Eureka Springs, AR
The entire downtown is on the National Register of Historic Places, meaning Eureka Springs -- so named on July 4, 1879 -- will retain its distinctive character. Steep hills and winding roads run through this Ozark Mountains town and 63 springs bubble forth, at one time believed to bring “miracle” cures for illnesses. Tourists soak in the charm and atmosphere, and their presence means a plethora of innovative eateries and bars for locals who live here year-round.
Greater Houston, TX
H-Town, the country’s fourth-largest city, is one of the most diverse in the world. Retirees can put down roots in walkable areas of downtown, rejuvenated neighborhoods or master-planned developments on the outskirts. Second-to-none health care is here as well as a sterling restaurant reputation. Plus, the cost of living is lower than average and less than both Dallas and Austin. Galveston and the lapping waves of the Gulf Coast are about an hour away.
Santa Fe, NM
Anyone who visits Santa Fe won’t forget its adobe buildings and distinctive downtown plaza, where Spanish colonialists first set foot in the early 1600s. It’s the third-largest art market in the country, after New York City and Los Angeles. Innovative chefs here prepare delectable dishes in the kitchen, often incorporating green chiles, native to the area. “We have four seasons, none of which are brutal,” one real estate agent says.
Tampa Bay, FL
The coast in Tampa is meant to be enjoyed and its 2.6-mile Riverwalk makes sure that happens 365 days a year. Professional sports in both basketball and football get residents happily stirred up, and a cruise port and the Tampa airport make travel super easy. Active-adult communities proliferate here, hundreds of years after Spanish settlers and renegade pirates stepped ashore. Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and ZooTampa at Lowry Park entertain the grandchildren.
8 Tax-Friendly Cities
A locale with low taxes is right up there at the top of the wish list for many soon-to-be relocating retirees. After evaluations of taxes on income, property, sales and more, we came up with this list of standouts for our annual tax-friendly feature: Clearwater, FL; Clemson, SC; Elko, NV; Houma, LA; Killeen, TX; Natchez, MS; Oak Ridge, TN; and Valdosta, GA.
Civic Affairs in Your New City
Getting involved in local government and community service projects can be fulfilling, but it’s difficult when working full time. Many relocating retirees, who see their new city with fresh eyes, are tempted to dive in and use their storehouse of experience and intellect. Here’s how to get involved, with advice from experts as well as retirees who use their newfound free time to lend a hand.
Financial Consultant: 10 (All-Too-Common) Pitfalls When Selling Your Home
Incorrectly pricing your home, choosing the wrong agent to sell it and struggling with emotions can sink real estate plans quickly. Our 10 pointers help retirees sell their home with no deficits in money or sanity.
Roads to Retirement: Ski Colorado
Grand Junction, Telluride and Durango
Best Neighborhood: RiverLights in Wilmington, NC