1. Anchorage, Alaska
In Anchorage, Alaska, veterans age 65 and older make up 2.60% of the population, which is the 40th-highest percentage for this double-weighted metric. Meanwhile, Anchorage ranks 35th for its low unemployment rate (2.9%) and 91st for the percentage of veterans living below the poverty line (7.9%). For retired seniors, the city offers the lowest tax burden (14.78%) in the entire study.
2. Roseville, CA
Roseville, California ranks seventh on the Military Retirement Ease Index and eighth on the Business Environment Index. About 3% of Roseville’s population are veterans ages 65 and older (15th highest income) and the area has the 22nd highest income for veterans ($61,953).
3. Sioux Falls, SD
Sioux Falls, South Dakota, remains #3 this year due to its consistently strong rankings. Sioux Falls boasts a place in the top 20 cities in our Veteran’s Resource category. In particular, we estimate that there are approximately 21 VA health care facilities and nearly two VA benefits administration offices, both per 100,000 veterans.
4. Lakewood, CO
Colorado ranks the sixth best state for number of VA benefits administration offices per capita, with 2.30 offices per 100,000 veterans. The city of Lakewood is also ranked 18th overall for its strong economic environment, which is a composite of these three metrics: median veteran income ($53,957), percentage of veterans living below the poverty line (4.8%), and unemployment rate as of August 2022 (3.0%). ).
5. Vancouver, WA
Vancouver, Washington ranks second in our category for military retirement-friendliness. Notably, Vancouver also has the fourth-highest percentage of veterans aged 65 and older (4.03%) and a low estimated senior tax burden (22.02%).
6. Overland Park, Kansas
Overland Park, Kansas ranks second for the Business Environment Index of all 200 cities in our study. Unemployment is low, with just 2.6% of workers out of work in August 2022 (18th lowest overall). Additionally, Overland boasts the 60th-highest number of senior communities per capita at 16.53.
7. Chesapeake, Virginia
Chesapeake, Virginia shows a top 20 ranking in two metrics: Percentage of Population Who Are Veterans Age 65 and Older (3.22%) and Median Income Level of Veterans ($76,406). Chesapeake seniors are less likely to live below the poverty line, as approximately 5.0% of this population is currently in that position.
8. Surprise, AZ
Surprise, Arizona had a few surprises in store for us compared to the 200 other cities in our study. First off, the city ranks in the top 10 for both its military retirement friendliness and its business environment. Additionally, this Phoenix suburb ranked first for the percentage of the population who are veterans ages 65 and older (4.51%) and has the second-lowest veteran poverty rate (1.4%).
9. Oceanside, CA
Oceanside, California moved up one spot in the overall military retiree rankings this year. Located between Los Angeles and San Diego, the city of Oceanside performs well due to its relatively low percentage of veterans living below the poverty line (5.0%), which is the 28th lowest in our study. Oceanside veterans also earn approximately $58,369, the 34th highest median income for veterans in the entire study.
10. Peoria, AZ
Peoria, Arizona rounds out this year’s top 10 ranking for the best places for military retirees. Peoria ranks in the top 20 cities for two metrics: percentage of veterans below the poverty line (3.6%) and percentage of population who are retired veterans (3.36%). The median veteran income is $60,739, further demonstrating the region’s strong economic environment for veterans.