Where to Spend Your Golden Years? Top 5 Cities for Seniors

Minneapolis.  Boston.  Pittsburgh.  Cleveland.  Denver.  To most people, these cities often conjure up images of ball parks and football stadiums where tried and true fans live and die by their sport’s teams.  These cities now have something else to be proud of.

In a report released today by the Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center For a Secure Retirement, these surprising cities earned the top rankings as the best for senior living. Best places to retire ranked

In a published press release, Scott Perry, president of the Bankers Life and Casualty Company, stated, “We weren’t interested in another study on where to enjoy your retirement, but instead wanted to find cities that did the best job in providing the services and support that seniors need. The top ranked cities aren’t what come to mind when you think about where to spend your golden years, but they scored high in the criteria most important to the 65 and up bracket.”

The goal of survey was to identify the cities that provide seniors with services and support that leads to quality of life, not just pleasant senior living.  The study’s major categories include: healthcare, economy, health and longevity, social, environment, spiritual life, housing, transportation and crime.

This statistical survey looked at the varying factors that affect senior living within the major categories.   Some of the factors affect the lives of every citizen, while others were specific to the aging populations.

In the healthcare category, surveyors looked at the number of physicians, nursing homes, specialty hospitals, and continuing care retirement communities.  In addition to the number of nursing homes, they also examined the average nursing home ratings. So, even if a city had a lot of facilities, they had to be good facilities to stack up against the competing cities.

Surveyors also looked at the life expectancy and mortality rates surrounding heart disease and cancer.

Cities were also ranked based upon the number of sunny days, the number and size of rivers, lakes, and parks and the cleanliness of the air and water.  Housing prices, property taxes and rental opportunities were examined, as was access to public transportation.

Of course, safety is always a concern especially with those who may be most vulnerable like the elderly so violent crime and property crime (such as vandalism and robberies) were added to the list.

Although the cities in the top five aren’t usually what is expected when you think of where seniors should be living, what’s more surprising is that not one city in Florida is ranked in the top 25.

So, how does your city stack up? If you’re home town isn’t on this list, what makes it the best place to live?

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