Best retirement states for lower property and income taxes specifically + climate consideration

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Austin has tripled in size since I've lived here, which I hate. I loved Austin when it was a medium sized city of 300K and there was space between it and the surrounding bedroom communities. Now, not so much. It's a huge city with huge city problems, I know everyone likes to harp on the homeless problem, but they have re-enacted the camping ban and it hasn't helped. The homeless are hardly the only problem. They haven't expanded I-35 in 50 years and Loop 1/Mopac (the other freeway though Central Austin) got another lane in the last 5-7 years but it was toll only and it still has the same three free lanes it's had since 1981.

Staying in Texas generally would require us moving somewhere with cheaper property values as the tax rate is close to 3% per 100K. And most places the sales taxes are in the 7.5-8.25% range so Tennessee's 9.45% doesn't look that bad with property taxes less than 1/3rd of what they are in Texas.

The Carolina mountains are nice once you get farther away from Ashville which is trendy and expensive. I would have to study the topic more.

Florida is a hard no on climate and topography.
I concur with your assessment about Austin. When I moved here 42 years ago it was the ideal place to live... great weather, low taxes, very low cost of living in general, low crime, good jobs, and easy to get around. Not any longer.
If you like the Carolina mountains why not look at the eastern Tennessee mountains? I have some friends that moved there about 5 yeas ago. They get a little more winter on the western side of the mountains, but still not bad.
 
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Brons2

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I get the focus on taxes and temperatures and I can’t get past MeatChicken as a state. Took me a few seconds to get it.

But once you are settled into retirement somewhere other things (fulfillment, happiness, companionship, friendship and maybe family) will become primary. So what are your other interests? Unless for you it is only about cost of living and if so you have done a good bit of research already.
Yeah I'm definitely an introvert. Not antisocial, but I like doing things alone. However, do have to consider wife's feelings in the matter, so it's a good point to bring up. Whereever we go, living somewhere that had at least a few other Brazilians living there would probably be helpful for her social life.
 

Brons2

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Of the places you mentioned, I would go for the Reno area if you can afford a house. I spent three years there for a temporary job in the mid-2000s. Most of the snow we got melted off by noon except for one year, when there was about a foot that stayed around for a few weeks because of an inversion. I lived in a duplex with no A/C and didn't really suffer. There weren't too many days above the mid-nineties then, and it always cooled off at night. A lot of houses in the area had swamp coolers.

The Mt. Rose ski area is 30 minutes away. You can showshoe at Tahoe Meadows in 45 minutes. Year-round hiking possibilities are basically unlimited. If your philosophy is that it ain't worth seeing if you can't drive to it, the entire state is a scenic road-trip destination. Most of the roads, at least when I was there, were empty enough that driving was enjoyable. At the casinos in town, I saw such varied acts as Willie Nelson and Cirque du Soleil. Metallica played at the UNR campus arena. There's a drag strip and a road course within an hour or two, and the Hot August Nights car show every summer.

I also spent a few years in Northwest Arkansas. Winter there is pretty mild, but it does snow occasionally. That used to make a lot of Mustangs and Firebirds end up perpindicular on the sidewalks in Fayetteville. Summer is probably not Austin miserable, but you'll want to spend it in the A/C or out West. There's plenty of hiking and canoeing up there, but it takes a little longer to access compared to the Reno area, unless you buy further out in the country.

Both of these could be considerations. I have been to Reno lots of times growing up (parents gambling) and while I usually skiied Squaw and Heavenly because they had shuttle buses up there from the casino we stayed at, I have been up to Mount Rose one time in my 20s when I flew out to Reno. Being close to the Sierras, Cascades and other Nevada ranges to the east is a major plus. Having entertainment come to town is a plus. Like the idea of having a drag strip nearby.

I looked at the climate chart for Bentonville, AR and Fayettevill, AR on Wikipedia and no month with an average high above 90 for either city is great. I see the highs in December and January are in the mid 40s, occasional snow is ok, I'll just stay home if it happens As long as it's not more than a handful of times a year. I Imagine the pig-sooey folks would be a bit more anti-Texas Longhorns up that way than other places but it is what it is. I'm not going to let my college allegiances figure into my decision. I didn't have any serious issues going to games in Fayetteville in burnt orange gear in the past, oh sure lots of horns down type stuff but I can live with that.
 

Brons2

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If you have them, live where your grandkids are. Wear a coat if need be.
That's what the wife will want. My only child is still young but my wife has adult kids from a previous relationship. They are here in the Austin area.
 

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Stellenbosch, South Africa. It's a college town in wine country, the cost of living is low and it has a really laid back and relaxed vibe. Right now it's my summer escape but I wouldn't mind living there year round at some point.
That sounds nice but I'm not sure how spouse acceptable South Africa is.
 

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Prices have leveled off a bit. Away from the poophole known as Seattle. The powers that be completely ruined that carphole.

I would only consider wet side, farthest two counties north and south.

We settled on either Skagit or Whatcom county. Bellingham is a decent place but completely filled with nutbags. But the Whatcom county areas are decent. You can get an acre+ and decent home in that range if you shop and are patient. I wanted and needed a shop 2 years ago about this time, so it took us 3-4 months of looking and waiting.

You don't get tweakers out here.

You can plink if your property is OK size and you have a backstop.

The soil is great and sun is warm and no it's not constant rain. We can get cold but not forever. No salt.

