Do you live in one of the best places for retirement?

When you think about your retirement, what do you picture? If it involves moving to a new location, these top 10 retirement destinations in England and Wales might be just what you’re looking for.

According to Prudential, the best places to spend your years after giving up work are:

  • West Sussex
  • Dorset
  • East Sussex
  • Isle of Wight
  • Norfolk
  • Devon
  • Worcestershire
  • Oxfordshire
  • Somerset
  • Shropshire

The study looked at nine different factors that were considered important to retirement quality of life, measuring a range of different wellness factors:

  • Resident pensioners as a proportion of the county’s population
  • Disability-free life expectancy
  • Access to healthcare
  • Crime levels
  • The number of pensioners moving to the county
  • Pension income
  • Weather
  • Healthy lifestyle data
  • Happiness

Interestingly, seven of the nine indicators had top counties that weren’t listed in the overall top 10 areas for retirees. With this in mind, your retirement priorities and aspirations should influence where you decide to settle if you choose to move.

  • While Rutland was ranked 16th overall, it topped the charts for both healthy lifestyle factors and having the happiest population
  • Retirees seeking better weather would benefit from moving to Essex
  • Bedfordshire is where you’ll find pensioners with the best income
  • Herefordshire boasts the best life expectancy
  • But it’s Gwynedd where access to health care comes out top

If you don’t have a destination in mind when moving, setting out what’s important to you can help you find a location that matches your expectations.

Kirsty Anderson, a Retirement Expert at Prudential, commented: “There are currently 12 million over 65s in England and Wales, up 1.4 million from 2017. Retirement is an exciting time for many, but it does come with major decisions which should not be taken lightly, one of which is where to live. Many of us currently live in a location close to work and wish for a retirement away from the hustle and bustle of being near a major city.

“Our analysis hopefully helps future retirees with this decision and highlights that every county has something different to offer.”

Four finance areas to consider if you plan to move in retirement

If moving to a new county to enjoy your retirement years appeals to you, considering these four factors are important.

1. House prices

House prices vary hugely across the country, so this is an important factor to consider.

You may have a family home now, only to find that when you start researching properties, you can’t afford a replacement even when downsizing through a property sale alone. On the flip side of that, if you move to somewhere that has a more affordable housing stock, you could end up with leftover cash to spend during your retirement.

Getting your existing property valued and then researching the homes available in the area you’d like to move to should be among the initial steps you take.

2. Cost of living

Much like house prices, the cost of living can vary significantly depending on where you live. It could mean your spending power is decreased or increased, as a result of moving.

How much your cost of living can change will depend on your lifestyle. You need to factor in the essentials, such as grocery shopping, but also think about areas such as entertainment, eating out, and hobbies. With a clear idea of what you spend now and how this will change, you can see how far your budget will go should you decide to move.

3. Cost of care

Nobody wants to think about needing care when they’re older. But it’s a fact that some of us will need to rely on support to some degree.

Should you need help, whether moving into a care home full time or support at home for some household tasks, the associated cost can be more than expected. It’s a bill that can rise significantly depending on where you live too.

The average weekly cost of living in a care home in Lancashire was £531 a week in 2017, according to research by Trustedcare. In contrast, the price soars to £955 per week in Oxfordshire.

When you’re planning your retirement, care is likely to be at the bottom of your list of priorities. But assessing what services you’ll have access to and how much they’ll cost should be a step you take. It will not only mean you can better plan how you access your pension but ensure your later years are comfortable too.

4. Travel

If you’ll be moving away from family and friends during your retirement, the cost of travel may play a role in your decision.

If you’re planning several holidays and trips in the year, will you be far away from a well-connected airport? Also, driving frequently to visit family can quickly add up. And, if it’s not an expense you’ve considered, it could place pressure on your finances. Of course, you’ll be able to take advantage of concession prices when using public transport (whether you like it or not!) and, in some cases, travel for free. But petrol and the cost of running a car can quickly mount up if you’re regularly taking longer journeys.

If you’d better like to understand your retirement finances and what they mean for your plans, including moving, you can contact us today.