Getting ready to retire? Avoid these pricey states, study warns

It’s that moment you’ve been waiting for – you are officially retiring.

Continue Reading Below

Now the big question is – where?

According to a new study, some of the desirable spots that most have been dreaming of throughout their entire working careers, aren’t necessarily budget-friendly.

Personal finance website analyzed data of popular retirement destinations to determine which cities are most affordable.

The website used factors such as the median listing price for a home, the average cost of expenditures for someone 65 and older, crime rates, overall livability scores and whether to determine the country’s cheapest spots to live out one’s golden years.


Here are the results and why,  according to the report.

Miami—Don’t retire here

“Miami has long been one of America’s best-known cities — gaining fame for its active nightlife and large Cuban-American community, among others. However, making this city your home in retirement comes at a steep cost, with the median list price for a house reaching nearly half a million dollars and the average annual expenditure for seniors is at $67,873.”

Instead, choose Hialeah, Florida

"Nearby Miami is Hialeah, a community where the median list price is over $150,000 lower and the cost of living is about $3,000 a year lower for senior citizens. If you’re interested in a South Florida retirement but don’t want to pay Miami prices, this could be your ticket."

Los Angeles — Don't retire here

"The City of Angels offers nice weather year round and a wide variety of amenities. However, America’s second-largest city is also among its most expensive. The median list price for a home is about $800,000 and the cost of living is about double that of the national average, meaning the average expenditure for ages 65 and older households is nearly six figures."

Instead, choose San Bernardino, California

"Good thing nearby San Bernardino offers many of the same benefits at a fraction of the price. The median home list price of $295,000 is less than half that of Los Angeles and the average senior spends less than $60,000 a year living there. Throw in a variety of options for local theater and closer access to Lake Arrowhead, Big Bear and Joshua Tree National Park and this could be a paradise for nature lovers looking to spend less."

Oakland, California-- Don't retire here

"The cost of living anywhere in the San Francisco Bay Area is quickly spiraling out of control. While Oakland might be the retirement spot of your dreams, the median list price of $650,000 is followed by an average cost of living for residents 65 and over that nearly reaches six digits. All told, for most Americans, retiring in Oakland is either well out of reach or would require major compromises elsewhere."

Instead, choose Modesto, California

"Instead of Oakland, consider the inland city of Modesto, the inspiration for the George Lucas classic “American Graffiti” and a haven for classic car lovers who want to live a short drive from both the mountains and the beach. Modesto’s median list price — at just shy of $300,000 — is less than half that of Oakland, the average cost of living for seniors is just over $60,000 and the crime rate is close to a third lower."

Naples, Florida -- Don't retire here

"Deciding to retire in Florida is a cliche for a reason: The Sunshine State has a lot of offer to people in retirement. As such, it’s understandable that retirement in Naples would stand out as a goal for many. Unfortunately, you might not have such a sunny disposition when you get done shelling out nearly $400,000 for a home based on the median list price, or when you discover that under 10 percent of the city’s population are ages 65 and older."

Instead, choose St. Petersburg, Florida

"St. Petersburg could offer you the retirement on Florida’s west coast that you want at a price you can afford. You’ll be nearby to Clearwater Beach — voted the No. 1 beach by TripAdvisor — with a median list price of $279,000, that’s $120,000 under that of Naples. That amount would cover two full years of expenses with over $10,000 to spare."