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December 2014

Livability.com Names the Best Places to Retire, 2014

Annual list ranks America's top retirement cities

December 2014 - NWREporter

Each day nearly 10,000 Baby Boomers are turning 65, and retirement is within reach. Nearly four in 10 Boomers plan to move when they retire. With this in mind, Livability.com has named the Best Places to Retire, 2014. These cities offer access to affordable and quality health care, practical cost of living, retiree-friendly businesses and services, as well as several amenities to help keep residents active.

Our editors used data from Esri and the County Health Rankings to find cities with access to a large number of hospitals and doctors and yet still have low health-care costs. Housing affordability measured by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Location Affordability Index was also taken into account. Several measures including overall cost of living, natural amenities, climate, number of golf courses, walk score, and crime rate were selected from our overall Best Places to Live metrics with special attention paid to specific concerns of seniors and Boomers. 

In addition, our editors looked at Census data and data from Esri's consumer segmentation system, Tapestry, to find areas with heavy concentrations of seniors and businesses and services that cater to them. They analyzed data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to find areas with low unemployment for seniors and used data from Kiplinger to find cities located in states with retiree-friendly tax benefits.

"Not all seniors will move when they retire, but for those who do Livability wanted to suggest a range of options," says Livability editor Matt Carmichael. "As retirement itself is changing for many beyond a traditional idea of warm weather and golf, so too have our ideas of what makes a great retirement city."

Best Places to Retire 2014

  1. Springfield, MO
  2. Knoxville, TN
  3. Bellevue, WA
  4. Largo, FL
  5. Wheat Ridge, CO
  6. Honolulu, HI
  7. Albuquerque, NM
  8. Tucson, AZ
  9. Missoula, MT
  10. Coeur d'Alene, ID

About Livability.com:
Livability.com explores what makes small to mid-sized cities great places to live, work and visit. We examine issues related to livability such as walkability, cultural amenities, transportation, urban planning, and sustainability through exclusive research and discussions on our blog. We celebrate the accomplishments of these cities through our monthly top 10 lists, our annual ranking of livable cities, our rich photography and conversations with readers in social media. Livability.com is a division of Journal Communications, Inc.