Advice / Info on Where to retire in the US

I would not suggest Florida. Not only is there the hurricane risk, insurance companies are pulling out of there. I would suggest Colorado, North Carolina, or VT/NH.
 
I liked visiting Estes Park, Co. It's pretty high, so cold/snow in winter. Close enough to Denver for major health stuff. Absolutely stunningly beautiful mountains and close to Rocky Mtn. Natl. Park.
 
OP said they were likely to move, and then what ?
Yes, we thought about that. Our kids are all early to mid twenties. They will definitely move a couple of times, and it probably does not make sense to try to follow them around.
Our thinking is to be in a very nice place so that they would want to come visit. My wife wants a big enough place to accomodate all of them but I do not agree. I believe a 2BR (maybe plus Den) is more than enough and if they all come at the same time we could always put them up in a hotel.
 
Asheville, NC? In the mountains, near great hiking, with restaurants and breweries. It's popular with retirees. The airport is good, with connections through Atlanta, Charlotte and elsewhere.
I would avoid this place... to many folks already... LOL... Outside of the citys you can find some great places, and Asheville has its own airport.
 
Thanks for all the suggestions.
I like a couple of suggestions/options and need to do a lot more research.
1. Boston and Hew Hampshire Combination. I know Boston and I like it. There is also a lot of Condos available. I will research New Hampshire some more. I looked at Portsmouth and Exeter, but they are probably more places to buy houses. I have two left hands and like the convenience of condos.
2. Ashville looks good. Close to Charlotte and maybe Atlanta. In know Atlanta, don't like it too much, to be honest but the airport is very convenient.
3. The Rockies would be great. I don't know Denver or Boulder. Not sure how far it is from these cities to the mountains. I am currently in Munich, Germany and in less than 1 hour I am in the Alps, in 1.5 hours I am in Kitzbuhel, Austria by train. That is a great setup. Maybe Denver/Boulder and a town in the Rocky Mountains would be similar.
4 Lake Tahoe. Never been there and always think about the Godfather 2 Movie. In the movie it looked breathtakingly beautiful. I looked at listings of townhouses / condos at the Tahoe Beach Club, expensive but very nice.
5 Seattle / Cascades? Never been to Seattle but heard almost only good things about it. The only negative being that it is supposedly very very liberal. I only read about it and that it might become unpleasant with too many homeless and drug addicts. I will definitely go and have a look. Where in the Cascades would you suggest. I already saw Leavenworth but are there some bigger towns?
6 Florida I will keep Florida on my list for now. But I have the same concerns - hurricanes, flodings, heart, humidity, difficult insurance coverage.

I have some more questions on retirement or living communities but I will probably ask in a different thread.
 

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We've been to many mentioned places and we love Mammoth Lakes and have friends in Gardnerville NV. The clean, dry air there is nice and, iirc, there is an excellent water source there. Tahoe is nice too. Taxes are favorable in NV. We're going back to Mammoth for a "camping" trip with our Cali friends in Sept. You can ski in the winter and up to Memorial day many years there and some of the best high altitude lakes for the summer. And Yosemite just over the mountain drive. Close to Reno and Las Vegas for airports. It would be on my short list.

One not mentioned may be Chattanooga, TN area. Middle of Atlanta and Nashville airports and near the Smokies. Nice town. Not mountains, imo. I've always considered the Smokies as big rolling hills after seeing the Alps and Rockies. Probably a quieter place to be.
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Just an idea - Canada? Something like Calgary, near Banff.
 
Cambridge, MA gets my vote too. Some of the best healthcare in the country, great food, tons of things to do at your door step, and you can easily escape to Maine or NH or VT when you want to get a rural mountain fix. Winter can be harsh, but you can always spend your winter in FL like millions of other snow birds. Coastal FL is very nice in winter, but our summer can be brutal if you’re not used to it.

We just bought a condo in Cambridge MA so my advice was bias :).

Why would I go to boring Florida if I can be in 6 hours in Seville or Granada Spain and enjoy (In Winter) 60-70F, sunny dry climate with great food and friendly people?
 
Once you decide.....rent for a year or two.

Or, do 6 month rentals in two or three locations that are on your short list.
 
Leavenworth was going to be my suggestion also.
 
OP said they were likely to move, and then what ?
I see that his kids are probably going to be shuffled in their locations by the giant corporate machine, yes, but usually you are from somewhere and have people there, and kids might gravitate back to the general area eventually. So by "my people", that includes family and long-time friends. I just wouldn't go somewhere because it was a 5 star hiking area, for instance, but you have nobody in range that you know well enough to make or get a random call and meet for assistance or entertainment. I'd take a 3 star hike location if it meant closer associations. There are some hobbies/passions that are region-specific, like maybe ocean fishing. But if you're into that, it's probably because you grew up with it, and it aligns where your people are.
 
