The 5 worst states for retirement in 2017
There are a few major factors that make a certain place a good choice for retirees. Affordability is a major factor for seniors on a fixed income, and access to top-quality healthcare is certainly important as retirees age. In addition, retirees want things to do -- many play golf, or go to the theater, for example. With these things in mind, here are the five worst states to retire to in 2017, according to a recent analysis by WalletHub.
The five worst states for retirement in 2017
I won't keep you in suspense. Out of the 51 candidates (including D.C.), here are the least retirement-friendly states, according to WalletHub, ranked in descending order -- so the worst state is listed last.
What makes a state retirement-friendly?
In case you were curious, the five best states to retire, according to WalletHub's methodology, are:
What makes these states so retirement-friendly? For starters, most of them are more affordable for retirees than other states. The top three have no state income taxes, and for the most part, the top states have strong job markets for seniors who want to work part-time, as well as affordable senior-specific services, such as in-home healthcare.
In addition, quality of life is a big factor. Florida has beautiful weather, Wyoming has the best air quality in the country, and Iowa is full of things for retirees to do, such as golf courses and museums. Many of the top states have low crime rates, lots of volunteer opportunities for seniors, and strong, populous senior citizen communities.
Finally, access to high-quality healthcare is a big priority for most retirees. South Dakota, for instance, has more nurses and healthcare facilities per capital than any other U.S. state. And almost four out of five Colorado seniors are physically active, giving Colorado seniors a longer life expectancy than seniors in most other states.
It's not all about these factors
To be clear, these are the five worst states to retire in, but only in terms of things such as affordability and senior-friendly environments. There are other, more personal factors that should be taken into consideration as well. Most obviously is the proximity to your friends and family -- if your entire family is in Hawaii, it may not seem worth the cost savings to relocate to the mainland, for example.
On a similar note, these findings don't consider that the best option for many retirees is to simply stay put. According to Jim Mitchell, professor of sociology and director of the Center for Diversity and Inequality Research at East Carolina University, failure to consider the financial implications of selling their home is a common mistake. "For many, home equity is a significant asset and the risks and benefit of relinquishing that asset should be considered carefully in light of replacement costs," says Mitchell.
The bottom line is that while the five states here are the worst states for retirement in 2017, at least when considering general affordability, quality of life for seniors, and healthcare options, you need to take your personal situation into account as well.
The $15,834 Social Security bonus most retirees completely overlook
If you're like most Americans, you're a few years (or more) behind on your retirement savings. But a handful of little-known "Social Security secrets" could help ensure a boost in your retirement income. For example: one easy trick could pay you as much as $15,834 more... each year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we think you could retire confidently with the peace of mind we're all after. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.
The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.