Connecticut Deemed Worst State for Retirees [POLL]

A colder climate and a high cost of living were just two of the criteria used by the TopRetirements website in naming Connecticut the worst state in which to retire this year.


When the TopRetirements website compiled the criteria for the top 10 worst states to retire in 2012, two states were actually tied for the number one spot: Connecticut and Illinois.

"Connecticut won the tie-breaker because it has much higher property taxes, income taxes and cost of living than Illinois," according to the TopRetirements website.

The announcement of the top 10 worst states in which to retire notes the following information for readers:

  • The list's purpose is to help baby boomers find places where they can enjoy their retirement without incurring more problems.
  • Each retirement is unique. If being near family is important, then one of the worst states to retire according to the site's criteria may be one of the best states to retire, when family is factored into the equation.

The Top 10 Worst Places to Retire (according to TopRetirements)

  1. Connecticut
  2. Illinois
  3. Rhode Island
  4. Vermont
  5. Massachusetts
  6. New Jersey
  7. Minnesota
  8. New York
  9. Maine
  10. Wisconsin

The Top Weighting Criteria Used

In 2011, Connecticut made the list too, but at number nine. The top weighted criteria used in 2011 was fiscal health, taxation and climate.

The criteria used to determine quality of retired life in 2012 were fiscal health, property taxes, income taxes, cost of living and climate.

A more detailed page on why Connecticut was chosen as the number one worst state to retire goes through the criteria in detail.


"Connecticut's manufacturing base has been seriously eroded and the state struggles to make ends meet," the TopRetirements website stated. "Still, inflation-adjusted 2007 per capita income of over $35,295 is the highest of any state."

Median home values in Connecticut differ depending on the area, the site noted. In Greenwich, for example, a starter home may cost $1 million. In the Hartford area, the third quarter 2011 median price was $232,900.

The national median is reportedly $169,500, according to TopRetirements.

"At 133, the cost of living is well above the national average of 100," the website noted.


"Connecticut is one of the highest taxed states in the country in spite of a wealthy population and significant revenues from the state's Indian casinos," the TopRetirements website stated. "In 2009, the state had the third highest state/local tax burden of any state."

The site also notes that in Connecticut, social security income is exempt on couples whose adjusted gross income is $60,000 or less and partially exempt when above $60,000.

The TopRetirements site lists towns in Connecticut that it has deemed welcoming to active adults, mainly due to the presence of active adult communities.

  • Avon
  • Madison
  • Mystic
  • Newington area
  • Niantic
  • Old Saybrook
  • Oxford
  • Pomfret
  • Sharon
  • Southbury
  • Stonington
  • Wallingford area
  • Washington
  • Willimantic

Readers, do you agree with the findings of the TopRetirements site? If you've chosen Connecticut as your retirement spot, why did you choose it?

