Retirement Location

Last night as Vince and I were talking about places we might want to retire, the thought ran through my mind that I should let my blog readers determine our retirement destination.  You all live all around the world so if you live somewhere that you think we would like to retire, send me the info.  There are so many neat places we don’t even know about.  We definitely want:

  • Not too much farther north than Kansas City.  A little farther might work but North Dakota is probably out!  🙂
  • No farther west than OK/KS/TX.
  • A state that does not tax retirement income.
  • Kinda rural but not too far from decent health care facilities.
  • Probably not the Gulf Coast due to home  insurance costs.
  • We would love to be on a lake or river that doesn’t flood.

Louisiana rates right up near the top of my list but Vince has no desire to go there.  The Toledo Bend area is 3 hours north of the Gulf coast and while a bad hurricane can cause damage there, it isn’t nearly as bad as it would be living closer to the coast.  Many of my cousins are in that area.  Louisiana feels like home to me.  In the next few years, we need to go to that area and spend a week and see if Vince could find a reason to be happy there.

A second area and a place we both agree on is the Mountain Home, AR area.  We’ve spent several vacations there and I could live there.

Evansville, IN is in the running.  We lived near there before and don’t mind that area.  There’s good health care, enough shopping to keep most anyone, including Vince, happy.  Plenty of good restaurants if we ever want to go out to eat.  My favorite quilt shop is near there.  I have friends just across the Ohio River in Owensboro, where we used to live.  I’d vote for the Evansville area.

We had one area near Paducah, KY that we thought we had agreed to check out and then when we were doing more research, we found they have a $50 annual  “sticker” fee for every car!  Is $50 (or $150 because we have three vehicles) going to break us?  No . . but it’s the principle.  Municipalities, states, most every government entity keeps spending and taking more and more and once we saw that $50 “sticker” fee, we scratched them off the list . . purely on the principle of it.  If we had our heart set on that place, we would probably have gone ahead but since we’re just in the investigation phase, that was enough for us to mark them off.

We have more than a few years left before Vince can retire but we want to nail down a place and . . it’s kinda fun to look at the options and research the area.

So, where do you recommend we consider retiring?  We could be your neighbor some day!  🙂


  1. 1


    The mountains of NC are beautiful and there’s still plenty of land and the piedmont of the state has lots of lakes. We’re gonna be looking in NC or SC for lake front land ourselves.

  2. 2


    From research done by a friend of mine before they retired last year- there are only 13 states that don’t tax retirement.
    I am trying to reach her for my own interest- and will post what I find out from her. I am also just over 1 yr from my husband being eligible to retire from the fire dept. so we are looking.

  3. 3


    Lots of retirees come to eastern NC. No lakes but we have rivers and sounds and the ocean close by. My town is dying, but New Bern and Greenville are thriving. Please won’t you be my neighbor!

  4. 4

    Peggy says

    When you mentioned the $50. sticker fee near Paducah it made me think I know where you were considering. Remember often times these fees are for the towns or cities, not the county/rural area. All lakes and rivers are subject to flooding, but many flood yearly. For instance, KY and Barkley lakes are at the lower end of the TVA lake system and flood yearly. The good news is they can only reach a certain level due to the dams. The flood level never reaches property land owner on the lake actually own, but by permit can maintain.

  5. 6

    Sherry says

    My best suggestion would be for you to wait until Chad is through school, married and settled wherever he needs to locate and then find a place that is in the vicinity, roughly speaking, because when he has a family, you will want everyone together for family and holiday occasions and to watch those babies grow up and teach them how to cook and quilt.

    • 6.1


      Good point, my in-laws retired from IN to SC (near Augusta). We are in StL and their daughter is in TX – at least an 11 hr drive for both of us ( a 2 day road trip each way with little ones strapped in those car seats). Now my in-laws are older and driving isn’t so appealing for them either and they are about 2 hrs from the Atlanta airport. So, we see each other at least once a year, maybe twice. Unlike my parents who are still in IN, an easy 4 hr drive from StL.

