More and more Baby Boomers are leaving the workforce. Whatever the reason for hanging it up, retirees in Massachusetts ought to consider heading to Hampshire County, where just over 15 percent of residents are 65 are older. That’s according to the folks at 24/7 Wall St., who determined last week the best place to retire in each state.
To make these determinations, the authors created an index based on 17 health and economic factors, such as the number of dentists and primary care physicians per capita, as well as median home value and monthly cost of living for two people with no children. They considered only those counties where the population of older adults grew at least as fast as the country and was larger than the national average.
Here’s a breakdown of Hampshire County:
Population that’s at least 65 years old: 15.3 percent
Primary care physicians: 139.7 per 100,000
Estimated monthly living expenses for family of two: $4,639.86 (9th out of 14 MA counties)
Median home value: $272,700
The best places to retire nationwide ranged from small counties with just 4,318 people (Nuckolls County, Nebraska) all the way up to 1.26 million (Cuyahoga County, Ohio). Most counties appeared to be rural, with populations in the tens of thousands. They often had estimated monthly living expenses in the high $3,000s or low $4,000s and a median home value in the mid-$100,000s to mid-$200,000s.
The most common reason for retirement, according to the study, is to spend more time with family. Other popular reasons include health problems and dissatisfaction at the job. But whatever the reason, the authors noted, life changes “dramatically” in retirement.
“While retirees are among the least likely group of Americans to be poor, they typically rely on fixed and reduced incomes, and the cost burdens of housing and medical care, in particular, tend to go up substantially,” the study said.
The researchers used tax burden data from the Tax Foundation from 2012, the most recent year available. Median home value data came from the 2017 American Community Survey’s five-year estimates and the monthly cost of living came from the Economic Policy Institute for 2017.
Patch national staffer Dan Hampton contributed to this report.
Photo credit: Shutterstock
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