As we grow toward middle age, a person tends to think a lot more about retirement. As we go on into our mid-forties and fifties we start to think about having enough money, where to live, and how is our health going to be as we age. Even though it is advised for people to plan for retirement at an early age, the unfortunate thing is many don’t begin to think a lot about it until it is too late. A good thing now is a person is not restricted to one place when they retire and has the option to live or travel anywhere they wish.
The way our technology is we can live about anywhere in the world and still stay in contact with our loved ones and friends. I wanted to talk only of places to retire in the United States because that is where the majority of the people are going to retire. Some may live overseas part time, but most retire in the U.S. What are some things to consider when looking for the best place to retire and have you adequately planned so that you can retire in the ideal location, or are you going to have to stay where you are?
Many opt to retire right where they have lived most of their lives, while others, if possible move to where there is a better climate or better facilities for a senior population. I want to talk a little about the five things a person should consider as early as possible before their retirement and why it is becoming more difficult for seniors to find the best places to live when you retire.
Probably one of the major decisions a person should make is the taxes they will have to pay in a particular state. Often this is difficult because of our continually changing government. All the things we are going to talk about here involve us being able to adapt to change and everyone knows tax laws vary regularly. Take a look at some of the taxes in some of the states that have no state income tax.
State Tax SSI Income Tax Sales Tax Property Tax
Texas no no 8.25% 2.06%
Florida no no 6.80 1.05
New Hampshire no no none 2.03
South Dakota no no 6.40 1.38
Nevada no no 8.14 .64
Alaska no no 1.76 .96
What about states that have state income tax how do they compare with the other taxes?
State Tax SSI Income Tax Sales Tax Property Tax
California no 13.3% 7.25% .75%
Hawaii no 11 4 .27
Oregon no 9.9 no 1.10
Minnesota yes 9.85 6.875 1.17
Iowa some 8.98 6 1 .50
From these numbers, one could say that the states with no income tax have higher sales and property tax, while the opposite is exact for the states with an income tax. Taxes are hard to calculate because of all the deductions and variables involved in all the different regulations. We also have to remember these are prone to change at least every two to four years. All one has to do is look to Washington; when the Democrats are in control taxes will go up, but when the Republicans take back control taxes go back down.
In the last election, the individual income tax was lowered while many lost several deductions such as interest on home loans and state income tax. Not to mention all the state, county, and city tax laws that change regularly with each election. All this make it very difficult for someone to plan their retirement too far ahead.
Cost of Living
Another significant consideration is the cost of living in a state where one could be considering retirement. And what is usually the case is the states with the most taxes also have the highest cost of living. I think we can all agree the cost of living rises each year steadily at a rate higher than our income. That is why it is imperative that seniors on a fixed income examine the value of each state’s cost of living.
As we can see the states with the highest income tax and sales tax also have the highest cost of living index. Once again the cost of living can change almost yearly in all the states. There are many factors involved here when pricing goods and services; it depends on what the government may be doing at the time, such as minimum wage laws, environmental rules, regulations, and any fees they may impose upon a company or person. Once again as we near retirement one should look closely at the state where they are thinking about living the rest of their life.
Medical Care and Hospitals
Healthcare should be at the top of everyone’s list because we all know we are not going to stay fit the rest of our lives. Once again this is difficult to determine because of all the changes, mainly brought about because of government intervention. The United States still has some of the best health care of any country in the world, so we should not complain about having to pay more, but in some states, we all know it is getting out of control.
Everyone should do a thorough search about hospitals and doctors in the state where they are thinking about moving. With today’s technology, this is very easy to do. It may take some time on the internet, if you don’t feel comfortable doing it, get a young person to help you out.
All relevant hospitals and doctors are listed on the internet in each state, along with their specialty and with individual ratings by patients. The one thing to be careful of it is straightforward for someone to put anything about anyone on the internet, so one has to do more than just search the web. To do a thorough check of a doctor, it may be a good idea to talk with their patients and verify any negative reviews.
Vermont, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire are three of the top-rated states for healthcare, while Alaska, Mississippi, and Louisiana are rated at the bottom for overall healthcare. Most of this information is from WalletHub, and you can read more on their website.
Here are some other facts from CMS.gov:
National Health Expenditure increased 3.9% to $3.5 trillion in 2017, or $10,739 per person, and accounted for 17.9% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Medicare spending expanded 4.2% to $705.9 billion in 2017 or 20 percent of complete NHE.
Medicaid spending rose 2.9% to $581.9 billion in 2017 or 17 percent of total NHE.
Private health insurance spending grew 4.2% to $1,183.9 billion in 2017 or 34 percent of total NHE.
Individual spending increased 2.6% to $365.5 billion in 2017 or 10 percent of total NHE.
Hospital expenses grew 4.6% to $1,142.6 billion in 2017, slower than the 5.6% growth in 2016.
