Why do these retirement planners have Georgia on their mind?
ATLANTA, Ga (AP) - While Georgia may lack the reputation of retirement destinations like Florida, financial experts recommend the Peach State as an affordable alternative with its unparalleled southern charm.
A diverse state boasting beautiful beaches and mountains alike, Georgia is also far cheaper than many better-known retirement hubs. It’s tax-friendly, has significantly lower housing prices, and benefits from a robust economy.
For those considering relocating to Georgia in retirement, these six towns ranked among the top locations recommended by retirement planners.
Cozily nestled along the Georgia coast, Savannah earns the love of visitors and residents alike. The city is a popular choice for weddings and weekend trips, as well as an excellent location for retirees.
David Berns of Truadvice Wealth Management highlights some of its key features, “The city of Savannah is a popular choice for retirees due to its historic charm, mild climate, and abundance of cultural activities and outdoor recreation opportunities.”
In addition to agreeable weather and abundant southern history and charm, Savannah’s unusual layout gives it a unique feel. Its walkability and many tree-laden squares create an atmosphere that feels as much like a giant park as a city.
People of all stripes come to the Georgia capital for its strong economy, friendly locals, incredible food scene, reasonable cost of living, and an endless list of things to do, among many other reasons.
From Elton John’s Peachtree Road album to Frank Sinatra’s song “Peachtree Street,” Atlanta has inspired some of the world’s best-known musicians.
Atlanta’s called the “City in a Forest” because of the more than 100,000 trees planted here by a non-profit called Trees Atlanta. There’s also the Atlanta Beltline - 22 miles of unused railroad tracks with trails, walkways, parks, and other open green spaces to enjoy. Active retirees who want both city life and outdoor recreation will be in their element in Atlanta.
An hour outside Atlanta sits Athens, a perfect retirement spot for those seeking a balance of activity, culture, and affordability.
Cecil Staton, Athens resident and founder of Arch Financial Planning shares a few fundamental reasons to consider the area, “In Athens, folks will find an affordable cost of living and proximity to cultural activities through the University of Georgia’s renowned sports and arts programming, along with quality healthcare at their level II trauma center.”
Rich in history, Athens has plenty of civil war historical sites and impressive antebellum architecture. It also houses the University of Georgia, bringing a vibrant college-town energy into the area.
Located in Forsyth County, Cumming is a thriving part of the Atlanta metropolitan area.
David Edmisten, Certified Financial Planner from Next Phase Financial Planning, shares why retirees should consider the region, “Forsyth County is one of the wealthiest and safest counties in Georgia. You’ll have access to Lake Lanier, a premiere boating and recreational area, and award-winning food and entertainment are available in nearby Alpharetta.
“There are plentiful activities, whether outdoors hiking near the Blue Ridge mountains, visiting local wineries and restaurants, joining the active local tennis and pickleball community, or amazing golf available at several local country clubs. You’re an hour from Atlanta, and Forsyth County has premiere health care as well.”
For many, Cumming is synonymous with the whole of Forsyth County, which has a fast-growing population of almost 200,000 people. At any rate, there’s no shortage of reasons for prospective retirees to fall in love with this region.
It may lack the ancient history of its Italian namesake, but Rome, Georgia, holds ample treasures of its own. The largest city and seat of Floyd County, Rome sits up north in the foothills of the mighty Appalachian Mountains.
Thanks to its prime location, Rome’s natural beauty and outdoor opportunities are hard to beat. Retirees here have easy access to both Coosa Valley and the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. The city itself is full of charm, too. It has an active arts scene, a golf course, three picturesque rivers that wind through its center, a symphony orchestra, and many museums.
Combine that with its excellent healthcare options and affordable housing, and Rome becomes a strong competitor among Georgia’s many destinations to enjoy life in retirement.
Monroe, the seat of Walton County, is located east of Atlanta in the Alcovy River basin. This popular place balances small-town energy with plenty to do, from its parks and farmers market to its cycling routes, historical buildings, and lively downtown area. It’s also the “Antiques Capital of Georgia,” boasting over 1,200 booths and 300,000 square feet of antique and vintage items.
The city has Clearview Regional Hospital to handle residents’ medical needs and an assortment of accommodation options. These include adult communities, assisted living properties, gated communities, nursing homes, and more.
An hour away from Atlanta and a similar distance from Athens, Monroe residents are never far from the buzz of big-city life.
The Peachy and Peaceful Georgia Life
What Georgia may lack in brand recognition among pre-retirees, it makes up for with an inviting cost of living and amenities that rival popular retirement destinations in Florida. Between its iconic hills and its gorgeous beaches, Georgia brims with charming towns and vibrant cities.
A lingering glance will reveal why Georgia is a great place to settle down for one’s golden years. Of course, choosing where to live in retirement is never an easy choice, but some of these prime locales ought to offer a stellar starting point on the journey.
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