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How to Choose the Right Retirement Plan in the USA: Experts Have Their Views

To explore the comfortability of the USA as a retirement destination, we reached out to a range of professionals, including senior editors and CEOs.

They provided us with ten diverse perspectives, ranging from seeing the variety, affordability, and quality of healthcare to considerations about the economy and political sphere. Dive into their insights to make an informed decision about your retirement plans.

  • Combining Variety, Affordability, and Healthcare
  • Finding High-Quality Healthcare for Retirees
  • Providing Many Climates and Lifestyles 
  • Offering a Range of Amenities vs. Relaxed Options
  • Preferring a Fast-Paced Environment 
  • Considering High Living and Healthcare Costs 
  • Reviewing State-Specific Comfortability 
  • Weighing Overseas Living vs. Proximity to Family
  • Being Aware of Social Services and Taxes
  • Dwindling Economy and Political Instability

Combining Variety, Affordability, and Healthcare

I would consider the USA as the perfect country for retirement. I might be biased due to my profession as an avid traveler. Let’s be honest: the USA has a lot to offer for traveling. However, several other factors play a critical role in my decision. 

The USA offers a wide variety of landscapes and climates, from sunny beaches to snowy mountain tops, meaning that anyone can find the perfect place for their peaceful retirement. It offers affordable places to retire.

Yes, it might not be in the big cities, but this is the time to enjoy life, and I believe smaller towns offer unlimited adventures. Another big reason for me is one of the more expensive things in life, but you will not find healthcare like ours anywhere else in the world.  

In the end, it will come down to your individual needs and preferences, but I believe the USA is the perfect country for retirement.

Finding High-Quality Healthcare for Retirees

Aiden Higgins, Senior Editor and Writer, The Broke Backpacker

Aiden Higgins

The United States has a highly developed healthcare system, which is essential for seniors looking for high-quality medical care, so I would consider retiring there. 

In retirement, it’s nice to have easy access to top-notch medical facilities, cutting-edge diagnostic tools, and a comprehensive menu of treatment options. Medicare, the federal government’s health insurance program for people 65 and older, further guarantees seniors’ access to low-cost medical treatment. 

Retirees’ peace of mind that their healthcare needs will be met is a major factor in the healthcare system’s ability to support them during retirement.

Providing Many Climates and Lifestyles

Tim Allen, Director, Oberheiden P.C.

Tim Allen (Retirement)

Most of my clients who are retirees are simply looking for peace—a simplified, relaxing experience. I’ve learned that the process can be a lot to work through, but the USA can be a great place to retire.

From sunny beaches to snow-capped mountains, the USA has it all. You can find a place to retire that suits your ideal climate and lifestyle. Retirement means a fixed budget, so affordability is very important. In smaller towns and rural areas, there are plenty of budget-friendly places to retire.

Healthcare is a concern for many retirees as well, and affordable options can be found in Medicare or Medicaid. The USA also has a lot of activities and programs that allow for volunteer work and to get involved in your community.

If you’re willing to do plenty of research and are dedicated to finding a place that meets your individual needs and preferences, the USA can be a great place to retire.

Offering a Range of Amenities vs. Relaxed Options

Ryan Carrigan, CEO and Founder, moveBuddha

Ryan Carrigan

While the USA offers a range of amenities and opportunities, I often find that certain European countries, like Spain and Andorra, provide a more favorable environment for retirees. 

The Spanish healthcare system is well-regarded, and access to quality medical care is often more affordable and comprehensive in contrast to the U.S. The peace of mind that comes with knowing healthcare needs are well-covered, without the risk of exorbitant costs, is a compelling reason for retirees to explore European options. 

Andorra, with its stunning landscapes and favorable tax policies, presents another attractive option. The absence of income tax can significantly enhance retirees’ financial well-being, allowing them to make the most of their retirement savings. 

Also, when you look at the pace of life in both Spain and Andorra, you’ll find it tends to be more relaxed, contributing to a comfortable retirement lifestyle.

