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The 50 Best Places To Retire — and What It Costs To Live There

Barri Segal

If you’re thinking about leaving the rat race, you’ll inevitably wonder about the best places to retire in the U.S. Finding the right city is essential, especially if you want to get the most out of your retirement nest egg.

To make your life easier, GOBankingRates identified the 50 best American cities to spend your golden years and provided the annual retirement costs for both homeowners and renters in each city. However, more than just home prices went into this study — GOBankingRates took into account everything from grocery and healthcare expenses to taxes and crime rates.

So, if you’re getting ready to say goodbye to the workforce, make sure to review your best options for retirement.

50. Columbia, Maryland

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $36,215.62
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $39,839.62

It’s not surprising that Columbia made GOBankingRates’ list of the best places to retire. Thanks to low median mortgage and rent payments, at $1,335 and $1,637 per month, respectively, retirement costs are manageable in this city.

49. Ventura, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $46,716.49
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $42,276.49

Although Ventura doesn’t offer rock-bottom prices for your median monthly rent or mortgage, retirees in this city will still find annual costs for groceries and healthcare — at $3,831.79 and $6,244.40, respectively — to be quite cheap.

48. Garden Grove, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $47,562.46
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $39,438.46

Although the median house price in Garden Grove doesn’t come cheap at $617,000, along with an annual mortgage bill of $28,248, the yearly cost of groceries is on the low end at $3,921.62. Utilities are relatively inexpensive in this city as well, at $3,647.15 per year.

47. Santa Rosa, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $47,627.09
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $42,923.09

Santa Rosa is another California city that’s great for retirees, but it’s not because of the median home list price of $619,750 or the average monthly rent of $1,972. Groceries and utilities aren’t expensive at $4,327.85 and $3,717.71 per year, respectively. And, you’ll be close to plenty of wineries in this beautiful Sonoma County suburb.

46. Hampton, Virginia

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $27,487.16
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $30,967.16

Watch out for healthcare costs in Hampton — at $7,638 per year, it’s the second-most expensive city for this expense out of all the cities on GOBankingRates’ list. However, there are other financial benefits to living in Hampton that might make up for the high cost of healthcare. It boasts the cheapest annual retirement costs for homeowners, as well as the fifth-cheapest overall costs for renters.

45. Centennial, Colorado

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $41,748.03
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $39,216.03

Retire in Centennial, and you’ll enjoy low retirement costs whether you’re a renter or a homeowner. Beware of healthcare costs in this city, however, as they are on the high end at $6,579.40 per year. Additionally, Centennial has rather expensive transportation costs at $6,104.96 annually.

44. Oceanside, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $45,295.24
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $40,507.24

Overall expenses for renters and homeowners are pretty average in Oceanside compared to the rest of the cities in GOBankingRates’ study, but if you’re looking to buy when you retire, consider the fact that the median home list price in this city is on the high end at $573,990.

43. Arvada, Colorado

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $41,781.01
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $36,657.01

Transportation and healthcare costs don’t come cheap in Arvada at $6,114.03 and $6,425.30, respectively, but utility and food costs fall toward the middle of the pack. The median rent is $1,404 per month, which is a reasonable price, too.

42. Las Vegas

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $34,194.41
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $32,766.41

With a median home list price of $299,900 and a median rent price of $1,025 per month, Las Vegas is a solid choice for those who want to retire in a city with cheap costs. Just make sure you don’t spend too much time in the casinos with all the money you’d save if you moved to Sin City.

41. Rochester, Minnesota

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $29,360.04
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $33,440.04

At only $3,812.76 per year, Rochester has the lowest annual cost of transportation among all the cities on GOBankingRates’ list. It also boasts a decent median home list price of $276,900 and offers reasonable healthcare costs at $5,641.40 annually.

Read More: The 50 Best Places To Retire Across Middle America

40. Fort Lauderdale, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $43,943.21
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $41,987.21

Fort Lauderdale has relatively high prices for transportation and healthcare, at $7,035.45 and $6,432, respectively, but you’ll spend only $3,580.30 on utilities and $4,011.46 on groceries annually. If you want to buy a home, however, get ready for a hefty median price tag of $499,900.

