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The 10 Best Places to Retire in Virginia In 2022

Are you considering retiring to Virginia? The state ranks second on CNBC’s list of the best states to spend your retirement, thanks to its affordability, quality of life, access to healthcare, and more. It offers everything from coastal access to small towns in the countryside to easy access to some of the largest metropolitan areas. To help your next home in Virginia, we’ve rounded up the 10 best places to retire in the state.

How We Determine the Best Places to Retire

To narrow down the 10 best states in Virginia, we sought to find cities that offer a combination of affordability, livability, and community. We narrowed down our final list using the following rankings:

Median home value
Cost of living
Crime rate
Cost of healthcare
Amenities Score
Percent of the population over the age of 65%

To gather our data, we relied on information from Zillow, the U.S. Census Bureau, AreaVibes (a website that ranks the livability of cities all over the country). The cities on our list may not have the highest rankings in every category, but they offer the best combination of benefits throughout the state.

Read More: 2022’s Best U.S. States to Retire In

Best Places to Retire in Virginia

1. Abingdon

Population: 8,321

Median Home Value: $217,529

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 11% lower

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 39% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 8% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 23.4%

Abingdon is the smallest town on our list, with a population of just over 8,000, making it perfect for retirees looking for a small town to enjoy their golden years. The town is located in Washington County, Virginia, near the state’s southern border, just north of Tennessee. It’s home to plenty of historical sites, as well as a strong fine arts and crafts scene.

Abingdon makes the top of our list because of its benefits across the board. It has affordable housing, cost of living, and healthcare. It also boasts a low crime rate, a high amenities score, and a large retiree population. In fact, nearly a quarter of the town’s residents are over the age of 65.

2. Roanoke

Population: 98,865

Median Home Value: $231,884

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 14% lower

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 83% higher

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 1% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 16.5%

Roanoke is one of the largest cities on our list and the eighth-most populated in the state, with a population of nearly 100,000 people. It’s located in the western part of the state in the Roanoke Valley of the Roanoke Region of Virginia. Roanoke is known for its beautiful scenery, especially with the nearby Blue Ridge Mountains. It has many outdoor activities and plenty of arts, culture, and nightlife.

Roanoke made our list because of its many amenities and its affordability. The city boasts a low median home value, low healthcare costs, and a low overall cost of living. It also has a large retiree population, with more than 16% of the population being over the age of 65. The only downside of Roanoke is its crime rate, which is considerably higher than the national average.

3. Martinsville

Population: 13,517

Median Home Value: $94,550

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 20% lower

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 31% higher

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 1% lower

Amenities Score: A

% of Population Above 65: 18.5%

Martinsville is a small independent city in Virginia with a population of about 13.500 people. It’s located in Henry County in the southwestern part of the state, not far from North Carolina. One of the city’s claims to fame is the Martinsville Speedway, where it hosts NASCAR races. It also has a rich arts and culture scene and plenty of outdoor activities, including kayaking and hiking. The city is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Martinsville has plenty of benefits for retirees, especially as it relates to its affordability. The city boasts the lowest median home price of any on our list. It also offers affordable healthcare and an overall low cost of living. The state also has a large retiree population, with more than 18% of the city’s residents being over the age of 65. The one major downside of Martinsville is its crime rate, which is considerably higher than the national average.

4. Williamsburg

Population: 15,590

Median Home Value: $404,987

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 16% higher

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 42% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 6% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 16.1%

Williamsburg is a small city in Virginia with a population of nearly 16,000. The city sits in the eastern part of the state, located right between the James River and York River, and not too far from the coast. Williamsburg has one of the richest histories in the state. It was founded by English settlers in 1632, and its long history is an important part of its culture and tourism today.

Williamsburg has plenty of advantages for retirees, including its high amenity score, the percentage of retirees in the state, and the low cost of healthcare. It also has a crime rate that’s considerably lower than the national average. That being said, the city does have a median home price and an overall cost of living that’s higher than the national average.

5. Virginia Beach

Population: 457,672

Median Home Value: $372,390

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 11% higher

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 31% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 6% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 14.2%

Virginia Beach has the largest population of any city on our list. With a population of nearly half a million, the city is located on the southeastern coast of the city next to Norfolk and Chesapeake. Given its proximity to the coast, it’s no surprise that beach life is an important part of the culture in Virginia Beach. There’s plenty of outdoor recreation, as well as plenty of historical and art sites.

There are plenty of reasons why a retiree might want to live in Virginia Beach. The city has a low crime rate and low healthcare costs. It also has an excellent amenity score and an over-65 population of more than 14% of the residents. The only downside is the cost — the median home value and overall cost of living are both slightly higher than the national average.

