Another retirement list has been published by Topretirements.com. This one ranks the ten best states for retirement. I’m confident that many will shake their heads at some of the states on the list. But either way, reviewing retirement location lists and why certain places are there is worth your time.
I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the top-rated state for retirement is our home state of Tennessee. According to data from the Missouri Department of Economic Development, Tennessee now has the lowest cost of living in the entire U.S. We have no general income tax (but we do tax certain interest and dividend income). All other retirement-related costs are low. Our climate is relatively mild yet we experience all four seasons, unlike states like Florida and Arizona where the seasons tend to be “hot” followed by “hotter.”
The complete list of top states in which to retire:
Tennessee and many of the other states on the list lag behind other states in other criteria, such as educational achievement, etc. But a lot of these other criteria become much less important to a retiree.
The deep south dominates this list. The south has its own culture in religion, language, food, and pace of life. This takes adjustment if you are from the north or upper mid-west. But if you are an open-minded and accepting person, it can be a pleasant adjustment, with financial benefits.
We have lived in Tennessee for 32 years. During this period, I have met a number of transplants from northern states (where my wife and I were from) who treated their time here like they had been exiled to Siberia. They never made a real attempt to fit in. A few years later, they were gone. Any retiree who experiments with a new location with a similar negative or pessimistic attitude will not succeed.
So what are your thoughts about this list?