Utah retirement guide
Utah, with a population just over 2.764 million in 2010, has the some of the world's greatest scenery. That, combined with its outstanding recreational opportunities and healthy economy, attracts a growing number of baby boomers to retire in Utah - the Beehive State. Salt Lake City is the capital and 88% of the state's population lives in this Metro along the Wasatch Range. Most of the rest of the state is unsettled. Utah's cost of living can vary a great deal - the Park City area tends to be much more expensive than other parts of the state. Utah was settled by the Mormons. They represent 62% of the population and are a major influence in most areas. Utah has one of the lowest crime rates in the country. The Wikipedia entry for Utah has more interesting facts.
The Utah climate is that of the steppe, characterized by aridity and an altitude above 3000 feet. Summers are hot and dry, there is plenty of sunshine. There is a lot of dry snow in the mountains.
Economy & Home Prices in Utah
Utah's 2006-8 inflation adjusted per capita income at $23,020 was below the U.S. average. Tourism and mineral extraction is important to the economy, along with hi-tech. The median home in the Salt Lake City area in the 3rd quarter of 2011 sold for $150,500 (NAR). In early 2012 the state median price of a home was $146,200 according to Zillow.com. Homes in the Park City region can easily cost $1 million, although the market became very slow starting in 2007.
Utah has changed in 2009 to a 5% flat rate income tax. State sales tax is 4.7% but localities at on to that. At 9.6%, the total tax burden in Utah is about average, 20th highest of U.S. states. There is a small retirement credit available to some tax payers. Per capita property tax is among the lowest of all states. Most pensions are taxable. Utah taxes social security income. Utah has no estate or inheritance tax. More tax information is available at www.tax.utah.gov
Certified Retirement Communities
Utah does not have a certified retirement community program.
Best retirement communities in Utah
Utah has only recently begun attracting retirees, mostly in the St. George and Park City areas, both of which tend to be more religiously diverse than Salt Lake City and other parts of the state. St. George, located in extreme southern Utah, is the fastest growing community in the U.S and has many planned retirement communities. It is only 30 miles from Zion National Park. Park City, which was home to the 2002 Winter Olympics along with Salt Lake City and other communities, is a booming and wealthy 4 season resort based on an old and charming mining town. Utah powder is legendary and attracts skiers from around the world to the many resorts in its Wasatch Mountains. Ogden is also near Salt Lake City and offers outstanding outdoor recreation. Its nearby ski resorts were home to some events in the 2002 Winter Olympics. Cedar City, the "Festival City", is a lower cost town for retirement, also in southern Utah. Cedar City has an altitude of 5800 feet and has great skiing nearby.
Here is more inside information on retirement living communities in the neighboring states to help you retire in Idaho, New Mexico, Texas, Arizona, California, and Colorado. These links provide insight and data into economic conditions, climate, top communities, and taxes.
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