39. West Covina, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $48,885.41
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $43,809.41

Another California city that has relatively expensive homes is West Covina, at a median list price of $585,000. But it’s easier to save up for a home since annual food and utility costs — at $3,921.62 and $3,788.28, respectively — are in line with most of the cities on GOBankingRates’ list. That said, transportation costs in West Covina are the highest — you can expect to pay $8,683.11 per year.

38. Bellevue, Washington

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $64,362.18
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $44,778.18

Bellevue residents pay only $2,636.94 per year for utilities, which is the cheapest bill among the best cities to retire. And, if you’re concerned about healthcare costs in retirement, note that you’ll pay less for healthcare in Bellevue than anywhere else on this list at $5,473.90 annually.

37. Miami

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $43,651.42
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $42,595.42

Although Miami has a high transportation cost of $7,702.68 per year, its surprisingly low median home list price of $475,000 might still make it very attractive to retirees. Plus, this popular retirement city in southern Florida features wide beaches that go on for practically forever.

36. Pompano Beach, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $32,674.76
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $37,726.76

If you can’t afford to retire in Miami, consider Pompano Beach — the median home list price is only $253,500, and the median monthly rent is $1,388. Watch out for transportation costs, however, which will cost you $7,058.15 annually.

35. Corpus Christi, Texas

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $28,135.09
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $29,995.09

Corpus Christi boasts the cheapest overall retirement costs for renters. At just $3,417.75 per year, it also offers the least expensive groceries among all the cities on GOBankingRates’ list. If that’s not enough to convince you, consider the median rent of $975 per month and the median home list price of $215,000.

Don’t Miss: These Southern Hidden Gems Are Perfect for Retirees

34. Pasadena, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $62,592.67
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $52,092.67

While Pasadena is one of the best places to retire in California, it’s still on the high end in, well, every category. The median home list price is $897,000, the median rent is $2,547 per month, and the annual transportation cost is steep at $8,147.

33. West Palm Beach, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $34,631.29
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $38,459.29

With a low median home list price of $298,000 as well as reasonable grocery and utility costs at $4,011.46 and $3,606.29, respectively, West Palm Beach is one of the best retirement cities in the Sunshine State. And, that’s not even taking into account this southern Florida city’s world-class entertainment, restaurant and shopping opportunities.

32. Simi Valley, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $47,010.79
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $41,538.79

Simi Valley is another California city where the median home list price is high at $610,000. But, if you decide to retire here, you’ll have reasonable annual grocery and utility bills at $3,831.79 and $3,777.14, respectively. Your healthcare cost of $6,244.40 per year also won’t be too steep.

31. Burbank, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $60,319.91
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $48,619.91

Burbank’s median home list price of $849,000 is relatively high. However, food and utility costs land toward the middle of the pack, and annual healthcare costs are surprisingly low at $5,708.40.

30. San Mateo, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $85,144.88
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $60,556.88

It would cost you an average of $1,389,000 to get into the real estate market in San Mateo — the most expensive median home list price on GOBankingRates’ list. And, the median rent is also the highest at $3,250 per month. However, groceries and utilities are reasonably priced in San Mateo, and healthcare will run you $6,499 per year.

29. Daly City, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $62,974.32
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $52,522.32

Residents in Daly City, one of the best places to retire in California, pay only $3,201.47 per year for utilities. It’s the lowest amount among all the U.S. cities in this study. However, groceries — at $4,327.85 per year — will cost you a little more compared to what you’d pay in many other cities.

28. Tyler, Texas

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $29,882.98
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $32,666.98

A low median home list price of $255,000 and a cheap median monthly rent of $1,205 make Tyler a great place for Americans on a budget — it’s one of the top retirement cities. Healthcare is rather expensive at $7,128.80 per year, but food, utility and transportation costs are all relatively cheap.

27. St. Petersburg, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $32,460.57
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $35,848.57

St. Petersburg has a very attractive median home list price of $282,200, as well as a competitive median rent of $1,276 per month. Groceries will cost you $4,011.46 per year, which is a bit high, but utilities cost $3,873.70 annually, which is in line with many other cities on GOBankingRates’ list.

