10 Worst States to Retire

Laura Joszt

The recession ensured that retirees could no longer choose retirement spots solely based on good weather. However, seniors will be happy to learn that chilly northern states mostly make up the list of worst states to retire, regardless.

The recession ensured that retirees could no longer choose retirement spots solely based on good weather. However, seniors will be happy to learn that chilly northern states mostly make up the list of worst states to retire regardless.

MoneyRates.com analyzed seven key factors to determine good and bad states for retirees to live in. In addition to climate, the site considered the following: cost of living; property taxes; unemployment rate; violent crime rates; life expectancy for seniors; and recent population growth in the senior demographic.

Each factor can have a lot of issues that determine the score. For instance, life expectancy encompasses quality of health care and environmental conditions.

Shrinking senior populations, cold weather, and high property taxes and cost of living plague the worst state for retirees, according to the analysis by MoneyRates.com.

And don’t forget to check out the best states to retire.

10. Rhode Island

Providence

The senior population in Rhode Island actually shrunk between 2000 and 2010 despite the fact that the overall U.S. population is aging.

9. Maryland

The southernmost state on this list, Maryland isn’t cheap with high property taxes and cost of living.

8. Maine

Seniors have a low life expectancy in this cold state, although the crime rate is very low.

7. (tie) New York

New York City

According to the Tax Foundation, New York now has the worst taxes in the country, and its senior population has grown very slowly.

6. (tie) Ohio

For most of the factors, Ohio is fairly mediocre, but it scored very low in the growth of its senior population and the low life expectancy for those 65 years and older.

6. Massachusetts

Beacon Hill, Boston

One of the most expensive states in the nation, it shouldn’t be any surprise that seniors are steering clear, which has caused its senior population growth to be sluggish.

4. Illinois

Lincoln Park, Chicago, in winter

The biggest problems in Illinois are high property taxes and high unemployment, but it scored below average on the rest of the categories as well.

3. Alaska

If climate at all matters to you, then you’ll definitely steer clear of Alaska, which has the harshest climate in the entire country. Plus its cost of living is the second highest. And yet its senior population has been growing at an impressive rate.

2. Pennsylvania

Only Rhode Island has a slower growth rate for its senior population. Plus, Pennsylvania scored poorly on life expectancy.

1. Michigan

Downtown Grand Rapids

Although Michigan doesn’t rank in the bottom 10 for any categories, MoneyRates.com scored is low enough across the board that it had the worst overall total. In particular, Michigan performed poorly on climate and economic factors.