For many people who have worked their entire lives, the thought of retirement can be a bit unnerving as they picture themselves becoming like the grandparents in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory; wearing a nightshirt and never leaving their bed (which may or may not be shared with three other retirees). But that geriatric nightmare doesn’t have to become a reality, especially for anyone who is currently living in or has plans to move to one of the states that can be found on Caring.com’s list of the 10 best states to grow old in.
Caring.com assembled this list by using data on quality of life in a given area for residents over 55, quality of healthcare, long-term care, support for seniors and family caregivers, affordability of senior care, and more than 100,000 ratings of senior care providers in each state.
After all the research was conducted and the dust settled, a surprising state was left standing in the first spot on the list. South Dakota outranked all other states in terms of a combination of quality of life, healthcare, and financial categories. Seniors here can get high-quality healthcare and senior care for right around the national average in terms of cost at about $36,000 a year for an assisted living community and around $52,000 for a home health aide.
Another state that may surprise some people came in at number two on the list and will cause some seniors to question, is this heaven? No, it’s Iowa. That’s right, the Hawkeye State was ranked as the second best state in the country for growing old thanks to its senior care costs right around the national average and its top ten ranking for quality of live and heath care for residents over 55.
Minnesota, Alaska, and Oregon round out the top five in a list full of surprises (and one that doesn’t include the likes of Florida or Arizona as one might expect). In fact, the only states that may not come as much of a surprise are Colorado, Hawaii, and South Carolina.
To view each state in the top 10 and see why they rank where they do, click the link below.