When searching for somewhere to retire, retirees should take into consideration the cost of living, safety, access to health care, proximity to family, quality of life, tax laws and estate laws in that state or country. The NY Times also warns that retirement decisions made rashly are costly to undo.
Cost of living can vary greatly from state to state and can mean the difference between having 50 years of expenses saved and 10 years. It is possible to do research on everyday costs online; however, MSN Money recommends a dry run where retirees visit the state in question in order to determine reasonable estimates for cost. Safety is a primary concern for retirees. Some states have higher crime rates than others or have less immediate access to authorities.
The ideal retirement location is situated close to health care providers or hospitals and is easily accessible via roads, notes MSN Money. Rural locations can prove difficult for medical personnel to attend in an emergency. While proximity to family is not always a concern for many retirees, it can be helpful to have a support network in close range during times of difficulty. Quality of life as well as the particular interests of the retiree should be taken into account as well. Finally, some state laws regarding estate tax may be restrictive or incompatible with the retiree's wishes.