  6. 7


    I agree with Sherry. I would wait to see where Chad settles. You’re welcome to come to Iowa and be my neighbor but you wouldn’t like it. Walmart is 30 minutes away….for any seriously quality healthcare, we drive to Rochester, MN. We have a MUCH shorter growing season than you. You are harvesting MUCH earlier in the spring and harvesting much later into the fall…nope, you wouldn’t like it here.

  7. 8


    Don’t come to California. Taxes much too high, people much too crazy. Our weather is really nice though, although it is really cold here right now. We do have the ocean and the mountains and Disneyland 🙂 I can’t wait to retire and get out of here too, but want to live close to my kids as well. With 4 kids, I doubt they will all pick the same place to live and I will have to pick my ‘favorite’ to live close to. My parents picked my sister in Colorado and moved away from my brother in So. Cal. They wanted the snow in the winter time. Crazy people!

  8. 9

    Karen says

    I have a feeling we’ll be staying right here but if I had my druthers I’d spend the summer months in the Colorado mountains near my daughter & her family and my winters in south Texas or Florida where it’s warm. I’d want a condo in each area.
    I love the beach so it would have to be close.

  9. 10

    Mary Beth says

    Mountain Home, AR gets my vote out of the places you named. Arkansas is beautiful. The Buffalo river or Bull Shoals lake is the best!!!

  10. 11


    Ah come on Judy. ND only has about 15-20″ of snow on the ground where I live and since I am 60 miles from Walmart or a mall, think of how much more quality time you and Vince would have together. Maybe he could get that. finished!

  11. 12

    LadyBaltimore says

    My husband and I spent the entire 7 years we lived in the desert in California trying to figure out where to retire to. (It wasn’t going to be California! And it certainly wasn’t going to be a desert!) We made a list of things we wanted (medical, closeness to family, access to military base, cultural, weather, access to transportation, etc.) and went on vacation, when we could, to those locations to check them out. We knew it was going to be in the Southeast from Maryland sweeping down towards TX.
    Long story short, we moved to northern Alabama this summer (no tax on retirement btw) and I couldn’t love it more. Right near the Tennessee River and more lakes and rivers than you can count. We live in a semi-rural area but very close to big towns and shopping, museums, gardens, etc. Just beyond where we live is lots of acreage for country living.
    The funny part is, after all our research and exploring vacations, we moved to a place where I had accompanied my husband for three days on a business trip.
    That was the only familiarity I had with it. And it turned out well because I love it. ps My husband hasn’t quite retired yet either…….
    Good luck!!

    • 12.1

      Marilyn W says

      Have you been to Grand Oak Retreat? My quilting group (I’m in northeast MS) goes there 3 times a year!

      WONDERFUL place. 20 minutes southeast of Huntsville.

      Check them out!!!

  12. 14

    Freda Henderson says

    Yep, move to Mountain Home and I will come see you! It’s only about 70 miles from my house and Lynn’s cardiologist is there.

  13. 15


    I grew up in Evansville and have lived in Wisconsin for 30+ years. I go back to Evansville every year to visit family. It will always be home to me like Louisiana is to you. There is an annual auto inspection fee, but you need to look at all the tax and fee structures to see what is economically best. The biggest problem with Evansville for me is the cost to fly there. I always drive because it is just too danged expensive to fly in and out of there. All of southern Indiana has beautiful rolling hills and gorgeous springs and falls.

  14. 16

    Melinda says

    I was going to write exactly what Sherry wrote. Stick it out 5-10 more years and see where Chad ends up. The time will fly by and you may even get to enjoy fruit from the trees you planted.

  15. 17

    Elaine says

    Well, Judy, I guess I’d vote for Mountain Home too, unless you wanna move to Republic! At least MH is not further from me than you are now, so we could still travel together. SOMEBODY’s gotta get you over bridges, right?

  16. 18


    Now Judy,

    You KNOW that if Vince came down to Tamale Land and spent some time here he would LOVE us!! We moved from S. AR back to Tamale Land 3 years ago because our familites were here. Parents and siblings are here, and both of my children moved back here after leaving home, so now we are back together. Family is important to us, and being near them is a blessing.

    Granted, there is not a lot to do here, and you do need to travel an hour to go to a mall or nice restaurant, or good health care….

    I don’t like to shop, I am self-entertaining (most quilters are), and live close enough to the interstate that I can jump and run to S’port if needed… but I only go about once every 3 months.

