Everyone who is close to retirement – namely, the baby boomer generation – wants to make their retirement dollars stretch as far as possible. At the same time, boomers want to enjoy life, which means staying physically active, as well as enjoying cultural amenities and great food.
I trolled several sites that professed to have the "best" list of cities for retirement, and picked a few that sounded appealing on the affordability scale, in addition to offering a wide array of things to do and see. Though not in any specific order, here are three of the most attractive U.S. cities for boomers looking for fun, food, and a low cost of living.
According to Grandparents.com, Savannah has a very low cost of living – nine points lower than the national average, according to their calculations. Sperling's Best Places, however, gives it a much larger discount of 17 points, which means the city weighs in at 83 out of 100.
As if that wasn't enough, Savannah has beauty and culture to add to its list of attributes. The city has nearly two dozen parks and public squares, and is home to the Savannah College of Art and Design, as well as the South's oldest art museum, the Telfair Museum of Art. Add in the live oaks, dripping Spanish moss and the nearby ocean, and Savannah sounds like anyone's dream retirement destination.
Depending upon which site you consult, Tulsa has a cost of living discount of 15.4%, 11.6%, or 10%. Whichever you choose, though, that low expense ratio is pretty sweet.
According to Grandparents.com, Tulsa sports some of the happiest retirees around. The city boasts of 19 public golf courses, so golf nuts will never tire of the same old scenery. There are lots of other attractions, too: parkland takes up 6,000 city acres, and Tulsa is also home to excellent museums, as well as the campus of Oklahoma State University. Housing is cheap, too, with the median home cost right around $94,300. Another bonus: assisted living costs are well below the national average, as well.
ThinkAdvisor gives Omaha a cost of living score of 88, and Marketwatch notes that the state of Nebraska has one of the most contented and happy populations in the country. The state has a very low unemployment rate, as well – which should be very attractive to boomers who plan to supplement their retirement income with a little paid work.
Omaha is brimming with culture, and is home to the famous Orpheum Theater and the Joslyn Art Museum, the state's largest. Golf is a favorite pastime here, too, with over 50 golf courses in the immediate area.
These are only three of many excellent choices in which to live out your dream retirement, so make sure you check out the vital statistics of all the areas you are considering. If you are on a budget, however, staying active and engaged could be a lot cheaper in these three cities than where you currently live, and should definitely be at the top of your comparison-shopping list.