Benefits of Retiring In Georgia (Pros & Cons)
March 14, 2022General Retirement
Georgia is an incredible state to live in, but is it a good place to retire? Here are the benefits of retiring in Georgia to help you make up your mind.
Most people wish to retire in a state that offers a good quality of life, safe living conditions, and fine quality healthcare; however, you can't get everything everywhere. One state that's a good option to retire in is Georgia because it's everything that you want and more.
Before you make up your mind about retiring in Georgia, you should know what's good and what's bad. Georgia offers stunning landscapes, a great sports culture, delicious food, and ideal weather. However, you'll also find awful traffic and lots of bugs. Healthcare isn't the best either.
There are a lot of pros of living in Georgia, but there are also some negatives. You'll find plenty of activities to do in the state. The weather is great, and many sightseeing spots will keep you busy in your post-retirement days. However, if you despise mosquitoes, Georgia isn't the place for you. Some of the many cons of retiring in Georgia include higher housing costs and hotter summers in some parts.
We've spent plenty of time living in Georgia, and we can tell you one thing – it's definitely a great option for retirees – for the most part. However, everyone has different preferences. We've listed down the pros and cons of retiring in Georgia for you to help you make a more informed decision.
Table of contents
Living in Georgia
Georgia is among the best states to live in. The laid-back culture, clean and fresh air, great food, and plenty of touristy sites are some of the state's many attractions that bring in about 100,000 new residents every year.
Pros of Retiring in Georgia
There are more pros than cons of retiring in Georgia. Bankrate, a financial publication, listed Georgia among the best states to retire. Georgia is a fine state to retire for all the right reasons. Let's have a look at some of the major pros that might encourage you to pack your bags and head to Georgia for your post-retirement days.
Winters Aren't Too Cold
By the time you retire, you've already aged enough not to be able to tolerate extremely cold weather. Georgia is an ideal place to move in this regard. Winters in this state aren't unbearably cold. It rarely snows, and when it does, you won't need to worry about having to get rid of the snow on your driveway because it's not much. Even on the coldest days, you can rely on a single winter coat to keep you warm.
Not all states experience all 4 seasons, but Georgia does. The best thing about Georgia is that all the seasons are pretty mild. Summer, winter, autumn, and spring are all pleasant, enabling you to thoroughly enjoy each season.
Lower Cost of Living
Cost of living is one of the major concerns for people who're planning to retire in another state. Georgia is a great place to retire because the cost of living is relatively lower. It's been ranked number 6 in the list of most affordable US states. The cost of housing, groceries, utilities, transportation, and goods is lower than most of the other states of the US. However, if you're planning to retire in Atlanta, you might have to reconsider because it's one of the most expensive parts of the state to live in.
If you're a sports lover, Georgia is one of the best places to retire for you. Georgia has a profound sports culture. From ball games to motorsports, Georgia is a host to various sports. You can enjoy going to your favorite sports games when in Georgia, which is something you didn't have time for before you retired. After all, post-retirement days are all about doing what your 9 to 5 job kept you from doing!
Host to Lots of Festivals
If you're someone who has lived in a dull state all their lives and want to relocate to a state that's alive and active after you retire, you should consider moving to Georgia. It's a host to a lot of festivals, including Summerfest, Atlanta Dogwood Festival, Dragon Con, and AthFest, among many other renowned festivals. There will always be something to look forward to in Georgia.
Variety of Landscapes
You can enjoy various landscapes in Georgia, from beaches to mountains. No matter what your landscape preferences are, you'll find a spot you'll love in Georgia. The Northeast side of Georgia is home to high mountains, and you have pristine beaches in the low country.
Diversity and Inclusion
Many retirees face the challenge of not feeling welcomed in a new state. If you're planning to retire in Georgia, that won't be a problem. The state is known for its diversity and inclusion. You'll find people of various cultures and ethnicities living in harmony. You can expect to lead a peaceful life in Georgia if you belong to a culture or ethnicity that's a minority.
Cool Craft Beer Scene
Do you love beer? If yes, Georgia is your place to be. The craft beer scene in Georgia is on! There are more than 50 breweries across Georgia where you can enjoy freshly brewed beer.
Affording a house in Georgia isn't a dream. You can easily own a house through a mortgage. If you don't want to go through that route, you can rent a house. The average rent in Georgia is lower than the national average. It's $1125 per month, making it possible for everyone to enjoy a comfortable living.
Lower Property Taxes
Not only is housing affordable in Georgia, but the property taxes are also lower than the national average too. You don't have to worry about your pension going into taxes when living in Georgia.
