Best and worst states for retirement

Active senior couple on a walk in a beautiful autumn nature.

While many Americans already have plenty of worries when it comes to retirement – whether it be their personal financial well-being or the uncertainty of Social Security’s future – location sometimes get overlooked when it could be key.

According to a new report by, finding the right state to live in could be the dividing factor on whether your retirement days are happy ones.

To determine the best and worst states, analysts looked at seven relevant features in the life of a retiree, and used government and experts sources to compare states against one another. The categories examined included: cost of living (20%), taxes (20%), health care quality (15%), weather (15%), crime (10%), cultural vitality (10%) and well-being (10%).

The end result found South Dakota to be the best place to retire due to ranking first on overall well-being and second for low taxes. Meanwhile, New York was the worst, driven by its high cost of living and high taxes.

Here are the best and worst states to retire, according to

1.            South Dakota

2.            Utah

3.            Idaho

4.            New Hampshire

5.            Florida

6.            Montana

7.            North Carolina

8.            Wyoming

9.            Nebraska

10.         Mississippi

11.         Hawaii

12.         Massachusetts

13.         Virginia

14.         Michigan

15.         Missouri

16.         Iowa

17.         Colorado

18.         Texas

19.         Delaware

20.         North Dakota

21.         Tennessee

22.         Maine

23.         Indiana

24.         Alabama

25.         Kansas

26.         Vermont

27.         Wisconsin

28.         Minnesota

29.         Arizona

30.         Kentucky

31.         Pennsylvania

32.         New Jersey

33.         West Virginia

34.         Rhode Island

35.         Connecticut

36.         Alaska

37.         Georgia

38.         Ohio

39.         Oregon

40.         Oklahoma

41.         South Carolina

42.         Nevada

43.         Washington

44.         Illinois

45.         California

46.         Arkansas

47.         Louisiana

48.         Maryland

49.         New Mexico

50.         New York