By Sarah Downey | The Center Square
New Hampshire was named the third best state for retirement in a report released by WalletHub.
To identify the most retirement-friendly states, WalletHub did comparisons across three key dimensions: affordability, quality of life, and health care.
“New Hampshire has a relatively high quality of life by several metrics that are straightforward to measure and several that are difficult to measure,” AnnMarie French, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute, told The Center Square via email when asked about the WalletHub report. “The state includes mountains, lakes, and coastline while still providing amenities associated with urban areas in the southeastern part of the state.
French also noted that the state has lower crime rate, poverty and food insecurity rates compared to the rest of the nation.
“Overall state-level taxation in New Hampshire is also relatively low,” she said. “Workforce participation rates for those aged 65-to-74 years have also been rising in New Hampshire for more than a decade, and a labor market that has a very limited supply of workers may mean more employment opportunities for those looking to supplement their incomes in retirement.”
French also described some of the challenges that retirees on low or fixed incomes could face in New Hampshire.
“The tight labor market means that services, including health services focused on caring for older adults and Medicaid enrollees, may be more difficult to access because of the lack of providers,” French said. “Retirees in rural areas, including areas with stagnant or declining populations, may find available services limited. Local property taxes are also high in New Hampshire relative to most other states, and those property tax levies vary considerably between municipalities.”
Housing costs must also be considered.
“There are limited housing options generally in New Hampshire, with especially thin and expensive housing markets near to many key services,” French said. “Housing costs have been rising steadily in recent years in the homeowner and rental markets, with tight competition for homes under $300,000 and a very low vacancy rate for apartments.”