The cheapest places to retire in the United States are often hidden secrets that are little known. Since cost of living is a major factor in retirement planning finding the cheapest places to retire is crucial to keeping retirement goals manageable. For some retirees a simple change in location for retirement plans can speed up retirement plans by several years. Generally speaking, the cheapest places to retire in the United States are located in the Midwest and the South. The most expensive places are in the Northeast and Southwest.
Best Places to Retire in the Midwest
Though there are many cheap places to retire in the Midwest, you want to consider access to key resources such as restaurants, entertainment, and airports so you can travel during retirement. Here are a few places to consider:
1. Fort Wayne, IN. Fort Wayne is located on the I-69 corridor. FWA the airport in Fort Wayne, is one of the few airports in the midwest with a 12,000 foot runway. A mid-sized city Fort Wayne has all of the key resources you will need, including high quality health care and hospitals, a variety of restaurants and entertainment, and a large population that makes networking easy. It also sports a median housing price of $93,900. That is more than $50,000 below the national median housing cost, and $38,000 below the midwest median. Since it is in a conservative state, taxes are also relatively low.
2. Louisville, KY. With a median house price of $96,000 Louisville KY is an incredibly cheap place to live for such a a large city sporting a major international airport. The rolling hills of Kentucky provide plenty of beautiful scenery including lakes for boating, natural state parks for hiking (such as the Red River Gorge), and a colorful history that is fascinating to explore.
Best Places to Retire in the South
1. Macon Georgia sports a low housing cost of $95,300 with an equally low tax rate for retirees. Macon is not far from Atlanta on the 1-75 corridor and misses the traffic and high home costs. Since you can exclude $32,000 of retirement income from state taxes and property taxes for retirees over 65 are waived up to $4000 a year. Those three factors make Macon Georgia a very cheap place to retire. Yet it is close to several lakes in the area as well as a wildlife refuge and preservation area for those who love the outdoors.
2. Westminster, South Carolina has an incredibly low median housing cost of $73,400 and is just a few minutes drive to Seneca, South Carolina well known as the “City of Smiles” for its welcoming culture, vibrant retirement community, and significant array of entertainment outdoors and indoors. Flanked by two lakes and blessed with a very moderate climate, this area is located in the foothills of Appalachia. It is harder to find a more beautiful and cheaper place to retire. Keep it quiet though, Seneca is well known, Westminster is still a tucked away secret.