The Best Places To Retire In 2021
14 May 2021
Forbes compared nearly 800 locales in America, on everything from housing costs and taxes to healthcare, air quality and climate change and natural hazard risk. These are the top 25 cities for retirees.
Steve and Kathleen Nagel had two special requirements as they searched for a retirement locale last fall: plentiful medical specialists (Kathy, 64, has health issues) and no risk of hurricanes, a perpetual threat to their old home in Lake Charles, 30 miles off the Gulf of Mexico. “We went through two hurricanes in a year,” explains Steve, 60, who is now winding up a career at oil refinery and chemical plants in the U.S. and abroad. They also wanted low taxes and reasonable living costs, mild weather and a lively cultural scene. The couple investigated Nashville, Austin, Tex., and Asheville, N.C. As part of their online research they came across a Facebook group touting the eastern Tennessee city of Knoxville. Scenic and far from hurricane paths, Knoxville is home to the University of Tennessee and its medical school, which translates into lots of doctors, restaurants and entertainment. Housing prices are low and Tennessee was about to end its remaining state income tax on dividends and interest. Despite the pandemic, with the help of a Knoxville real-estate-agent couple, Jon and Dawn Powell, the Nagels’ were able to tour a dozen potential homes during two 1,600-mile (roundtrip) road trips. “We just kept putting on and taking off masks,” Steve shrugs. In November they closed on a one-story on the outskirts of Knoxville, where they are now living happily.