26. Charleston, South Carolina

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $36,370.24
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $34,858.24

Charleston’s median home list price is $379,900, which isn’t too steep. The annual grocery cost of $3,589.61 and transportation cost of $4,992.90 are also on the lower end, which makes Charleston a great city to live in if you’re watching your retirement spending.

25. Overland Park, Kansas

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $37,004.42
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $31,244.42

Although this was supplemental research that didn’t factor into the overall rankings, it’s important to mention that Overland Park is one of just four cities on GOBankingRates’ list that tax Social Security benefits. The other three cities are Rochester, Minnesota; Arvada, Colorado; and Centennial, Colorado.

That said, Overland Park is a good choice if you’re looking for a city with low retirement expenses. If you choose to buy, you’ll find a median home list price of $395,000, and if you choose to rent, you’ll pay $1,027 per month, on average.

Related: Best Places in Every State To Live On a Fixed Income

24. Sterling Heights, Michigan

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $29,349.13
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $30,957.13

If you can deal with inclement weather, Sterling is one of the best retirement cities in the U.S. thanks to an extremely low median home list price of $205,999 and a median monthly rent of $920. Food and utilities are also a bargain, but transportation costs are rather high at $7,076.30 per year.

23. Mesa, Arizona

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $33,008.16
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $31,916.16

Mesa is one of the best places to retire in Arizona. Housing is inexpensive: You can rent for a median price of $977 per month or buy for a median list price of $279,900. In addition, you’ll pay only $3,730.23 per year for groceries and $3,717.71 per year for utilities. Healthcare costs, however, are on the high end at $6,807.20 annually.

22. Roseville, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $42,058.68
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $38,710.68

Roseville has a very inexpensive annual transportation cost of $4,929.35 and decently priced healthcare at $5,909.40 per year. But, if you want to buy a house, you should expect to pay the median home list price of $505,490. If you choose to rent a place, you’ll fork over the median rent of $1,649 per month.

21. Glendale, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $60,336.82
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $51,540.82

Glendale’s median home list price of $842,450 and median rent of $2,481 per month aren’t considered low, but annual food and utility costs are reasonable at $3,912.62 and $3,691.72, respectively. That said, transportation costs are the second highest among all the cities on GOBankingRates’ list at a whopping $8,447.08 per year, coming in just behind West Covina, California.

20. Torrance, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $59,387.86
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $44,831.86

Torrance has high transportation costs at $8,024.95 per year, as well as an expensive median home list price of $837,000. However, annual grocery and utility costs are pretty cheap at $3,921.62 and $3,416.88, respectively, and healthcare is surprisingly inexpensive at $5,708.40 per year.

See: Best Places To Retire If You Can’t Save Up $1,000,000

19. Carlsbad, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $59,882.06
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $47,102.06

Retire in Carlsbad, and your healthcare bill will total only $5,721.80 per year, on average. If you buy, you can expect to fork over the median home list price of $875,000, and if you rent, it’ll cost you around $2,273 per month. At $4,050.52 annually, you’ll spend a bit more on groceries compared to what you’d pay in many other cities, but your utilities will cost $3,617.44, which isn’t considered the high end of the spectrum.

18. Huntington Beach, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $59,978.53
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $44,966.53

Beach living can be expensive, and Huntington Beach is no exception. The city’s median home list price is $889,900, and its median rent is $2,144 per month. Food, utility and transportation costs, however, are all reasonable. Even healthcare, which will run you $5,963 annually, isn’t as expensive compared to many of the other cities on GOBankingRates’ list.

17. Hollywood, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $35,994.69
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $39,990.69

As one of the best places to retire in Florida, Hollywood has more going for it than the city’s relatively low median home list price of $320,000. If you decide to rent in Hollywood, you can find a place for a median price of $1,554 per month, and your utilities will also be on the low end at $3,591.44 annually.

16. Metairie, Louisiana

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $32,099.26
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $30,131.26

At just $919 per month, Metairie has the lowest median rent price of all the cities in this study. It also has a relatively low median home list price of $284,000. In addition, annual grocery and utility costs are pretty inexpensive at $3,628.67 and $3,205.18, respectively.

