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Study Assesses Outlook For Retirees Living In California

With 27 percent of all non-retired adults having no retirement savings, the personal-finance website WalletHub has released its report on 2022’s Best States to Retire, as well as accompanying videos and expert commentary.

To help retirees find a safe, enjoyable and wallet-friendly place to call home, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 47 key metrics. Our analysis examines affordability, health-related factors and overall quality of life.

For the full report, visit:


Retiring in California (1=Best; 25=Avg.):

49th – Adjusted Cost of Living

46th – Annual Cost of In-Home Services

11th – WalletHub ‘Taxpayer’ Ranking

41st – Elderly-Friendly Labor Market

45th – Percent of Population Aged 65 & Older

33rd – Property-Crime Rate

2nd – Life Expectancy

35th – Health-Care Facilities per Capita

13th – Percentage of Residents 12+ Who Are Fully Vaccinated


Expert Commentary

What is the most common mistake that retirees make when choosing where to settle?

“People too often move somewhere based on their health status and preferences at the time that they retire. But it is worth remembering that at the beginning of retirement health is at its best, but it can decline. Retiring to a living situation that will be manageable should health decline – i.e., locations like grocery stores and pharmacies are nearby, master bedrooms are on the first floor, a relative or friend is nearby for assistance – is important. It is also a money saver – if you are somewhere you can live for the long-term, you do not need to go through a process of selling and buying a new home that might be rushed. The good thing is that all states have these sorts of locations within them.”

Geoffrey Sanzenbacher, Ph.D. – Associate Professor, Boston College


What are some tips for living on a fixed income in retirement?

“Ideally, households would have set aside enough to maintain a similar standard of living during their retirement years as their working life. If not, working longer can be a good option for those who can. Working longer has two benefits – providing additional income and maybe even savings so you do not have to tap your nest egg so early and allow you to delay claiming Social Security which results in higher monthly benefits. If working longer is not an option, such as due to health reasons, and you have some savings set aside, using those savings to delay claiming Social Security can also help. Claiming Social Security at 70 instead of 62 increases your monthly benefits by 77 percent and claiming at 65 instead of 62 increases your monthly benefits by close to 24 percent.”

Anqi (Angie) Chen – Assistant Director of Savings Research, Boston College


The financial impact of the pandemic has many Americans reevaluating their retirement plans. What are some new points of concern for future retirees in considering where to retire?

“One clear thing from the pandemic is that no one can predict what will happen in the future – having more than enough retirement resources help retirees to adapt to the changes greatly. The extra retirement resources (besides the retirement living expenses) can mitigate spending shock risks.”

Chia-Li Chien PhD, CFP, PMP – Assistant Professor, California Lutheran University