Florida dominates the latest rankings for the best place to retire in the US yet again. In the US News & World Report for 2020/21, locations in the Sunshine State take 13 of the top 25 best places. Sarasota moves into top place this year on the back of high happiness and desirability ratings.
Florida metros stand out
The annual survey looks at 150 of the largest metro areas and ranks them to find the best place to retire in the US. Florida is no stranger to the ratings and regularly dominates the list. 2020/2021 is no exception.
No less than 13 of the top 25 places to retire are in the Sunshine State. Its nearest competition is Texas with 3 locations in the list. Florida combines the right ingredients for retirees who flock to retire to the state from all over the country.
The report highlights four factors in Florida that make it so appealing to retirees. Firstly is the affordability of housing. House prices in Florida compare very favourably with other top retirement destinations. Florida also levies low taxes (and zero state income tax), an important consideration if you’re on a pension. And the state ranks consistently well for happiness and desirability.
Sarasota best place to retire in the US
With a privileged location on the Gulf Coast, Sarasota attracts relocators of all ages and this year it’s the best spot for retirees. In second place last year, Sarasota overtook Fort Myers because of a higher happiness score and job opportunities.
According to US News & World Report, Sarasota has a large population over 60 (39%) and scored highly in the well-being ratings. Residents say “they have supportive social and community relationships”. The moderate price of property allows “retirees on a budget to enjoy a Florida beach retirement”.
“Moving to a new place for retirement can reduce your cost of living and improve your quality of life,” said Emily Brandon, US News Senior Editor. Florida metros tick both the criteria and as a result, dominate the rankings.
Other Florida favourites
In second place was Fort Myers. This metro area is, like Sarasota, no stranger to rankings for the best place to retire in the US. It too has a high retiree population (35%) and offers affordable property options.
Other top places to retire in Florida include Jacksonville (13th place), Orlando (16th) and Tampa (20th). All three metro areas offer something for everyone including some of the best job opportunities in the state.
Best places to live
The US News & World Report also ranks the best places to live in the US. In this case, winning criteria include a balance between cost and quality of living. For example, metros offering strong job markets, particularly in the technical and engineering sectors rank the highest.
In the 2020/21 edition, Colorado took four out of the top five positions. Boulder stood in first place on the back of its high job market score. Denver took second place with Colorado Springs and Fort Collins in fourth and fifth places respectively.
Build-to-let for retirees
The desirability of Sarasota as the best place to retire in the US means quality housing is in high demand in the area. However, single-family homes are in short supply – inventory levels stood at just 2.2 months in August. And sales of new homes in Southwest Florida have recently surged.
BRIC Group offers investors the opportunity to build-to-let in Rotonda West, a sought-after district to the west of Sarasota. Investment starts at US$26,500 for a prime plot and at US$327,635 to build a 3-bedroom single family home. Find out more about build-to-let in Florida.
(Source: US News & World Report)