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Want To Retire In One of America’s Safest Cities? $1 Million Might Not Get You Far

Alexandria Bova

Many people looking to retire have a clear focus on how much is enough money to save for retirement. But, often, they aren’t thinking about where they should retire — or, more specifically, the safest place to spend their golden years to ensure their nest egg will last as long as possible. 

The $1 million figure long has been the benchmark when saving for retirement. This seems like a considerable goal, but how much you need often depends on where you plan on living out your golden years. And shouldn’t you pick a comfortable city where your savings have the potential to last a few decades more?

To find out how long $1 million would last you in retirement in a dependable city, GOBankingRates analyzed 100 cities, sourced from NeighborhoodScout’s 2019 Top 100 Safest Cities in America report, and ranked them based on affordability. It might come as a surprise that many of America’s safest cities are just outside of major metro areas: Wellesley, Massachusetts, is only 17 miles from Boston, while Cliffside Park, New Jersey, is only 11 miles from New York City.

Multiple factors were used to determine how long $1 million would last during retirement in each of these safe cities, including data regarding annual expenditures, cost of living index, Social Security benefits and crime rates. Caledonia, Wisconsin, was excluded due to insufficient cost of living data. Find out how long $1 million will last you in 50 of America’s safest cities.

Last updated: Sept. 17, 2020

Saratoga, California

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.5

  • Total cost of living index: 437.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $222,715.94

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $206,443.34

How long $1 million will last: 4 years, 10 months and 2 days

Greenwich, Connecticut

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.8

  • Total cost of living index: 259.3

  • Total annual expenditures: $131,879.98

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $115,607.38

How long $1 million will last: 8 years, 7 months and 22 days

Wellesley, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.3

  • Total cost of living index: 256

  • Total annual expenditures: $130,201.60

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $113,929

How long $1 million will last: 8 years, 9 months and 7 days

Harrison, New York

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 5.8

  • Total cost of living index: 232.8

  • Total annual expenditures: $118,402.08

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $102,129.48

How long $1 million will last: 9 years, 9 months and 12 days

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Newton, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.1

  • Total cost of living index: 215.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $109,603.30

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $93,330.70

How long $1 million will last: 10 years, 8 months and 14 days

Belmont, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.5

  • Total cost of living index: 207.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $105,636.22

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $89,363.62

How long $1 million will last: 11 years, 2 months and 7 days

Needham, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.6

  • Total cost of living index: 201.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $102,686.34

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $86,413.74

How long $1 million will last: 11 years, 6 months and 24 days

Ridgewood, New Jersey

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.1

  • Total cost of living index: 176.3

  • Total annual expenditures: $89,666.18

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $73,393.58

How long $1 million will last: 13 years, 7 months and 12 days

Arlington, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.6

  • Total cost of living index: 174.1

  • Total annual expenditures: $88,547.26

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $72,274.66

How long $1 million will last: 13 years, 9 months and 28 days

Milton, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.3

  • Total cost of living index: 170.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $86,818.02

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $70,545.42

How long $1 million will last: 14 years, 1 month and 28 days

Long Beach, New York

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.6

  • Total cost of living index: 169.3

  • Total annual expenditures: $86,105.98

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $69,833.38

How long $1 million will last: 14 years, 3 months and 22 days

Rancho Santa Margarita, California

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.4

  • Total cost of living index: 162

  • Total annual expenditures: $82,393.20

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $66,120.60

How long $1 million will last: 15 years, 1 month and 10 days

Reading, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.4

  • Total cost of living index: 153.2

  • Total annual expenditures: $77,917.52

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $61,644.92

How long $1 million will last: 16 years, 2 months and 17 days

Cliffside Park, New Jersey

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.2

  • Total cost of living index: 148.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $75,730.54

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $59,457.94

How long $1 million will last: 16 years, 9 months and 20 days

Colleyville, Texas

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6

  • Total cost of living index: 143.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $72,984.10

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $56,711.50

How long $1 million will last: 17 years, 7 months and 14 days

North Andover, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.7

  • Total cost of living index: 141.2

  • Total annual expenditures: $71,814.32

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $55,541.72

How long $1 million will last: 17 years, 11 months and 27 days

Marshfield, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 4.5

  • Total cost of living index: 139.6

  • Total annual expenditures: $71,000.56

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $54,727.96

How long $1 million will last: 18 years, 3 months and 4 days

Franklin, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 3.3

  • Total cost of living index: 136.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $69,627.34

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $53,354.74

How long $1 million will last: 18 years, 8 months and 23 days

Weston, Florida

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.3

  • Total cost of living index: 136.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $69,373.04

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $53,100.44

How long $1 million will last: 18 years, 9 months and 25 days

Billerica, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.6

  • Total cost of living index: 133.3

  • Total annual expenditures: $67,796.38

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $51,523.78

How long $1 million will last: 19 years, 4 months and 24 days

Bergenfield, New Jersey

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 3.8

  • Total cost of living index: 132.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $67,338.64

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $51,066.04

How long $1 million will last: 19 years, 6 months and 26 days

Beverly, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.3

  • Total cost of living index: 131.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $66,982.62

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $50,710.02

How long $1 million will last: 19 years, 8 months and 14 days

Johns Creek, Georgia

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.8

  • Total cost of living index: 129.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $65,965.42

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $49,692.82

How long $1 million will last: 20 years, 1 month and 9 days

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Keller, Texas

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.9

  • Total cost of living index: 129.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $65,863.70

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $49,591.10

How long $1 million will last: 20 years, 1 month and 24 days

Shrewsbury, Massachusetts

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 3.5

  • Total cost of living index: 128.6

  • Total annual expenditures: $65,405.96

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $49,133.36

How long $1 million will last: 20 years, 4 months and 2 days

Park Ridge, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.9

  • Total cost of living index: 125.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $63,778.44

