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States with the Longest Retirements


Retirement is the supposed "golden years," although they've become stressful and rather shorter in recent times. However, residents of these states enjoy the longest retirements.

Retirement is the supposed “golden years,” although they’ve become stressful and rather shorter in recent times.

Americans are falling short of how much savings they should have for retirement and they’re not alone — half the world is reportedly unprepared for retirement. Social Security funds will be depleted by 2033, according to the trustees’ report. And, yet, people are living longer than ever.

So although Bloomberg has ranked the states with the longest retirement, it’s hard to tell how accurate this list is. The assumed retirement age is 65, but that is becoming less and less common. Partly as a result of the recession and partly because people are living so much longer, retirement is getting pushed back.

In fact, surveys have found that few people even consider age when planning retirement.

These are the states with the longest average “sunset years,” or life expectancy postretirement, and states are ranked by a gender ratio-weighted average.

9. (tied) Colorado

Skyline from City Park

State average years: 14.92

Female average years: 17.2

Male average years: 12.6

Maybe the reason that workers in Colorado live so long is because the state often has one of, if not the, lowest obesity rates in the country. The foreclosure rate has been fairly high in the state, though.

9. (tied) Arizona

Downtown Phoenix

State average years: 14.92

Female average years: 17.6

Male average years: 12.4

In 2012, Arizona ranked as the fourth best state to retire, according to because of the warm weather and long life expectancy. However, Yuma, Arizona, has the biggest prospective housing bubble, according to Bloomberg, because unemployment is up, but so is the median housing price.

8. Utah

Delicate Arch in Arches National Park

State average years: 15.08

Female average years: 17

Male average years: 13.1

If you want to keep working during retirement, then Salt Lake City is the place for you. With a low unemployment rate (4.9%) and a cost-of-living that is below the national average, Utah is great for retirees because of its tax climate.

6. (tied) North Dakota

Grand Cities Art Fest in Grand Forks

State average years: 15.10

Female average years: 17.6

Male average years: 12.6

With the lowest unemployment rates in the country and a low cost of living, North Dakota retirees can probably afford their longer life expectancies. They will also be healthy during those sunset years since the state spends a lot on health care per capita and the state’s doctors have embraced EMRs and e-prescribing.

6. (tied) Massachusetts

Back Bay in Boston

State average years: 15.10

Female average years: 17.5

Male average years: 12.5

Residents of Boston are very health since they can easily walk or bike around the city. Unfortunately, though, residents in Massachusetts have the a poor replacement income during retirement, meaning that they won’t have enough income during retirement to equal at least 70% of what the household earned between the ages of 45 and 64 years of age.

5. Connecticut

Hartford Main Street. Photo by Daniel Morrison

State average years: 15.18

Female average years: 17.4

Male average years: 12.7

In 2012, workers in Hartford-New Haven were the most prepared for retirement. Plus, Fairfield is one of the healthiest places to live because there is a high density of gyms and the Appalachian Mountains run through the area.

4. New York

New York City Financial District

State average years: 15.36

Female average years: 17.7

Male average years: 12.8

Despite New Yorkers having a long retirement, residents of expensive New York City are generally among the most unprepared for retirement, according to an Ameriprise Financial report.

3. California

Los Angeles

State average years: 15.37

Female average years: 17.8

Male average years: 12.8

Workers in the San Francisco and San Diego areas are among the most prepared for retirement, according to Ameriprise Financial; however, California is notoriously expensive with high taxes, so you might not want to stay there during your retirement.

2. Minnesota


State average years: 15.85

Female average years: 18.3

Male average years: 13.3

According to the Ameriprise Financial New Retirement Mindscape 2012 City Pulse index, workers in the Minneapolis-St. Paul are among the most prepared for retirement. However, the taxes in Minnesota are among the worst in the country, according to The Tax Foundation.

1. Hawaii


State average years: 16.48

Female average years: 19.8

Male average years: 13.2

For many people, Hawaii is probably the ideal retirement spot because of the weather and the surrounding natural beauty. However, like California, it isn’t cheap to live in Hawaii. Yet, Hawaiians seem to be doing okay. According to, Hawaii is one of just two states where households of those aged 65 and older are making at least 70% of the income they earned between the ages of 45 and 64.

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