Retirement can be daunting. It involves a lot of math and, obviously, some educated guesses. But a new report shows that retiring comfortably in one state can can cost nearly twice as much as another. That means a 65-year-old retiree who lives to be 85 might need — get this — an extra half-million dollars for living expenses depending on what where they live.
That’s according to a new report from 24/7 Wall St., which looked at what it costs to retire comfortably in every state. New Jersey ranked as the seventh costliest state for a comfortable retirement in the country, just ahead of Maryland and behind Connecticut. Here’s the breakdown for New Jersey.
- Estimated yearly retirement costs: $47,760
- Average yearly earnings for 65+ households: $28,773 (14th highest)
- Average yearly homeownership costs for seniors: $23,136 (second highest)
- Percent of residents who are at least 65 years old: 15.7 percent (22nd lowest)
The costliest state to retire comfortably in was Alaska. About 11 percent of Alaskans are over the age of 65, the second-lowest share in the nation, the authors found. That might have something to do with the fact that retirement costs are estimated at $56,879 every year, more than $2,000 more than the second-costliest state, Hawaii.
Here are the 10 costliest states for a comfortable retirement:
- Alaska, $56,879
- Hawaii, $54,590
- New York, $50,321
- California, $49,640
- Vermont, $49,598
- Connecticut, $48,532
- New Jersey, $47,760
- Maryland, $47,061
- Virginia, $46,758
- Massachusetts, $46,265
Retirees looking to keep their costs down ought to consider Arkansas or New Mexico, the two least costly states. An Arkansas retiree sees an estimated yearly cost of $36,378, the researchers found. The typical senior pays just $11,112 in homeownership costs.
New Mexico, Kentucky, Ohio, and Michigan rounded out the five cheapest states for a comfortable retirement.
Many expenditures are common across all age groups, but some are specific to retirees. Among these: annual health care costs. Americans ages 65 and over spend more than 34 percent more every year on health care than the typical consumer, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Survey.
Patch national staffer Dan Hampton contributed to this report.
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