Prime Retirement Spots

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Finding a suitable place to retire can be easier said than done. As a retiree, a new home that suits your financial needs along with your desire to adventure (or rest) can be difficult to find and balance, even on a larger budget.

To make your life a little easier, weve compiled a list of locations that will suit your budgetary needs and give life to an abundance of new adventures.

Grand Rapids, Michigan: Our beautiful hometown of Grand Rapids has made the cut for the prime retirement locations around the country. We all know and love the growing art and museum scene sprouting up throughout our beloved city. With Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, ArtPrize, the Grand Rapids Public Museum, and many other cost friendly attractions, its difficult to grow tired of spending your days wandering around the city. With an abundance of parks, outdoor activities, rivers, and lakes, you can find your fair share of ways to enjoy nature.

Theres more to retiring in Grand Rapids than things to do, theres also an abundance of financial benefits. With a cost of living that is 11.5% lower than the national average, most retirees (age 65 and older)pay $684 monthly in rent; homeowners pay $1,080 monthly with a mortgage, or $427 per month if their home is paid off. Throw in that Michigan does not have state tax on Social Security and youre all set to turn Grand Rapids into your perfect place for retirement.

Louisville, Kentucky: As the host city for the Kentucky Derby and offering an abundance of horse races, parks, forests, and historic memorial spots, Louisville is the perfect place for the retiree with a love for the outdoors. With over 100 miles of bike and hiking trails and over 14,000 acres of parks, theres no shortage of activities for the active retiree. Theres more to do than explore the outdoors, as Louisville also features a vivacious restaurant scene and a blossoming arts scene.

Financially, Louisville features practicality for retirees, as the cost of living is 9.5% below the national average, with the median home cost at $148,000, the average mortgage of $1,068 (or an average of $373 monthly if your home is paid off), and a median rent rate of $573. Louisville is a wonderful option for retirees who want to enjoy nature, a thriving community, and can have it all at a reasonable price.

Cape Coral, Florida: If you dream of spending your retirement enjoying the white sand beaches of Florida, look no further than Cape Coral. With affordable prices and having a cost of living that is a surprising 4% below the national average, you dont need to break the bank to retire by the beach, with home prices that average at $190,000. Featuring incredible weather, above average air quality, and a low crime rate, its difficult to find any negative aspects of pursing a beach style retirement in Cape Coral, Florida. Offering the enjoyment of watching the Boston Red Sox winter training camp and being a short drive from the Southwest Florida International Airport, its easy to find ways to entertain yourself if you happen to grow bored with the beach. As Florida has no state tax on Social Security or pensions, consider making Cape Coral your future home for an affordable retirement without the tedious winters.

Athens, Georgia: Combining affordable prices, mild winters, and a thriving music scene; Athens, Georgia is a prime destination for retirement. With a cost of living that is 1% below the national average, the average home price is $139,000. Nestled in a bustling college town, Athens features a good tax climate, low crime rate and an abundance of activities to enjoy. Rolling Stones once named this lively town the number one college music city in the country, featuring rock, country, and symphonies. Being within a stones throw of Atlanta, Athens has much to offer for the more active retiree or one that prefers mild winters with the livelihood of a nearby college town to maintain a youthful feel.

Abilene, Texas: With a cost of living that is a hefty 17% below the national average, Abilene, Texas might be the place for you if youre retiring on a budget. The average home price in Abilene is $139,000, which can greatly open up your options for finding a new nest for retirement. A lower cost of living makes for more than just cheaper homes, in Abilene, youll pay less for groceries, healthcare, and utilities. With a low rate of crime, a robust economy and an average tax climate, its quite possible youve found your next city to enjoy your retirement in.

When planning for retirement, it is imperative to find a location that suits all your needs. Cost of living, a sustainable rent/mortgage rate, enjoyable activities, and proximity to public transport (airports, busses, etc.) are all important factors to consider. How often do you plan to travel? How much can you allocate to your monthly bills? How adventurous do you plan to be? Be sure to communicate your hopes, dreams, and plans for your retirement with your financial advisor so that you can create a life in retirement that fits your needs, in location and beyond.