5 Facts About Senior Retirement in Arizona
When there are 49 other states you could retire in, why would you choose senior retirement in Arizona? Choosing where to retire and enjoy your free time can be a tough decision with many factors weighing in. For some seniors, it’s all about living near their family. For others, it’s about where they’ll be most comfortable. With so many options, it’s important to look at all the facts, figures, and amenities of both the state and the communities to ensure you’re making the right choice. Let’s look at five facts about senior retirement in Arizona.
1) Retirees Are Not Alone
Arizona is a very popular state to retire in for many reasons—the cost of living, income tax rates for Social Security, and idyllic weather—meaning retirees will enjoy the benefit of being surrounded by their own demographic. Currently, more than 20% of the state is age 55 or older. Having been one of the first states with an active retirement community, senior living is very popular, and the state includes many high-quality communities specializing in independent living, assisted living, and memory care, such as Solterra Senior Living. The state also attracts a lot of snowbirds, or seniors who live in the state during the colder months of the year in their home state.
The higher population of seniors not only means that seniors will likely enjoy being surrounded by those in similar stages of life, but it also means areas of the state are more likely to be senior-friendly. Having businesses, parks, and other amenities that cater to and are prepared for the needs of senior residents can be a great benefit of retirement.
2) Arizona Has a Diverse and Appealing Climate
While many consider Arizona to be one large desert, the state actually has diverse climates depending on where you are. Take for instance the mountainous region of the central and northern part of the state, which experiences all four seasons and can have temperatures drop to -35 degrees Fahrenheit. In comparison, during the colder months, the southwestern region of the state maintains highs of 65 degrees and lows of 40 degrees, which can be more comfortable for seniors. Also, as cold weather is commonly regarded as irritating to certain ailments we experience as we get older, such as arthritis, retiring in warmer weather means reduced negative impact from the cold. It also can mean more active days for seniors throughout the year.
While the summers can get really hot, which the state is more commonly known for, the heat is part of Arizona’s appeal. In certain regions, like the southern part of the state, residents will experience over 300 days of sunshine with less than 3 inches of precipitation for the year. For the high summer temperatures from late May to early September, residents tend to enjoy time inside or in the water, and the rest of the year they enjoy absolutely wonderful climates.
3) Tax Rates Are Moderately Friendly
When comparing to other states, the Arizona tax rates are competitive. Living on a fixed income can be challenging so it’s important to live in a place you’ll enjoy while also maximizing your finances. Social Security income isn’t taxed in the state; however, withdrawals from retirement accounts are fully taxed. Pensions, whether public or private, are also taxed and the tax rates range from 2.59% to 4.5%.
As for the state sales tax, it’s currently 5.6%. Because local cities and counties can include their own sales tax, the total tax rate can be as high as 11.2%, so we recommend doing more research when you’ve settled on what city you would like to retire in.
4) There’s Always Somewhere to Visit
Senior retirement isn’t supposed to be isolating or boring. When you’re looking at retirement, it’s because you have worked hard throughout your lifetime. Now it’s time to enjoy some more leisure time, whether you want to relax indoors crafting and conversing with friends, or if you’re up for more adventurous jaunts out into nature, fairs, art galleries, or museums. While Arizona’s most notable attraction is the Grand Canyon—one of the seven natural wonders of the world—there are plenty of other sites and attractions to visit all over the state.
Sedona is popular for its hiking trails and natural beauty from the red rock mountains surrounding it. There are also numerous ancient Native American dwellings nearby to visit. Phoenix is popular for its desert spas, art galleries, and golf courses. In the northern part of the state, retirees can visit the iconic sandstone buttes of Monument Valley. No matter if you’re visiting the Hoover Dam, Jerome’s old mining town, or the Petrified Forest National Park, there’s always a new place to explore in Arizona, contributing to a fun- and adventure-filled senior retirement. Also, most high-quality senior retirement communities will include transportation so as to ensure safe and convenient travel for their residents’ adventures.
5) The State Has Great Healthcare
With 124 hospitals within the state of Arizona, including the Mayo Clinic, seniors are sure to receive excellent care when they retire here. In 2019 the Mayo clinic was ranked nationally in eight specialties including cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; ear, nose, and throat; gastroenterology and gastroenterological surgery; geriatrics; orthopedics; pulmonology; and urology. As a research organization also focused on education and superb clinical practice, having the Mayo Clinic nearby is a benefit to any retired senior.
The state is also the base for the Banner Health system, with 21 of its 29 hospitals within Arizona, including research and education facilities as well. With so many top health facilities in the state, it ensures they all will do more to be better. What this means for the seniors retiring in Arizona is that they’re sure to receive top-notch care anywhere they choose to live within the state.
For more information on senior retirement in Arizona and to learn more about the communities, services, and amenities of Solterra Senior Living, contact us, and we’ll be happy to answer your questions.