The 10 Best and 10 Worst States to Retire In [2023 Guide]

There’s no better time to retire than 2023 when life expectancy continues to grow. However, choosing the best states to retire in 2023 from a list of 50 is no simple task. You have to consider the cost of living, healthcare, crime rates, social amenities, taxes, etc.

Your plans for retirement and wealth management are often influenced by location, and sometimes there are just too many factors to evaluate on your own. Navigating this complex landscape can seem daunting, especially when considering the worst states to retire in terms of taxes, cost of living, and healthcare.

A financial advisor can always help you navigate retirement planning in Portland or any other place. But, in the meantime, let’s explore our best and worst states for retirement that you should know about in 2023.

best state for retirees

10 Best States for Retirees in 2023

What are the best states to retire in, you ask? We’ve hand-selected these best states for retirees to live in after retirement.

1. Iowa

Iowa makes it to our top states for retirees for its low cost of living which happens to be 10-15% lower than other states. Although the state charges an income tax, Iowa’s income tax rate still belongs to the states to retire to with low taxes, making the state tax-friendly for retirees on traditional 401k, 403(b), and IRA plans. 

best and worst state to retire
Photo by @navassios

Even better, all that’s about to change in the new tax reforms that will take effect in the tax year 2023 to make Iowa the best state to retire with a pension. The new tax reforms will mean that people aged 55 and older will be exempt from the state tax on retirement income, particularly income raised from IRA distributions, taxable pensions, and annuities.

2. Minnesota

Missouri Economic Research and Information Center ranks Minnesota the 26th least expensive state to live in. While this may still sound high, it’s important to point out that Minnesota has a moderate cost of living compared to other states like Hawaii.

top ten retirement states
Photo by @eternalseconds

On top of that, Minnesota offers a high quality of life with top-quality healthcare, moderate living costs, and recreational amenities (Minnesota is ranked as the 9th most fun state).

3. Indiana

Other than its sports culture, Indiana is one of the best states to live in for taxes. For starters, income from social security is exempted from the state income tax. However, you still have to pay taxes for withdrawals from retirement accounts.

good state to retire
Photo by @rdehamer

Additionally, the state has a low cost of living index of 89.2 based on information from the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC).

4. Utah

The best state for retirees has moderately low crime rates, an excellent healthcare system, and a moderate cost of living, all of which happen to be in Utah.

top ten retirement states
Photo by @dulceylima

In addition, the state has a lot to offer in terms of outdoor activity and warm temperatures. However, it is important to point out that Utah taxes social security income at 4.95% flat income tax.

5. Wyoming

Wyoming is home to seven national parks. With majestic mountain views, an abundance of fresh air, and low housing costs, Wyoming is fast becoming one of America’s hottest retirement destinations. In fact, the number of people 65 or older in Wyoming has grown by 48.2% over the last decade. 

good states for retirement
Photo by @toanchu

Even better, the state has no income tax – which means no taxes on payments from your retirement income. 

6. New Hampshire

New Hampshire is a great place to retire. From the beautiful scenery, excellent recreational opportunities, safe roads, clean air, and an affordable cost of living.

best senior living states
Photo by @sjdphoto

More importantly, New Hampshire does not tax retirement income at the state level. This means no tax on social security, pension, or 401(k) distributions. Additionally, the state’s healthcare is one of the best in the country.

7. Virginia

There are many aspects of the state that make it a great place to retire, including the affordable cost of living, mild summers, great quality of life, and some of the country’s most friendly taxes.

what are the cheapest states to retire in
Photo by @stephenpoore804

As you may have guessed, Virginia doesn’t tax Social Security benefits. However, retirement account withdrawals and pension income are tax deductible. 

8. Delaware

Delaware is one of the few sales tax-free states alongside Alaska, Montana, and Oregon, among others. Social security benefits are also not subject to taxation. Average property taxes in Delaware are significantly low, at only 0.55%. But there’s more.

least expensive retirement states
Photo by @jodtlacroze

The low cost of living and a variety of affordable housing options make Delaware an attractive state to retire in. For instance, the average resident in Delaware spends roughly $1259, which is lower than the average monthly rent nationwide.

9. Colorado

Despite being recognized as a tax-friendly state, Colorado’s cost of living is a little bit higher than the national average.

affordable retirement states
Photo by @meteorphoto

The average American spends almost $1500 on monthly rent and an average of $6,543 annually on healthcare. On the bright side, you’ll enjoy a high quality of life and great healthcare services.

10. Florida 

Florida has the second largest population of people aged above 65 years. Boasting warm weather, gorgeous beaches, and a wide variety of entertainment options, it’s no wonder so many people want to call it home once they reach their golden years.

best states to live in for taxes
Photo by @dennycshots

Even better, the state has no tax on pensions, 401(k) income, IRA incomes, and social security benefits.

That concludes our top ten states to retire to. 

The Worst States for Retirement in 2023

When it comes to retirement, not every place is a winner. Some states stand out as the worst states to retire in 2023 due to factors like high costs of living, high crime rates, bad weather, and poor healthcare among other factors. A knowledgeable financial advisor for business owners and sudden wealth management will inform you that the following are the worst states for retirees in the U.S. in 2023.


Hawaii has some of the highest costs of living in the country – especially in places where retirees are most likely to live, like Honolulu.

top ten retirement states Hawaii
Photo by @karsten116

Retirees who move to Hawaii have to accept the burden of retirement income tax from private pensions and retirement savings accounts. On the bright side, social security benefits and public pensions are not taxed in Hawaii.

New York

New York has high taxes and high living costs. The income tax rate ranges between 4%-8.82%. Plus, property taxes often exceed 2.5%.

top ten retirement states New York
Photo by @lucabravo

Retirees who move to New York will see their budgets squeezed to afford to live in the state.

