The 10 best and worst states to retire in 2017

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The 10 best and worst states to retire in 2017
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If you’re thinking about moving to a new state for retirement, Florida may be the first place that comes to mind.

But what about New Hampshire?

Yes, you read that correctly — and before you dismiss the Granite State as a retirement-friendly destination, you should consider the results of a new Bankrate.com study.

Read more: 7 things that cost retirees a ton of money (and how to prepare!)

2017 best places to retire

Although the winter weather leaves much to be desired, New Hampshire was so strong in other areas important to seniors that the state ranked number one in a new survey of non-retired U.S. adults.

From most to least important, here are the factors the Bankrate study examined:

  1. Cost of living
  2. Quality of health care
  3. Crime
  4. Cultural vitality
  5. Weather
  6. Taxes
  7. Senior citizens’ well-being
  8. Prevalence of other seniors

A closer look at the findings…

New Hampshire ranked in the top five for seniors’ well-being (second-best), crime (third-lowest) and quality of health care (fourth-best), but it ranked sixth-worst for weather.

After New Hampshire, Colorado, Maine, Iowa and Minnesota rounded out the top five overall.

Taking a look at the map below, you’ll notice that popular retirement destinations such as Arizona, Florida and Nevada didn’t even make the top 10.

Alaska ranked dead last overall.

Bankrate found that about half of non-retired U.S. adults would consider moving to a different city or state when they retire, and the percentage is greatest among millennials.

“What people think they want in retirement may not end up being what serves them best over the long run,” said Bankrate.com analyst Claes Bell, CFA. “It’s about a lot more than sunny skies, beaches and golf courses. As you get older, practical considerations like health care, taxes and proximity to family and friends become much more important.”

So even if you don’t plan to move to New Hampshire, it’s important to take a big picture approach to your retirement planning.

For example, Florida (17th overall) has the nation’s highest percentage of residents age 65 and older, but it didn’t make the top 10 in any other area.

Bottom line: Consider all quality of life factors, not just the most obvious ones.

And speaking of retirement, are you financially prepared? Here are five steps you can take right now to make sure you can fund your golden years.

See the rankings for all 50 states at Bankrate.com.

5 basic money rules you can live by forever

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Mike Timmermann About the author: Mike Timmermann
Michael Timmermann paid off his mortgage in two years. Now, he shares his money-saving tips on his blog, Save on Almost Everything.
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