    Come on down! Remember… I have FIG TREES and I will share with YOU!!

    Kat in Tamale Land

    • 18.1


      I’m thinking that’s what we need to do . . come down there either in spring or fall and let Vince spend some time around the lake. Too bad it’s so hot when figs are ripe. I don’t want him anywhere near there in July and August because he’d definitely say no to the area. That’s my goal seriously — to get him to spend some time there in the spring or fall. I was looking last night to see if Cypress Bend allows pets and I couldn’t find it on their website but I’m betting they don’t. I did find a cabin near tamale land that allows pets. I’ll find the link and send it to you and see if you know anything about it. Maybe we could rent it for a week during the spring and see what Vince thinks of the area.

      • says

        For sure WAIT until the lake fills back up! It is SOOOOOO low right now. They had to lower it to do some repairs on the dam, and with the drought it has not filled back up. It may well be spring before it has a decent amount of water in it. And if you DO make it this way, I would love to meet and visit sometime! And we have a really small but neat quilt shop in Hemphill, TX. Yes, I would be glad to drive you across the big bridge to get there… what are cyber friends for?


  17. 19

    Judy C in NC says

    Can’t say enough good things about North Carolina – I am a native NC, raised in Virginia, spent adult working life in Colorado and retired back to NC in 2002. We live in a rural area subdivision where you can have chickens, horses, etc. about 20 miles outside of Raleigh which has the best medical care, museums and cultural events galore. If I had it to do over again, I would probably go a little further western NC as I really miss the snow and would more than likely have to live alone as husband definitely does NOT miss the snow. Lol – which is why we live in the Piedmont area. You will find your place and you will know it when you do. We are currently looking for a one level home as the stairs are a burden here and the six acres are becoming difficult for us to take care of.

  18. 20


    There is NOTHING better than being able to steal a grandchild for the day or overnight, and play with them, teach them, etc. DGD has decided she likes the quilting room. She is gluing fabric on construction paper now, but sometime this month I will show her how to sew it down! All three grandchildren within 20 miles? PRICELESS!!! (suburbs of Kansas City are nice. Taxes are better on the KS side.)

  19. 21

    Cheryl says

    Hey Judy,
    I vote for Tennessee. They have no state income tax, great hunting, fishing and beautiful mountain scenery. It’s my favorite state for vacations and I’d love to retire there.

  20. 22

    Diane says

    We have decided to become wealthy and have two places to live. I live in Florida right now and it is pretty nice in the winter if you can stand all the snow birds. In the summer though I want out of here! Too hot! Plus I am very afraid of hurricanes. I pray without ceasing during hurricane season.
    During the summertime we can go to Colorado, Estes Park area. BEAUTIFUL!
    But, since deciding to become wealthy we haven’t increased out worth by much so I will probably end up in East Texas. We had property there when I was young and spent all of my summers near Zavalla. I don’t think that is too far from Toledo Bend, so maybe we can get together for a sew-in sometime. 🙂

  21. 23


    Don’t restrict yourself to just states with no taxes on retirement income. Your choice should be on overall taxes, not just on “no retirement income taxes”. Here’s an article about retirement income taxes and taxes as a whole.

    With that said, if it was me, I’d go with where my heart leads… within reason of course. 🙂 I most likely would stay in TX. Although, Dan has talked about returning to MO upon retirement. Oh joy. The cold winters could kill me. LOL. 🙂

  22. 25

    Marilyn Smith says

    Judy, I know you would not enjoy the So. CA desert. As Lady B said, too darn hot in the summers. We are lucy to get out of the heat and go north. We would love to retire to the Napa/Sonoma area but it is just too pricy for us. Beautiful country. DH would like to move to Gardnerville/Minden area of NV. Cute towns and rural. Winters can be quite cold. Lots of ranches around. A few good quilt shops too. Good shopping locally and Reno and the malls are just an hour away. Another area we love is San Diego – especially North County. That would put us closer to our grandchildren. They are 2 hours away right now. Our oldest son is in Honolulu and have no desire to move there. Fun place to visit!

    I am sure we will stay put where we are. House is paid for. I have room for the Millie. As long as we can be gone most of the summer it is fine with me.