kathy johnson January 20, 2012 at 03:36 PM
It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. Still true today. Nothing is perfect. I love living in the 21st century and would not like to go back to the 50s but I do agree with Janis that the written hand is beautiful and more personal than the computer. Penmanship was once an art. I do hate to see that disappear.
Swami January 20, 2012 at 03:46 PM
The NOT SO SUNNY South - 3 of top 5 most stressful cities are in FLORIDA ! Come on down and CHILL OUT! http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/americas-most-stressful-cities-2012.html
Paul Improta January 20, 2012 at 04:13 PM
Sully, I appreciate that you actually research you points before making them. The studies you cite, however, don't delve into the detail necessary to answer the question "why". My answer won't cite any factors, but will cite the fact that I have personal experiencein Florida, that and having been in the medical insurance business for 26 years and a Registered Health Underwriter (RHU). Again, what the studies fail to acknowledge is the behavior and the demographic characteristics of those the system serves. In certain counties you have conscientious people who maintian a healthier lifestyle and who have the capacity to pay - either through a Medicare Advantage Plan or private health insurance, verses those who for whatever reason, including poverty, cultural beliefs where certain immigrant groups don't trust institutions, or they believe in family taking care of each other; or demographic groups who might be more inclined to drink more, eat more fast food and drive with no auto insurance and gamble that they won't have anything financially catastrophic happen to them.
Paul Alexander January 20, 2012 at 07:02 PM
The bigger point of this article is that the People's Democratic Republic of Connecticut has become so toxic to the pursuit of happiness that the state is bleeding people and business as they seek greener pastures outside the state. The 2000-2010 census data show that CT population grew at half the national rate. Florida population growth was twice the national rate. CT residents and businesses are voting with their feet. The "Worst State For Retirees" issue is just one data point, but an important one. When a system changes the change always begins at the margins of the affected system. Those living on a fixed income in CT live at the margins financially in a state with an increasingly confiscatory agenda. No one should be surprised that retirees are the first to beat feet. Others in CT whose circumstances place them farther away from the margin will eventually leave the state also if the state gets even more needful for revenue. And if CT residents keep feeding the beast with its every increasing state and municipal budgets, then the only ones left able to afford to live in CT will be a few hedge fund managers. Sully, rather than deflect criticism with your fingers in your ears while yelling “I can’t hear you” and calling everyone a whiner, why don’t you offer a cogent argument on why CT is losing so many people? My view is they are leaving because the can live a higher quality of life with greater purchasing power outside CT. I know I do.
Swami January 20, 2012 at 08:03 PM
A - Perhaps CT was Never meant to be a retiree heaven. B- Seems like Florida has the most miserable. stressed out people in the USA. C- keep out of the hot sun, it's been known to cook the brain. http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/americas-most-stressful-cities-2012.html
JM January 20, 2012 at 08:04 PM
John - with all due respect, I live a very frugal lifestyle. I only have 20 cable channels, nor do I have a smartphone with all the works. I have a big garden and grow a lot of my food. I'm the wrong person to call arrogant. I think you missed my cell phone analogy. And no, it's not an urban legend. You can talk to my family and friends who point it out to me all the time. If I can get by on a cellphone @ $30/month, why can't someone on food stamps get by on that as well? An iphone plan runs what, $80/month? Sorry, but socialism has created moral hazards and if you can't see it, shame on you.
Paul Alexander January 20, 2012 at 08:21 PM
Tough to be stressed out Dude when its 72 degrees, not a cloud in the sky, the palm trees are swaying outside my office window, the gang is meeting for cocktails after work at the Tiki Bar and the sun won't set until 6:30. Gimme more of THAT kind of stress.
Alex Tytler January 20, 2012 at 09:09 PM
How about some more happy news http://darien.patch.com/articles/ct-home-sales-worst-in-new-england-in-2011
Swami January 20, 2012 at 09:11 PM
Speaking of gangs, make sure you're packin'. West Palm Beach, FL, violent crime, on a scale from 1 (low crime) to 10, is 9. Violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. The US average is 4. West Palm Beach, FL, property crime, on a scale from 1 (low) to 10, is 9. Property crime includes the offenses of burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. The object of the theft-type offenses is the taking of money or property, but there is no force or threat of force against the victims. The US average is 4.