How close to a major airport? Maybe an hour or two from Denver? Breckenridge, Frisco, Silverton?

Or how about near Albuquerque or Santa Fe?
 
I see that his kids are probably going to be shuffled in their locations by the giant corporate machine, yes, but usually you are from somewhere and have people there, and kids might gravitate back to the general area eventually. So by "my people", that includes family and long-time friends. I just wouldn't go somewhere because it was a 5 star hiking area, for instance, but you have nobody in range that you know well enough to make or get a random call and meet for assistance or entertainment. I'd take a 3 star hike location if it meant closer associations. There are some hobbies/passions that are region-specific, like maybe ocean fishing. But if you're into that, it's probably because you grew up with it, and it aligns where your people are.
More aging people now may not have "people" these days. I read a surprisingly number of posts from single seniors exploring places to live and they don't have much keeping them in their current or past hometowns.

Their siblings may have already passed; they're an only child; or don't have extended family. Friends may be focused mainly on their own kids/grandkids.

Unless the folks you know are solid social connections or care enough to help if needed, it may be better to just move on if a better climate, cost-of-living or culture beckons.
 
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Thanks for all the suggestions.

3. The Rockies would be great. I don't know Denver or Boulder. Not sure how far it is from these cities to the mountains. I am currently in Munich, Germany and in less than 1 hour I am in the Alps, in 1.5 hours I am in Kitzbuhel, Austria by train. That is a great setup. Maybe Denver/Boulder and a town in the Rocky Mountains would be similar.
I worked in Germany for a few months, and have spent some time in the Alps, love them!

When I retired and had no ties to my location, I relocated to the Front Range area of CO. Not in the mountains, but several miles from the foothills. I'm an hour from RMNP, less than an hour to the Denver airport. You could look anywhere within an hour or so of DEN to the north (up to Fort Collins, including Lyons, Longmont, Loveland), south (Colorado Springs and other places I don't know all the names), and west. Lots of choices. Boulder is nice, but was pricey for us. I'd suggest you expand your view beyond Boulder/Denver and look at communities up and down I-25 and to the west, in the foothills/mountains or not, but all close enough for day trips. The view from my back deck is well over 90 degree mountains, including Longs Peak (highest mountain in RMNP). Yes, there's RMNP for hiking (has been getting more and more crowded over the years, timed entry reservations needed from Memorial Day to mid October), but also national forest and wilderness, and state and county parks. Activity friendly region (not just hiking, but also dedicated bike paths, plenty of fishing and hunting if you're interested). Good medical, which we ended up needing. I had a relative retire and move to the mountains near Estes Park, and they were surprised at how often they ended up coming down to the Front Range to shop and for medical needs. Have heard numerous anecdotal comments from people who retired IN the mountains, Estes Park for example, and ended up relocating to the Front Range as they aged. Good luck with your search! Sounds to me like you should make some visits to the places that end up on your short list. :cool:
 
Fort Collins and Loveland, Colorado are on our short list. We've spent time in both cities, and the short distance to the mountains and to the Denver airport are big plusses. We also have friends in Fort Collins. Colorado has become more expensive in recent years, but these two cities are a little less "more expensive." Great hiking, great brewery scene, lots of sunshine.
 
I notice that VT/NH have been mentioned. We lived in a kinda rural part of VT for 8 years - on Lake Champlain (our town, not our house) - between Burlington and Middlebury. If I were to move back there I would live in a more “urban” part of the state. Burlington is a small city, pretty funky, with loads of good restaurants. Good access to skiing and good medical facilities. It’s a bit pricey, particularly for more affluent folks as the tax structure favors less well off residents and lets the higher income people pick up the tab. But the state and Burlington are quite pleasant and the state university is located there (for cultural and sporting events). International experiences are close by in Montreal and Quebec City (the latter being a bit further). Big international airport in Montreal although any time I compared prices, fares were higher from Canada than Boston. Small regional airport but you have to go through Boston, NY or Chicago for longer haul flights. Cold winters, obviously. Might work out well, especially with a 2nd home in a warmer clime.

We left VT for MA. Decided we needed something a bit more “citified” (but not Cambridge!) and there were family considerations. Might have stayed if we’d been closer to Burlington. Good luck in your quest.
 
Lake Isabella. California's best kept secret. According to, I guess the Chamber of Commerce. Not too much traffic, or people, or development. Housing prices are low for CA. All kinds of outdoor activities. Love it here.