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $47,505.84

How long $1 million will last: 21 years and 12 days

Saratoga Springs, Utah

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8

  • Total cost of living index: 123.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $62,812.10

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $46,539.50

How long $1 million will last: 21 years, 5 months and 20 days

South Kingstown, Rhode Island

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.5

  • Total cost of living index: 121.6

  • Total annual expenditures: $61,845.76

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $45,573.16

How long $1 million will last: 21 years, 11 months and 4 days

Cheshire, Connecticut

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.1

  • Total cost of living index: 118

  • Total annual expenditures: $60,014.80

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $43,742.20

How long $1 million will last: 22 years, 10 months and 4 days

Rochester Hills, Michigan

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.1

  • Total cost of living index: 116.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $59,251.90

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $42,979.30

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 3 months and 1 day

Cumberland, Rhode Island

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.1

  • Total cost of living index: 116

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,997.60

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $42,725

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 4 months and 22 days

Bartlett, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 5.7

  • Total cost of living index: 115.3

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,641.58

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $42,368.98

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 7 months and 1 day

Merrimack, New Hampshire

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.4

  • Total cost of living index: 114.8

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,387.28

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $42,114.68

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 8 months and 22 days

Pleasant Grove, Utah

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 4.1

  • Total cost of living index: 114.5

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,234.70

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $41,962.10

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 9 months and 24 days

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Carmel, Indiana

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.7

  • Total cost of living index: 113.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $57,929.54

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $41,656.94

How long $1 million will last: 23 years, 11 months and 27 days

Huntley, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.4

  • Total cost of living index: 111.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $56,912.34

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $40,639.74

How long $1 million will last: 24 years, 7 months and 2 days

Buffalo Grove, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 5.7

  • Total cost of living index: 109

  • Total annual expenditures: $55,437.40

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $39,164.80

How long $1 million will last: 25 years, 6 months and 6 days

Lake in the Hills, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 3

  • Total cost of living index: 107

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,420.20

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $38,147.60

How long $1 million will last: 26 years, 2 months and 12 days

Little Elm, Texas

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.5

  • Total cost of living index: 106

  • Total annual expenditures: $53,911.60

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $37,639

How long $1 million will last: 26 years, 6 months and 19 days

Ballwin, Missouri

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6

  • Total cost of living index: 104.6

  • Total annual expenditures: $53,199.56

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $36,926.96

How long $1 million will last: 27 years and 22 days

Hanover Park, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.3

  • Total cost of living index: 103

  • Total annual expenditures: $52,385.80

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $36,113.20

How long $1 million will last: 27 years, 8 months and 2 days

Hutto, Texas

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.3

  • Total cost of living index: 101.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $51,572.04

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $35,299.44

How long $1 million will last: 28 years, 3 months and 22 days

Mundelein, Illinois

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.4

  • Total cost of living index: 98.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $50,046.24

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $33,773.64

How long $1 million will last: 29 years, 7 months and 2 days

Florence, Arizona

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 5.5

  • Total cost of living index: 95.9

  • Total annual expenditures: $48,774.74

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $32,502.14

How long $1 million will last: 30 years, 8 months and 29 days

Independence, Kentucky

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.3

  • Total cost of living index: 92

  • Total annual expenditures: $46,791.20

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $30,518.60

How long $1 million will last: 32 years, 8 months and 27 days

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Rexburg, Idaho

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.6

  • Total cost of living index: 91.6

  • Total annual expenditures: $46,587.76

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $30,315.16

How long $1 million will last: 32 years, 11 months and 17 days

Bella Vista, Arkansas

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 8.4

  • Total cost of living index: 90.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $46,130.02

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $29,857.42

How long $1 million will last: 33 years, 5 months and 19 days

Brunswick, Ohio

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 6.2

  • Total cost of living index: 90.4

  • Total annual expenditures: $45,977.44

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $29,704.84

How long $1 million will last: 33 years, 7 months and 21 days

North Ridgeville, Ohio

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 4.7

  • Total cost of living index: 88.7

  • Total annual expenditures: $45,112.82

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $28,840.22

How long $1 million will last: 34 years, 7 months and 24 days

Plum, Pennsylvania

  • Total crime rate per 1,000 residents: 7.5

  • Total cost of living index: 79.2

  • Total annual expenditures: $40,281.12

  • Annual expenditures after annual Social Security benefits are used: $24,008.52

How long $1 million will last: 41 years, 7 months and 14 days

More From GOBankingRates

Methodology: GOBankingRates looked at 100 of America’s safest cities as sourced from NeighborhoodScout’s 2019 Top 100 Safest Cities in America report to find out how long $1 million will last you in retirement in America’s safest cities. GOBankingRates determined the amount of time that $1 million will last during retirement in each city by multiplying the annual expenditures for someone 65 and older, sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2018 Consumer Expenditure Survey, by each city’s overall cost of living index as sourced from Sperling’s Best Places. This annual expenditure figure was reduced by the annual Social Security benefits a retiree would receive based on the Social Security Administration’s September 2019 monthly statistical snapshot. GOBankingRates then took this reduced figure and divided it by 1,000,000 to get the years, months and days that $1 million would last in retirement for each city. Each city’s crime rate (per 1,000) residents was sourced from NeighborhoodScout, and the percentage of the population 65 years and older was sourced from the 2017 American Community Survey as supplemental data. Caledonia, Wisconsin, was excluded from the final ranking due to insufficient cost of living data available. All data was up to date and compiled on Nov. 13, 2019.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Want To Retire In One of America’s Safest Cities? $1 Million Might Not Get You Far