By Stephanie Hyland,

Finding your place in this world can be pretty difficult, not to mention how hard it can be to move there. is here to help with the moving process, either by providing storage or helping you find the ideal place to call home.

Retirement is something that many people look forward to after years of punching the clock because it means more time to spend with family, travel, or invest in their hobbies. In order to live comfortably, though, retirees need to find a home that’s affordable for a retirement budget. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 places to retire in the U.S. Each city on this list not only offers affordable living for retirees, but each has recreation and entertainment opportunities, too.

#10 – Madison, Wisconsin

Population (2013): 243,344
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 9.6%
Cost of Living: 3.8% above the national average

Madison, WI Skyline
Photo by Richard Hurd

Though the cost of living in Madison, Wis., is slightly higher, it’s been named one of the healthiest cities in the United States by The Huffington Post. Not only are there a number of highly-rated hospitals and clinics, but the number of doctors per 100,000 people is significantly higher than the national average. For retirees who are health-conscious or need extra medical care, Madison is a good place to settle down.

#9 – Decatur, Alabama

Population (2013): 55,816
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 14.5%
Cost of Living: 8.8% below the national average

Alabama Jubilee
Photo by Kevin Stephenson

Located along the Tennessee River is Decatur, Ala., which is lovingly called “The River City” by residents. For retirees who like to travel, Decatur is definitely a must. It’s approximately three hours (or less) from Nashville, Memphis, and Chattanooga, Tenn., all of which have great history and entertainment. Besides Decatur’s low cost of living, another reason retirees move there is because of its cultural attractions, including the oldest hot-air balloon race, the Alabama Jubilee Hot-Air Balloon Classic.

#8 – Clemson, South Carolina

Population (2013): 14,276
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 11.6%
Cost of Living: 0.4% above the national average

Lake Hartwell on the Savannah River
Photo by US Army Corps of Engineers

With a warm climate, low crime rate, and small town feel, Clemson, S.C., is a wonderful place to retire. It has beautiful natural surroundings, including Lake Hartwell and Abernathy Waterfront Park, which are great for boating, fishing, or water skiing. Also, Clemson doesn’t tax social security checks.

#7 – Boise, Idaho

Population (2013): 214,237
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 11.2%
Cost of Living: 7% below the national average

Boise, Idaho Depot
Photo by Charles Knowles

Retirees who choose to settle in Boise, Idaho, can take comfort in the city’s good economy. Boise is a perfect fit for anyone looking to live an active lifestyle during their retirement as well, as there are plenty of white-water rafting opportunities. The city is also home to several museums and memorials, such as the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial, and Idaho Black History Museum.

#6 – Jacksonville, Florida

Population (2013): 842,583
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 10.9%
Cost of Living: 0.1% below the national average

Jacksonville, FL at night
Photo by Rob Bixby

Besides the nice weather and proximity to beaches, Jacksonville, Fla., is a good home for retirees who love volunteer work. The city’s community takes volunteerism very seriously. In fact, HandsOn Jacksonville makes it their mission to help people find projects that align with their passions. Jacksonville also has a large population of U.S. veterans—more than 80,000, to be exact.

#5 – Albuquerque, New Mexico

Population (2013): 556,495
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 12.1%
Cost of Living: 1.4% below the national average

Sandia Peak in Albuquerque, NM
Photo by Brian Sterling

Retirees looking to settle near mountains should check out Albuquerque, N.M. With breathtaking views of the Sandia Mountains and opportunities for skiing and hiking, Albuquerque is a warm home for any active retiree. Fun fact: The Sandia Peak Tramway is the longest aerial passenger tramway in the world.

#4 – College Station, Texas

Population (2013): 100,050
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 4.7%
Cost of Living: 3.7% below the national average

Texas A&M - College Station
Photo by Ed Schipul

Though College Station, Texas, is known for Texas A&M University and the Texas World Speedway, its low cost of living and nice weather make it a great place to retire. The city is also centrally located between Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio (and the beach is only a few short hours away), so there are plenty of opportunities for retirees to travel and experience all that Texas has to offer.

#3 – Clarksville, Tennessee

Population (2013): 142,357
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 7.3%
Cost of Living: 7.3% below the national average

Dunbar Cave in Tennessee
Photo by Lindsey Boise

Retirees in Clarksville, Tenn., have the Roxy Regional Theatre, Customs House Museum and Cultural Center, and Dunbar Cave State Park  nearby, so there’s never a shortage of entertainment and recreation. There’s also Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley for retirees who love to go boating. But, of course, a major draw for retirees is that Clarksville doesn’t tax social security, IRAs, or pension.

#2 – Daytona Beach, Florida

Population (2013): 62,316
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 18.5%
Cost of Living: 5.3% below the national average

Daytona Beach, FL
Photo by Yohann Legrand

Living close to the beach is something many retirees dream of. Fortunately, finding a beachfront home in Daytona Beach, Fla., can become a reality since Daytona Beach doesn’t tax social security or pension. Besides enjoying beach living, retirees in Daytona Beach can enjoy a number of different museums, such as the Museum of Arts and Sciences, Halifax Historical Museum, and Southeast Museum of Photography. And let’s not forget Daytona International Speedway for all of those NASCAR fans!

#1 – Tucson, Arizona

Population (2013): 526,116
Persons 65 & Older (2010): 11.9%
Cost of Living: 4% below the national average

Tucson Pima Building
Photo by James Charnesky

With approximately 350 days of sunshine in Tucson, Ariz., retirees can enjoy national parks, a Sonoran hot dog, golf courses, and never having to shovel snow again. For those who enjoy bird watching, Tucson is home to more than 500 different species of birds, which are celebrated with local festivals like the Tucson Bird & Wildlife Festival during the summer. Although summers can get toasty, retirees benefit from no taxes on social security, inheritance, gifts, or estates. In other words, Tucson is the whole package for retirees.


How Self Storage Can Help Retirees

Retirees often turn to self storage when they downsize their homes or have big plans to travel. Being able to find a storage facility that fits your needs means you don’t have to sacrifice your belongings just because your lifestyle has changed. can help you find a storage unit at an affordable cost, in the right unit size, and with the necessary features to make your transition easier.

All images have either been provided by a listed organization or are licensed under the Creative Commons license.

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  • Clarifier

    Ya, and with all the radiation in Albuquerque, old people are more likely to die than be effected by the radiation. ouch!

    • Gary Freeman

      I thought about moving their as a retiree but didn’t think about the radiation till you mentioned it. Think I will look elsewhere. Thank you.

  • Iloveyoukris

    No disrespect, But we just moved from Jacksonville Florida because of all the crime. There is so much hate there, I would never move back, and I have lived there all my life.