5 Ways to Pick a Great Place to Retire

Many workers are looking for a retirement locale that is more affordable than their current city.

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A good retirement spot generally has quality medical facilities, affordable entertainment options, and plenty of scenic beauty and sunshine. Many workers are also looking for a place to retire that is more affordable than where they live now, according to a new Gallup survey of 1,099 adults with at least $10,000 invested for retirement commissioned by Wells Fargo. Here are five attributes many Americans say are necessities for their ideal retirement locale.

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Good medical facilities. As you age, you are likely to increasingly need more medical services. Some 60 percent of workers and 54 percent of retirees say they are aiming to retire near quality medical facilities, Gallup found. The majority of those surveyed (72 percent) also say the cost of health care will have a major impact on when they can afford to retire.

Lower taxes. Tax rates vary considerably from state to state. Five states have no sales tax: Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire, and Oregon. And seven states don’t have an income tax: Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming. Additionally, New Hampshire and Tennessee tax dividend and interest income only. Almost twice as many workers (52 percent) as retirees (27 percent) are seeking a retirement spot with low state or real estate taxes.

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Affordable cost-of-living. Your fixed income will stretch further in a place with a low cost-of-living. Almost half (45 percent) of current workers are looking for a retirement locale with lower everyday expenses than where they live now. However, only about a quarter (26 percent) of current retirees say lower costs were a major factor in choosing their retirement spot.

Convenient transportation. If you want to spend your retirement years traveling, living near an airport or train station is essential. Affordable transportation options can also become a necessity for retirees who can’t or no longer want to drive. Many workers (40 percent) and retirees (23 percent) say they desire easy access to transportation in a retirement locale.

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Low-cost homes. Selling your home and moving into a new house that costs less can give a quick and significant boost to your nest egg. Just over a third (34 percent) of workers are hoping to move to a place with lower home prices in retirement. Many of the investors surveyed say they view their home as an asset they can sell to add to their retirement funds (39 percent) and would consider renting throughout retirement (31 percent).

Twitter: @aiming2retire