    Once Chad is finished with school, he may move to a bigger city for a good job. And, they often change jobs (requiring a move) so there is no guarantee that you would be living close to them. We raised our boys to be independent and they certainly are. We have never lived near family. My parents were in No. CA. Jerry’s parents went back to Oklahoma (where they were from) and finally settled down in Reno. His sister moved to Reno and has stayed there. We have both lost our parents so that is no longer an issue.

    Start taking some road trips during all seasons. I am so glad that Lady Baltimore and hubby have found such a wonderful place in AL.

    • 26.1


      You’re right! After living here, good water is definitely on our list. I have to wonder if there’s any place with worse water than we deal with.

  23. 27

    Evelyn says

    The $50 fee sounds a bit like our excise tax here in Mass? I have to pay a percentage of my cars value each year to the town as an additional tax. In addition, if you own a 2nd home here – ALL the contents are taxed – not just the house/land mind you – but the furniture, etc. I remember my Mom stewing about a tax bill one day over a little cottage she owned with ticky tacky furniture. I am not sure the exact name of that tax, but we always called it the furniture tax! So – if you owned 1 house somewhere else and then another here – you would have to pay that dreaded furniture tax. Got to do your homework ahead of time I guess because for sure that is something no real estate agent would want to tell you. Good luck with your search. Or maybe, you will just decide that you really do love your house forever more with the lime green kitchen! Cheers ! Evelyn

  24. 28


    We went thru a phase of wanting to leave our family home here in the Sonoma/Napa valley of No. Calif. Even leaving our family here to make the “retirement move”. Funny, we were thinking of moving to be near our friends who live in Joplin, MO. when this” gotta move retirement idea” struck us. Sure glad we got over it. They moved to Texas from Joplin within a few years, and our daughter had a baby girl, and our son and his family were in panic that we would sell the “family” home and consider moving across country. So, we didn’t ever move, and we are soooo—happy we didn’t. Our home is paid for, we have good medical care, we have steady retirement income. We know our neighbors, we know where everything is, and the climate here is wonderful. We live on 5 country acres 30 mins. from the pacific coast, and only 10 miles to all the major shopping we need. We spend our money on improving our home, and enjoying life in general. Our daughter and her family live close by. Our son and his family live 3 hours north of us now. People want to retire to where we live—and we wanted to move! Took us awhile to figure out we should not make a retirement move just because so many of our friends were doing that were our age. We stayed “home”, and we are sure glad we did. I would suggest as others have done that you discuss this with Chad, even now, or when the time comes that he graduates. How does he feel about the general vicinity you now live in? We did not realize our children loved this area and their family home, and that their friends are here too. Nor that they would be heartbroken if we sold our home and moved away to retire. Lots to think about. The pros & cons, and some family meetings put everything into prospective. Sometimes the grass is not greener as the saying goes.

  25. 29


    Here’s what we did: We stayed put in Minnesota, but we don’t spend the coldest months here. You could stay where you are and go to a warm climate with other retirees. PLEASE consider Port Aransas, Texas, right on the Gulf coast 1/2 hours from Corpus (you can rent monthly and let the condo owner eat the insurance costs). And then of course you would choose the Sandcastle condos because that’s where we are AND I NEED ANOTHER QUILTER TO QUILT WITH ME!!! We have a couple but not enough for a group. pleasepleaseplease

    • 29.1


      eww, I forgot about the bridge thing, but you could get on and off the island (Port Aransas is on Mustang Island) on the ferry end. I just KNOW that you want to come and sew with me Jan & Feb!!!

  26. 30

    Rita E says

    Since you said “I’d vote for the Evansville area.”, I think that’s the right place for you. Wherever you are happy – that is going to be a place where Vince is happy. Nothing brings more pleasure to a DH than to have a happy wife.

    • 30.1


      If that were true here, we’d definitely be going back to Louisiana. For us, Vince has to be happy and I’ll adjust to wherever he wants to be . . within reason.