Cons of Living in Georgia
Like we said earlier, there are some cons of retiring in Georgia, which you must be aware of before you decide to retire in Georgia. Let's have a look at some of the biggest drawbacks:
Hot and Humid Summers
While you can enjoy all 4 seasons, including warmer winters in Georgia, you might not enjoy the summer season much. The summers in Georgia are hot and humid. The temperature can become unbearably high, and humidity levels may just become too suffocating. No wonder the people are soaking in sweat in the summers. To cope with hot summers, people rely on air conditioners, so you can expect pretty high electricity bills. If that's something of a concern for you, you better not relocate to Georgia after you retire.
Too Many Mosquitoes and Bugs
The hot and humid summers provide the ideal conditions for mosquitoes. You'll have to deal with mosquitoes throughout the summer season. The worst thing is that you'll find them everywhere. To keep your home free of mosquitoes, you'll have to invest in insect screens and repellants. Not many people have the tolerance for these blood-sucking critters, and if you're one of them, you shouldn't consider retiring in Georgia.
If you think mosquitoes are the only insects you'll have to bear, you're mistaken. You'll also have to learn to live with bugs like gnats. This means you just can't enjoy an outdoor event without being bitten by a blood-sucking insect. The worst is yet to come. These bugs are immune to most of the common insect repellant sprays. Ants, hordes, and palmetto bugs are there too. It's a lot for most people!
Terrible Traffic Conditions
The traffic conditions in Georgia, especially Atlanta, are just horrible. It's a business hub and a popular tourist attraction, so the roads are always jam-packed with cars. You can expect to lose several hours of your day in commuting. If you've got the patience of being stuck in traffic for hours every day, only then should you consider relocating to Georgia. If not, Georgia shouldn't be an option.
High Crime Rates
The crime rates in Georgia are the highest in all of the US. One of the reasons for high crime rates in this state is high poverty rates. Property crimes are one of the most commonly reported crimes in Georgia. Some violent crimes are also reported. If you want to spend your post-retirement days in a state where you can rest assured that your property is safe, Georgia shouldn't be on your list of options. 1 in 35 residents in Georgia fall victim to property crimes.
Public Transport isn't Extensive
Georgia is a huge state. With more than 10 million people living in Georgia, public transport isn't as extensive as it should be. It means you'll have to use your private transport to commute within the state most of the time. If you don't mind spending your money on transport, you can consider moving to Georgia after retirement. However, if you can't afford hefty transportation costs, retiring in Georgia wouldn't be a wise decision.
Poor Healthcare Quality
The healthcare system in Georgia isn't the best. The Commonwealth Fund Report of 2020 ranked Georgia 46th when it comes to the quality of its health system. There is a massive percentage of adults in Georgia who don't have access to medical care. The reason for this is the extremely high costs of healthcare that make it very difficult for an average resident to afford it.
Too Many Allergens
If you're allergic to pollen, Georgia should be the last place to move to after retirement. The spring season comes in full swing in Georgia and with that comes lots of pollen. There's so much pollen that you'll literally find it everywhere. You'll have to wash your patio, deck, and car every day to keep it pollen-free. Pollen isn't just a physical nuisance, but it can lead to severe pollen allergies in susceptible individuals.
Too Many Snakes
You read that right. There are too many snakes in all of Georgia. The residents of Georgia won't be surprised to find a snake in their backyard. There are 46 known species of snakes that are found in Georgia, out of which only 6 are poisonous. That's not the worst thing. You'll have to pay a fine of $1000 and even go through jail time if you kill a non-venomous snake. For someone who isn't fond of wildlife like snakes, Georgia isn't the best place to retire.
The accent of people living in Southern Georgia is distinctly different from that of Northern Georgia. For someone who's coming from another state, understanding the accent and getting a hold of it might be a challenge.
Expensive Homeowners' Insurance
While housing is quite affordable in Georgia, homeowners insurance is one of the most expensive ones in all of the US. The chances of property damage due to floods and hurricanes are high, so the cost of homeowners insurance is also high. Before you move to Georgia, you should always consider the cost of homeowners insurance on top of the housing cost.
There are beaches in Georgia, but the number of beaches isn't much. The few beaches that are there in Florida are usually very crowded. If you like beaches with little or no crowd where you can absorb the view and the sound of waves, you're in for a disappointment.
About THE AUTHOR
With multiple family members currently in senior living facilities, David is in the trenches every week, learning the ins and outs of nursing homes, assisted living, memory care, and general senior living.Read more about David Bolton
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We love planning for retirement. It's somewhat of a hobby, and we want to share what we've learned with you. Over the years we've found the best ways to live, how to travel, take on new hobbies and give back. Happiness in retirement is the main goal, and having the right information allows us (and you) to achieve that.