Sedona : Arizona


What It Is Like to Retire in Sedona

The Red Rocks of Sedona, Arizona are world famous, having been immortalized in countless westerns like Broken Arrow (with Jimmy Stewart). The colors displayed by sunrises and sunsets on the red sandstone rocks have brought in admirers from around the world. That beauty, combined with the mountains and the moderate climate provided by an altitude of 4500’ have made Sedona a very popular retirement community as well as tourist destination. The population in 2011 was just over 10,000.

At least one source rates Sedona in the top 20 retirement spots in the country. Hiking and the arts are extremely notable here. The International Film Festival, many musical events,  and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute are an indication of the high level of culture that Sedona enjoys.  The Sedona area straddles 2 counties – Coconino and Yavapai. The nearest city is Flagstaff.  Many active adults have chosen Sedona as their community for its warm climate and beautiful setting. Zoning is very strict here, even the McDonalds looks like a pueblo.  Photo of the Chapel of Holy Cross courtesy of Wikipedia and Matthew P. Del Buono, Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0/. Here is information on retirement in Arizona or in Flagstaff or Phoenix


Where to Retire in Sedona and Home Prices

There are many high-end developments both here and in nearby Cottonwood-Verde, either built or planned, that would be ideal for active adults in retirement. But there are also some very reasonably priced communities (see Active Communities link at right).
In late 2022, the median home value was $946,261 up 24% over the past year, according to Zillow. Prices are much more stable than in Phoenix and other areas in the south. Views and acreage will dramatically influence prices.


What Is Special about Sedona

Sedona's Red Rocks are breathtaking; 1.8 million-acre Coconino National Forest; outdoor activities such as hiking, sightseeing, horseback riding; Sedona International Film Festival.


What Is Not Special about Sedona

• There are a lot of tourists • Worries about overdevelopment will always be here – it is too nice to spoil •  Real estate is very expensive.

Who Will Like Retirement in Sedona

Sedona attracts people interested in great scenery, outdoor activities, and the arts. Since real estate is pricey, its new residents tend to be very affluent. The average age is 50.5, well above the state and national average.

Local Economy Is Driven by

Sedona enjoys a booming economy thanks to its popularity as a tourist and retirement destination. Top components of the economy include: services, retail, hospitality, construction

Climate and Physical Environment

Sedona’s red rocks have their origin in the Schnebly Hill Formation - a thick layer of red to orange-colored sandstone found only in the Sedona vicinity. At 4500’ the climate is more moderate than Phoenix. Oak Creek Canyon runs through this part of north central Arizona. The Mogollon Rim of the Colorado Plateau is home to the largest contiguous stand of ponderosa pine in the world.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The town offers many cultural opportunities and events which include the Sedona Arts Center, the Sedona Jazz on the Rocks festival, Sedona International Film Festival, Chamber Music Sedona, Arizona Opera League, NORAZ Poets, and countless galleries. Yavapai College, which has the Sedona Center for Arts is also located here, along with Coconino Community College.


The crime rate is about half the national average.

Medical Facilities

Flagstaff Medical Center, Verde Valley Medical Center, Sedona Medical Center and Northern Arizona Homecare are all in the area.


Flagstaff Airport is 21 miles, Prescott's is 46. Sedona is a little above average in walkability when compared to other communities.


Valuable Links

City of Sedona

The Sedona Chamber of Commerce


What people are saying about Sedona

sedona is for outdoor people
It's easy to fall in love with Sedona - over and over again in my case. Those red rocks and great hiking trails take you out of the humdrum world. I am tempted about retiring there but a little nervous about what it would be like to live here full-time. Would the tourists get to me? Or would I start getting desperate to see some green? Hard to know, I'll just have to keep coming back to see.
Posted by sid on February 19, 2009

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