  27. 31

    Rose says

    After reading all the posts it just reinforces what I already knew. There just is not one single place that is 100% good all of the time. Everywhere you live you will find some negatives. Some you can live with, some you cannot. After living a couple years overseas I learned to be grateful for all we that we have here in the U.S. I decided I could be happy anywhere within continental U.S. so I could easily visit my family. And when grandchildren can be close by it is like hitting the jackpot.

  28. 32


    We own two houses in CA and, when we retired, we also owned one in Houston (thank goodness that one is sold – what a pain that place was). But we bought in NW Ohio!

    Using your criteria, CA won’t work (high taxes, high cost of living and one of our houses was 3 hours from ANYTHING! – the other was one block from a hospital, one block from shopping and we loved it *and* it is paid for BUT… too small for all our STUFF!), but the weather is PERFECT! And there is ocean and mountains and… Trouble is, buying in CA is NOT cheap — keeping houses we bought in the 70s is!

    Here we have winter (not my favorite) and state income tax (also not my favorite) but we have a non-flooding lake and a semi-rural feel (no chickens that I know of, but the corn and soybean fields make up for that). And family (husband’s but that is fine with me).

    My brother picked FL and after six or seven years, moved to Russelville Arkansas (traded in hurricanes for tornados, in my opinion, but hey…)which he says he loves.

    To be honest, we only had issues with where we lived when we retired because we had been overseas for ten years and no longer had “home ties”… If we has still been in the US, we’d have probably stayed put as others have done. makes a lot of sense to me: friends and other support structure, house paid for, etc.

  29. 33


    The only thing I know is that we’re probably NOT looking for the same kind of retirement community! I want to live somewhere we can walk to coffee shops, resturants, libraries….probably a condo not a house if I can find one with enough space.

    We had this GA condo for sale for 3 years and finally took it off the market for now. I really enjoy spending time here and it’s within driving distance for both boys to visit. Wouldn’t want to live here all the time but we’ve decided to keep it for now.

    I think for us, 2 places might work best but you seem more of a homebody so it seems like having two homes wouldn’t work as well for you.

    • 33.1


      You’re right. Home is where I want to be most all the time! We’ve had two houses and won’t ever do that again . . I hope.

  30. 34


    Dang – I guess Oregon doesn’t fit your coordinates very well, but even though we’re very north and very west, it doesn’t snow much here in the valley. Lots of lakes, about an hour from the ocean, an hour from the mountains. We do tax income, but there’s no sales tax. I would love to have you as a neighbor!

  31. 35

    Elsie says

    I agree with Sherry, being close to grandchildren is heaven. Small towns are great to live in. We live in one 30 miles south of Topeka between two federal lakes. Shopping and eating in Topeka and Kansas City are close. We have several small towns around that have great quilt shops and good hometown eating places.

  32. 36


    Why is a tax on cars more offensive than property tax? If a big portion of the budget is being spent on road maintenance, it seems only reasonable. (I’m used to paying a hefty vehicle excise tax in MA.)

    Wanting to make sure the local government spends sensibly and is not corrupt seems entirely reasonable, but I think it would make more sense to look at where their spending is than what they collect it on.

    My town is addicted to using street parking enforcement as a revenue stream, which does irritate me. I wish they’d just tax vehicles even more heavily up front, and not make us mess around with visitor’s permits, etc. But, that kind of stuff is clearly an urban problem.

    • 36.1


      That’s in addition to the property taxes and license fees charged for vehicles. We do pay taxes on our vehicles each year. This year it’s over $700.

      • says

        Hmm, I guess that is a lot. But, I think it makes more sense to calculate a total tax burden for an area, and not fixate on a particular stream. I pay $100-$300/year in excise tax to the town for each vehicle, then $1600/year in car insurance for two vehicles (my driving record is clean, my cars aren’t snazzy, and that’s the minimum legal insurance for Massachusetts), then $20/year parking and $60/year registration and inspection for each car.

  33. 37

    Diann Smith says

    middle TN…beautiful and no state income tax
    Lexington, KY…major hospital systems, great economy, no tax on food purchases in the grocery, and very nice people

    Home for me is always in the South. Would never consider leaving. I’m a native Tennessean but just love KY too…horse capital of the world and I wished I owned one!

