These Are the 10 Best (and Worst) States to Retire

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Where retirees choose to enjoy their golden years can have a big impact on their quality of life.

Personal finance website WalletHub recently released its annual list of the best and worst states for retirees. WalletHub’s rankings are based on 24 metrics, including cost of living, affordability of health care services, entertainment options, life expectancy, number of resident retirees and property crime.

The most common mistake retirees make when choosing where to settle down in retirement is to select a place based primarily on either good weather or where their children reside, according to Teresa Ghilarducci, director of the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis at the New School for Social Research.

Children move and good weather alone does not make people feel happy or contented. If places with good weather are places where people create an active social or political life and good weather is a shorthand way to say that a retiree chose a place where the retiree is dedicated to activities that improve an old person’s life — which [are] calorie restriction, physical exercise, cognitive stimulation and social support — then seeking a place that offers all those opportunities is a good decision. Often staying where you are or moving to an urban area provides what people need for successful aging.

WalletHub said these are the 10 best states to retire:

  1. Florida
  2. Wyoming
  3. South Dakota
  4. South Carolina
  5. Colorado
  6. Idaho
  7. Texas
  8. Montana
  9. Nevada
  10. Virginia

These are the 10 worst places to retire, according to WalletHub:

  1. Rhode Island
  2. District of Columbia
  3. Hawaii
  4. Connecticut
  5. Vermont
  6. New Jersey
  7. West Virginia
  8. New York
  9. Alaska
  10. Maryland

Where do you plan to retire? If you haven’t decided on a location yet, what factors will help you choose a spot to enjoy your golden years? Sound off below or on our Facebook page.

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