Planning for retirement involves a lot more than savings. You will need to find the right places to settle and enjoy your life as a thriving senior. Maine and New Hampshire are great examples of retirement-friendly states. But of the two, which is better suited for seniors in search of peaceful retirement?
Both New Hampshire and Maine are great states for retiring. However, New Hampshire is better due to its tax-free social security retirement benefits. Incomes from pensions are also untaxed in the state. Despite its harsh weather, Maine has great healthcare and a high senior prevalence score.
Curious to learn which of the two states is better for retirement? Then you could not be in a better place. Read on as we break down the advantages and disadvantages of retiring in Maine and New Hampshire.
Retiring in Maine
Thinking about retiring in Maine? To help you determine whether it is the right state to spend your golden years, let us take a quick look at some important considerations to keep in mind.
Maine is not the best state in terms of retirement taxes. Although the state does not tax Social Security income, expect high tax rates of up to 7.15% on your other forms of retirement incomes. Property taxes are also above average in Maine.
If you receive retirement income from a pension, IRA, or a 401(k), then you will be required to pay taxes as high as 7.15%. However, Maine’s sales tax rate is considerably low at 5.5%. You will also love that no additional city or county rates are collected on top of Maine’s sales tax rate.
Maine is characterized by its cold winters and warm, humid summers. The Pine Tree State is America’s most forested state, with an impressive 89% of its land covered by forest. You are likely to enjoy the serenity that comes with lakes, rivers, and mountains in the state. Offshore islands, beaches, and fishing villages also add to Maine’s appeal as a retirement-friendly state.
As reported by Weather-US, Maine has among the most comfortable summers of all U.S. states. The average temperatures during the summer range from 20-23 °C (60-68 °F). Expect cold winters of up to -11 °C (12.2 °F) during winter. Spring in Maine is characterized by light rainfall and warm temperatures. However, autumn is significantly colder than summer but full of bright, appealing colors.
Prevalence of Seniors
As revealed by US News, almost 21% of Maine’s population is aged over 65. The site further claims that Maine has maintained the country’s oldest median age for over four decades. The large population of seniors in the state makes it a haven for seniors.
Maine has some of the best hospitals in the country, which means access to quality healthcare services will not be an issue in The Pine Tree State. The quality of nursing homes is also high in Maine. However, while the state has outstanding healthcare services, the costs are considerably high, making access to healthcare problematic for seniors who do not qualify for means-tested benefits.
Maine scores highly when it comes to security. According to US News, Maine is among the safest states in the U.S. The state has been ranked in the bottom five states with regards to crime rates.
The impressive safety score means you can settle comfortably in Maine without worrying about crime or damage to your private property. Unlike most states, where seniors are often viewed as easy targets for robbery with violence or property theft.
Advantages of Retiring in Maine
- One of the best summer weathers
- Bearable winters
- Among the best-rated states with regards to safety
- The scenic environment gives you the chance to make the most of your free time after retirement
- High prevalence of seniors making it easy to find like-minded people to interact and socialize with
Cons of Retiring in Maine
- The tax policies are not senior-friendly
Retiring in New Hampshire
Thinking about relocating and retiring in New Hampshire? Below are some important considerations to keep in mind if retiring in the Granite State is at the top of your to-do list.
New Hampshire is one of the most senior-friendly states in the country. Its low retirement taxes make it a haven for seniors looking to capitalize on their savings. Retirement income from a retirement account, a pension, or Social Security will not be taxed in the Graphite State, consequently boosting your overall savings.
While the state does not have a sales tax, New Hampshire’s property taxes are among the country’s highest. This means that buying a retirement home in the Graphite State might end up denting a huge chunk of your savings, courtesy of its high property taxes. Income from retirement accounts like IRA or 401 (k) will not be taxed as retirement income is not taxable in New Hampshire.
New Hampshire’s weather is characterized by cold, snowy winters and warm, humid summers. The state has a great blend of mountains and forests, making it a perfect place for seniors to settle. Point to note, though, the North Country (New Hampshire’s northern part) experiences heavy snowfall and severe cold during the winter.
North Hampshire’s summers are humid and warm, often ranging between 21 °C (69.8 °F) and 29 °C (84.2 °F). Winter temperatures can get as low as -20 °C (-4 °F) in January. Snowstorms frequently occur during the winter, while tornadoes and hurricanes are common from spring (late) to fall.
Prevalence of Seniors
As reported by SeniorCare.com, 14% of the total New Hampshire population are seniors. The Granite State is among the highest-ranked states when it comes to healthcare. Although New Hampshire does not have as many seniors as Maine, it still ranks high when it comes to healthcare for seniors.
With over 70 nursing homes, New Hampshire is a great place to spend your golden years. The presence of experienced caregivers and an affordable healthcare system makes the state one of the best for seniors looking to retire.
New Hampshire ranks as one of the safest states in the U.S.A. per statistics provided by Alarms.org, The Granite State has the lowest property crime rate and the third-lowest violent crime rate in the country. New Hampshire is regarded as one of the best states for retiring due to its low crime rates.
You will not have to worry about your property being vandalized or stolen due to the state’s low crime rate. This allows you to retire and enjoy your golden years in peace, away from the hustles and stresses associated with states that record high crime rates.
Advantages of Retiring in New Hampshire
- New Hampshire has one of the friendliest tax policies for retirees
- The Granite State has an impressive safety score, making it an ideal place to retire
- Scenic locations and forest cover enhance the state’s appeal to retirees
- No sales tax
Cons of Retiring in New Hampshire
- Property tax one of the costliest in the country
- Does not have a large population of seniors
- The weather might be too extreme, especially during the winter
Both Maine and New Hampshire are retirement-friendly states. The two states score highly when it comes to security. However, the best state to retire in greatly depends on your personal preferences.
In terms of weather, Maine is undoubtedly the better state as it has one of the country’s friendliest summers. However, New Hampshire beats Maine when it comes to tax policies as it is widely viewed to be a tax-friendly state for retirees.
- Kiplinger: New Hampshire: #9 Best State to Retire in 2018
- SmartAsset: New Hampshire Retirement Taxes
- SmartAsset: Maine Retirement Taxes
- US News: States Focus on Rise of Elderly Populations
- Weather Atlas: New Hampshire, USA – Climate data and average monthly weather
- Weather Atlas: Maine, USA – Climate data and average monthly weather
- Alarms.org: Safest Cities in New Hampshire – 2021
- SeniorCare.com: New Hampshire Senior Guide
- USDA: Forests of Maine, 2016
- Visit Maine: Weather & Climate