California, not Florida, is home to the richest retirement towns in the U.S., according to a new report

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California, not Florida, is home to the richest retirement towns in the U.S., according to a new report

There’s plenty of towns across the U.S. where Americans can retire affordably and live out their golden years without breaking the bank. But where do retirees with bigger nest eggs like to settle down? 

Earlier this month, personal finance site GoBankingRates.com ranked the richest retirement towns in the country. The site examined American cities with a minimum population of 15,000 of which at least 25% of residents are aged 65 or older.

The 131 qualifying cities were then ranked by median household income based on data from the 2022 American Community Survey by the U.S. Census Bureau. 

Of the 10 richest retirement towns in the country, the wealthiest has a median household income of $166,747 while the No. 10 town’s median income is $124,460. 

California towns dominated the list, with the Golden State being home to not only the richest retirement town in the country but also four of the top 10. Meanwhile Florida, one of the most popular states in the nation for retirees, had one city in the top 10 of the rich list.

America’s richest retirement town: Ranchos Palos Verdes, California

Ranchos Palos Verdes, Calif. ranked as the richest retirement town, with a median household income of $166,747.

The coastal city is a suburb of Los Angeles and is known for its extensive hiking trails, highly rated school district and high property values, according to the education ranking platform Niche.

Rancho Palos Verdes, California ranked as the richest retirement town in the U.S., according to GOBankingRates.

Simonkr | E+ | Getty Images

Residents aged 65 and over make up 26.2% of the total population, with just under 11,000 seniors living in Ranchos Palos Verdes.

The average Rancho Palos Verdes home value is $1,909,216, up 8.4% over the past year, according to Zillow.

The high home value goes hand in hand with the fact that the cost of living is 104% higher than the national average, according to PayScale. Housing expenses are 328% higher than the national average, while utility prices are 11% higher.

To retire in a California city like Ranchos Palos Verdes, you’ll need a minimum of $1,432,425 for 25 years of retirement or a $1,720,630 minimum for 30 years of retirement, according to a January GoBankingRates.com analysis.

The 10 richest retirement towns in the U.S.

  1. Ranchos Palos Verdes, California
  2. Highland Park, Illinois
  3. Bainbridge Island, Washington
  4. East Honolulu, Hawaii
  5. Melville, New York
  6. Laguna Beach, California
  7. Paramus, New Jersey
  8. Naples, Florida
  9. Walnut Creek, California
  10. Cerritos, California

Highland Park ranked as the No. 2 richest retirement town in the U.S., according to GoBankingRates.com.

The Chicago suburb has a 65-plus population of 25.3% and a median household income of $159,567.

The average Highland Park home value is $633,515, up 6.1% over the past year, according to Zillow.

The Chicago suburb of Highland Park ranked as the No. 2 richest retirement town in the U.S., according to GOBankingRates.

Page Light Studios | Istock | Getty Images

Highland Park is considered one of the best places to live in the state, according to Niche.

It’s a little over 20 miles from downtown Chicago and the O’Hare International Airport is about 18 miles away. The location allows residents to be close to a large metropolitan area while still being partially along Lake Michigan.

East Honolulu is the only town in the top 10 not located in the contiguous United States. The Hawaiian town with a median household income of $141,244 has the second-highest number of senior residents in the ranking with 13,577.

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