6. Winchester

Population: 28,136

Median Home Value: $338,015

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 3% higher

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 1% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 3% higher

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 16.7%

Winchester is a city of just over 28,000 people and the county seat of Frederick County. It’s located on the very northern tip of Virginia, not far from Maryland. Like much of the state, Winchester has a strong historical culture, including its role in the American Revolution and Civil War. The city is home to plenty of outdoor recreation, as well as shopping and dining.

Winchester has plenty to offer retirees. First, the median housing price is a bit lower than the national average. And while the cost of healthcare and the overall cost of living are higher than the national average, it’s just slightly. The city also has a low crime rate, a high amenities score, and a large percentage of its population over the age of 65.

7. Staunton

Population: 25,661

Median Home Value: $231,868

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 3% lower

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 1% higher

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 12% higher

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 21.2%

Staunton is a Virginia city located in the northwestern part of the state with a population of just over 25,000. Staunton is located near the Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Its downtown has a vibrant music and arts scene, with plenty of shops, art galleries, and dining opportunities. The city also has plenty of historical sites, including its local museums and Woodrow Wilson’s presidential library.

One of Staunton’s biggest perks for retirees is its cost of living. Both the median home price and the overall cost of living are below the national average. It also has a high amenities score and an over-65 population that’s more than 21% of its residents. Unfortunately, the city does have a crime rate that’s slightly above average, as well as above-average healthcare costs.

8. Colonial Heights

Population: 18,273

Median Home Value: $236,094

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 9% lower

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 72% higher

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 7% higher

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 19.7

Colonial Heights is an independent city in the eastern part of Virginia, just south of Richmond. It has a population of more than 18,000 people. The city has a rich history that dates back to the American Revolution. In fact, that war is where the city got its name. The city offers plenty to do, including its museums, parks, and historical attractions.

Colonial Heights has plenty of advantages for retirees. It has both a median home price and cost of living that are lower than the national average. It also has an excellent amenities score and a large retiree population — nearly 20% of its residents are over the age of 65. As for downsides, Colonial Heights has above-average healthcare costs and a crime rate that’s considerably higher than the national average.

9. Blacksburg

Population: 44,949

Median Home Value: $352,715

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 7% higher

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 67% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 5% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 6.5%

Blacksburg is a town in Montgomery County in the western part of Virginia, just west of Roanoke. The city is primarily known for being home to the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Blacksburg has plenty to offer its residents, including lots of shopping, cultural and historical attractions, a historic downtown, and a thriving arts scene.

Blacksburg’s greatest advantages include its below-average median home price, its low crime rate, its low cost of healthcare, and its high amenities score. As for downsides, the town has a high overall cost of living, as well as a very small retiree population — just 6.5% of the population is 65 or older.

10. Arlington

Population: 232,965

Median Home Value: $831,466

Cost of Living (Compared to the National Average): 64% higher

Crime Rate (Compared to the National Average): 62% lower

Cost of Healthcare (Compared to the National Average): 6% lower

Amenities Score: A+

% of Population Above 65: 11.1%

Arlington is the fourth-largest city in Virginia, with a population of nearly a quarter of a million people. It’s located just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., meaning its residents enjoy the benefits of one of the country’s largest and most renowned metropolitan areas. Arlington residents can enjoy the walkable neighborhoods, waterfront views, and more.

Given its proximity to Washing, D.C., it probably doesn’t come as a surprise that Arlington has a high cost of living. Both the median home price and the cost of living are considerably higher than the national average. However, despite being a large city, Arlington has a crime rate that’s well below the national average, as well as low healthcare costs.

Next Steps For You

If you’re considering retiring in Virginia, you have plenty of great options available to you, whether you’re looking for a small town or a big city. The list above can serve as a great starting point in helping you find a home to spend your golden years.

Are you looking for help in managing your finances during retirement? You can access Personal Capital’s financial dashboard and find tools to help you with your budget, retirement plan, savings goals, and more.

Get Started with Personal Capital

 

 

Author is not a client of Personal Capital Advisors Corporation and is compensated as a freelance writer.

The content contained in this blog post is intended for general informational purposes only and is not meant to constitute legal, tax, accounting or investment advice. Compensation not to exceed $500. You should consult a qualified legal or tax professional regarding your specific situation. Keep in mind that investing involves risk. The value of your investment will fluctuate over time and you may gain or lose money. Any reference to the advisory services refers to Personal Capital Advisors Corporation, a subsidiary of Personal Capital. Personal Capital Advisors Corporation is an investment adviser registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training nor does it imply endorsement by the SEC.

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