Retiring in Connecticut
This article will take you through the main things you need to consider if you are retiring in Connecticut.
Connecticut, located in the Northeast region of the United States, is an attractive retirement destination for many Americans seeking a peaceful and quaint environment with access to outdoor activities, cultural events, and historical landmarks. With its picturesque towns, shoreline, and proximity to major cities, Connecticut offers a unique retirement experience that attracts many retirees every year. According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau in 2020, Connecticut had a population of approximately 3.6 million people, with over 16% of the population being over the age of 65, making it one of the top states with a large retirement population.
What age can you retire in Connecticut?
Like many states, Connecticut has no specific retirement age that is mandated by law. This means that individuals are free to retire whenever they choose, as long as they are able to financially support themselves. However, there are some age-related benefits and considerations for retirees in Connecticut:
Social Security benefits: The earliest age at which you can begin receiving Social Security benefits is 62, but if you delay taking benefits, your monthly payments will increase. Full retirement age (FRA) is between 66 and 67, depending on your birth year. Delaying benefits until after FRA can result in even higher monthly payments.
Medicare eligibility: Medicare eligibility begins at age 65, regardless of retirement status. However, if you choose to retire before age 65, you will need to find alternative healthcare coverage until you become eligible for Medicare.
Age discrimination: It is illegal for employers to discriminate against employees or job applicants based on age.
Retirement savings: Regardless of retirement age, it is important for individuals to start saving for retirement as early as possible. Many financial experts recommend saving at least 15% of your income for retirement.
However, like any location, there are both pros and cons to retiring in the state.
Why do people retire to Connecticut?
Peaceful environment: Connecticut is known for its peaceful and quaint towns, scenic natural areas, and historical landmarks. Retirees can enjoy living in a peaceful environment that offers plenty of opportunities for exploration and cultural experiences.
Four-season climate: Connecticut's climate varies greatly depending on the region, but many areas have a four-season climate with mild summers and snowy winters. This makes it an attractive destination for retirees who enjoy experiencing all four seasons.
Outdoor activities: Connecticut is home to numerous state parks, forests, and beaches, providing ample opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and boating.
Cultural scene: Connecticut has a rich cultural scene, with numerous museums, galleries, and performing arts venues. The state hosts several festivals and events throughout the year, including the Connecticut Wine Festival, the Mystic Outdoor Art Festival, and the Connecticut Folk Festival.
What puts people off retiring to Connecticut?
Cost of living: Connecticut's cost of living is generally higher than the national average, which could be a concern for retirees on a fixed income. Housing and healthcare costs, in particular, are higher than in many other states.
Traffic: Connecticut has some areas with heavy traffic, particularly during rush hour in and around the major cities of Hartford, Bridgeport, and New Haven.
Natural disasters: Connecticut is prone to natural disasters such as hurricanes and blizzards, which could be a concern for retirees living in certain areas.
Best places to retire in Connecticut
If Connecticut is your chosen retirement state, here are some of the best places to retire in:
West Hartford: Located in the heart of Connecticut, West Hartford offers a vibrant downtown area with restaurants, shops, and cultural attractions. The town is also home to several parks and walking trails, as well as a golf course and community center.
Mystic: This coastal town is known for its historic seaport and maritime museum, as well as its picturesque downtown area with shops and restaurants. Retirees can enjoy scenic views of the Mystic River and nearby beaches, as well as access to hiking and biking trails.
Simsbury: Nestled in the Farmington River Valley, Simsbury offers a small-town feel with access to numerous outdoor activities. The town has several parks and nature preserves, as well as a golf course, community center, and library.
Southbury: Located in western Connecticut, Southbury is a quiet town known for its scenic countryside and historic landmarks. Retirees can enjoy hiking and fishing in nearby parks, as well as cultural events and activities at the local senior center.
Madison: This coastal town offers access to several beaches and nature preserves, as well as a charming downtown area with shops and restaurants. The town also has a senior center with numerous programs and activities for retirees.
In conclusion, Connecticut offers a range of great places to retire, from small towns to coastal communities, with plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities and cultural experiences but potential retirees should be prepared for a higher cost of living. It's important to seek expert financial advice to weigh up all of the costs associated with retiring in Connecticut, including property taxes, insurance, and living expenses, in order to make an informed decision about whether the state is the right choice for your retirement.
Kate has written for leading publications and blue chip companies over the last 20 years.