How many of us dream of retiring to a cabin in the woods, perhaps to write the next great American novel, or simply to watch the twilight of our lives in the serene splendor of mother nature? It is a natural part of life to want to spend your golden years free of the encumbrances of our workaday lives.
Well, we just found a story about a retired math teacher who spent ten years restoring a log cabin from the 1830’s. He had to disassemble the entire structure and relocate it to his family farm one piece at a time, discovering and documenting the condition of every stone and log as he went. You will not believe how his decade-long project turned out when he was done.
We thought the image of a cabin in the woods sounded like a great idea for retirement, and so we decided to look at some other places that have people excited about their later years.
Big factors that go into being a good retirement spot include cost of living, property values, cultural amenities, and health care. Yearly weather cycles also play a big part as severe winters or scorching summers may be too much for older bodies to handle.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Athens, Georgia, and Bowling Green, Kentucky (home of the terrorist attack that never was), all have housing prices well below the national average, making them very affordable options for retirees on fixed incomes.
For weather, you will never beat Florida or Arizona, although some prefer Texas. In each of these states, you may pay more for the real estate, but the weather is mild year round, meaning warm in the summer and cool in the winter, as opposed to frigid for six months and scorching for two.
Assuming that you are healthy and fit at retirement age, and you want to stay that way, an active lifestyle will help to keep you up. Athens, Georgia, and Pittsburgh both rank at the high end of walkability. This means that not only can you get your daily exercise in when it comes time to finally hang up the car keys for good, you will still be able to easily navigate the community. Columbia, Missouri also ranked highly as a great place for bicycling, which is one of the best ways to get around and stay in shape at the same time.
As for health care and social amenities, college towns are some of the best places to retire. They frequently have university medical schools that do remarkable research and patient care, and they always have great theaters, concerts, and museums. In this category, Columbia, Missouri and Athens, Georgia may be the top picks for places to retire. Plus hanging out with the whippersnappers is a sure way to keep feeling engaged with current affairs.
Of course, you do not want to live near college row in these towns, but hey, did want to live there when you were in college?
What did you think of this guy’s log cabin? What are your retirement dreams? Where do you see yourself settling down when the kids finally get out of the house and your career has wound down? Share your thoughts and ideas with us here.