Preferring a Fast-Paced Environment

Guy Sharp, Relocation Manager, Andorra Guides

Guy Sharp

Retirees seeking a slower-paced lifestyle may not find the USA comfortable due to its fast-paced and bustling environment. Many American cities are known for their busy streets, crowded attractions, and high-energy atmosphere. Individuals who prefer a more tranquil retirement experience may feel overwhelmed and find it challenging to escape the hustle and bustle.

For example, retirees seeking a peaceful retreat might prefer countries with smaller towns, picturesque landscapes, and a more relaxed atmosphere, like Costa Rica or New Zealand. While the USA offers a diverse range of activities and amenities, it may not cater to retirees who prioritize a slower-paced lifestyle.

Considering High Living and Healthcare Costs

Yoana Wong, Co-Founder, Secret Florists

Yoana Wong

The biggest question when deciding whether to retire in a country is whether you can afford to live there. As a traveler, I do not consider the USA a comfortable country for retirement, as the costs of everything, including taxes, can limit your life.

The USA does not meet the criteria of affordability, as life is expensive compared to other parts of the world. The cost of living itself is way above that of other countries. 

Rising costs of healthcare are another hurdle, considering retirees might regularly need to seek medical assistance. Many retirees will need to save nearly $300,000 just to cover healthcare expenses. These costs are exorbitant compared to other countries like Canada and the United Kingdom, which have government-funded healthcare services. Assisted living costs in the USA are also higher than in other countries. 

For people who have not saved enough, it’s just impossible to retire comfortably in the United States.

Reviewing State-Specific Comfortability

Saya Nagori, Founder, Wander DC

Saya Nagori

Whether the U.S. is a comfortable place to retire really depends on what state you plan to retire in. If you want to retire in New York City, Nantucket, or Venice Beach, you’re going to get eaten alive by high costs.

You’re going to burn through your savings incredibly quickly, and a lack of fellow seniors might also dampen your social life. 

Plus, retirees need to think about the weather. Not to be ageist, but older people prefer warm weather. So if you’re talking about Wisconsin, then no, the U.S. is not a comfortable place to retire. But if you’re talking about Florida or Arizona, those are absolutely retirement-friendly states. The answer to this question is very state, and even city, specific.

Overseas Living vs. Proximity to Family

John Ross, CEO, Test Prep Insight

John Ross

Retirement in the U.S. offers a dependable and comfortable living, and you’ll be close to your friends and family. However, it can be costly and lead to a boring routine. A change of scenery, new and thrilling experiences, and a reduced cost of living can all be obtained by retiring overseas.

Being Aware of Social Services and Taxes

Axel Hernborg, Founder and CEO, Tripplo

Retirement in the USA

The cost of living is the one thing that could make retirement in the U.S. hard for some global audiences. However, for people who have the means, the U.S. is an excellent place to retire. 

There is a wide variation in the weather. There are states with a great deal of open land. The tax burden is relatively low for an OECD nation. If you’re coming from outside the U.S., just be aware of the large number of normally social services you will need to provide for out of pocket.

Dwindling Economy and Political Instability

Trevor Ewen, COO, QBench

Trevor Ewen Featured

The USA may not be the ideal country for many of us to retire in, considering the rising inflation, healthcare, and housing costs, along with a dwindling economy and political instability. However, these are a few reasons that the majority of countries in the world face, right? If you’re moving interstate for retirement purposes, the USA does host a few good places that can ease your retirement living.

No matter how big a retirement corpus you have accumulated, it would be a smart financial move to leave a metropolitan city like NYC or Los Angeles and move to a comparatively less expensive state with better living standards.

To some of my peers who are nearing retirement, I’ve advised them to relocate to Delaware, a state which has high-quality, government-provided healthcare and also doesn’t burn a hole in your pocket in terms of living standards.

In a family’s case, relocating to a nearby state would be better as you would definitely not want to spend your retirement life socially isolated.

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