Retiring in Rhode Island

1 min readLast updated April 16, 2024by Kate Morgan

Delve into the pros and cons, best places to stay, and other aspects of retiring in Rhode Island.

According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2022, Rhode Island had a population of approximately 1.1 million people, with over 18.9% of the population being over the age of 65, making it one of the top states with a large retirement population. Learn more about retiring in Rhode Island.

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  • The state offers unique reasons for retiring in Rhode Island.

  • Rhode Island provides a small-state feel, mild climate, ocean access, and a cultural scene.

  • More than 18% of Rhode Island’s population are retirees.

  • Newport and East Greenwich are among the best places to retire in Rhode Island.

  • There are age-related benefits to retiring in the Ocean State.

What are the pros and cons of retiring in Rhode Island?

As appealing as the state’s good points are, it’s important to remember that retiring in Rhode Island comes with pros and cons. Let’s take a closer look.

The pros of retiring to Rhode Island

Some of the biggest reasons why Rhode Island is a good place to retire include:

  •  Small state feel: The island has a small-state feel, and there are many charming towns and friendly retirement communities in Rhode Island. Retirees can enjoy living in a close-knit environment that offers a sense of community and belonging.

  • Mild climate: Rhode Island's climate varies depending on the region, but many areas have a temperate climate with cool winters and warm summers. This makes it an attractive destination for retirees who want to avoid harsh weather conditions.

  • Ocean access: Rhode Island is home to numerous beaches and marinas, providing ample opportunities for boating, fishing, and other water activities.

  • Cultural scene: Rhode Island 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 Newport Jazz Festival, the Providence WaterFire, and the Rhode Island International Film Festival.

The cons of retiring in Rhode Island

For some people, the following cons are the main reasons why Rhode Island is bad to retire in:

  • Cost of living: Rhode Island'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.

  • Natural disasters: Rhode Island is prone to natural disasters such as hurricanes and flooding, which could be a concern for retirees living in certain areas.

  • Traffic: Rhode Island's traffic can be congested during peak travel times, particularly around the major cities of Providence and Newport. This can be off-putting for people who are looking at retiring in Rhode Island for a change of pace.

What are the best places to retire in Rhode Island?

If the Ocean State is your chosen retirement state, here are some of the best places to retire in Rhode Island:

  1. Newport: Located on Aquidneck Island, Newport is a historic city with a vibrant cultural scene. Retirees can enjoy the city's rich history, beautiful beaches, and numerous restaurants and shops.

  2. East Greenwich: This small town is located in the western part of the state and is known for its quaint downtown area, historic homes, and excellent schools. Retirees can enjoy the town's quiet charm and proximity to Providence, the state's capital city.

  3. Providence: As the state's capital and largest city, Providence offers retirees a diverse range of cultural experiences, including museums, theaters, and restaurants. The city is also home to several universities which provide a variety of continuing education programs.

  4. Narragansett: Located on the southern coast of the state, Narragansett is a popular beach town with beautiful views of the Atlantic Ocean. People retiring to Rhode Island can enjoy the town's laid-back atmosphere, excellent seafood, and easy access to other coastal destinations.

  5. Warwick: Located in the central part of the state, Warwick is a suburban community with a diverse range of housing options and amenities. Retirees can enjoy the city's parks and recreational facilities, as well as its proximity to both Providence and the coast.

  6. Cumberland: Located in the northern part of the state, Cumberland is a quiet suburban community with a strong sense of community. Retirees can enjoy the town's parks and trails, as well as being able to travel easily to other destinations in New England.

What age can you retire in Rhode Island?

Like many states, Rhode Island 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 support themselves financially. However, there are some age-related benefits and considerations to consider if you’re looking to retire in Rhode Island:

  • 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, individuals need to start saving for retirement as early as possible. Many financial experts recommend saving at least 15% of your income for retirement. You could also check out the average retirement savings in the US here.

Is Rhode Island a good place to retire?

Rhode Island offers a range of retirement options, from charming small towns to vibrant cities and beautiful coastal destinations. Retirees can enjoy a mild climate and a variety of cultural attractions but should be prepared for a higher cost of living.

Seek expert financial advice if you’re thinking about retiring in Rhode Island, as you’ll need to consider property taxes, insurance, and living expenses. Visit Unbiased for more information about retirement savings and investment options. Let us match you with a financial advisor who can help you weigh up all the costs associated with retiring in Rhode Island so that you can make an informed decision.

Content writer

Kate Morgan

Kate has written for leading publications and blue chip companies over the last 20 years.

Want to retire in Rhode Island?

A financial advisor can help you plan and realize your dream retirement.