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View Poll Results: *****Best and most affordable place to retire to
Grayson, KY 1 2.22%
Berea, KY 1 2.22%
Harrison AR 2 4.44%
Fayettville AR 4 8.89%
Branson MO 4 8.89%
Traverse City MI 2 4.44%
Murray, KY 2 4.44%
Chattanooga, TN 12 26.67%
Dunellon, FL 3 6.67%
Stuart, FL 8 17.78%
Huntington, WV 1 2.22%
Charleston, WV 0 0%
Bloomington, IN 5 11.11%
Inverness, FL 4 8.89%
Saint Cloud MN 2 4.44%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 45. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-14-2014, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,895 posts, read 25,351,824 times
Reputation: 26407

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St. Cloud? Really? I lived close to there for 15 years and the Winters are brutal and it can snow from September to the end of May. Has more biting insects than anyplace I had lived before. And very frequent severe storms, tornadoes, and straight line winds in the Spring/Summer/Fall.

I think you put that one on the list as a test to see if we were really reading your post!
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:41 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,895 posts, read 25,351,824 times
Reputation: 26407
Here's the stuff dreams are made of. Check out unitedcountry.com. I also wonder why you don't have anything in NM on your list? There are some beautiful areas there.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:16 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,134 posts, read 23,028,696 times
Reputation: 35368
Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowsnow View Post
Here's the stuff dreams are made of. Check out unitedcountry.com. I also wonder why you don't have anything in NM on your list? There are some beautiful areas there.
His list is based on where he can use a VA benefit where he doesn't have to pay property tax, as I understood it. Apparently, not all states offer the same benefit.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:48 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,662 posts, read 1,530,329 times
Reputation: 3650
Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowsnow View Post
Here's the stuff dreams are made of. Check out unitedcountry.com. I also wonder why you don't have anything in NM on your list? There are some beautiful areas there.
The OP's original criteria was a single family house (no manufactured home) on an acre of land or more costing less than $175K-190K. There were lots of other criteria too, the most important being close proximity to a VA hospital or clinic. It was difficult to identify a town in NM that fit all these criteria. Many of the less expensive towns either have high crime or are rather isolated with no nearby VA clinic or hospital. Now that the housing budget is growing, I would recommend Tijeras in the mountains east of ABQ. There are a few homes available on an acre or more in the low 200's and it is only a 20 minute drive to ABQ. Another area might be in the higher elevations outside Alamogordo in the southern part of the state. Las Cruces is nice but is in the desert and very hot although you might be able to live near the river where it is greener for that price point. You may be able to find something in Ruidoso which is a nice mountain town where lots of Texans vacation and have second homes - but it will be 2 hours to a VA hospital in El Paso and 1 hour to the VA clinic in Alamogordo. Ruidoso would be the coolest in the summer.

Last edited by ABQ2015; 08-14-2014 at 08:47 PM..
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:05 PM
JRR
 
Location: Middle Tennessee
3,686 posts, read 2,232,463 times
Reputation: 5245
Berea KY and Murray KY were both on our retirement list when we started. I liked Berea a lot when we visited but my wife just didn't get any connection with it. Murray is still on our list and we plan on making another trip back there. Never cared for Charleston WV when we have traveled through it. Guess it was because it seemed to be packed down along the Kanawha River with all the of all the chemical plants.

I used to live in Vero Beach, about 35 miles or so north of Stuart FL. I always liked Stuart; thought it was a lot like Vero Beach, laid back FL with a lot of seasonal residents. It has been several years since I have been down that way; hopefully it hasn't changed much.

I would not have a problem in living in Berea, Murray or Stuart. You might want to take a look at Cookeville TN. We just got back from a visit there for a week and it seems to have the qualities you are looking for.

Also, in my visits to Berea, Murray and Cookeville, I never had any feeling that anyone didn't like me because I was not from around there (and I still talk with my central NY accent). Everyone we came into contact with was very pleasant and helpful. And we struck up conversations with people in all situations.

