Iowa Retirement Planning

Is Iowa The Best State To Retire?

Iowa has earned the title of the #1 place to retire, all thanks to its unbeatable combination of safety, healthcare, and affordability. 

As you contemplate where to spend these golden years, consider looking no further than the heartland of America. Nestled among picturesque landscapes, this often underrated gem offers a trifecta of benefits that make it the ideal state to retire, according to BankRate’s 2023 survey. Here’s everything you need to know about retiring in the Hawkeye State.

Affordable Cost of Living

When making the most of your retirement savings, Iowa emerges as a shining star. The state’s ability to help provide an economical lifestyle is a big attraction for retirees. According to the Council for Community and Economic Research, Iowa is the sixth-cheapest place to live in the U.S.. The state’s median home price of $239,400, according to Redfin, is well below the nationwide median home price of $388,800. Homeowners insurance is below the national average as well.

Breaking down the numbers, it’s evident that day-to-day expenses in Iowa consistently come in under national averages:

  • Housing costs are 28% lower
  • Utilities are 6% more affordable
  • Transportation expenses are 2% less

These figures highlight Iowa’s attraction to retirees who want to maintain a high quality of life without undue financial strain. The state’s cost-effectiveness helps provide a cushion for your retirement dollars, further allowing you to experience what truly matters.

Tax Benefits

Iowa’s tax provisions for retirees offers a range of favorable benefits, but ranks only 23rd in property taxes, with a median assessment of $4,012 annually. According to the Iowa Department of Revenue, like most states, Iowa doesn’t tax social security benefits, and Iowans who are 55 and older are exempt from paying state taxes on retirement income for the 2023 tax year.

This exclusion allows individuals to exclude a portion of their retirement income, such as pensions and annuities, from state income taxes; ultimately helping to lower retirees’ tax liability and help enable them to retain more of their hard-earned income during their golden years.

Quality Healthcare

Healthcare services and low healthcare costs in the state also influenced the top ranking.

Iowa boasts a world-class healthcare system that ranks 11th in the nation. Healthcare expenses remain one of the fastest-growing expenses – rising about 6 percent annually. This primarily affects older Americans, given that many are on fixed incomes and health deteriorates as we age.

In addition, University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics continues to receive national recognition with seven specialties included in the 2023–24 “Best Hospitals” rankings published by U.S. News & World Report.

UI Hospitals & Clinics—ranked by U.S. News as Iowa’s No. 1 hospital—rated in the top 50 hospitals for two specialties:

  • Ophthalmology – No. 6
  • Ear, nose, and throat – No. 28

Furthermore, five specialties were designated as high-performing, which places them in the top 10% of hospitals across the country:

  • Cancer
  • Gastroenterology and GI surgery
  • Orthopedics
  • Pulmonology and lung surgery
  • Urology

The methodology for compiling the rankings includes clinical outcomes, such as patient survival, infection rates, and complications; the level and quality of hospital resources related to patient care, such as staffing, technology, and special services; delivery of health care, such as programs that prevent infections and adherence to best practices; and expert opinion among specialists.

Safety and Peace of Mind

Safety is a fundamental concern when choosing a place to retire. Iowa ranks 12th overall in crime, offering retirees a tranquil environment to relish their newfound freedom. With low crime rates and close-knit communities, Iowa fosters a strong sense of security that can help retirees to explore the state’s natural beauty, engage in community activities, and build meaningful connections with their neighbors.

The Idyllic Lifestyle

Iowa’s serene countryside, dotted with rolling hills, lush farmlands, and scenic rivers, provides the perfect backdrop for outdoor enthusiasts. From leisurely hikes to birdwatching, fishing to golfing, there’s no shortage of activities to keep you engaged and active in your retirement years.

For those with a penchant for cultural experiences, Iowa surprises with its vibrant arts and entertainment scene. From world-class museums to open air music festivals – and let’s not forget the famous Iowa State Fair – the Hawkeye State’s entertainment attracts visitors from far and wide.

Retirement Planning Support

If retiring in Iowa appears the perfect fit for you, Johnson Wealth and Income Management is here to help you every step of the way. With our office locations in Humboldt, Iowa, and Clear Lake, Iowa, we are positioned to provide personalized, informative assistance for all your retirement planning needs.

Our experienced and trusted Fiduciary advisors offer a range of services tailored to help you maximize your retirement experience. Our financial professionals are committed to helping you make the most of your retirement years. Here are just a few of the areas in which we excel:

When it comes to retiring in our great Midwest state, we are committed to helping you make informed financial choices and help attain a more secure and fulfilling retirement. 

The Final Verdict

As you map out your future golden years, look closer at Iowa – a state where your aspirations for a gratifying retirement can truly blossom. Our dedicated team at Johnson Wealth and Income Management is ready to guide you on your journey. Embrace the possibilities of Iowa and embark on your retirement adventure right in America’s heartland.

Ready to get started? Contact us today to schedule your complimentary retirement consultation.

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