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Best small towns for retirees in every state

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    Best small towns for retirees in every state

    Working day-in and day-out in one of America’s biggest metropolitan areas can prove to be incredibly stressful on its own, and it certainly does not help to come home to a loud, bustling apartment building shared by hundreds. Senior citizens are especially eager to abandon this lifestyle as 75 percent of baby boomers want the next home they purchaseto be 1-story tall and 55 percent of retirees prefer a suburban environment when it eventually comes time to settle down for good. Since smaller, tighter-knit communities offer less mobility and fewer immediately accessible resources and amenities, deciding on a suburban retirement location can require a very fine-tuned analysis.

    In seeking to help prospective retirees, Stacker referenced Niche’s Best Places to Retire study in order to list America’s 50 small towns which offer the best retirement. Only towns with a population of less than 40,000 were considered for the ranking, which Niche calculated according to a retiree representation, weather quality, cost and safety, access to healthy living, and a handful of other factors explained in detail here. For each town, we’ve included the town’s resident population as well as Niche-calculated grades for the overall quality of the town, the cost of living (along with figures for median home value and median rent), diversity, and quality of outdoor activities. 

    Read on to see which small towns are the best spots to retire in America.

    ALSO: Best small towns for retirees in America

  • Chris Watson // Wikimedia Commons
    2/ Chris Watson // Wikimedia Commons

    Alabama: Orange Beach

    Population: 5,791
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $248,200; Median rent: $836)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B+

  • Brian A. Ridder // Wikimedia Commons
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    Alaska: Soldotna

    Population: 4,471
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $223,000; Median rent: $1,019)
    Diversity grade: B
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Arizona: Green Valley

    Population: 22,249
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $162,200; Median rent: $1,010)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Arkansas: Cherokee Village

    Population: 4,669
    Overall grade: B-
    Cost of living grade: A- (Median home value: $76,600; Median rent: $686)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    California: Kensington

    Population: 5,602
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C- (Median home value: $805,200; Median rent: $1,994)
    Diversity grade: B+
    Outdoor activities grade: A

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    Colorado: Holly Hills

    Population: 2,684
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C (Median home value: $342,100; Median rent: $1,784)
    Diversity grade: B
    Outdoor activities grade: A

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    Connecticut: Essex

    Population: 6,594
    Overall grade: A-
    Cost of living grade: C (Median home value: $363,600; Median rent: $1,165)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Delaware: Rehoboth Beach

    Population: 1,119
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $842,800; Median rent: $1,008)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Florida: Whiskey Creek

    Population: 5,011
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $203,300; Median rent: $1,090)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Georgia: Avondale Estates

    Population: 3,095
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $300,200; Median rent: $1,146)
    Diversity grade: B+
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Hawaii: Maunawili

    Population: 2,124
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: C- (Median home value: $932,400; Median rent: $1,955)
    Diversity grade: N/A
    Outdoor activities grade: B+

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    Idaho: St. Maries

    Population: 2,323
    Overall grade: C+
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $137,100; Median rent: $571)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Illinois: Leland Grove

    Population: 1,625
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $202,100; Median rent: $979)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Indiana: Meridian Hills

    Population: 1,762
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $439,400; Median rent: $1,750)
    Diversity grade: B
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Iowa: Waukon

    Population: 3,786
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $89,600; Median rent: $507)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Kansas: Eureka

    Population: 2,439
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $51,500; Median rent: $489)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: C

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    Kentucky: Windy Hills

    Population: 2,203
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $241,300; Median rent: $1,967)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Louisiana: Westminster

    Population: 3,103
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $241,900; Median rent: $1,202)
    Diversity grade: A-
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Maine: Rockport

    Population: 3,352
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: C+ (Median home value: $285,200; Median rent: $1,014)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Maryland: Chevy Chase Village

    Population: 2,030
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C (Median home value: $1,608,300; Median rent: $3,375)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Massachusetts: West Falmouth

