New study ranks Utah at No. 3 among states for retirement
Published: May 7, 2014 09:15AM
Updated: August 1, 2014 08:20PM
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Steve Griffin | Tribune file photo Downtown Salt Lake City

Utah ranks as the third-best state for retirement in a new report by bankrate.com.

Ranking ahead of Utah was South Dakota at No. 1 and Colorado at No. 2.

Bankrate.com looked at several factors to determine which states offer the best quality of life for seniors including weather — sunshine and average humidity — plus cost of living, crime rate, health care quality, tax burden and well-being (a measurement from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index that quantifies how satisfied residents are with their surroundings).

South Dakota came out on top due to its low tax burden (7.1 percent of state income vs. Utah’s 9.4 percent), low crime rate (actually higher in violent crime than Utah’s but lower in property crime) and high wellness score (70 compared to Utah’s 68.2).

The Top 5 states round out at South Dakota, Colorado, Utah, North Dakota and Wyoming.

“While the states that ranked highly may not be thought of as typical retiree havens, seniors should consider more than sunshine when choosing a place for their golden years,” said Bankrate.com research and statistics analyst Chris Kahn.

The five states that ranked the lowest for retirement are New York, West Virginia, Alaska, Arkansas and Hawaii.