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8 Tips: What To Consider When Choosing Where To Retire

Choosing a retirement destination is a big decision. Moving is expensive and rather stressful, so naturally, the goal is to find a nice community to settle down to enjoy life, hobbies, and time with family or friends.

There are many factors that make a location an ideal match for your retirement, or not. By taking them into account you can make the best choice for yourself and look forward to a bright retirement.

8 Tips to consider when choosing where to retire.

8 Tips to Consider when Choosing where to Retire:

Cost Of Living

This is a big consideration. You’re looking for a place where you can retire comfortably and have a nice standard of living without struggling to make ends meet.

Before you start scouting out places, have a serious look at your budget. Know what you’re going to have coming in from pensions or other investments. Write down the amount you’ll have to live on.

Check out the cost of living in the areas you’re interested in and pick one that fits with your budget and leaves you enough for saving and an emergency fund.

Related: 1 in 3 Plan to Work During Retirement

Local Amenities

Which amenities do you need? This is different for every person. Nearby shops, a doctor and a dentist are pretty standard, but what else do you need at hand?

Perhaps having a community center, a golf course, or a place of worship nearby is important to you. Some people really like to be close to nature walks, a farmer’s market, or plenty of restaurants and a theater.

Think about how you like to spend your days, and choose a place that has everything you need (and easily accessible) to make your life comfortable.

Climate

Climate is an important consideration, and one which is often overlooked. Everybody has their own climate that they thrive best in, along with a climate that really doesn’t suit them.

Related: Cost of Retirement in the Philippines

If you love hot weather and like to relax on the beach, the Pacific Northwest is not the ideal choice for you, but California might be perfect. On the other hand, if you love seasonal weather and are comfortable with cold winters, New Hampshire is a better choice than Florida.

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Proximity To Family and Friends

If you are close with your family, staying near them might be an important part of your decision. Often as we get older, we need our family around us not only for support but so we can share in their lives, too.

Likewise, if you have a close support network of friends you might like to consider staying within easy reach of them so you are not cut off from your nearest and dearest.

Health Care

Health care is important at any age, but especially as we grow older.

Before you move to a place, check out the doctors, dentists, and emergency clinics and hospitals in the area. Find out what kind of facilities are available (for example specialist diabetic clinics if you need them, or podiatry or cardiac care, or anything else you need.)

Ideally, the facilities you need should be easy to reach using public transport or a ring and ride service so you do not have to drive if you don’t want to, or are no longer able to.

Taxes

The taxes in each area can make a real difference to your life.

Do a little research about taxes in your proposed new home. You might like to look at:  Sales tax, property tax, inheritance tax, vehicle tax, income tax, and taxes on gas, alcohol, tobacco and travel.

Related: Most Expensive Areas to Retire in the USA

Higher taxes aren't always a bad thing. In some cases, higher taxes also means great public facilities. However, taxes will make a difference in your budget, so find out about them before you make a decision.

Transportation

Don’t overlook transportation. You might not need it every day but reliable transportation will undoubtedly come into play at some point.

Start by looking at public transport around the area. Will you be able to get around easily by train, tram or bus if you don’t have a car?

Look at out of state travel, too. How easy will it be for you to go on a vacation? How about if friends or family come to stay – can they get to your new destination easily? Check out bus stations, rail stations and airports nearby.

Political Climate

Political climate can make a real difference to how well you settle into your new home. If you choose a town where most people more or less share your own political views, you’ll find it easier to fit in to your local community.

Being with people who share your values makes you feel like you belong and eases the transition into your new town or city.

Finding the perfect place to retire is an exciting time. When you find a place that is a good fit, you can look forward to settling in and enjoying a new phase of life.

2 Comments

  1. My grandma has decided that it is probably time for her to enter into some kind of retirement village and so we have been helping her figure out what she should be looking for. I really like your advice to find one that is near the rest of the family if you are close with them so that you can share in their lives more easily. Since we all still visit our grandma often, we’ll definitely have to make sure that the retirement village she ends up choosing is fairly close to all of us.

  2. Taxes are a good thing to consider when looking at where you want to retire to—thanks for including that in this article. My grandparents are looking at maybe moving into a retirement home near their current community. They want to stay close because they have so many friends here, so I’m going to help them find the right one in their local area. Thanks for these great tips!

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