retirement

Where are the worst states for retirement?

Retirement » 10 Worst States For Retirement

No. 1: Arkansas
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Arkansas © iStock

No. 1: Arkansas

Weaknesses: Personal well-being, high crime rate, poor health care quality

At first glance, Arkansas may seem like a good retirement option. Its residents enjoy a relatively low cost of living, and there's ample opportunity for outdoor recreation in the Natural State. Unfortunately, Arkansas received below-average marks for everything else, including weather, crime, health care, taxes and happiness.

It's our worst place to retire for 2015.

Arkansas received the fourth-lowest happiness scores in the nation among seniors, with especially low overall scores for physical and emotional health. It also has the sixth-highest crime rate in the nation and the seventh-lowest heath care quality score from the federal government.

Dr. Moy, who oversees AHRQ's health care rating system, says that Arkansas and other areas of the South tend to have higher levels of uninsured residents and fewer resources to improve health care. As we age, Moy says, it's important to find a retirement spot with the health resources to support you.

"A lot of times, people get fixated on finding a retirement spot close to a big university hospital, but you're probably not going to need that for a long time," Moy says. "What you need are people to help you improve your lifestyle and manage chronic disease -- the bread and butter things."

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Sources: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; Healthways; the Council for Community and Economic Research; the FBI; the Tax Foundation; and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

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