Guard Against This Stressful Retirement Decision

Itchy rashes, depression, pounding headaches, stomach ulcers... older women in Japan are developing these and other stress-related medical issues by the score.

It's called "retired husband syndrome."

The name might sound laughable, but the issues are true for any couple facing retirement. Many psychologists point to retirement as one of the most stressful life events a couple can face.

Married couples entering retirement may not know what to do with their free time, how to manage their new lifestyle, or how to balance household chores and responsibilities.

Adding to that stress is a big decision all retirees face: whether or not to relocate.

Moving consistently ranks as one of the most stressful life events people face (along with death of a loved one and divorce). But many retirees consider moving for various reasons.

In fact, we recently spoke with a couple nearing retirement. They're currently looking for a vacation house – a place where they can eventually move into full time in a state with fewer taxes than Maryland.

Taxes are just one good reason to consider relocating for retirement. You might also want to downsize to a smaller home, find a place that's all one level for easier mobility, or move somewhere with a more agreeable climate. If the kids have moved away, you might consider moving closer to them as well.

But sometimes, couples can't agree on where to move (or if they should move).

Start with the basics.

Here are a few questions you and your spouse should answer honestly. If you disagree, discuss how important it is to each of you and try to find a compromise.

  • Can we afford to move? And if so, what if we want to move back?
  • Do you want a small-town feel or a big city?
  • Do you want to head for the mountains or the beach?
  • What hobbies do you want to pursue and do they require a certain setting (like fishing or golf)?
  • Do you want a warmer climate or a cooler one?
  • Do you want to stay in your state but try a different area?
  • Do you simply want a smaller home instead of a full relocation?
  • Do you want a retirement community (such as a 55-and-older neighborhood)?
  • Do you want to stay within a certain distance of the kids? What about your friends and extended family?

Scope out local areas. Talk to family, friends, and co-workers. Chances are, someone you know has either moved or considered moving to a location you're considering.

Go for a drive or an extended trip to test potential areas. And don't be afraid to chat with the locals and even call up real estate agents.

One couple we spoke with called up a real estate agent for a property they happened to pass in Pennsylvania. Not only did the agent come out for a showing on a Sunday, but she offered them insight into the rising homeowners' association fees. She also pointed out problems with the expensive man-made lake... It was so full of bacteria that locals couldn't even swim in it. It was the kind of insight our friends needed to decide to look elsewhere.

Check out our full report. We spent months sifting through data on all 50 states to determine the best states for retirement.

We looked at the following:

1) Taxes: Income tax, Social Security tax, sales tax, and inheritance and estate tax.

2) Housing Costs and Property Taxes: Median home values along with the average property tax.

3) Crime Rate: Violent crimes per 100,000 residents.

4) Hospitals: Number of hospitals per 100,000 residents (you want to make sure you're not only near a hospital, but that you have access to excellent care).

5) Climate: Average temperature, rainfall, snowfall, and number of sunny days.

We also factored in livability highlights like nightlife, golf, beaches, mountains, shopping, ease of transportation, and proximity to the rest of the country.

After considering all of these, we narrowed our list to 12 states, and we then chose our favorite five. If you're currently a subscriber to Retirement Millionaire, you can access that report and see our list right here.

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What We're Reading...

Here's to our health, wealth, and a great retirement,

Dr. David Eifrig and the Retirement Millionaire Daily Research Team
July 26, 2017