Physician and clinical services expenditures grew 4.2% to $694.3 billion in 2017, a slower growth than the 5.6% in 2016.
Prescription drug spending increased 0.4% to $333.4 billion in 2017, slower than the 2.3% growth in 2016.
The highest percentages of total health spending were sponsored by the federal government (28.1 percent) and households (28.0 percent).
The individual business share of health spending accounted for 19.9 percent of total health care spending, state and local governments accounted for 17.1 percent, and other personal revenues accounted for 6.8 percent.
Yes, these numbers are stunning, and it makes us wonder how we can adequately plan for a worry-free retirement?
States with the least amount of crime? That is very hard to clarify as these statistics change so rapidly. As it is with taxes, there are many things to consider, such as violent crimes per 100,00 people, murder rate, imprisonment rate, and poverty rate. With these parameters, Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire are the safest states to live in, while Alaska, New Mexico, and Nevada are the most dangerous.
But, once again we need to look to crime in individual cities. Larger cities tend to have a higher crime rate, and at the same time, the overall crime rate for a state may be below average. Seniors may want to live away from the larger cities and reside in a less populated area of a county, but we need to take into consideration the problems associated with getting around in our older days. Because of your health, you may need to be closer to shopping, a clinic, and other conveniences associated with a big city.
It could be that when you are nearing retirement to take a close look and the overall crime stats of a state. At the same time, you may want to check the tax rates for each state and make a comparison of the crime rate. Tax-wise Alaska has the best overall tax rate of all states, but it also has the highest crime rate overall.
Climate and Weather
Another consideration, the weather! When we talk about climate and weather a persons health is a significant concern. Do you have arthritis or do you have allergies? We all know a state with a lot of moisture is not good for arthritis, and the states where the winters are short have a lot of pollen in the air that creates respiratory problems. What about breathing problems; states such as Colorado with its higher elevation tend to create breathing problems.
Overall California is rated among the top state to live in as far as weather. Temperatures in summer typically stay below 85 degrees. And there’s limited rain, usually less than 20 inches a year. Skies are frequently clear, with Los Angeles recording sunshine for 73 percent of the time.
In Hawaii, the monthly medium-high temperatures for Honolulu on the island of Oahu and Kahului on Maui linger in the 80s all year. It rains fewer than 20 inches yearly in both areas. Plus, there’s plenty of sun, with Honolulu receiving 71 percent, and Kahului only somewhat less.
Being such a large state, one has to look at all the different areas of Texas. We can find about any weather in Texas, and that is why so many people retire in Texas. Temperatures in the Brownsville, Victoria area, for example, stay quite mild in winter, but summers here get hotter than many other places in the U.S. touching highs in the mid-90s. Galveston is somewhat cooler year round with normal monthly highs from 61 degrees in January to 90 in August. Del Rio has the driest climate, with just 19 inches of rain annually, while the rest typically receive 30 or 40 inches. Sun for these areas averages about 60 percent.
Florida and Arizona are two other states that rank high on the list of best places to retire. Arizona being the drier climate, much like Del Rio in Texas and Florida’s climate being more like Galveston with the moisture. Oklahoma, Ohio, and Iowa are three states that are considered to have the worst weather.
One could say peoples thoughts on weather vary greatly. When reading about all this, I found different opinions about different states. While one article had Texas in the top ten another had Texas rated in the lower ten areas. As in all the other things to consider, the number one thing to do is do your research in several different publications.
What can a person determine from my article here? Maybe now you are more confused than before, and I can see why. In our world today everything is changing, almost daily. We can understand the weather changing, but do our taxes have to change so often and yes as taxes go up so does the cost of living. When you have the government running our health care and telling everyone how to live, there is going to be change and confusion, also.
The main thing is to do your research several years before you get ready to make that final move. It may be a good idea to settle on two or three retirement states, several years before retirement, and keep track of the things we talked about here. Many seniors today opt to travel more; instead, it is in an RV traveling around the country or spending time on a cruise ship, our technology today makes traveling a lot easier. Yes, even though we can go more these days that can soon grow tiresome and we must have a permanent place to call home.
Many seniors live with what we call old age aches and pains. Arthritis, back pain, and joint pain are a normal part of a seniors life, and some of us suffer depression and anxiety. We no longer have to rely on harmful pain relief medications anymore.
HempWorx products are made from industrial hemp plants grown on Kentucky farms. Cannabidiol (CBD), a constituent that naturally occurs in industrial Hemp, is just one of over 85 cannabinoids that are identified in the cannabis plant. Our oil is CO2 extracted resulting in a solvent-free, pure extract. Many are saying this product should be part of our daily regimen of vitamins and minerals. Click CBD Herbal Drops to find out more!!
Thank You for reading and Please Comment Below!!