  34. 39

    Marla says

    Judy, I vote for Evansville, IN area as you will be in my neck of the woods. I live in southern Illinois and go to Evansville frequently for my job. I stop and see your favorite quilt shop in Boonesville a lot too. It is one of mine as well. Beautiful hilly area.

  35. 40


    Somewhere close to your son!!! And pray you raised him right!!! Someone needs to be there to run you to the doctor and he’s the only one in your life who loves you unconditionally once your parents are gone!!!!! And you can’t pay for love and respect and gratitude no matter how much money you have.

  36. 41


    Home is where my herd is.

    I doubt I ever move too far from where I am right now. The boys (DIL and Grands) are all close and I’d never go too far from them. Maybe a vacation, but never permanent. Somebody’s gotta take care of me when I get old!

  37. 42


    What, no one votes for northern MN?? Well, we love it here, winters and all, and we are on the lake-priivate-no access, along with about 20 other homes. Perfect. We have 7 acres, but the growing season kind of bites, (good thing I am not a big gardener) but that is what green houses and grow lights are for! We do think about moving west, WA. or OR. (Mt. hood area?) as we love it there, east of the mts, for sure. Bill has a daughter (no kids-ever), sister and brother in the Seattle area, has a son in Dillon CO. which I could do but probably couldnt afford. A condo someplace else sounds good, only coming here for parts of the year. A friend of ours has a condo in Mpls, and one in Tacoma. Sounds good to me! But we have pets, and always will, so we would have to find something that allows them. No desert or high desert for me tho, I am a girl that likes humidity-well, most of the time! I could do the ocean too! Most places we would love to live we couldn’t afford!

  38. 43

    Ellie says

    I vote with Charlene and the others who’ve said to stay close to Chad. Both my parents and DH’s parents retired to “retirement” areas and when they became very elderly and needed support they moved back near us! Indianapolis isn’t my favorite part of the country but one of our kids lives here and isn’t likely to move so I’m sure we’ll stay here and vacation in the “retirement” areas.

  39. 44


    Being with Chad would be the best, but be careful, as he too could be moving many times in his “career”, and you could be stuck someplace. I would say, find a “homebase” and rent someplace near him for months at a time, of course, if he would allow it! Bill’s brother always said only ONE Miller allowed in a state at a time, bummer for him there are 3 in Washington now! Guess we would have to go to Oregon!

  40. 45


    We are retiring (from the Navy at least) in less than three years, so I am looking into areas in Texas. Right now we are thinking Corpus Christi. One of our “would likes” is to have a base nearby so we can utilize the commissary and exchanges.

  41. 46


    I know you ruled out Paducah but it really encourages artists and craftsmen which you and Vince are all about. It is centrally located also. Another thing to think about is where your son is going to live. There will be grandchildren for sure and they are the most fun.

  42. 47


    Not NJ! My property taxes are over 10 grand a year on a 3 bedroom rancher! We plan to retire to the piedmont area of NC to be near our oldest daughter. She’s in Albemarle, less than an hour from Charolotte. She has 15 acres but is close to everything, and the climate is mild.

  43. 48

    Kathy B in TN says

    After 22 yrs in So Calif (north of San Diego) my husband agreed that we would relocate to Middle TN – where MY family is and where I grew up. (Versus New Hampshire, his home) Now a quick 5 yrs later …. both grown sons have married and had beautiful daughters! I’d have been miserable “stuck” on the west coast with grandgirls so far away! No state income tax here – but they do tax interest income and sales tax is high. We chuckle to ourselves – car tags are $49 in our rural county! Gotta love it after paying a percentage of value every year in CA. Mild winters, wonderful Spring and Fall and thank goodness for AC in July/August! So it all works out! Come visit – you’ll like it!

  44. 49


    You might want to check out at your local library the book: Retirement Places Rated: to add to your list.

    I’m out west, though I ‘d rather be in TX, but hubby won’t consider moving except to HI but he’ll never do that because he’s a packrat and it would be way too stressful for him to give up some of his stuff.

