Retirement Locations are as varied as the people who are retiring. The cliche is of course to retire to Arizona or Florida, but for many retirees the retirement locations are endless. However, it is a good idea to decide on where you wish to retire as soon as possible so that you can make financial retirement planning decisions based on the costs of living there. Retirement locations such as a beach house in Florida will have much different financial requirements than living in your same house that you raised the children in. That is why planning ahead is so critical. There are many tools available for financial planning the best being a professional financial adviser. Be sure they know what retirement location you are considering so they can plan your finances accordingly.
Many people may have a view of retiring that is out of date. What one does in one's retirement is as varied as people are. Some do move to Arizona or Florida and golf every day. But others fill their time with volunteer or charity work, travel, study, or spending time with the grandchildren. You may wish to buy an RV and explore the country. Or be a snow bird and spend summers at home and winters in a warmer locale. Some retirees even start new careers, enjoying the excitement of a new endeavor without the hardship of entry-level pay. Once you decided on how to retire the question comes where to retire and what retirement locations you should consider. The locations will often be dictated by what you wish to do during your well-deserved golden years.
All retirement locations have pros and cons. Anywhere that is popular will be more expensive than less popular locations. Some retire in Mexico or Central America because their dollar goes further. But there are many things to consider with such a move, including the safety and stability of foreign countries that may not respect property rights as well as we do in the United States. Warmer climates may be preferred by some but others may find them bland. This gives rise to the snow bird phenomena where some retirees migrate south for the winter. Also, where you lived will have an influence on your preferred locations. If you lived on a farm outside a small town all your life, you will probably not be happy in Miami, Florida. If you lived in New York City, Sun City, Arizona may drive you nuts. You want to be happy in your retirement so consider locations where you will be comfortable and content. Obviously, if you plan to do more than golf everyday, you will probably need to locate in a specific spot.
After selecting a few retirement locations to research, it may behoove you to travel there and see for yourself if you'll enjoy it. If your health is not the best, you may need to retire to an assisted living situation. These, too, vary in cost, locale, and amenities. Some are very luxurious and some are very basic. Again, your finances should determine which of several retirement locations you consider. If independence is important to you, you will need to live someplace that allows you that freedom such as a home or apartment with access to your car or public transportation that can get you to shopping and cultural events.
Another consideration when looking at retirement locations is the local tax structure. One reason Florida is so popular is it does not have a state income tax. Neither does Texas, Washington, and a few other states. This may be advantages in making your retirement dollar go further. Some states have high property or sales taxes. A low-tax state can make your retirement that much more prosperous but may not have the amenities you are used to. Be sure to study the state tax situation of any locations you are considering.
A happy, prosperous, and healthy time after working full-time for many many years is what we all wish for when we retire. The golden years may not be so golden without the best possible retirement locations considered. Research the locations, the cost of living at each, the taxes, the climate, the crime, and the amenities such as culture, public transportation, access to recreation such as golf, and whatever is important to you. Then discuss with you financial planner how to get there and afford to live how you want to live. Make these decisions early so that you can plan ahead. And keep up on changes. Perhaps Florida will put in place an income tax in the future and that would be a nasty surprise if you retired there. With proper planning, you can enjoy your reward for your years of hard work.
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