Finance Website Ranks Best, Worst States for Military Retirees

Finance Website Ranks Best, Worst States for Military Retirees
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Editor’s note: This article by Jim Absher originally appeared on, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.


A career in the military hones certain skill sets and talents, but where are the best places to take those talents once you're out of the military? To coin a phrase from real estate, it's all about location, location, location.


In that spirit, compiled a list of the best places for veterans and military retirees to settle down to after leaving the military.


[RELATED: MOAA's Military State Report Card and Tax Guide]


Their study rated each state on three different criteria that are important to veterans:

  1. Economic environment - Factors such as state tax on military pension, projected job growth, housing affordability, cost-of-living, quality of public university system
  2. Quality of life - Factors such as number of military installations, arts, entertainment & recreation opportunities, average population age, number of homeless veterans, weather and climate
  3. Health care - Including number of VA health facilities, number of hospitals, physicians and mental health counselors per capita, availability of veterans treatment courts.


Based on a combination of ratings for those criteria, here are the best states to move to after leaving the military:

  • 10: New Hampshire
  • 9: Missouri
  • 8: Wyoming
  • 7: Maryland
  • 6: Alabama
  • 5: Alaska
  • 4: South Dakota
  • 3: Florida
  • 2: South Carolina
  • 1: Virginia


[RELATED: Military Officer's Live and Play 2021]


For more details, as well as rankings of the worst states to move to after leaving the military, see the article 2021 Best and Worst States for Military Retirees.


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