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Best small towns for retirees in America

  • #30: Bingham Farms, Michigan

    - Population: 1,101
    - Median home value: $395,400 (87% own)
    - Median rent: $1,042 (13% rent)
    - Median household income: $118,571

    This community created its Design Review Board “to preserve, protect, and enhance the ecologically and historically unique environment and aesthetic charm of the village.” Residents are just minutes from Detroit and 30 miles from the Brighton Howell area, which has 123 miles of trails and 20 golf courses.

  • #29: Olmos Park, Texas

    - Population: 1,999
    - Median home value: $714,800 (76% own)
    - Median rent: $805 (24% rent)
    - Median household income: $167,667

    Olmos Park is surrounded by San Antonio, offering the community quick access to all the attractions found in the larger city. It also lays claim to year-round warm weather.

  • #28: Sunset Beach, North Carolina

    - Population: 3,826
    - Median home value: $273,200 (83% own)
    - Median rent: $1,081 (17% rent)
    - Median household income: $56,086

    Golfers and anglers alike won’t have trouble filling their days in this town that spans the island bearing its name and parts of the coastal mainland. Sunset Beach is also a short walk from Bird Island, the undeveloped barrier island that is home to threatened or endangered species like loggerhead sea turtles.

  • #27: Sun City, Arizona

    - Population: 39,348
    - Median home value: $145,800 (82% own)
    - Median rent: $1,067 (18% rent)
    - Median household income: $38,899

    Billed as “The Original Fun City,” Sun City is dedicated to creating a fun, relaxing place for active retired adults. Residents can join more than 130 recognized clubs (including political organizations, performing arts groups, and fitness groups), spend their days on the putting green, or attend classes at nearby colleges and senior education centers.

  • #26: Pine Knoll Shores, North Carolina

    - Population: 1,368
    - Median home value: $372,300 (89% own)
    - Median rent: $1,145 (11% rent)
    - Median household income: $73,958

    This community sits on the 25.4-mile barrier island of Bogue Banks, which is part of an area called the Crystal Coast for its white beaches and clear water. With numerous water trails and a temperate climate, the coast is a paddler's paradise. The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores offers a different kind of fun, as well as volunteer opportunities.

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  • #25: Murrells Inlet, South Carolina

    - Population: 9,396
    - Median home value: $250,600 (82% own)
    - Median rent: $1,143 (18% rent)
    - Median household income: $55,735

    The MarshWalk is a source of pride in this beach town known as the seafood capital of South Carolina. It’s a half-mile boardwalk along a saltwater estuary where residents can eat, listen to live music, shop, and enjoy recreational water activities. Myrtle Beach is 10 miles away; and Huntington Beach State Park is even closer.

  • #24: Paradise Valley, Arizona

    - Population: 14,215
    - Median home value: $1,505,300 (93% own)
    - Median rent: $1,862 (7% rent)
    - Median household income: $204,145

    This Phoenix suburb sits on the edges of both the Phoenix Mountains Preserve and Camelback Mountain and has three golf courses, four medical centers, nine resorts, and 294 sunny days per year. Its stated mission is to provide “high-quality public services to a community which values limited government.”

  • #23: Hollywood Park, Texas

    - Population: 3,342
    - Median home value: $326,200 (82% own)
    - Median rent: $3,303 (18% rent)
    - Median household income: $112,083

    Hollywood Park is a San Antonio suburb self-described as “a great, peaceful, and friendly place to live.” The Hollywood Park Community Association works toward that goal by hosting community events and running programs like Neighbors Lifting Neighbors, which pairs people needing assistance with others seeking to help.

  • #22: South Kensington, Maryland

    - Population: 8,769
    - Median home value: $736,300 (90% own)
    - Median rent: $2,164 (10% rent)
    - Median household income: $181,941

    Though South Kensington has its share of bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and parks, residents also have easy access to the sights, shops, and eateries of Washington D.C. and the surrounding areas. There are also loads of hiking trails throughout Montgomery County.

  • #21: Bethany Beach, Delaware

    - Population: 1,006
    - Median home value: $509,400 (97% own)
    - Median rent: $1,211 (3% rent)
    - Median household income: $79,904

    Bethany Beach is among the southern Delaware coastal towns known as the Quiet Resorts. It hosts concerts, movies, and bonfires in the summer when its population swells and is close to the peaceful Assawoman Bay State Wildlife Area.

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