Best small towns for retirees in every state

Written by:
January 14, 2022
Nicole Glass Photography // Shutterstock

Best small towns for retirees in every state

Many Americans who have bid farewell to the workforce or are thinking about it are turning to places that offer affordability, a strong economy, quality health care options, less traffic, and overall, more comfort. Neighborhoods outside major cities and metropolitan areas have grown in popularity among retirees, with 26% moving to smaller towns, but the overall number of people moving for retirement is down.

In 2021, American retirement relocations dropped significantly—approximately 43% less than the previous year, its lowest number of retiree relocations in five years. The Economic Research Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis suggests this was a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, soaring home prices, and retirees not having enough savings.

In seeking to help prospective retirees, Stacker referenced Niche’s 2021 Best Places to Retire study, released in August 2021, to list 50 small towns that offer the best retirement. The focus was on towns with a population of less than 40,000.

Whether you’re looking to relocate or just curious to see if your city of residence is mentioned, read on to see which American small towns are the best retirement spots.

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Chris Watson // Wikimedia Commons

Alabama: Orange Beach

- Population: 6,019 (19% age 55-64 and 34% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 70% of the population
- Renters: 30% of the population
- Median household income: $81,883

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Brian A. Ridder // Wikimedia Commons

Alaska: Soldotna

- Population: 4,649 (13% age 55-64 and 20% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 51% of the population
- Renters: 49% of the population
- Median household income: $60,491

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James Brooks // Wikimedia Commons

Arizona: Green Valley

- Population: 20,902 (14% age 55-64 and 80% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 85% of the population
- Renters: 15% of the population
- Median household income: $49,147

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shuttersv // Shutterstock

Arkansas: Bella Vista

- Population: 28,539 (14% age 55-64 and 33% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 87% of the population
- Renters: 13% of the population
- Median household income: $67,550

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California: Del Monte Forest

- Population: 4,105 (16% age 55-64 and 40% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 82% of the population
- Renters: 18% of the population
- Median household income: $147,500

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Jeffrey Beall // Shutterstock

Colorado: Holly Hills

- Population: 2,835 (15% age 55-64 and 21% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 97% of the population
- Renters: 3% of the population
- Median household income: $132,955

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Paul Latham // Shutterstock

Connecticut: Mystic

- Population: 4,249 (17% age 55-64 and 32% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 68% of the population
- Renters: 32% of the population
- Median household income: $94,102

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Ron Shawley // Wikimedia Commons

Delaware: Rehoboth Beach

- Population: 1,400 (24% age 55-64 and 48% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 82% of the population
- Renters: 18% of the population
- Median household income: $114,583

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FloridaStock // Shutterstock

Florida: Pelican Bay

- Population: 6,140 (13% age 55-64 and 83% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 95% of the population
- Renters: 5% of the population
- Median household income: $141,856

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Diana Daley // Shutterstock

Georgia: Dutch Island

- Population: 1,162 (17% age 55-64 and 28% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 100% of the population
- Renters: 0% of the population
- Median household income: $170,417

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Elena_Suvorova // Shutterstock

Hawaii: Wailea

- Population: 6,218 (23% age 55-64 and 25% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 60% of the population
- Renters: 40% of the population
- Median household income: $81,932

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Sam Beebe // Wikimedia Commons

Idaho: Weiser

- Population: 5,323 (14% age 55-64 and 20% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 62% of the population
- Renters: 38% of the population
- Median household income: $36,610

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Jacob Boomsma // Shutterstock

Illinois: Leland Grove

- Population: 1,406 (17% age 55-64 and 34% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 95% of the population
- Renters: 5% of the population
- Median household income: $108,947

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ONUnicorn // Wikimedia Commons

Indiana: Meridian Hills

- Population: 1,741 (15% age 55-64 and 18% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 98% of the population
- Renters: 2% of the population
- Median household income: $186,750

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Billwhittaker // Wikimedia Commons

Iowa: Clear Lake

- Population: 7,597 (18% age 55-64 and 25% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 72% of the population
- Renters: 28% of the population
- Median household income: $57,841

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Weldon Schloneger // Shutterstock

Kansas: North Newton

- Population: 1,778 (10% age 55-64 and 30% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 57% of the population
- Renters: 43% of the population
- Median household income: $67,188

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John Knouse // Wikimedia Commons

Kentucky: Windy Hills

- Population: 2,433 (19% age 55-64 and 33% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 94% of the population
- Renters: 6% of the population
- Median household income: $95,588

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H.dryad // Wikimedia Commons

Louisiana: Westminster

- Population: 2,760 (11% age 55-64 and 22% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 71% of the population
- Renters: 29% of the population
- Median household income: $88,778

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Kristi Blokhin // Shutterstock

Maine: Belfast

- Population: 6,688 (17% age 55-64 and 26% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 63% of the population
- Renters: 37% of the population
- Median household income: $62,857

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Nicole Glass Photography // Shutterstock

Maryland: Chevy Chase

- Population: 9,622 (15% age 55-64 and 23% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 78% of the population
- Renters: 22% of the population
- Median household income: $181,929

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Massachusetts: Chatham

- Population: 6,019 (18% age 55-64 and 45% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 84% of the population
- Renters: 16% of the population
- Median household income: $83,839

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Traveler100 // Wikimedia Commons

Michigan: Bingham Farms

- Population: 1,129 (16% age 55-64 and 48% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 89% of the population
- Renters: 11% of the population
- Median household income: $131,071