Downsides are fire hazard, nearest commercial airport is small and an hour away, or 3 hours drive to LAX (On Sunday). There is a hospital here I have not had occasion to visit. Major stuff and specialists, you may need to drive an hour or 3. No big box stores here, must drive an hour to get there, although I actually like this part. Keep them outta here.
 
If I had the resources of the OP I would seriously consider snowbirding. Several areas mentioned (like Florida and Las Vegas) have pleasant winters and springs, but are much less nice the rest of the year. Conversely some of the mountain areas the OP is considering have fairly harsh winters. but gorgeous summers. If you're comfortably in the 8-figure club, why not.
 
If I had the resources of the OP I would seriously consider snowbirding. Several areas mentioned (like Florida and Las Vegas) have pleasant winters and springs, but are much less nice the rest of the year. Conversely some of the mountain areas the OP is considering have fairly harsh winters. but gorgeous summers. If you're comfortably in the 8-figure club, why not.
While there are occasional big winter storms in the CO Front Range, the climate through much of the winter can be surprisingly mild. With low humidity, 5000' elevation, and lots of sunshine, many non residents are surprised at how it feels outside. I see people wearing shorts year round (I'm not quite at that level... :) ), even day time temps of 40s feel much warmer than back east in gray cloudy winters with more humidity, and I'll ride my bicycle through much of the winter. You need to get up in the mountains and west of the continental divide to get the big snows, as a general rule. We always laugh when the national news is showing some storm on I-70 west of Denver with stopped traffic and I was sitting outside on our deck that afternoon. Couple of years ago we hit almost 80 in February, it was in the 60s in RMNP, I drove the convertible top down up there for a picnic... yes, I wore a jacket and turned on the heat and seat warmer, that's what they're for! :cool:
 
Choosing the best town to retire in, relies so much on one's individual preferences! I would imagine that many would eliminate New Orleans due to their aversion to heat, humidity, and occasional hurricanes. Frank and I love, love, LOVE living here, though! It's inexpensive, very European in many ways, with great food, history, art, music, and architecture, amazing people, and festivals and more going on to keep one from getting bored. If you could get bored living in New Orleans, my guess is that you would get bored anywhere.
 
Choosing the best town to retire in, relies so much on one's individual preferences! I would imagine that many would eliminate New Orleans due to their aversion to heat, humidity, and occasional hurricanes. Frank and I love, love, LOVE living here, though! It's inexpensive, very European in many ways, with great food, history, art, music, and architecture, amazing people, and festivals and more going on to keep one from getting bored. If you could get bored living in New Orleans, my guess is that you would get bored anywhere.

There are some really cheap properties too! Not sure I'd want something 100 years old though. I enjoyed the time I spent in NOLA, but I don't know what it would be like to live there. Are the insurance costs still Florida-like ?

 
There are some really cheap properties too! Not sure I'd want something 100 years old though. I enjoyed the time I spent in NOLA, but I don't know what it would be like to live there. Are the insurance costs still Florida-like ?


Yes, insurance is crazy sky-high! $2495 this year for homeowners', flood, and wind'n'hail (=hurricane insurance) for a 1500 sf house that Zillow says is worth $327K. But some other things are low in cost, so some of that balances out.
 
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I retired 2 years ago after 30 years with MegaCorp. Spent most of the last 2 years in Central America and Europe. Our 4 kids are in the US, so my wife and I are ready to move to the US as well, planning to move within the next 12 months. We are financially well off (see my posts from 8 years ago, if interested), so cost of living is not a major consideration.
I am looking for advice on where in the US to retire.
We are considering South Florida, but also a mountain town.
We are both 60 years, into hiking, traveling , restaurants, working out and healthy so far. My ideal retirement city/town would be something like an Austrian Alpine town not too far from a larger city, just to have easy airport access. Lots of restaurants. While we are well off, Aspen prices are too high for us.
What would be good options? Colorado, North Carolina, the Pacific North West, the North East, lake Tahoe? My kids are in Boston, New York, and Chicago, but they will most likely be moving around anyway. I checked online but mostly found articles on affordable mountain towns.
I am very familiar with Miami, and we both like it also. I know it is very different from the above locations. One thing that worries me about South Florida is the climate. Increasing hurricane activity means more flooding, and the whole area might just become uncomfortable to live.
Also any ideas on retirement communities? They seem nice but mostly for folks even older than we are?
So, please let me know your thoughts
Jackson Hole. :)

The Villages is in Central Florida but not much hiking going on there. High Desert California? Palm Springs?
 
I have some more questions on retirement or living communities but I will probably ask in a different thread.

Look at Tryon Estates in Columbus NC. Not my cup of tea, but everyone I know there loves the place. and 2 major airport 40 minutes away.
 
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