Every year, Forbes Magazine collects data on 400+ cities in the US to create their list of the Top 25 Places to Retire, and Tucson has made that list for the past 3 years in a row. For many Baby Boomers, it is time to consider something new – a change of surroundings to warmer weather, or a new career in an affordable community that fosters entrepreneurism. If that is the case for you, then Tucson should be at the top of your list.
According to Forbes, “Retirement is one of those chances in life to do something really different. With kids usually out of the house, many people look at it as an opportunity to move to a place that better fits their likings and budget—somewhere affordable that’s warmer (or colder), more rural (or urban), with good medical care and options for an active life, including perhaps a part-time job.”*
To compile their list of Top Places to Retire, Forbes screened cities by the following criteria: 1) housing and cost of living, 2) taxes, 3) weather and air quality, 4) crime rates, 5) doctor availability, 6) active lifestyle and availability of outdoor exercise, 7) volunteerism and 8) economic data with an eye towards a “working” retirement. Their lists were provided in alphabetical order, and considered all locations to be meritorious and not ranked 1 -25.
One noteworthy point for Investors: the average cost of a home has remained a top reason to choose Tucson, and home values have risen consistently in the past 2 years; up 18% from 2012 to 2013 and up 11% from 2013 to 2014, for a total increase in value of almost 32%. For the Investor that wants to purchase a home for future retirement, RPM Rincon can manage that property as a rental, which will pay for itself while increasing in value.
Here is how Tucson was featured in Forbes in January 2014, and in the two previous years:
2014 Fast Fact: Nicknamed “The Old Pueblo”
Pros: Warm climate, above average air quality, cost of living 4% below national average, typical home price $172,000, abundant doctors per capita, high rank for bicycling and volunteering. Cons: High crime rate, so-so economy
2013 Fast Fact: Name derived from Indian name for nearby volcano
Pros: Low cost of living, median home price $155,000, good state tax climate, warm weather, above average air quality, high doctors per capita, high grades for bicycling and volunteerism. Con: Crime
2012 Fast Fact: Home of the University of Arizona
Pros: Low cost of living and taxes, average Home price $131,000, good weather, encouragements for active retirement, numerous doctors. Con: Poor economy
The only other cities in Arizona to make the list in the past 3 years are Mesa and Prescott, both in 2013.
*Source: Forbes.com; January 2014, February 2013, June 2012