  45. 51


    Judy you know I love Arkansas and would vote for it without reservation. Having said that I also must say that our retirement income is taxed. But at least Arkansas has a balanced budget, unlike our country. The Hot Springs area is wonderful but so is Mountain Home. Health care in central Arkansas is phenomenal. And without a doubt I’d wait until Chad settles down and get close to him. He will need his children to be close to their grandparents, and you will need his help as you get older. 🙂 blessings, marlene

  46. 52

    Sandra Neel Hutchins says

    Paducah is a place that I could enjoy living in. Evansville would be great too. Even though I don’t live in Texas, I think Tyler, Texas would be a nice spot for you. It would cut your driving time to Lake Charles by so much. It is a nice place with beautiful rose gardens. I think it is about half way between Shreveport and Dallas. Since Chad is an out doors man, I’m betting that he would be happy in that area or at least in Dallas where he could go home to see you in Tyler without an extremely long drive. Wherever you go, the place will be better because of you! Have fun planning!

  47. 53

    Mary Jo says

    I live in North Carolina on Lake Norman (512 miles of shoreline!) and only about 30 miles from Charlotte with most everything you could want. But my sister lives in Lexington, SC just outside of Columbia and there are beautiful lakes around her as well. Taxes are probably better in SC than in NC. Both states have beautiful Atlantic ocean shorelines as well as beautiful mountians on the western part of the states. We have been in Manteo (eastern most point in NC and Murphy (western most point in the state) in the same week! But that’s not a big deal —probably about 8-10 hours from one point to the next.
    But staying close to Chad (especially if he plans on staying in one area) has definite benefits…All four of our grandchildren are within 20 minutes of us!

  48. 54

    Peggy says

    I know you are from Louisiana, but what about Vince? My husband and I plan to move to SW Wisconsin, because that is where he was raised. He has family all over WI. As you know I live near Murray KY where the $50. car fee and the property tax keep me living outside of town. I hate the summer weather here. It is the humidity more then the temperature.

    I also vote for thinking about distance from Chad, but don’t count on him staying in one place.

    Evansville area is nice with lots of people you know and love not too far away.
    Shopping could include large cities and little towns as well as Amish. Great area for gardening. Then you could also be a Hoosier like me from my early years.

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    Well, I know this is too far away for you, but we love where we live in Newberg, OR. It’s a tiny rural community, but we have everything we need here. We have a brand new community hospital, which is part of a larger hospital group. Our income is taxed, but no sales tax! We’re about 45 minutes from Portland, and so have access to cultural events, museums, several universities (in fact, there is a university right here in Newberg!) There is also a first rate medical school in Portland, and so our access to good healthcare is excellent. Our climate is mild, although it rains a lot here. That means we have rivers and lakes all around. I know this isn’t on your map, but thought I’d give it a plug anyway. Go one hour north, and you can find similar communities in Washington, where they have sales tax, but no income tax. We’ve lived here since 1978 and I wouldn’t dream of living anywhere else.

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    Cindy from CA says

    I also think that you should include Chad in your discussions. He obviously is very close to both of you (he comes home every weekend!!!). You should talk about what career he is aiming for, the major companies that he might work for and where they are located. Talk about pros and cons for those areas. Share your research with Chad. You should be open about how important it is to you to be near him and his family. It is not necessarily a given that he will move around after he takes his first job. Especially if he understands the “family” tradeoffs. You will probably have to take into consideration his fishing and hunting requirements and add them to your list of “needs”! But I would have this discussion with him BEFORE he gets engaged!!! It doesn’t need to mean that you live next door to him. You might live an hour away (20 minutes would be my limit!). If he wants to move to a climate adverse area, you could do the two condo thing.
    I live in California (all my life) and love it! But I also recognize that my 3 daughters (all over 21) will never be able to afford our house (which we bought 30 years ago). When I was younger, all my family lived closeby and it was wonderful!! Now, the elders have died and the younger generation has moved to less costly areas. So my husband and I have been thinking that we should move ALL of us to some other location before they find husbands. Having my daughters and grandchildren close by would be Priority #1 for me!!! Frankly, $50 for a car tax (times our six vehicles) would not stop me from being near my grandchildren!

    Good Luck on a tough decison!

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    How about a complete change of scenery, the house across the street is for sale? We have free health and its snowing! Northampton England UK!!
    It would be great to have you for a neighbour.

