel your state or a state you would like to retire in, is the best state to do so?


I have been living in Virginia since February 2015, relocated from Florida. Retired July 2020.


Anyone else living in Virginia or want to?


According to the Kiplinger State-by-State Guide To Taxes on Retirees, Virginia ranks as a TAX-FRIENDLY STATE for retirees. Do you agree or disagree? I am still evaluating this as I approach my 1 year of being retired. This year will be my first full year on Social Security alone. Lol, will be interesting to see what I OWE Uncle Sam come tax time next year 😱

Link to article I saw this info if you want to check it out 

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Regular Contributor

What are the criteria for the list? This is suspect.

Trusted Social Butterfly


This is an old article from 2019.  The way they ranked it were based on 5 criteria:



To construct our ranking, Bankrate looked at eleven public and private datasets related to the life of a retiree. The study examined five categories (weightings in parentheses): affordability (40%), crime (5%), culture (15%), weather (15%) and wellness (25%).

Affordability was calculated using scores from the 2019 Cost of Living Index from the Council for Community and Economic Research, the percentages of people who needed to see a doctor but could not because of cost in the past 12 months from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and rankings for income, property and sales tax rates from the Tax Foundation's 2019 State Business Tax Climate Index.

Crime was calculated using the property and violent crime rates per 100,000 inhabitants for each state from the FBI’s 2017 Crime in the United States report.

Culture was calculated using the number of arts, entertainment and recreational establishments per capita,restaurants per capita and adults 65 and older per capita from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Weather was calculated using the average daily temperature from 1985 through 2018 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Hawaii’s temperature was calculated using the available data from the Honolulu weather station.

Wellness was calculated using the rankings from the Gallup-Sharecare Wellbeing Index, the number of places providing services for the elderly and people with disabilities per capita from the U.S. Census Bureau and the number of health care benchmarks states achieved or exceeded in the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports provided by the Agency for Healthcare and Research Equality For this study, Bankrate only looked at the benchmarks that included data for all 50 states."


And, yes I agree this is subjective.

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@sp362 I appreciate you stopping by 🙂 Interesting data!

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Yes you are CORRECT @lc3507 Anything ONLINE is suspect. Some ONLINE lists have my state VIRGINIA ranked high. Bottom line, the INDIVIDUAL retiree should maybe VACATION where they want to RELOCATE to. Personally, I luv small towns and they usually get ranked low. I may be wrong, and everyone is entitled to their opinion. Lol, Virginia I heard taxes Social Security. Just retired so I guess I will be paying taxes on my Social Security 😞 I HOPE Biden gets this changed. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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Honored Social Butterfly


The (Federal) taxing of Social Security Benefits has been around for a very long time - but it only affects people in a certain income bracket - individual or joint.

SSA>gov - Income Taxes And Your Social Security Benefit 

Many states just leave this the same when calculating the state tax portion.


However some states, like mine - Georgia - gives a very nice retirement income deduction - counting all kinds of income - up to a certain amount.


Yes, there is a lot to consider when deciding where might be the best place to retire

  • weather and of course, cost to heat and cool
  • cost of living especially housing, for seniors or just in general, and any property tax adjustments for being over a certain age
  • access to healthcare providers and cost of health care (cause this affects your cost even under Medicare when choosing a MA plan or a Medigap supplemental plan)
  • taxation of all kinds
  • transportation access or a walk-about community
  • availability of extra curricular activities which a senior or retiree might want access to

Then of course, for those on Medicare/Medicaid - how this works and how much help for different health care needs.




It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
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@GailL1 I have only Social Security, but GRATEFUL 🙂 

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Honored Social Butterfly

Might also add -

Some seniors may find that a certain states laws will affect their decision too - like Aid-In-Dying or even others.

Also Maybe being close to family members or NOT ~ 😯

It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
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@GailL1 excellent point 🙂

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