Last edited by JRR; 08-14-2014 at 08:13 PM.. Reason: Add notes
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:44 PM
eok
 
6,684 posts, read 3,176,827 times
Reputation: 8464
The problem with retiring to a low population density area is that the local government is more likely to be run by a corrupt clan that favors locals and discriminates against people who weren't born there. And the general population discriminates against you in a lot of subtle ways. If anyone sues you there, and they're a local, you're more likely to lose, than you would be in a bigger city. If various people violate zoning ordinances, whether they get away with it often depends on whether they're locals. If two people have a dispute, and both are locals, they're more likely to settle it informally. But if one of them is from somewhere else, it's more likely to end up in court. If you were only going to live there for a few years, none of that would matter much. But the longer you stay there, the more all that subtle discrimination will add up.

Besides that, bigger cities give you better medical care, which could save your life, more shopping choices, which could reduce your cost of living, public transportation, which could be important when you get too old to drive, etc., and you can find a nice condo within short walking distance of a shopping center and grocery store.

The key to affordability of city life is to live in a condo, not a house. Some cities have too many condos, making it cheaper to buy them. There are also 55+ condos, which are cheaper and nicer. They're cheaper because it's harder to sell them because a lot of the potential market doesn't meet the age requirement. They're nicer because people that age tend to be neater, more considerate, and less likely to have wild parties that damage the buildings etc., and no kids shooting toy rockets through your windows and spilling ice cream in the elevator.

The one big advantage of a low population area is that you can have a big house instead of a condo, and invite all your relatives for holidays. But people who don't plan to do that, would be better off getting a city condo for retirement.

Just because people seem nice in a small town doesn't mean they're going to always be good neighbors. The subtle discrimination becomes evident in what they do over the long run, not how nice they seem when you first meet them.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:28 AM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,800 posts, read 4,856,396 times
Reputation: 6379
Quote:
Originally Posted by eok View Post
The problem with retiring to a low population density area is that the local government is more likely to be run by a corrupt clan that favors locals and discriminates against people who weren't born there. And the general population discriminates against you in a lot of subtle ways. If anyone sues you there, and they're a local, you're more likely to lose, than you would be in a bigger city. If various people violate zoning ordinances, whether they get away with it often depends on whether they're locals. If two people have a dispute, and both are locals, they're more likely to settle it informally. But if one of them is from somewhere else, it's more likely to end up in court. If you were only going to live there for a few years, none of that would matter much. But the longer you stay there, the more all that subtle discrimination will add up.

Besides that, bigger cities give you better medical care, which could save your life, more shopping choices, which could reduce your cost of living, public transportation, which could be important when you get too old to drive, etc., and you can find a nice condo within short walking distance of a shopping center and grocery store.

The key to affordability of city life is to live in a condo, not a house. Some cities have too many condos, making it cheaper to buy them. There are also 55+ condos, which are cheaper and nicer. They're cheaper because it's harder to sell them because a lot of the potential market doesn't meet the age requirement. They're nicer because people that age tend to be neater, more considerate, and less likely to have wild parties that damage the buildings etc., and no kids shooting toy rockets through your windows and spilling ice cream in the elevator.

The one big advantage of a low population area is that you can have a big house instead of a condo, and invite all your relatives for holidays. But people who don't plan to do that, would be better off getting a city condo for retirement.

Just because people seem nice in a small town doesn't mean they're going to always be good neighbors. The subtle discrimination becomes evident in what they do over the long run, not how nice they seem when you first meet them.

YIKES! Such a dim view of humanity.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:32 AM
 
Location: Whereever we have our RV parked
8,818 posts, read 7,725,647 times
Reputation: 15126
Here's a solution. Buy an RV and move into it. Try each place for 3 months and then figure it out on your own.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:52 AM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,800 posts, read 4,856,396 times
Reputation: 6379
Quote:
Originally Posted by augiedogie View Post
Here's a solution. Buy an RV and move into it. Try each place for 3 months and then figure it out on your own.

Or rent a place. www.HomeAway.com is a resource that should be a help. Before any one asks, no I do not work for them. It is just a resource for anyone that is in need.
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Old 08-15-2014, 09:21 AM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,359 posts, read 10,919,127 times
Reputation: 3843
Anywhere around Gainesville, Florida, a college town with a couple of large regional hospitals including a VA one. You'll likely be told to have a 'blessed day' outside the city if that sort of thing bothers you.
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