by Margie Coghill

Are you pondering retirement? If so, trying to balance a fixed income with an enjoyable retirement can be difficult. Therefore, it is a crucial to consider the cost of living, because if your daily expenses exceed your budget, you won’t be left with much extra money to afford anything fun, and your peace of mind may suffer. More than 67% of people say they would move to a less expensive location if it meant having a more financially comfortable retirement.

Here are five States that offer below-average living cost for retirees. These affordable places to retire are spread out across the nation, offering many options for your retirement destination.

  1. Texas: Everything is bigger and better in Texas! Texas lands in the top 10 most affordable states to live in based on three categories: senior care, cost of living and elderly and family caregiver support services. The average yearly cost of a nursing home in Texas is $54,750.00 which is $31,000.00 less than the national average.
    Texas is famous for its steaks, barbequed ribs and Mexican food. The immense size of Texas offers many attractions and things to do. Try visiting San Antonio’s River Walk, the Space Center in Houston or Padre Island in Corpus Christi.
  2. Florida: It is easy to see why the sunshine state shows up on so many people’s lists of top retirement destinations. Warm sandy beaches, sunny weather, no state income tax and countless facilities tailor-made for retirees make Florida an ideal location for retirement. There are 3.5 million Florida residents over 65 and plenty of restaurants and bars that are frequented by senior citizens.
  3. Alabama: Retirees are sure to love the Heart of Dixie. Alabama has low income tax rates ranging from 2% to 5% and Social Security benefits are tax exempt. Alabama’s current rental rates are below the national average. Alabama’s winters are mild and warm, for those who do not like the cold. There are also plenty of beaches and harbors to visit while enjoying the states warmer weather. Alabama has tons of great food and is known for its fresh Gulf Seafood, BBQ, burgers and specialty sandwiches.
  4. Arizona: The Grand Canyon State has a retiree-friendly climate and beautiful natural scenery. Just like Alabama, Arizona is very tax friendly to retirees. Social Security is not taxed, and property taxes are substantially lower than the national average. Arizona also offers the Arizona Commodity Senior Food Program that provides a food package once a month to eligible people over 60 years of age.
  5. Iowa has always been a great state for friendly neighbors, low crime rates and very little traffic. The cost of living is 11% below the national average and Social Security is not taxed. This state’s residents can experience all four seasons. Retirees can spend time watching the snowfall, smelling the spring air, basking in the summer sun and taking a walk on a crisp fall day.
    For retirees who enjoy the outdoors, Iowa has many places to explore that include rolling hills and over a thousand lakes.

Retiring is a major lifestyle change and it is important to consider factors such as finances, recreational interests, hobbies, comfort, healthcare needs and proximity to family and friends.