The 5 worst places to retire in the US

Every one of them seemed like a good idea to somebody -- but if you're thinking about spending your golden years in any of these 'retirement havens,' don't say you weren't warned.

By The Fiscal Times

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VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

47Comments
Feb 8, 2012 1:45PM
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I retired in the area in which I was born and raised: Cape Cod and southeastern Massachusetts! I happen to think its one of the loveliest places to reside, and the benefits in this area (cultural, sports, educational, historical) are beyond belief. I did not retire with a huge income, and yet I can easily afford the cost to live here. Too many people are concentrating on taxes as if they were receiving NOTHING in return. We live in a country where we collectively pay our fair share so that we ALL benefit from that money (in terms of maintaining our roads and providing good education for the young, and proper police and fire services, and support services for the poor ). I have wonderful services here along the Cape Cod Canal, and feel that my taxes are reasonable for all that is offered here.

My mom turned 100 recently and still lives on her own in a community not far from me and is able to stay in her own home on a small income from Social Security. I know she would not have wanted to move from here and is quite comfortable in her extended retirement. 

I realize that living in an area with 4 true seasons (instead of continuous warm air) is not for everyone.I also know that the political atmosphere in the Bay State doesn't appeal to everyone.But then we have a large diverse country in which we all should be able to find a place we can live in comfort in our golden years WITHOUT bad-mouthing those who don't happen to share the same views (whether they be about the weather, or politics).

Feb 8, 2012 4:26AM
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Gracious.  Is there any more to life than golf and pot.
Jul 20, 2012 11:05PM
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What kind of hokey reveiw is that? I've seen all of  the western and midwest states. What kind of statement to say the whole state is crappy because of taxes or crime or whatever? Might as well move to Mars. I heard they have water there. Wherever place you decide to retire you absolutely have to see it in person. If it's a retirement community, then get all the info available to you. I know there a lot of bad places but people will settle where they enjoy their lifestyle .Yes, you may pay a few more bucks in sales or property taxes or you can go on the cheap and live out in the middle of pick your favorite state's desert with a hand pump and kerosene lantern. And if you can afford it , a dilapidated barn. But no matter where you park yourself, it's going to take some amount of funds. I live in So. Calif. I gotta move before I get runned over! There are a lot of nice places here too.  You just need a lot of time to find one. LIKE any other state. And for you young folk, think very carefully before you invest in a retirement place. 40 years from now you'll be in a completely different state of mind. I know! Good luck!
Jul 7, 2012 1:11PM
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I winter in Laughlin Nevada, southern Clark County NV.  The weather is fantastic from November thru March, little crime, drive across the river to shop in Bullhead City (much cheaper), many outdoor activities. Great entertainment in the casinos.  3 or 4 hour drive to metropolitan areas in AZ, CA, and NV or National Parks.  Small town atmosphere filled with many retirees and snowbirds.  Soooo, not all of Clark County is a bad place to live!
Feb 6, 2012 3:26PM
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Laguna Woods is the best place in America to retire. Where else can you play golf on a championship course for $8 a round. The few potheads are using marijuana medically and it, in no way, impacts the community.
Feb 20, 2012 6:03PM
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While there are many reasons not to go someplace it is better for all to find a place that has reasons to live there.  The only complaint I hear about Coastal Maine is that it is cold in the winter. As they say here, Yup!  ! do not think it is as bad as the Northern Plaines states, and while it is cold for a few months, the local beauty of Maine, the lack of crime, the natural friendliness of many communities, the very active civic life and excellent health care; all provide reasons to investigate Maine for your retirement home. While I am from "away", I am accepted by most.  And it is not true that many Mainers are unfriendly.  Come and see for yourself!.
Sep 4, 2012 7:39PM
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WHICH STATES DON'T TAX YOUR PENSION ?  I know washington does not..

Jul 20, 2012 8:58PM
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I can tell you where not to retire.  My husband and I retired (ha ha) in 2004.  We left the state of Wa. and went back to our home town Scranton, Pa.  Bad Move!!  I am sure you have seen the publicity in the past few weeks about Scranton.  Big mistake, we were here for about 2 months and my husband was back to work full time, and a few months later I went back to work part time. The only thing that thrives here is the Casino that was built here.  Very Sad.
Jul 17, 2012 9:05AM
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Anyplace in California would be the worst place to retire owing to the plethora of socialist bastard democrats in our legislature.

