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The 20 Best States for Your Retirement

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People approaching or just starting retirement may have plenty of life experience under their belts, but many are enjoying at least one brand-new feeling: a sense of freedom. Starting at age 60, the majority of people shift from saying where they live is determined by their responsibilities, including family and work obligations, to saying they're free to live wherever they want, according to a survey by Merrill Lynch and Age Wave, a research firm focused on the aging population. And many retirees exercise that freedom to relocate, with 64% having moved or anticipating moving in retirement.

But how do you choose where to retire? Many factors come into play, from proximity to family to climate preferences—but we'll leave those personal preferences to you. What we can help you with is the financial angle: We ranked all 50 states for retirement based on quantitative factors, figuring that the best states for retirees will offer low living costs and light tax burdens, as well as quality health care options. We also sought out states that are healthy—both economically (with well-balanced state budgets) and physically (with a fit and active senior population). Finally, we favored states with relatively prosperous residents age 65 and over. Take a look at our list of the best states for retirement.

SEE ALSO: The 20 Worst States for Your Retirement

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See "How We Ranked Every State for Retirement" at the end of the rankings for details on our data sources and methodology.

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