Rhode Island

Rhode Island has some of the highest property taxes in the country at an average of 1.53%.

good state to retire Rhode Island
Photo by @coffeeguy77

Over the years, the state has been ranked one of the highest-cost places to live in the country where housing costs reach as high as 21% above the national average.

New Jersey

New Jersey rivals New York in high living costs. A one-bedroom apartment in Jersey City goes for $1421 a month. New Jersey also has high taxes where the income tax rate ranges between 1.4% – 8.97%.

top ten retirement states New Jersey
Photo by @manisharaghunath

Retirement account withdrawals are partially taxed. Plus, property taxes average 2.42%, which is 1.35% higher than the national average.


Retirees in Vermont will be happy to know that the state’s average monthly housing costs are only slightly above the national average, with a 1 bedroom house going for $979 per month.

top ten retirement states Vermont
Photo by @ventiviews

However, Vermont also has long and cold winters and the infrastructure still remains below standard. The state has high taxes, particularly, property taxes, income tax, and a retirement income tax ranging between 3.35% to 8.75%.


The Natural State has many attractions for seniors and retirees, including a low cost of living and a beautiful environment.

top ten retirement states Arkansas
Photo by @jcotten

However, high crime rates in the state make it less than ideal for retirees. Arkansas ranks among the top 5 most dangerous states. Retirees who want to feel safe in their retirement may consider moving to the safest states instead.


The Old Line State has a lot to offer retirees, but it also has several shortcomings that they should be aware of.

best states to live in for taxes Maryland
Photo by @onthesearchforpineapples

For starters, Maryland has a high cost of living; higher than the national average. This means that goods and services in the state cost 8.4% more than the average cost in the country.


Alaska has some of the most remote places in the country, making it an undesirable place to retire for people who want to keep in touch with family and friends, and those who are not in good health.

top ten retirement states Alaska
Photo by @funkmastacrump

Alaska is also one of the most expensive states to live in. The state’s cost of living is 24.09% higher than the national average.


The Golden State has a reputation for being the most desirable place to live in the USA – or in the world, even. So why is it on this list? As one of the most populous states in the country (with a population of  39,538,223 people) California also has one of the most expensive housing markets in the U.S.

good state to retire California
Photo by @sterlingdavisphotola

In fact, the median price of a single-family home value in California is $898,980, which happens to be higher than the national average ($374,900).


Despite its low costs of living, Alabama has one of the poorest healthcare systems in the country. The average life expectancy for retirees is low. Additionally, the state is ranked the 7th most dangerous state in the country. 

best state to retire
Photo by @nathananderson

Financial challenges have a significant impact on where you end up in your golden years. At Interactive Wealth Advisors, we offer Portland investment management advice to help you manage your assets wisely and achieve your financial goals for retirement. 

Expert Tips from Interactive Wealth Advisors on How to Pick Your Best State to Retire

When considering the best and worst states to retire, the following tips can help you make an informed decision. If you’re searching for the best states to retire taxes-wise or for other specific factors, these guidelines can help you narrow down your choices.

  • Think about your health and well-being – Health-wise, are you in good shape to make a big move? Not every state ranks high in terms of healthcare. Even the most retiree-friendly states may have less-than-ideal healthcare. If you have any serious medical conditions or special needs, you’ll want to take this into consideration when choosing where to retire.
  • Get a sense of the community and culture – It’s important to get a sense of the community and culture of the area you’re considering moving to. You’ll want to read up on the state to find out what the local economy is like, politics, financial issues, and other aspects that relate to the community at large.
best state to retire in the united states
  • Think about the cost of living – Weighing the cost of living is incredibly important when choosing the best states to retire financially. Look at the monthly rent, food, transportation, and other regular costs of living in each area you’re considering moving to. Coastal areas often have higher costs. You can find the cheapest state to retire inland and outside of a major city.
  • Taxes and other financial factorsTax estate and financial planning for retirees are important financial factors to consider when choosing the best state for retirement living. You’ll want to check out the taxes for both your current state and the state you’re considering moving to. You’ll want to look at state and local taxes, as well as other financial factors like the cost of living and average homeowner’s insurance rates.

Our fee-only financial advisor in Portland can help you navigate the complex world of taxes for retirement, develop a strategy for your business exit, and provide estate planning to ensure that your hard-earned wealth is in good hands. 

Best States for Retirement 2023: Methodology

We analyzed data for all 50 states in these categories: 

  • Quality of life
  • Accessibility
  • Sports and Culture 
  • Quality of healthcare
  • Affordable housing 
  • Insecurity and crime
  • Third-party data retirement rankings by state
best states to retire in the usa

The data was pulled from multiple sources such as the U.S. Census Bureau, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Department of Housing and Urban Development,, National Council on Aging, and other ranks by state websites.

The Winners

Iowa and Florida win the race thanks to their lower tax rates. They are inarguably two of the top 10 states to retire in 2023. Florida, in particular, has a great environment for retirement, with its sunny weather, and communities of fellow retirees living out their golden years. Florida also has a fairly low cost of living, excellent health care, and great quality of life, making it one of the 10 best retirement states.

Interactive Wealth Advisors is a Registered Investment Advisory firm in the State of Oregon and Washington. The Adviser may not transact business in states where it is not appropriately registered, excluded or exempted from registration. Individualized responses to persons that involve either the effecting of transaction in securities, or the rendering of personalized investment advice for compensation, will not be made without registration or exemption.
Schedule a Call Today
Book now
Interactive Wealth Advisors are committed to helping you reach financial freedom. If you are in need of financial advice, please complete the form below.