    Population: 2,021
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: C+ (Median home value: $540,100; Median rent: $1,125)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Michigan: Village of Grosse Pointe Shores

    Population: 2,933
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $431,200; Median rent: $2,550)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Minnesota: Osseo

    Population: 2,612
    Overall grade: A-
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $164,300; Median rent: $883)
    Diversity grade: B
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Mississippi: Hide-A-Way Lake

    Population: 1,883
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: A- (Median home value: $159,800; Median rent: N/A)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Missouri: Town and Country

    Population: 11,001
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $659,700; Median rent: $1,045)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Montana: Glasgow

    Population: 3,363
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $151,600; Median rent: $506)
    Diversity grade: N/A
    Outdoor activities grade: C-

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    Nebraska: O'Neill

    Population: 3,664
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $106,100; Median rent: $588)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Nevada: Boulder City

    Population: 15,373
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $223,200; Median rent: $938)
    Diversity grade: B
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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    New Hampshire: Gilford

    Population: 7,103
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: C+ (Median home value: $240,600; Median rent: $1,018)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B+

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    New Jersey: Surf City

    Population: 1,166
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: C (Median home value: $658,400; Median rent: $1,021)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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    New Mexico: Elephant Butte

    Population: 1,515
    Overall grade: C
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $122,800; Median rent: $816)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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    New York: Lake Success

    Population: 3,084
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C- (Median home value: $1,150,500; Median rent: $3,501)
    Diversity grade: A-
    Outdoor activities grade: A

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    North Carolina: Pine Knoll Shores

    Population: 1,420
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: C+ (Median home value: $372,400; Median rent: $1,053)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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    North Dakota: Valley City

    Population: 6,615
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $89,800; Median rent: $658)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: D

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    Ohio: Bellbrook

    Population: 7,082
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $160,200; Median rent: $988)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: B+

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    Oklahoma: Nichols Hills

    Population: 3,864
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $636,800; Median rent: $918)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: C

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    Oregon: Gold Beach

    Population: 2,311
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: C+ (Median home value: $174,900; Median rent: $751)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B

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    Pennsylvania: North Warren

    Population: 1,952
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: A- (Median home value: $102,600; Median rent: $524)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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    Rhode Island: Jamestown

    Population: 5,462
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C- (Median home value: $563,900; Median rent: $1,708)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: A

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    South Carolina: Garden City

    Population: 9,456
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: B+ (Median home value: $120,500; Median rent: $900)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: B+

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    South Dakota: Mobridge

    Population: 3,460
    Overall grade: A-
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $80,700; Median rent: $587)
    Diversity grade: N/A
    Outdoor activities grade: C

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    Tennessee: Lookout Mountain

    Population: 1,930
    Overall grade: A
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $561,700; Median rent: $1,125)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Texas: Olmos Park

    Population: 1,964
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $643,000; Median rent: $782)
    Diversity grade: B+
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Utah: Kanab

    Population: 4,436
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $192,100; Median rent: $913)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Vermont: Rutland Town

    Population: 4,058
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: B- (Median home value: $218,600; Median rent: $757)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Virginia: Bridgewater

    Population: 5,906
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $209,200; Median rent: $820)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Washington: Clyde Hill

    Population: 3,197
    Overall grade: A+
    Cost of living grade: C- (Median home value: $1,578,900; Median rent: $2,900)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: A

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    West Virginia: Belmont

    Population: 1,031
    Overall grade: C+
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $92,500; Median rent: $505)
    Diversity grade: B-
    Outdoor activities grade: C+

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    Wisconsin: King

    Population: 1,754
    Overall grade: B+
    Cost of living grade: A (Median home value: $108,200; Median rent: $581)
    Diversity grade: C
    Outdoor activities grade: A-

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    Wyoming: Thermopolis

    Population: 2,918
    Overall grade: B
    Cost of living grade: B (Median home value: $137,300; Median rent: $690)
    Diversity grade: C+
    Outdoor activities grade: B-

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