Paul Alexander January 20, 2012 at 09:15 PM
I just shot mojito out of my nose you make me laugh so hard Sully!
Alex Tytler January 20, 2012 at 09:46 PM
I dunno, I played 18 today in West Palm and it seemed pretty peacefull to me. 80 degrees, not a cloud in the sky, what could be better? Oh and Sully's not here but Paul is!
Paul Alexander January 20, 2012 at 10:17 PM
Eric, I'm in North Palm. Call me.
Janis Hardy January 21, 2012 at 05:39 PM
Just out of curiosity, I wonder how many folks would consider leaving CT not because of the high taxes and the high cost of living but because of the political environment? I like CT, and while I wasn't born here, I have lived here just about all my life. My husband and I (both retired) have discussed relocating several times over the past 10 years, and are still here mostly because of our grandchildren. We are now wise enough to realize how much of our own children's lives we missed out on because we were caught up in the rat-race called making a living sufficient enough to afford to live here. We would NEVER move to FLA, but instead would chose Texas, either of the Carolinas or VA. The reason is simply because as a conservative, I am tired of my state and federal vote not having any effect at all! Locally, yes, conservatives in many communities can influence their political destiny, but on a state and national level, not so! I am tired of my vote not counting! Just thought I'd stir the pot a little more......
Swami January 21, 2012 at 08:14 PM
All votes count, your problem is that not enough people agree with you on the issues, it's called DEMOCRACY !
JYD January 21, 2012 at 08:35 PM
Wrong, Sully. The votes that really count are the hundreds coming from a single addresses in Bridgeport in recent elections. It's called CORRUPTION !
Swami January 21, 2012 at 09:53 PM
JYD, could you please enlighten with facts, as opposed to Rush Limbaugh/Glen Beck paranoia? thanks. Here's how Newtown voted in 08. http://www.newtown-ct.gov/Public_Documents/NewtownCT_BBoard/News%20Archive/S021D63BE.0/2008%20ELECTION%20RESULTS.pdf
John M. Joy January 22, 2012 at 12:17 AM
We own twenty-eight acres in New Hampshire, in the White Mountain region. Driveway's in; septic plan's approved. Now, if we could just sell THIS place... Not sure my vote would count any more (less) there than here. Frankly, I've seen enough of "democracy" to regard it as a giant scam. Up there, it doesn't matter quite as much, as people generally leave you alone.
Sam Mihailoff January 22, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Paul Alexander January 22, 2012 at 12:57 AM
Sully, your myopic Rep/Dem argument is getting old. Forget Rep/Dem for a moment. WHY do YOU think so many people are leaving the People's Democratic Republic of Connecticut? That's the issue. WHAT are the issues driving so many people and businesses out of the state? That's what the original article so many posts above speaks to. Why don't you speak to that?
Swami January 22, 2012 at 01:26 AM
At ease flyboy, I was responding to one of the earliest posts in the thread, that blamed the Democrats for everything happening in CT. Post follows: socrates 7:09 am on Wednesday, January 18, 2012 This is simply more fallout from 30 years of democrat policies.Spend and tax with no end in sight, and Malloy just made things worse.
Southbury Resident January 22, 2012 at 03:21 AM
Huh you must have missed last year FBI ratings. Here is so you know most dangerous cities in US 1. Flint, MI 2. Detroit, MI 3. St. Louis, MO 4. New Haven, CT Hartford and Bridgeport were not far behind it.
Southbury Resident January 22, 2012 at 03:30 AM
It is Democrats driving taxpayers out. High taxes and supporting freeloaders are the only reasons why I am getting ready to move. I got Land and we are slowly building our new place. I will sell current one at the loss or leave it to the bank dont matter but I i will not be paying high taxes here anymore. libs can sit here and sing cumbaya but this state is already bankrupt once loans dry up people will be jumping that state like Titanic. Its coming. Sell house now come back in few years and get house here for 10% of value just like in Michigan. :) Just look at the wave of foreclosures in CT its growing.
Paul Alexander January 22, 2012 at 03:55 PM
Read "Thidwick, The Big Hearted Moose" by Dr. Suess and you'll understand precisely why everyone is leaving. It was written in 1948! Dr. Suess was a genius for writing it. My father was a genius for reading it to me and helping me understand the message.
John Hawley January 22, 2012 at 05:05 PM
