Des Moines : Iowa


What It Is Like to Retire in Des Moines

Des Moines is the state capital of Iowa and its largest city with a population just over 200,000.  It is located in the center of the state.  Drake University is a prestigious college in town, giving Des Moines the oomph of the arts and a youthful feel.  The city is very important in the insurance industry. Photo of Old Main of Drake University courtesy of Wikipedia and Limitingflame1 (public domain); photo of the The State Capitol building in Des Moines, Iowa, courtesy of Wikipedia and Carol M. Highsmith (public domain). Watch this short Youtube video prepared by TravelIowa:


Where to Retire in Des Moines and Home Prices

There is at least one active adult community in Des Moines (see link at top left).
There are many nice neighborhoods and suburbs to choose from. Home prices during the 1st quarter of 2022 were $259,500, in the Des Moines and West Des Moines area, according to the National Association of Realtors.


What Is Special about Des Moines

As the capital of Iowa, Des Moines is an exciting city for presidential politics since it the host of the Iowa caucuses. It is always highly ranked on Green Cities lists.

What Is Not Special about Des Moines

The crime rate is well above average, and it is cold in winter.


Who Will Like Retirement in Des Moines

Those who admire politics, work in the insurance industry, or admire an artsy, literary feel are happily retired in Des Moines.

Local Economy Is Driven by

insurance companies

Climate and Physical Environment

Des Moines is located in the center of Iowa. The average Jan temp is in the low 20s and the average July temp in the mid 70s.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Des Moines is home to the Des Moines Metro Opera, Playhouse, Symphony, and Ballet, as well as an arts center and Riverfront Ampitheater. There are dozens of festivals each year.


The crime rate is high in Des Moines, as you would expect in a city of this size.

Medical Facilities

There are several hospitals in Des Moines including Iowa Lutheran and the VA Hospital.



Des Moines has an extensive skywalk system downtown, one of the largest in the US.

Valuable Links

City of Des Moines

Des Moines on Wikipedia


What people are saying about Des Moines

retiring in Des Moines area
Originally from Dubuque, Iowa, we are ready to end up back in Iowa! Want May be open to retirement communities with activities and an out door pool. Would want single story home. Do NOT want the senior living type of first being in a condo or apt. for independent care and so forth. Also considering buying anywhere in the w. Des Moines, urbandale area. thank you!
Posted by beisbach on June 09, 2022

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