Apr 4, 2012 11:33AM
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Laguna Woods sounds too good to be true.
May 20, 2012 4:25PM
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Laguna Woods is awesome, 5 miles to Laguna Beach, 27 hole golf course, 5 pools much more. Love it here.
May 20, 2012 5:11PM
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You are correct, sir! Clark County is the pits.
Feb 9, 2012 1:54PM
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Although I find this item interesting and informative, I have a niece that planned on retirement when she purchased a piece of property about 50 years ago in California City around Edwards A/F base.  About the time Gene Autry's Apple Valley property was popular.  To this day, the dirt is as it was and there has not be any growth.  The taxes have always been paid and it just does not grow.  This is even sadder yet, as there is no building and she has no place to retire to. 
Dec 8, 2012 9:02AM
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We retired to Vegas, Henderson actually.  Love it, don't gamble or go to the strip unless we get 2 for 1 tickets to shows / concerts. Lots of discount show tickets and dining specials available for locals.  Once you know where to go eat its cheaper than buying groceries.  Sure theirs crime, but police here have zero tolerance.  Obey the law, no problems.  No state income tax, low property taxes, 
Vegas is the entertainment, culinary and convention center to America.  The new Smith Center for performing Arts, is wonderful. With political correctness gone sour in most large cities, off the beaten path safe small neighborhoods in Henderson is just fine with us !  Come vacation here, keeps my taxes low.
Aug 25, 2012 9:52AM
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I spent the bulk of my healthcare career in CA.  After retiring early due to health reasons, my husband and I (he was already retired) sold our home and relocated to TN.  I was from this area and we had visited here several times.  Although the cost of living here is much to our liking, the cultural disadvantages to me far outweigh the financial.  If we had it to do over again, we would put our things in storage and spend time in several different areas of the country before making a decision on where to put down permanent roots.  I suppose we could still do that, but we both were so exhausted by the cross country move that the thought of another major move is not something we look forward to.  We will maintain northeastern TN as our home base and hopefully be able to travel.  If I had it all to do over again, though, I would probably stay in the Western United States, despite the gist of this article.  There are just more places there that have a lot of cultural activities and I'm one who enjoys living in a diverse culture.....the South is still far behind in their acceptance of folks who are of a different culture, ethnicity, religion for me....and I'm a native!!! I suppose I thought it was a little more progressive after all these years.....NOT! It is wise to weigh all issues of an area other than the financial when making a permanent move.
Feb 8, 2012 1:02PM
Jul 23, 2012 6:22PM
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Actually my husband and I are both from abroad. As many people here lately, we come to make money and retire back to our homelands of origin or another multiculturally multi-integrated community. It is unfortunate that America still does  not understand the nature or integrating different cultures and the richness and huge leverage it would offer for global growth and domination. While we (yes we are Americans, I by birth, my husband by US Naturalization), fear the unknown, we also deprive ourselves of the opportunity that multiculturalism and mutlicultural integration offers. Fear not, as Americans, and yes I can also say that proudly, we (yes, we) can offer to lead the world in a global environment, whilst while we fear our own talent, we ourselves hold our own potential back and allow other nations to take the lead. The reason that we will retire abroad? For the very offer of multicultural integration, potential, and quality of lif, it isn't all about work, it is about socializing and creating a social network that offers growth and quality and not a rat race just to keep up with a fraudulently endorsed and created mortgage. We want to live like humans not to be treated as human experiments and that is what is happening here - very unfortunate. While I am still here I still try to contribute the best of ourselves (yes, my husband and I are in the medical field) but once done, I want to live my life and enjoy the fruits of my labor and cotnributions for many years and not drop dead from the garbage food of fast foods and a fast paced lifestyle that contributes to so many diseases and mental states of depression. Hope for all that someone wakes up and realizes that there is more to be offered if we change this lifestyle.
Sep 2, 2012 6:28PM
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Thank you for your comments Norman Axelson. Because of those comments we have decided to recruit some blacks, mexicans and asians to come live near you in your close knit community. Hopefully you'll welcome them with open arms. What we won't recruit are more military lifers.  We only recruit good people not people that have to have the government keep them and their families up. Serving in the military for one term is a good thing. Lifers are scum that can't make it on the outside.
Aug 14, 2012 3:23PM
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Don't retire in AZ, unless your raciest, Tea Klux Klan member, & like to shoot or advertise to shoot people who don't agree with you. Been here since 05 & when wife ready to retire were moving...AZ pretty place but WAY to many RADICAL RIGHT WING NUTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 
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