No. 2: West Virginia
Weaknesses: Personal well-being, health care
Known as "Wild and Wonderful," West Virginia offers retirees a low cost of living and plenty of outdoor activities in the Appalachian Mountains. But the state's poor scores for well-being and health care dragged it down 2 spots from last year.
For the 6th straight year, West Virginia received the worst scores in the country for personal well-being by the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. It was ranked last in 4 out of 5 categories: sense of purpose, social relationships, community and physical health.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality gave West Virginia its 7th lowest rating in the country. The agency noted high rates of hospitalizations for conditions such as hypertension, asthma and diabetes, as well as potentially avoidable hospitalizations for acute conditions.
Sources: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; Gallup-Healthways; the Council for Community and Economic Research; the FBI; the Tax Foundation, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.