February 18, 2018 — Every year we have fun rendering our opinion on the very “Best Places to Retire“. To start that process, late last year we featured the 20 Best Retirement Towns in three major U.S. retirement regions. In today’s installment we are going to winnow those lists down into our top 10 overall picks.
For 2020’s best places to retire our overriding criteria: how interesting it is to live there, recreation and culture, climate, taxes, economic situation, location, transportation, walkability, healthcare, and to a minor extent – cost of living. We also wanted to mix it up a little bit, offer diversity and some new faces.
Popularity on this site, as measured by online visits by our Members, is also very important. Here, in our opinion, are the best of the best places to retire in all of the U.S.
February 8, 2020 — Our popular series comparing different regions of the country for retirement has a new update. The Southwest, featuring comparisons of Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah has all new data and a fresh look. You’ll find up to date information on housing prices, taxes, climate, and where to live in this handy comparison article. Plus over 220 Comments rich in detail.
February 5, 2020 — For many retirees, getting to where you want to go in a golf cart is just about heaven. Forget the car, a golf cart (or low speed vehicle) will get you there while you enjoy your surroundings in the open air. Most active adult communities allow you to keep a golf cart and drive on community roads to golf, pickleball, or the clubhouse. But the real bonus comes with places where you can get to destinations outside of the community like the supermarket, doctor’s office, and movie theatre. In this article we’ll review some of the best communities and towns in America for golf carts.
Peachtree City, Georgia is a huge planned community about 25 miles south of Atlanta, Georgia. Although it is famous for its golf cart oriented transportation system, it is not a 55+ community – it is for people of all ages – the median age is 37.5. You probably can’t walk to too many places nor take public transportation, but you sure can get about anywhere in your golf cart. There are special roads throughout that let you get to shopping, amenities, or different developments. Cresswind Peachtree City is an example of the type of active community within this city.
February 2, 2020 — For Europeans and residents of the British Commonwealth, the answer to that question might be yes, it is a great choice for an expatriate retirement. The area around Cape Town at the southern end of the Continent is particularly appealing. This article, based on our recent trip to the country, will explore what it might be like to retire in South Africa, list some possible retirement towns, and provide the pros and cons of retiring here. Our visit was brief, so the impressions we formed on our own and from our guides are not comprehensive. We welcome those with more experience to chime in in the Comments section.
South Africa has long had the most prosperous economy in Africa. Much of that wealth came from gold, diamonds, and agriculture. Business is strong as well. Since apartheid was eliminated in 1994 the economy has softened, but still strong. Some people believe the Rand, the National currency, is undervalued by as much as 60%.
Dave is a very practical writer. And as he points out, there is a lot to consider, so choosing the place that’s right for you can be overwhelming. The Quest for Retirement Utopia covers all the possibilities and help you cut through all of the daunting and often conflicting information.
The book will help you clarify what factors are most important and suggest some considerations that you may not have thought of. It will suggest new possibilities for where and how you might retire. It will help you evaluate each place realistically and dissuade you from making a poor choice. And it will provide you with the resources you need to properly evaluate the places you are thinking about retiring so that you can make the most informed choice.
Here’s the link to buy The Quest for Retirement Utopia on Amazon: https://amzn.to/37jK6ra. It is available in paperback and Kindle.
January 4, 2020 — Who wouldn’t want to wake up to a loon calling in the distance. Or the sound from the gentle lap of waves on the shore. Having the grandchildren up to enjoy some fishing or a boat ride. Not to mention the pleasure of an early morning dip in velvety lake water.
The good news is that the country is filled with lakes and ponds of every size and description. Some are edged by major cities (Chicago or Madison WI), while others have bucolic towns on their shores. Still other lakes have nothing around them except the occasional camp or cottage. By choosing just 20 lake towns in this report, it means that we have omitted dozens if not hundreds of other great candidates. We have tried to focus on lakes where it is possible to live on or near the lake, and where there is some kind of nearby town for entertainment and the necessities of life. Some of these lake towns were suggested by members.
December 17, 2019 — If you are shopping around for the best state to retire in, the good news is that there are a number of states that would really like you to choose them. These states know that the homes retirees buy and the money they spend locally represents an important and clean industry. So they have taken steps to make themselves attractive to retiring boomers.