The Canada border is 5-20 minutes away. We ate a delicious Indian buffet for lunch and no wait at the border on Wednesday. $25US total!

Jan-11-2023
An Indian Affair Langley Bc - 33.7900 Canadian Dollar
$25.27

Mt Baker is close, the Sound is close and a bunch of little towns - hills and valleys and flats

BUT don't move here, too many people coming here. Sucks. :ROFLMAO:
Are you in the Olympics Mountains rain shadow? I was surprised to see how much sun and less rain some places got. Sequim is famous for it's 300+ days of sun a year but also popular and expensive.
 

Brons2

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This article was in Barron’s (online) and behind a paywall but I found it here, also:

Have some friends who's parents retired in Cuenca. Looks nice. The ship may have sailed on getting in early though. It's a pretty well known ex-pat city.
 
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Are you in the Olympics Mountains rain shadow? I was surprised to see how much sun and less rain some places got. Sequim is famous for it's 300+ days of sun a year but also popular and expensive.
Sometimes. Our microclimate varies, where our property is located we are far enough inland to not have 100% rain shadow, but still get enough rain to not worry too much about our well and trees. But we are blocked from the nasty Fraser Valley outflow, which during the worse winter howlers we can actually hear like a freight train down in the valley. Again, we get the Pacific warmth and setting sun because we are on a west slope.

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So overall, what you are listing is low property tax, low sales tax, high income tax (to make up of the rest of the low text), and probably low infrastructure expense (low tax means little to none in infrastructure etc).

Does it need to be in low crime area or within the US? What is your definition of good climate? Nevada or Mississippi? or Hawaii and California?
 
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So overall, what you are listing is low property tax, low sales tax, high income tax (to make up of the rest of the low text), and probably low infrastructure expense (low tax means little to none in infrastructure etc).

Does it need to be in low crime area or within the US? What is your definition of good climate? Nevada or Mississippi? or Hawaii and California?
What causes lack of infrastructure is wasteful spending. Not low taxes. Illinois is a perfect example. They have some of the highest property and income taxes in the country. And the state, along with it's schools, roads, and infrastructure are all falling apart. They waste money like drunken sailors.
 

Brons2

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So overall, what you are listing is low property tax, low sales tax, high income tax (to make up of the rest of the low text), and probably low infrastructure expense (low tax means little to none in infrastructure etc).

Does it need to be in low crime area or within the US? What is your definition of good climate? Nevada or Mississippi? or Hawaii and California?
Why would I want high income tax? No income tax is preferred, or very low. And I never said anything about low sales tax. It's 8.25% where I live now and I'm not complaining. Basic life essentials like food and prescriptions are not taxed. I can control my sales tax burden by limiting my spending on non-essentials.

I am complaining about extortion property taxes in Texas and then the school money redistribution from rich districts to poor districts is just crazy. Anyone who says Texas is a low tax state with these extortion property taxes needs to think again. I mean literally HALF my mortgage payment is taxes in escrow! My property taxes are 10% of my annual gross income!!!!!!! For a house that is right at the national average size and I have moved FAR outside the Austin area. Don't tell me Texas has low taxes, I will tell you that you're wrong.
 
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Near the beach in Delaware
So we picked Delaware since it's a retirement friendly state (taxes), near the ocean which wife & I enjoy. Driving distance to family in northeast. Near the beach will lure my daughters down for a free week of vacation with Dad.

Roads are better than NY (few potholes) and not much salt.

We are a mixed race couple and need to live in an area where she feels comfortable. I have to respect her feelings on that.

I do not think there is a "best state" for retirement. Many factors come into play. No one size fits all.
 
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Wilmington NC down the coast to Ocean Isle NC, Calabash NC to North Myrtle Beach SC and all the way down to Hilton Head SC
Your property taxes on a $350k to 500k home will run around $3,000 a year, if that much in many areas. (not a misprint) One would have to look up the state income tax and see if that is a big deal to them. These areas also have much health care facilities too.

One thing for sure, a low tax state is a low tax state and taxes come from some place so if your not paying state income tax you can bet your paying it on your home or other means. NC and SC are pretty low tax states even with the income tax and I feel certainly less than Florida even with Floridas no state income tax..
Our desire to not move too far from SC limited Florida for us but we liked Northeastern Florida a lot too, Yulee area... but for us was getting pricey for what we would have got and property/HOA/CDD fees were getting up there, even with no state income tax it was pricey compared to what I just mentioned.
 
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Might seem trivial, but public services are also wonky in some states. A retired couple who moved from Boston, mentioned there new community has private sanitation services. And its been a revolving door to the point, where their hired company just up and vanished one month. Garbage piled up and well that became a literal dump for a while.
 
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Might seem trivial, but public services are also wonky in some states. A retired couple who moved from Boston, mentioned there new community has private sanitation services. And its been a revolving door to the point, where their hired company just up and vanished one month. Garbage piled up and well that became a literal dump for a while.

That's how it is in much of Virginia. In the news recently are stories about how Fairfax County is having problems getting trash picked up because one of the private trash companies went out of business and the other one is really understaffed. This is one of the richest counties in the USA and it's right near Washington, DC...

Another thing about Virginia--they don't like street lighting. I was driving on a 4-lane road the other day with a center median and thinking to myself "If this road were in any other state it would have street lighting but it's almost completely dark". Even extends to interstates--the interchange of I81 and I66 has no lighting whatsoever. It's pretty rare in this part of the country to have an interchange between two interstates with no lighting.
 
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