For those planning for the golden years of life, it is common to move to a warmer climate or embrace a new lifestyle in retirement. U.S. News & World Report recognizes that the best place to live is not always the optimal place to retire.
Today, the publication released its list of the best retirement locations in the U.S. after evaluating the 150 most heavily populated metropolitan areas. From Aug. 19 - 21, it surveyed 3,052 individuals both nearing and at the retirement age of 60 or older.
From there, U.S. News determined the six indexes it would use to calculate its rankings: housing affordability, happiness, desirability, retiree taxes, job market and health care quality.
Below are the results from this year's list.
Florida cities nab the top four spots
A 2019 study by the Population Reference Bureau revealed that Florida had the second-highest percentage of its state population aged 65 or older at 20.5% — behind only Maine’s 20.6% score. So it's no surprise that the Sunshine State took the top three spots with Sarasota, Fort Myers and Port St. Lucie, respectively.
According to the city’s profile for U.S. News, Sarasota largely caters to its residents over the age of 65, providing a lively atmosphere for retired people. It offers numerous shopping outlets and golf courses, as well as seasonal farmers markets.
Last year’s ranking had Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in the third spot, with Port St. Lucie at No. 5. This year, the two locations swapped places.
Of the 150 cities ranked, 14 were cities within Florida, 13 of which were in the top 25 best places to retire.
Some of the cities that made notable rises in the ranking include Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (No. 11), and Ann Arbor, Michigan, which made its debut on the list at No. 7. Ann Arbor excelled in part due to its solid health care and robust job market.
Best Places to Retire in the U.S. 2021
- Sarasota, Florida
- Fort Myers, Florida
- Port St. Lucie, Florida
- Naples, Florida
- Lancaster, Pennsylvania