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Places to Retire in the Midwest

Married couple moving into a new home after finding places to retire in the midwest

While you could spend your golden years basking in the sun in a tropical location, there are plenty of great retirement destinations right here in the U.S. — some of which are located in places you may have overlooked.

The Midwest is a prime example. America's heartland has a lot to offer retirees, from below-average housing and living costs to culture and amenities. Here are some places to retire in the Midwest and why you might consider a Midwest retirement.

Appleton, Wisconsin

Appleton balances historic charm with urban living. With a population of roughly 75,000, Appleton is less than two hours from Milwaukee and is even closer to Green Bay. 15.2% of Appleton's population is age 65 and older, which means you may find a community of like-minded retirees if you decide to call the city home.

Appleton is also part of the Fox Cities region, which boasts a housing price average of $171,300 — lower than both the state and national averages, according to the Fox Cities Regional Partnership. Appleton itself boasts a cost of living that's 5.6% below the national average. Plus, with a performing arts center, a baseball stadium and popular convention center that hosts everything from trade shows to entertainment events, there's enough to keep retirees busy year-round.

Fargo, North Dakota

Although the movie and TV series may have imposed a reputation on this city, Fargo is an attractive option if you're considering a Midwest retirement.

Health care is one of the city's main industries. Fargo is home to one of the highest doctors per capita, according to Forbes, putting it near the middle of the pack compared to other Midwest cities. The median home value is $225,500 which is far below Midwest cities like Chicago, where median home values are $267,600. If you're looking to stretch your retirement dollars further while having access to traditional urban comforts like museums, theaters and other cultural activities, Fargo may be worth adding to your list.

Kansas City, Missouri

Want big city living in a more tax-friendly state? Kansas City may be worth consideration.

Missouri recently lowered its income tax rate to 5.4%, and the median home values are $163,300. The city also has a thriving arts and restaurant scene (Kansas City barbecue, anyone?), and with professional sports teams like the Chiefs and Royals, retirees who are sports fanatics may just find their tribe in this city.

Live More & Worry Less

Live More & Worry Less

We have financial professionals ready to assist you on your retirement journey.

Springfield, Illinois

While Chicago gets most of the attention, Illinois' capital city shouldn't be forgotten, either.

Springfield's cost of living is nearly 11% lower than the national average and offers some of the most affordable housing in the region, with median home values of $131,300. While housing costs might be a major consideration for a soon-to-be retiree, so might access to good health care. Springfield gets a check here, too — there are 290 doctors for every 100,000 seniors, according to 247 Wall St.

For those who enjoy a bit of nostalgia, the city has a drive-in theater, which is fittingly called the Route 66 Drive-In. Whether you're a book lover or foodie, Springfield has a longstanding literary tradition and love of the arts. Its cultural events and festivals showcase these traditions all year round, showcasing the many activities retirees can enjoy.

Cincinnati, Ohio

Cincinnati offers a little bit of everything for retirees, from more than 20 museums to diverse restaurants that pay homage to the city's German roots. Cincinnati is also home to the Cincinnati Reds and the Bengals, which means sports-loving retirees will have plenty of ways to occupy their time nearly year-round.

Several Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in the city, including Procter & Gamble, Kroger and Fifth Third Bank, which indicates a strong local economy. Below-average housing costs are another main draw, with median home values at $148,700.

Cincinnati recently ranked 3rd among 182 cities for the top place to retire in the U.S. If you crave a Midwest retirement that's more socially active than laid back, this city may just meet your needs.

Are You Ready to Retire in the Midwest?

If you're set to retire, looking beyond the coasts to the Midwest may provide more options. From Fargo to Columbus, there are a number of places to retire in the Midwest that can offer an affordable retirement filled with arts and culture. You've saved all these years for retirement, so why not spend it in a place where your dollars could potentially go further and where you can truly enjoy it?

Live More & Worry Less

Live More & Worry Less

We have financial professionals ready to assist you on your retirement journey.

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Information provided is general and educational in nature, and all products or services discussed may not be provided by Western & Southern Financial Group or its member companies (“the Company”). The information is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal or tax advice. The Company does not provide legal or tax advice. Laws of a specific state or laws relevant to a particular situation may affect the applicability, accuracy, or completeness of this information. Federal and state laws and regulations are complex and are subject to change. The Company makes no warranties with regard to the information or results obtained by its use. The Company disclaims any liability arising out of your use of, or reliance on, the information. Consult an attorney or tax advisor regarding your specific legal or tax situation.