15. Palm Bay, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $27,517.15
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $31,021.15

Palm Bay has one of the cheapest transportation costs at just $4,697.87 per year, which might make it attractive to retirees. At $195,000, it also has the second-lowest median home list price out of all the U.S. cities on GOBankingRates’ list. Grocery, utility, transportation and healthcare costs are quite reasonable, too.

14. Peoria, Arizona

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $35,932.55
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $34,276.55

Peoria looks attractive as a retirement city based on the median rent price of $1,140 per month. Throw in the low median home list price of $334,900 and the relatively cheap annual cost for groceries, and Peoria can easily become one of the best cities to retire in the U.S.

Discover: The 50 Cheapest Places To Retire Across America

13. Thousand Oaks, California

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $55,898.81
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $44,894.81

Thousand Oaks might sound like the perfect place to retire if your heart is set on living out your golden years in expensive California. Healthcare is on the cheap end at $6,244.40 per year, and the annual costs for groceries and utilities are reasonable at $3,831.79 and $3,613.72, respectively.

12. Richardson, Texas

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $35,362.11
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $35,566.11

Richardson is one of the best places to retire in Texas. If you rent, you’ll face a median price of $1,314 per month, and if you buy, you can expect to pay the median home list price of $339,900. Costs for groceries, healthcare and transportation are all middle of the road compared to the other cities on GOBankingRates’ list.

11. Henderson, Nevada

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $37,023.73
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $35,031.73

Rents in Henderson are reasonable at a median price of $1,245 per month, and shopping around for a home yields a median price of $369,999. Moderate annual healthcare costs of $6,331.50 as well as reasonable expenditures for groceries and utilities — at $3,792.73 and $3,740 per year, respectively — serve to boost Henderson into this ranking of the best places to retire in the U.S.

10. Honolulu

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $54,183.43
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $46,047.43

At $6,547.78 per year, Honolulu has the most expensive utilities on GOBankingRates’ list by a wide margin. But healthcare costs are reasonable at $6,217.60 per year, and contrary to what you might expect, Honolulu isn’t in the top 10 for most expensive annual mortgage costs.

9. Clearwater, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $31,690.86
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $33,886.86

If you want to retire in a city where the median home list price is only $265,000 and the median rent is $1,194 per month, Clearwater is a good choice. This Florida city also has reasonable food and utility expenses, as well as a relatively low cost for transportation at $5,051.91 annually.

8. Pembroke, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $34,902.53
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $41,838.53

There’s a reason why you’re seeing so many Florida cities on this list — it’s a great state for retirees. Pembroke is affordable whether you rent or buy, and utilities run on the low end at $3,628.58 per year. Annual healthcare costs are also reasonable at $6,432, but transportation costs are on the high end at $7,330.49 per year.

7. Hialeah, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $36,464.51
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $38,804.51

This Florida city has rather high annual transportation costs at $7,548.36, but healthcare is still somewhat reasonable at $6,646.40 per year. And, you can buy a home for a median list price of $294,900 or rent somewhere for a median price of $1,703 per month.

6. Lakeland, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $27,503.26
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $30,599.26

If you want to retire and buy a home, you can purchase one in Lakeland for a median price of $199,900 — the third cheapest on GOBankingRates’ list. Or, you can rent a place for a median price of $1,021 per month. You’ll also encounter low annual transportation costs at $4,384.67 and reasonable healthcare costs at $6,311.40 per year.

5. Spring Hill, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $28,039.29
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $32,719.29

Spring Hill has a median home list price of just $180,000, and it also boasts the lowest mortgage payments at $8,244 per year. Additionally, the median rent is only $1,077 per month. All other costs are middle of the road for this list, making Spring Hill a very attractive place to spend your golden years.

4. Scottsdale, Arizona

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $47,723.93
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $37,235.93

If Arizona appeals to you, check out Scottsdale. Although the median home list price is rather high at $605,000, you can rent for $1,434 per month. Annual food and utility costs are relatively low at $3,730.23 and $3,803.14, respectively, which makes Scottsdale a very livable city for retirees.