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    Jackie Hicks says

    Take a look at the Huntsville (Madison County) area – it has most of the things you are looking for. Huntsville has good medical facitilies and you are half way betweeh Brimingham AL and Nashville TN and both have excellant facilities. We have mountains and lakes/rivers and you can be rural with land within 20-30 minutes of the city. The area has 3 good quilt shops and several quilt guilds.
    AND is it getting closer to LA. There is a menomite community about 40 miles from here and tell Vince that there are lots of Wal Marts, Sams and Cotsco!

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    Looking at your list of requirements, I’m thinking Knoxville, TN should be in the running.

    * Not too much farther north than Kansas City.
    * No farther west than OK/KS/TX.
    * A state that does not tax retirement income.
    No income tax at all. Not absurdly high sales tax or property tax, either.
    * Kinda rural but not too far from decent health care facilities.
    200,000 people in the valley, but lots of small towns abound nearby, like Oak Ridge.
    * Probably not the Gulf Coast due to home insurance costs. Decent health care here, and UT Knoxville.
    Check. No tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes or floods in the normal course of things.
    * We would love to be on a lake or river that doesn’t flood.
    Check. Many rivers, Norris Lake, no flooding, not even when it flooded in Nashville. Actually, Nashville had many very safe areas that didn’t flood, either. Chattanooga is another good city.

    A fair number of cultural events, 4 quilt shops, a bead shop, plenty of farmers. It does snow on occasion, but it doesn’t stay long. It’s definitely 4-season, but neither horrendously hot or cold, with the occasional exception. Even as a desert rat, I was able to tolerate the humidity. It’s hilly, and you are right into the Smokey Mountains area. There are both freeways and back roads to get you around town.

    Love to have you for a neighbor.

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    carol c says

    You have already thought out the things I wa going to suggest. However, you two wont be able to get around like you do now, I can hope you will be able to, but things happen. You might want to think about a disability friendly space,
    low maintenance, nothing too big to need lots of mowing, a big kitchen for you,
    having what makes you happy around, no steps/stairs, far enough out in the county to be able to do stuff, close enough to a city to have facilities. One person I know moved near a military place for their needs for even grave svcs, weather, no more snow or stuff, but not close enough neighbors to see what is cooking on their stove. If you dont use something for a year, get rid of it, less storage needs. But really Judy (vince) just for you tobe happy is the most need.

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    Eileen Keane says

    Several people I’ve talked to have mentioned Delaware. I know they don’t tax federal retirement income, not sure about others. There’s no state income tax and people over the age of 65 don’t pay school taxes.

    On another subject, Judy, dh Mike asked me a question about soup-which is cheaper if you don’t can, homemade or store bought soup?

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    I vote for Lake Palestine, near Tyler, Texas. An hour and a half to the Louisiana border, beautiful scenery (piney woods, dogwoods and azaleas in the spring) an active quilt guild with a yearly show in Tyler (also good healthcare options there) and really low property taxes, and not too, too far from Stitchin’ Heaven, a fine quilt shop.

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    Judy, Come to Arkansas!!! We live just north of Van Buren, and love it!! We have GREAT healthcare in Fort Smith. We spend a week in Springfield, MO every March(got caught in that freak snowstorm this year), and we’ve said that if we had to live anywhere else, it would be there. So maybe they are similar?

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    Elizabeth says

    Judy I saw on the msn homepage today the best and worst states for retirees. It was in the investing section. Alaska was #1!

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    I grew up on a farm and have lived in the City of Chicago most of my adult life. We live in one of the neighborhoods with single family houses, yard, good neighbors.
    I would like to retire to a high rise downtown in Chicago, and getting a summer home near one of my sisters.
    I like the idea of stepping out of my building and grabbing a bus or cab to where ever I need to go. No being dependent on others for rides when I can no longer drive. A doorman and no snow removal (woke to 4 inches of snow this morning).
    Retirement is a long ways off, have three kids to launch yet. Andy isn’t so keen on the high rise idea.
    Plan B: make sure my kids do well in school so they can afford a place with a nice basement for me to live in.

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    Weed says

    Retire in Gotha, Florida!!! No state income tax, Vince and I get to fish all we want and your relatives visit alot so they can go to the Parks!! Simple and easy decision!!