Pennsylvania named one of the best states for an early retirement

By Kelly Leighton | Dec. 19, 2016 | 2 min. read

Pennsylvania was recently named the seventh best state to retire early.

According to SmartAsset, thanks to the commonwealth not taxing retirement income, as well as our 10-th lowest average healthcare costs in the country, Pennsylvania is one of the best places to settle down early.

“Pennsylvania ranks in the better half of the country for its average state and local sales tax rate. Lower sales taxes can help early retirees stretch their dollars. Additionally, Pennsylvania has the 16th-highest number of doctors’ offices per 10,000 residents, which can be important later in the golden years,” said Asees Singh, a spokeswoman at SmartAsset.

Singh also pointed out that Pennsylvania offers financial benefits for early retirees, and that these benefits can be used to promote the state as an early retirement destination. “In particular, the state’s 0 percent effective tax rate on retirement income can help early retirees get the most out of limited retirement incomes,” she said.

However, Singh did mention that the state’s high property tax rate could be one downfall for potential early retirees. With an average effective property tax rate of 1.6 percent, PA places 12th-highest in the nation for that metric, said Singh.

Yet, Pennsylvania does still have opportunity to improve in the area of early retirement. “According to data from the Council for Community and Economic Research, Pennsylvania ranks slightly above the nationwide average for the cost of items such as groceries, utilities and transportation. Therefore, a lower non-housing cost of living score could help Pennsylvania move up in the ranks,” she said.

Wyoming, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Dakota and Tennessee were named the top five states best for early retirement, according to SmartAsset. The company based their rankings on effective income tax rates on people ages 55 to 64, state and local sales tax rates, average effective property tax rates, median annual housing costs, non-housing cost of living, average annual cost of a silver health insurance plan, arts, entertainment and recreation establishments per 100,000 residents, and doctors’ offices per 10,000 residents.

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