States like North Carolina, Nevada, Florida, and Texas don’t have a problem attracting retirees. They have a good reputation and many attractive places to retire. Others, such as West Virginia and Mississippi, have a harder time bringing in retirees without incentives. In this list we will concentrate on states that have taken specific steps to increase the number of people retiring in those states. .
November 26, 2019 — Are you in the camp of retirees who “hate” Florida, or are you among those that “love” it? Most folks thinking about the best place to retirein Florida seem to fall into one of those divisions; not so many have no opinion. In our view, Florida is filled with many great retirement towns, and it is diverse in more ways than you might think. This article will tell you a bit about this very large and populous state, plus give you a list of 12 Florida towns we think make for a great place to retire.
First, a few facts Florida’s 2018 estimated population was 21,300,000, the 4th most populous in the nation. Some 19% of the population is 65 and over, compared to 15% nationwide.
Geographically speaking, the State has a very unusual shape – it is both tall and wide. So tall and wide that it takes over a day to drive from Pensacola to Key West (832 miles). Florida is the 22nd largest state, has the longest coastline in the contiguous states, and the only state to have a coastline on the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. It is a very flat state, which is one of the things that people tend not to like about it (Mount Dora, at 185′ is one of its highest towns).
November 11, 2019 – As a place to retire the American West offers perhaps the biggest range of geography and the lifestyles that go with that. This huge area comprises 9 states with every kind of geography. Most impressive is its huge coastline that runs from coastal California to the state of Washington. There is the Pacific Northwest with its rain forests and deserts. Then there are towns in the real wild west from Idaho to Montana, along with deserts, mountains, and national parks in Nevada and Utah. There are college towns, some big and small cities, and many towns in tourist areas, so it’s likely there is a great place to retire for just about everybody. Here in our the third installment of our “Best Places to Retire 2019” are the top 20 most popular retirement towns in the U.S. West. Here are links to the other two: “The Top 20 Places to Retire in the Southwest” and “Best Places to Retire in the Southeast“.
What States are in the West? The National Geographic Society includes nine states in the American West, a huge territory made up of Washington, Oregon, California, Utah, Nevada, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming. With the exception of the coastal Northwest, most of this region is dry with hot summers. Most of the region has low humidity. For more information about what it is like to retire in the West see our “Dueling Retirement States” series: Dueling Retirement States: The Pacific Northwest, and Dueling Retirement States: The Western Mountain States.
A Surprising # 1 The 20 most popular towns in the West contain some surprises, including a few not familiar to many. The surprising #1 most popular place to retire on our list, Sequim (WA), edged out many more well known towns and cities. Its review was read by over 3,300 visitors in the first ten months of 2019 by Topretirements.com visitors, beating out Grand Junction (CO). Last year’s winner, St. George, UT, slipped to third place this year. This year there were four newcomers to the top 20 list: Cheyenne (WY), Eureka (CA), Brookings (OR) and Port Townsend (WA). Dropping off from the 2018 were Coeur D’Alene (ID), Medford (OR), Spokane (WA), and Las Vegas (NV).
October 30, 2019 — Ahh, the mountains. Snowy peaks, amazing trails, clean air, and majestic scenery that one never tires of. Although many people dream of a retirement near the beach, in a small town, or even the downtown of a city, there are plenty of baby boomers whose ambition is to retire near the mountains.
To help them find their best mountain retirement town, we have assembled a list of sixteen. From most of them you can look up and see mountains rising above, while in others they are just a short drive away. All are proven great places to retire – some are college towns and others are also on a lake. At the end of this article we will discuss some of the pros and cons of retiring in the mountains, but first here is our list, in no particular order (they’re all nice!). Note this is Part 2 of Mountain Towns for Retirement, see Further Reading at end for 10 more.
Twin Falls, Idaho. Sitting above the Snake River Canyon, this town is known as the hub of the eight-county Magic Valley region. Its location atop the Snake River Canyon provides for outdoor activities including boating, fishing, hiking, golf, whitewater rafting and skiing. There are many parks, a national forest, and the popular Shoshone Falls. It is home to the Shoshone Falls, “The Niagara of the West”.
Williamstown, Massachusetts. This small town in western Mass. offers a double pleasure – it is in the Berkshire Mountains and is home to prestigious Williams College. The famed Clark Art Institute, the Williams College Museum of Art, and the Williamstown Theatre Festival are just some of the proud artistic accomplishments of the town. Williamstown is in Berkshire County. Mt. Greylock rises to 3,500′ above town.