Monday, Jan. 04, 2010

Should I Move to a Low-Cost Region?

This is probably the best reason to relocate. By moving from an expensive urban area to a rural location or small town in the South or Midwest, you can stretch your savings. To get an idea of how much costs can vary, check out the cost-of-living calculator at Moving from Los Angeles to Bloomington, Ind., for example, you'd save 15% on groceries, 61% on housing, 8% on utilities, 14% on transportation and 13% on health care each year. A working person needs to earn only $47,505 a year to live there as well as they did for $75,000 a year in L.A. Such compelling savings can help you retire sooner and for less, especially if your portfolio has taken a hit in the recession. Of course, you'll have to give up all those big-city amenities, right? Not completely. In this example, I chose Bloomington because it is typical of the nation's many college towns (Indiana University) that are cheap to live in but also provide cultural, sporting and educational experiences on par with those of big cities. They may be especially appealing to anyone thinking about using their retirement years to take a few courses and pursue a second act in life.

See more questions about where you should live:
Introduction: Where Should I Live?
Should I Move Abroad?
What Are the Tax Implications of a Move?
Should I Move into a Retirement Community?
Should I Just Stay Put?