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Minnesota: Jackson

- Population: 3,219 (18% age 55-64 and 24% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 75% of the population
- Renters: 25% of the population
- Median household income: $50,972

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Aaron Manning // Wikimedia Commons

Mississippi: Hide-A-Way Lake

- Population: 2,392 (17% age 55-64 and 28% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 87% of the population
- Renters: 13% of the population
- Median household income: $100,300

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Amy Kerkemeyer // Shutterstock

Missouri: Town and Country

- Population: 11,077 (15% age 55-64 and 30% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 85% of the population
- Renters: 15% of the population
- Median household income: $192,983

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5of7 // Wikimedia Commons

Montana: Conrad

- Population: 2,633 (15% age 55-64 and 21% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 73% of the population
- Renters: 27% of the population
- Median household income: $48,636

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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

Nebraska: Central City

- Population: 2,903 (10% age 55-64 and 25% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 60% of the population
- Renters: 40% of the population
- Median household income: $48,447

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Nevada: Mesquite

- Population: 18,446 (15% age 55-64 and 41% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 73% of the population
- Renters: 27% of the population
- Median household income: $55,542

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New Hampshire: Peterborough

- Population: 6,604 (18% age 55-64 and 27% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 67% of the population
- Renters: 33% of the population
- Median household income: $87,557

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New Jersey: Surf City

- Population: 1,271 (23% age 55-64 and 50% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 86% of the population
- Renters: 14% of the population
- Median household income: $90,313

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New Mexico: Sandia Heights

- Population: 3,571 (17% age 55-64 and 44% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 97% of the population
- Renters: 3% of the population
- Median household income: $107,104

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Eric Salard // Wikimedia Commons

New York: Lake Success

- Population: 3,119 (12% age 55-64 and 31% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 100% of the population
- Renters: 0% of the population
- Median household income: $177,500

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James Willamor // Wikimedia Commons

North Carolina: Pine Knoll Shores

- Population: 1,343 (22% age 55-64 and 47% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 89% of the population
- Renters: 11% of the population
- Median household income: $75,313

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Tim Samuelson // Shutterstock

North Dakota: Rugby

- Population: 2,724 (15% age 55-64 and 29% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 71% of the population
- Renters: 29% of the population
- Median household income: $46,552

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arthurgphotography // Shutterstock

Ohio: Bellbrook

- Population: 7,212 (16% age 55-64 and 19% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 81% of the population
- Renters: 19% of the population
- Median household income: $84,130

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4kclips // Shutterstock

Oklahoma: The Village

- Population: 9,452 (11% age 55-64 and 18% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 67% of the population
- Renters: 33% of the population
- Median household income: $58,947

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Cary Bass // Wikimedia Commons

Oregon: Harbor

- Population: 1,958 (15% age 55-64 and 71% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 84% of the population
- Renters: 16% of the population
- Median household income: $30,791

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ifly6 // Wikimedia Commons

Pennsylvania: Penn Wynne

- Population: 5,932 (15% age 55-64 and 26% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 87% of the population
- Renters: 13% of the population
- Median household income: $123,854

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Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

Rhode Island: Jamestown

- Population: 5,494 (19% age 55-64 and 26% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 83% of the population
- Renters: 17% of the population
- Median household income: $111,110

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South Carolina: Garden City

- Population: 10,669 (20% age 55-64 and 40% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 79% of the population
- Renters: 21% of the population
- Median household income: $44,862

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Cheri Alguire // Shutterstock

South Dakota: Hot Springs

- Population: 3,509 (17% age 55-64 and 28% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 68% of the population
- Renters: 32% of the population
- Median household income: $46,071

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Melinda Fawver // Shutterstock

Tennessee: Farragut

- Population: 22,631 (16% age 55-64 and 23% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 89% of the population
- Renters: 11% of the population
- Median household income: $108,511

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Stedil // Wikimedia Commons

Texas: Shenandoah

- Population: 2,887 (10% age 55-64 and 40% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 55% of the population
- Renters: 45% of the population
- Median household income: $80,451

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Utah: Ivins

- Population: 8,530 (14% age 55-64 and 30% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 83% of the population
- Renters: 17% of the population
- Median household income: $63,680

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Bob LoCicero // Shutterstock

Vermont: Cornwall

- Population: 1,028 (18% age 55-64 and 29% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 77% of the population
- Renters: 23% of the population
- Median household income: $84,688

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Famartin // Wikimedia Commons

Virginia: Belmont Estates

- Population: 1,226 (13% age 55-64 and 34% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 100% of the population
- Renters: 0% of the population
- Median household income: $81,885

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SounderBruce // Wikimedia Commons

Washington: Woodway

- Population: 1,105 (13% age 55-64 and 23% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 97% of the population
- Renters: 3% of the population
- Median household income: $194,904

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Malachi Jacobs // Shutterstock

West Virginia: Summersville

- Population: 3,368 (20% age 55-64 and 28% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 69% of the population
- Renters: 31% of the population
- Median household income: $38,774

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Porterhse // Wikimedia Commons

Wisconsin: Elm Grove

- Population: 6,153 (14% age 55-64 and 25% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 93% of the population
- Renters: 7% of the population
- Median household income: $106,058

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Jonathan Green // Wikimedia Commons

Wyoming: Thermopolis

- Population: 2,703 (14% age 55-64 and 26% age 65+)
- Homeowners: 77% of the population
- Renters: 23% of the population
- Median household income: $53,162

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