From Wikipedia...LOL, perfect! Thidwick, a moose who lives in a herd "about sixty or more" , accepts a bug living on his antlers for free, who tells a spider of the free housing, and both accept a "Zinn-a-zu" bird. The herd rejects Thidwick after the Zinnazu bird's wife, a woodpecker, and four squirrels move in. After a bobcat and turtle settle, winter moves in, and although food is scarce, they refuse to let him travel to the other side of the lake. Thidwick realizes that he has lost his autonomy and that the collective in his antlers has forced him to support them. Pressure hits the poor moose after three mice, a fox, a bear, and 362 bees move in on his antlers, but trouble switches thoughts fast after seeing hunters who "must get his head for the Harvard Club wall". When Thidwick is trapped after an attempt to escape, he suddenly remembers that antler-shedding season has arrived. He bucks the antlers off, leaves the freeloaders at the mercy of the hunters and swims to the other side of the lake to rejoin his herd. His antlers, and the former squatters, are stuffed and mounted.
Ken D. January 24, 2012 at 04:34 PM
Well by following Paul's logic - every election is a fluke because it was only by "chance". So I guess you're saying Govenors have no power at all. No power to infulence voters, or to veto a bill despite the fact it will be over-ridden, etc, etc. The fact of the matter is that they have this "power" if they choose to exercise it. As for why manufacturing has left Connecticut - no doubt some of that has to do with taxes - more has to do with national policies and the evolution of free trade. We have a minimum wage to adhere to, Unions dont stop and start at our state boarder, and we basically have a national standard of living we choose to preserve. Why dont you blame the companies who moved their jobs to China or elsewhere because they could get cheaper labor. Isnt that the free market at work? I thought you were all about the free market?! And please dont suggest its "taxes" only - the lions-share is wages and benefits - AND its not that some other state is 10cents cheaper or has lower benefit standards. We're dealing with other countries that have exponentially different standards like NO environmenal health and safety, no workers comp, no health insurance, no minium wage. We lost to these places and our basic way of life was the reason NOT just that we have higher taxes.
Ken D. January 24, 2012 at 04:47 PM
I'm not sure what Steven expects the town Tax Collector to do about cars registered in other states. If they arent registered in CT then they dont show up on her list of property. Is she suppose to drive from house to house to look for cars in driveways and ask who owns them?!
Paul Alexander January 24, 2012 at 05:36 PM
Re: Ken D. 11:47 am on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 "I'm not sure what Steven expects the town Tax Collector to do about cars registered in other states. If they arent registered in CT then they dont show up on her list of property. Is she suppose to drive from house to house to look for cars in driveways and ask who owns them?!" Ken, The issue isn’t WHAT should the Tax Collector do with respect to CT residents registering their cars out of state. The issue is WHY are CT residents resorting to this behavior? This behavior change is a SYMPTOM of some new dynamic. People naturally change their behavior when a new and hostile force penalizes their former behavior. That hostile force is the now toxic levels of taxation in the People's Democratic Republic of Connecticut. The early adaptors, those who have reached their threshold of pain, are modifying their behavior in various ways. Re-registering vehicles. Changing the titles to assets. Moving! Forget the “symptoms” of Connecticut’s financial dysfunction. You’re just wasting your time debating the symptoms. Peel back that onion and focus on the causes.
Swami January 24, 2012 at 05:46 PM
Paul, You don't get to choose which laws apply to you and which don't. Wasn't that explained to you at some point in your education? ps: Still think that Bill Gates is a Marxist?
Paul Alexander March 01, 2012 at 12:41 AM
Feb. 29, 2012, 12:01 a.m. EST “10 best places to retire in the U.S” http://www.marketwatch.com/story/10-best-places-to-retire-in-the-us-2012-02-29?dist=afterbell 1. Sarasota, FL 2. Naples, FL 7. St Augustine, FL 8. Ft Myers, FL 9. Venice, FL Methodology To develop this list of 10 best places to retire, Brady started with the top 20 towns from TopRetirements.com’s 100 best retirement towns list. Then he analyzed and compared those towns and cities using 12 different retirement criteria, applying one point if the city/town was above average for that characteristic, and deducting one point or more if it was below average. For example, housing prices in San Diego and Sedona are more than twice as expensive as the national average, so Brady penalized those towns two points. These are the criteria used: “wow” factor, college town, large number of active adult communities, adult education/cultural opportunities, retiree income-tax rate, property tax, climate, cost of housing, crime, health-care options and walkability/attractiveness of downtown.
Dennice Loraine May 17, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Yes you are right. Illinois seems to be a worst place for retirement. I worked as an engineer in Chicago. Now I have retired from my work. I choose Lancaster PA after retirement. I am residing garden spot village. It is one of Best Retirement Communities in the country. I am quite happy here.


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