Retirees Don't Flock to Kentucky - Unhealthy Lifestyle Choices Could Explain Why
While the economic consequences of COVID-19 have delayed many Americans’ plans to retire, those who are fortunate enough to do so have a lot to consider. Where and how to live are among those many decisions that are to be made when facing retirement, and yet the Bluegrass State probably isn’t at the top of most people’s Ideal Spots to Retire list. Sure, bocce ball on the beach might be a tempting proposition, but aren’t Kentucky’s picture-perfect rolling hills, relatively mild winters, affordable real estate, and friendly folks worthy of consideration? We think so, but according to the latest WalletHub study, Kentucky fared poorly — ranking 45th in terms of the best states to retire in.
Factors of the study include affordability, taxes, security, life expectancy, quality of life, and access to health care, among others. Kentucky may fare well in terms of affordability and security, and holds an average rank in overall tax burden, but Kentucky struggles in terms of overall health.
Kentucky’s Poor Health Record
According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, Kentucky has the second-highest rate of smoking among adults, with 23.4% of the population reporting regular cigarette use. Additionally, Kentucky leads the nation in terms of deaths caused by cancer and chronic lower respiratory disease. When coupled with other health concerns, and the fact that eastern Kentucky has been hit particularly hard by the opioid epidemic, it’s sobering and not surprising that the state is also ranked 49th in terms of life expectancy.
Of course, in terms of tobacco use, dietary preferences, and sedentary lifestyles, one could argue that these are typically lifestyle choices. It could also be argued that people who have fallen on hard times often lack the resources and education to build a healthier future. But does that really make Kentucky a bad place to retire?
There’s Still Plenty to Love in Kentucky
For the strong-willed, somewhat health-focused individuals or couples, likely not. Kentucky is still home to some of the nation’s best care facilities, beautiful scenery, friendly people, and affordable real estate. Just make sure you get out, get your heart rate up, keep an eye on what you eat/drink, commit to quitting smoking, and explore it! Better yet, get a few friends to do those things with you. If that sounds good to you or your clients, check out this 3 bed, 1 bath ranch in Lexington listed for $229k. Or perhaps this single-level 3 bed, 2 bath abode listed for $300k in Louisville is more your speed. No matter where you or your client end up, we’re confident that you’ll fall in love with all that the Bluegrass State has to offer.
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