According to a new study, Texas is the best state for retirement in 2023, followed by Michigan, Florida, Georgia and Tennessee. Delaware on the other hand was dubbed as the worst state to retire in.
The research by banking and credit experts at Bank Locations looked at 50 states through 18 key metrics distributed in three relevant categories: Cost of Retirement Living, Quality of Life and Access to Healthcare.
Each category factored in data from various agencies, including the U.S. Census Bureau, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Council for Community and Bureau of Transportation.
Texas, the second most populous state and the fourth fastest-growing state, tops the rankings on our list. Texas ranked first for Access to Healthcare due to the high number of hospitals, hospital safety grades, number of senior living communities, and number of dentists.
Texans’ access to healthcare is high with a large number of hospitals, senior living communities, and dentists. The quality of life score is above average, as Texas offers many amenities to seniors, including a large number of museums and state and national parks. Texas also offers favorable weather for residents consisting of warm weather and minimal rain. While they have a low percentage of acceptable roads, they offer a large number of airports for frequent travelers.
The cold-weathered Michigan seems an odd choice for the second place, but Michigan boasts one of the best Affordability and Access to Healthcare in the nation, ranking 9th on both metrics. The state also did well in Quality of Life since they have plenty of activities for retirees and have low levels of crime. The cold temperatures and a small number of airports and acceptable roads contributed to the lower quality of life score.
Although Florida’s warm climate and lack of state income tax make it a popular retirement destination, it is not the cheapest state to spend one’s golden years. Florida came in second for Access to Healthcare and first for Quality of Life but its 20th-place ranking for Cost of Retired Living brought down its overall ranking.
Florida’s first place for the Quality of Life comes as a result of its many activities that seniors can partake in along with favorable weather all year long, average crime rate, above average air quality, and a large number of airports and acceptable roads.
For retirees considering a move to Georgia, affordability is one big selling point. The state combines a low cost of assisted living, health care spending, and a light tax burden to rank No. 6 in the Cost of Retired Living.
Georgia ranked below average for Quality of Life for a number of reasons. Georgia has a small percentage of seniors 65 and older living in the state, with many facing a threat of hunger, and the air quality index is the second worst in the nation. However, the yearly temperatures are one of the best, the acceptable roads, number of airports, and crime rate are average, and it offers residents a large number of state and national parks.
Taking fifth place, Tennessee is a great option for retirees. Tennessee offers its residents some of the lowest tax burdens in the nation and is ranked as one of the ten best states for the cost of retired living. Despite ranking low in quality of life due to air quality, average life expectancy, and crime, it has the highest percentage of acceptable roads in the United States. Additionally, Tennessee scored above average for access to healthcare as it has a large number of hospitals with a high safety grade.
North Carolina takes sixth place. This state is one of the best in the nation for access to healthcare for retirees and ranked above average in the cost of retired living. North Carolina provides its residents with a large number of hospitals, all with high safety grades as well as low healthcare and assisted living costs. Despite scoring below average quality of life, North Carolina offers favorable weather, a high number of airports and acceptable roads, as well as a large number of museums.
Utah takes the seventh spot among the top states for retirees with a score of 66.18. Utah is the best state in the nation in terms of the cost of retired living, primarily due to the low costs of healthcare spending and assisted living. While it scored below average for access to healthcare, it is one of the best states in the nation for hospital safety grades. Utah also scored below average for quality of life, as it has a low number of adults 65 and older and the air quality is ranked as the worst in the United States. However, it has a high life expectancy, a low risk of seniors facing hunger, and a large number of state and national parks for residents.
Arizona comes in at the eighth place. Although it has a higher crime rate, the state offers retirees an affordable cost of retired living and above-average access to healthcare. While they scored just below average for quality of life, Arizona is one of the best states for weather and also offers its residents a high number of museums, state and national parks, and airports.
In ninth place is Idaho. The state boasts the lowest level of crime rate for the top 10 states to retire to and offers an affordable cost of retired living options for seniors. Idaho ranks below average for access to healthcare due to the low number of hospitals, assisted living communities, and dentists. On the contrary, it scored above average for quality of life as it has a high average life expectancy and a low percentage of adults facing the threat of hunger.
Missouri ranks tenth in our list. Missouri is the least expensive state in the nation for the cost of assisted living, providing seniors with an affordable cost of retired living and an above-average score for access to healthcare. Although it scored below average for quality of life, it offers residents a large number of airports, museums, and state and national parks.
At the other end of scale, Delaware is ranked as the least desirable state to retire in. Delaware scored low for affordable cost of retired living and access to healthcare, mostly due to high healthcare costs, and minimal hospitals and senior living communities. Delaware’s high crime rate, below-average weather, affordability, and limited activities for seniors contribute to its poor quality of life score as well.