3. Port Saint Lucie, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $31,036.17
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $36,668.17

Food is a bit expensive in Port Saint Lucie, costing $4,011.46 per year, but annual utility costs are fairly low at $3,487.45. The median list price for a home in this city — $247,340 — is reasonable, and you can rent somewhere for a median price of $1,580 per month. Overall, this city on the Atlantic coast of southern Florida is a good choice for retirees.

2. Surprise, Arizona

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $32,178.67
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $34,470.67

You might be surprised that the city of Surprise ranks No. 2 on GOBankingRates’ list because its median home list price of $269,500 isn’t the lowest. But, you can rent for a median price of $1,219 per month, and you can feed yourself for a low cost of $3,730.23 per year.

1. Cape Coral, Florida

  • Annual retirement costs for homeowners: $33,541.98
  • Annual retirement costs for renters: $35,761.98

Healthcare costs in Cape Coral are by far the most expensive on GOBankingRates’ list at $8,013.20 per year. But, if you move to this southwest Florida city, you’ll be able to buy a house for a low median list price of $262,200. And, you can rent for a cheap median price of $1,185 per month.

See Why: The Best Places To Retire In America Are All College Towns

The Best Places To Retire in the US

Choosing the best place for you to retire doesn’t always mean finding the cheapest place. When you’re looking for your ideal retirement city, it’s essential to take various factors into account, including how much it’ll cost for you to eat, get around, use basic utilities and gain access to healthcare.

Because GOBankingRates has done the legwork for you, all you have to do now is decide which city fits you — and your financial situation — the best. Overall, Florida takes the crown with seven of the top 10 cities for retirement. For options beyond the Sunshine State, Arizona clinched two of the top retirement cities, and Hawaii managed to snag the No. 10 spot.

Click through to find the best cities to retire on $1,500 per month.

More on Retirement Planning

Methodology: GOBankingRates analyzed the top 100 cities with a population over 100,000 based on the percentage of the population ages 65 and older, as sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2017 American Community Survey’s five-year estimates. GOBankingRates then took these top 100 cities and ranked them across five factors: (1) violent crime rate per 1,000 residents, sourced from NeighborhoodScout; (2) property crime rate per 1,000 residents, sourced from NeighborhoodScout; (3) livability score, sourced from AreaVibes; and (4) average annual temperature, sourced from Weatherbase.com. These factors were scored and combined, with a lower score indicating a better score. The top 50 cities were then chosen to determine their total cost-of-living necessities.

To determine the total cost-of-living necessities, GOBankingRates found the annual costs of a (1) 30-year fixed-rate mortgage at a 3.99% APR, as determined by the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank on May 30, 2019, based off median home list prices as sourced from Zillow, and (2) annual rent costs, sourced from RentCafe.com. GOBankingRates then determined the (3) annual cost of food/groceries based on “food at home” annual expenditures for people ages 65 and older, sourced from the 2017 Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey (this cost was then adjusted to each city’s local cost of living using Sperling’s Best Places’ grocery index); (4) annual cost of utilities, based on “utilities, fuels, and public services” annual expenditures for people ages 65 and older, sourced from the 2017 Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey (this cost was then adjusted to each city’s local cost of living using Sperling’s Best Places’ utilities index); (5) annual cost of healthcare, based on “healthcare” annual expenditures for people ages 65 and older, sourced from the 2017 Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey (this cost was then adjusted to each city’s local cost of living using Sperling’s Best Places’ healthcare index); and (6) annual cost of transportation, based on “transportation” minus “vehicle purchases” (we assumed that new retirees will not be purchasing a new car) annual expenditures for people ages 65 and older, sourced from the 2017 Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey (this cost was then adjusted to each city’s local cost of living using Sperling’s Best Places’ transportation index). These factors were then combined to give both an (7) annual necessities cost for homeowners and (8) annual necessities cost for renters in all 50 best cities to retire.

GOBankingRates also found supplemental tax data for each city, which included (1) local sales tax rate as sourced from each city/county’s website; (2) state sales tax rate, sourced from the Tax Foundation’s “State and Local Sales Tax Rates, 2019”; (3) whether the states taxed Social Security benefits as sourced from the AARP; and (4) whether the states taxed retirement income such as 401(k) plans, pensions, etc. as sourced from each state’s tax/revenues website.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: The 50 Best Places To Retire — and What It Costs To Live There