Only You Can Make the Decision!
This Information Should Help!

What are the best retirement states? That depends on what is important to you in each location. I have addressed the basic concerns of most retirees.

The top four categories to take into account are:

  1. Finances - retirement must be affordable.
  2. Crime - no one wants to be worried about their safety.
  3. Climate - more retirees head south rather than north.
  4. Health - eventually most of us will need some medical assistance.

There is a 5th category that I call "Personal Preference". Some retirees want to be near water or near scenic beauty or near snow skiing. Others want to fish the rivers or travel or be near their children.

Any concern in that 5th category may take precedence over the first four. As a result, where to retire becomes a very personal decision.


You can give your available retirement funds a boost by moving to a newer home in a state where homes are less expensive. Money left over can pad your "nest egg".

States with lower or no income tax should not be overlooked. However, all states need revenue and lower income tax rates may mean higher sales taxes.


I believe that this should be a major concern when identifying the best retirement states. Retirees are more vulnerable. A gated community should be considered. Retirement should not require you to be confined to your home.


The highways to Florida and Arizona seems to be busiest in a southerly direction in November. Anyone who lives in those states realizes that senior traffic is more of an issue when the "snowbirds" arrive.

There are many other states that have great retirement communities and four seasons.


One way of measuring this is "physicians per capita". Perhaps the quality of health care available should be more important than quantity.

It is believed that people over 65 live about two years longer in Hawaii. But, living in Hawaii is expensive.

Air quality and an active retirement may be related to health. Freedom from the stresses of financial hardships may also be important for health.

"The Perfect Retirement State!"

The perfect or best retirement state will vary depending on the four categories listed above. The "trump card" will be the 5th category - "Personal Preferences".

I've professed for years that: "If there were a perfect place to live in this country, everyone, who could, would move there. It would quickly become very crowded and all of the negatives that a large population causes would soon make it a less desirable location."

Seven States With No State Income Tax!

  • Alaska
  • Florida
  • Nevada
  • South Dakota
  • Texas
  • Washington
  • Wyoming

Seven States (including DC) with the Highest State Income Tax!  (2013)

The highest state income tax is listed first.

  • California 1.0 to 12.3 percent
  • Hawaii 1.4 to 11.0 percent
  • Iowa 0.36 to 8.98 percent
  • New Jersey 1.4 to 8.97 percent
  • Vermont 3.55 to 8.95 percent 
  • District of Columbia 4.0 to 7.75 percent
  • New York 4.0 to 8.82 percent

 Seven States with the Highest Sales Tax!

  • California 7.25 percent
  • Indiana 7.0 percent
  • New Jersey 7.0 percent
  • Rode Island 7.0 percent
  • Tennessee 7.0 percent
  • Minnesota 6.875 percent
  • Nevada 6.85 percent

 Seven States (including DC) with the Highest & Lowest Violent Crime Rate!

This is based on the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation report for 2007. Violent crime includes murder, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. The number represents the rate per 100,000 inhabitants.

  • District of Columbia 1414
  • South Carolina 788
  • Tennessee 753
  • Nevada 751
  • Louisiana 730
  • Florida 723
  • Delaware 689
  • Maine 118
  • Vermont 124
  • New Hampshire 137
  • North Dakota 142
  • South Dakota 169
  • Rhode Island 227
  • Utah 235

Crime statistics are no exception to the adage that "statistics can lie". There may be areas in a high crime state that are very safe. There may be areas in a low crime state that are not safe.

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