Survey: Virginia is seventh-best state to retire in

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Retirement might be the end of your career, but it doesn’t have to be the end of financial security or life satisfaction. Retirement generally coincides with the age at which we may receive Social Security or pension benefits. However, not everyone can retire when they want to. 26 percent of non-retired adults haven’t saved any money for retirement, though not necessarily through any fault of their own.

But in addition to when to retire, a good question to ask is where. Finding the best states to retire can be difficult without doing lots of research. Even in the most affordable areas of the U.S., most retirees cannot rely on Social Security or pension checks alone to cover all of their living expenses. Social Security benefits increase with local inflation, but they replace only about 39 percent of the average worker’s earnings.

If retirement is still a big question mark for you because of finances, consider relocating to a state that lets you keep more money in your pocket without requiring a drastic lifestyle change.

I n order to identify the most retirement-friendly states, WalletHub compared the 50 states across three key dimensions: 1) Affordability, 2) Quality of Life and 3) Health Care.

For example, affordability included such metrics as adjusted cost of living, general tax friendliness, tax friendliness on pensions and social security income and the annual cost of adult day health care.

Quality of life included such metrics as the share of population aged 65 or older, the risk of social isolation, the elderly friendly labor market, access to public transportation, mildness of the weather, access to scenic byways, museums per capita, golf courses per capita, bingo halls per capita and the violent crime rate.

Health care included such metrics as family and general physicians per capita; dentists and nurses per capita; health-care facilities per capita; quality of public hospitals; the well-being index for population 65 or older; and the share of the population 65 or older with good or better health.

We evaluated those dimensions using 47 relevant metrics. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for retirement.

We then calculated each state’s weighted average across all metrics to determine its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.

Here are the results of WalletHub’s analysis listed from best state to retire in to worst: 1. Florida 2. Colorado 3. New Hampshire 4. Utah 5. Wyoming 6. Delaware 7.Virginia 8. Wisconsin 9. Idaho 10. Iowa 11. South Dakota 12. Montana 13. Pennsylvania 14. Massachusetts 15. Ohio 16. Minnesota 17. Texas 18. South Carolina 19. North Dakota 20. Missouri 21. Michigan 22. Arizona 23. Illinois 24. Kansas 25. Nebraska 26. North Carolina 27. Washington 28. Maine 29. Hawaii 30. Georgia 31. Alaska 32. California 33. Connecticut 34. Indiana 35. Nevada 36. Vermont 37. Oklahoma 38. Oregon 39. Alabama 40. Maryland 41. Louisiana 42. New York 43. Mississippi 4. Arkansas 45. Tennessee 46. West Virginia 47. New Jersey 48. Rhoda Island 49. New Mexico 50. Kentucky