Many seniors aspire to retire abroad and explore the world, seeking affordable destinations with favorable climates. Fortunately, numerous cities offer both these elements, allowing retirees to make the most of their income. These places are not only filled with adventure but also provide a comfortable retirement without depleting savings.
Whether it's the charm and attraction of global travel or the appeal of low living costs, retirees can find their dream retirement spot. These destinations offer the best weather and affordable living, making them enticing options for those looking to embark on a new chapter in life.
Are you a retiree and want the places with the most amazing weather year round? If yes, then let’s dive deeper into this!
1. Augusta, Georgia
Augusta, located in the south of the United States, provides retirees with a combination of agreeable summers and mild winters. Winters occasionally feature low temperatures in the 30s, but snowfall is uncommon. In 2021, Forbes acknowledged Augusta's retirement appeal, praising its affordable housing, tax advantages on retirement income, and low crime rate. It has earned the title of Georgia's premier retirement community.
Augusta provides retirees with a welcoming environment and a variety of recreational activities, making it an attractive option for those seeking a comfortable retirement.
Portugal has acquired popularity as a retirement destination due to its temperate climate, breathtaking landscapes, and hospitable people. The cost of living, which includes housing, fluctuates from city to city, with Porto being slightly less expensive than Lisbon. By enrolling with the National Health Service and paying per service, legal residents can obtain access to public healthcare.
Private insurance is required for residence permits and covers healthcare for others. Retirees must register for a residence permit at a local consulate, which grants a five-year permit. They can apply for a permanent permit upon expiration. These factors make Portugal an attractive location for retirement.
3. Cape Hatteras, North Carolina
The distinctive coastal location of Cape Hatteras, a chain of barrier islands off the eastern coast of mainland North Carolina, is advantageous. It has mild summers and warmer winters than the interior regions of North Carolina.
July's average high temperature is 87 degrees, while January's average low temperature is 41 degrees. The vulnerability of Cape Hatteras to wind and water damage from tropical cyclones is a recurring concern for residents in this picturesque but hurricane-prone region.
4. Torrance, California
Torrance's senior community thrives with opportunities for active living. Senior centers in the city provide diverse activities, from cardio salsa dancing to organized day trips across Southern California through Torrance Travelers. With a median home price of $799,450, the city offers an inviting residential environment.
Torrance boasts a comfortable climate, with an average of only 87 cloudy days per year. Seniors constitute 16.5% of the population, fostering a sense of community. While Torrance generally maintains a safe atmosphere, it registers an average of around 24 crimes per 1,000 residents, ensuring a secure living environment for retirees.
5. West Palm Beach, Florida
West Palm Beach's variety of golf courses attracts golf-loving retirees. With a median residence price of $298,900, the city offers affordable housing. It does, however, have a higher crime rate, with 56.55 offenses per 1,000 residents. West Palm Beach has a sizable senior population, constituting 18.5% of the city's total population.
Despite its sunny reputation, the city experiences approximately 131 cloudy days per year. Here, retirees can enjoy golf and a vibrant community, but they should also be aware of the area's crime rate.
6. Costa Rica
Costa Rica, a dynamic Central American country noted for its “pura vida” culture, is home to a wide variety of ecosystems, from tropical rainforests and jungles to idyllic beaches on the Pacific and Caribbean coasts. Housing in San José is around 79% cheaper than in New York City, and overall consumer prices are about 44% cheaper in this country than they are there.
Pensionado requires a monthly income of $1,000, while the Rentista Programme necessitates either $60,000 or a monthly income of $2,500 for two years in the absence of a pension, whichever comes first.
7. Eugene, Oregon
Eugene enjoys a climate characterized by dry, comfortably warm summers, with an average July high temperature of 84 degrees. Winters, on the other hand, are generally cool and damp but rarely do temperatures drop below freezing, with an average January low of 35 degrees. Snow is a rare occurrence, and when it does fall, it doesn't accumulate significantly.
The consistent, mild climate throughout the year makes Eugene an ideal destination for both professional track and field athletes and fitness enthusiasts who can utilize the city's bark chip running trails and paved paths year-round.
Ecuador, nestled in northwestern South America, entices retirees with its breathtaking Galápagos Islands, lush rainforests, and extensive Pacific Ocean coastlines. The country's affordable living costs are particularly appealing to adventurous nature enthusiasts. Cuenca, a favorite expat destination, offers significant savings, with consumer prices around 64% lower than in New York City and rents 88% more affordable.
Healthcare is accessible to all, with costs about 25% lower than in the U.S. Foreign retirees can access government healthcare for under $100 monthly or present private insurance. Permanent residency is attainable after 21 months under a temporary visa, often involving income thresholds, real estate investments, or bank deposits.
9. Des Moines, Iowa
There are many great places to retire in Iowa, but Des Moines stands out as a great choice for retirees who want to live in a larger city without breaking the bank. The Milken Institute named Iowa and specifically Des Moines as one of the greatest places to retire. This city has a low cost of living on top of a thriving economy, a wide variety of cultural attractions like museums and performing arts centers, and an abundance of healthcare institutions that specialize in serving the needs of the elderly.
Those looking for a rewarding retirement experience will find Des Moines an attractive option because of the opportunities it provides to enjoy city life without breaking the bank.
10. Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Pittsfield is a hidden treasure due to its reasonable cost of living. Compared to neighboring cities like Boston, where expenditures spike 50% above the U.S. average, or Cambridge, where they rocket 73% above the average, living here is far more affordable. The median property value in Pittsfield is only $183,600, which is significantly lower than the $424,700 statewide average, the $610,400 median value in Boston, and the $888,000 median value in Cambridge.
In addition to being a relatively cheap place to visit, the Berkshires are home to a wide variety of activities and attractions throughout the year, including viewing the autumn foliage, camping, fishing, hiking, and skiing, and cultural enrichment.
11. Hilo, Hawaii
Hilo, situated at the foot of two volcanoes on Hawaii's Big Island, offers a slightly cooler climate compared to other Hawaiian locales. With an average January low of 64 degrees and a July high of 83 degrees, it maintains a pleasant temperature range. However, Hilo is renowned as one of the rainiest cities in the U.S., receiving around 120 inches of rainfall annually, as per NOAA data.
The city also houses the Pacific Tsunami Museum, dedicated to preserving the history of past tsunamis and promoting disaster prevention efforts for the future.
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I’m Steve. I’m an English Teacher, traveler, and an avid outdoorsman. If you’d like to comment, ask a question, or simply say hi, leave me a message here, on Twitter (@thefrugalexpat1). Many of my posts have been written to help those in their journey to financial independence. I am on my journey, and as I learn more I hope to share more. And as always, thanks for reading The Frugal Expat.