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Best Places to Retire in Maryland

Thinking of retiring in Maryland? You’ll find plenty of company in the following cities and towns, which generally have large populations of senior citizens living there. You’ll also have the peace of mind of being near ample medical facilities. Where Maryland falls short, however, is its relatively high tax burden rates. This means you might need to save a little more for retirement and perhaps work with a financial advisor to make sure your nest egg will last through retirement.

How We Determined the Best Places to Retire

We determined the best places to retire by looking at a few different factors. So as to better plan your finances in retirement, we looked at each city’s tax burden. We also checked out each city’s access to medical centers, recreation centers and retirement communities, counting up the number of each per 1,000 residents. Then, to measure whether you’d have peers to spend your retirement with, we also found the percentage of seniors in each city.

1. Bel Air

The top spot to retire in Maryland is the town of Bel Air. With 11.33 medical centers per 1,000 residents, it comes second in this department only to Chevy Chase. Bel Air also comes second to Chevy Chase in the percentage of seniors as a part of the general population.

It does, however, outperform Chevy Chase in the number of recreation centers, with 2.39 per 1,000 residents. Among its attraction are one of Maryland’s 24 Arts and Entertainment districts in the city’s downtown, plus an expansive Saturday Farmers Market. Bel Air also offers the highest concentration of retirement communities in this list with 0.77 per 1,000 residents.

2. Chevy Chase

At 19%, the tax burden you’ll face in Chevy Chase is tied for the highest you’ll see on this list. With Washington D.C. and all its amenities right at its border, Chevy Chase offers the highest concentration of medical centers with 11.47 per 1,000 residents. This is handy, since the city also maintains a remarkably high percentage of senior citizens at 40.4%.

Retirees in Chevy Chase will have access to 1.13 recreation centers per 1,000 residents and a relatively low number of retirement communities at 0.24 locations per 1,000 residents.

3. Chestertown

A retirement in Chestertown can offer some nice riverfront views as the town sits right along the Chester River. You’ll have access to a little over two recreation centers per 1,000 residents. The numbers are lower when it comes to retirement communities, however, with only 0.58 per 1,000 residents even with a senior population of 28.1%.

Chestertown offers just around five medical centers per 1,000 residents. The tax burden here is 18.9%.

4. Ocean City

Best Places to Retire in Maryland

As its name might suggest, Ocean City is billed as a resort town, offering perhaps the perfect retirement community. With the Atlantic Ocean to the East and the Isle of Wight Bay to the West, Ocean City offers a nice stretch of beach and boardwalk. It’s no wonder the city posts a relatively high percentage of seniors as part of the population at 31.9%.

Retirees here will also have access to 5.80 recreation centers per 1,000 residents. While access to medical centers is somewhat limited (1.98 locations per 1,000 residents), Ocean City does have the lowest tax burden of any town in this top 10, at 17.9%.

5. Westminster

While Westminster has a relatively low senior population – senior citizens make up 15% of the population – the Baltimore suburb does have plenty of retirement communities, with 0.70 locations per 1,000 residents. There’s just over one recreation center and 4.72 medical centers per 1,000 residents.

The city isn’t lacking in fun events, with the Carroll County Fair, Common Ground on the Hill, Maryland Wine Festival and Art in the Park – all happening annually.

6. Easton

Easton is home to the Academy Art Museum, Historical Society of Talbot County and the Far Eastern Shore Winery. The Red Avon River makes its way through parts of the city’s western side.

While Easton has the lowest number of retirement communities on this list, you won’t be without neighbors your age, as just over a quarter of the population here are retirees. You will still have good access to medical care, with 4.58 medical centers per 1,000 residents.

7. Rockville

Rockville is a short drive from both Virginia and Washington D.C. a short drive away, but people who retire here may not want to leave. Its main Rockville Town Square is picturesque, with a lawn and seasonal ice-skating rink. Plus, for the more active retirees, there’s also the Rock Creek Trail, Rock Creek Regional Park and Lake Needwood. Rockville tallies around one recreation center per 1,000 residents, and should you need medical attention, you’ll have access to 5.95 medical centers per 1,000 residents.

On the downside, Rockville is tied with Chevy Chase for the highest tax burden on this list, with a 19% burden. There are also a lower number of retirees here, with only 15.4% of the town’s population over the age of 65.

8. Annapolis

The capital of Maryland, Annapolis can offer a nice view of Chesapeake Bay throughout your retirement. You’ll also be able to visit the city’s historic district with its 18th-century brick houses and Maryland State House. The city also has a decent number of recreation centers, with almost two centers per 1,000 residents.

Annapolis does have a lower percentage of seniors (15.5%) and a fairly low concentration of retirement communities in Annapolis. You can find 5.3 medical facilities per 1,000 residents in Annapolis.

9. Pikesville

A quarter of residents in this Baltimore suburbs are over the age of 65. It has a relatively low number of recreation centers, though retirees can enjoy its two large golf courses (the Woodholme Golf Course and The Suburban Club) and shop a dine at the Shops at Quarry Lake. The city does lag others on this list when it comes to access to medical centers, and its tax burden is a bit on the high side at 18.8%.

10. Silver Spring

Best Places to Retire in Maryland

Closing out the top 10, Silver Spring is tied with Chevy Chase and Rockville for highest tax burden on our list, at 19%. It also has the lowest percentage of seniors, at a mere 9.2%. Despite that, it has a relatively high concentration of retirement communities. Silver Spring offers around five medical centers per 1,000 residents.

Residents who choose to retire in Silver Spring can find plenty to do. The town is home to a number of festivals and events throughout the year, including the Silverdocs documentary film festival in June and the Silver Spring Jazz Festival in September. In between, you can go to events at the Fillmore, the Cultural Arts Center, the American Film Institute Silver Theatre and Culture Center and more.

Retirement Tips

  • An employer-sponsored 401(k) can go a long way toward building your nest egg. At the very least you should make sure you’re getting any employer match that your company offers, but you can contribute up to $19,000 a year in 2019.
  • A financial advisor can help you invest your retirement dollars in a way that takes on just the right amount of risk to optimize your savings. And as you enter your retirement years, a good advisor can help you with everything from tax planning to Social Security strategies to cutting living costs. To find the right advisor for you, check out our financial advisor matching tool. Answer just a few questions and we can connect you to up to three qualified advisors in your area.

Photo credit: ©iStock.com/Sean Pavone, ©iStock.com/rypson, ©iStock.com/AleksandarNakic

Lauren Perez, CEPF® Lauren Perez writes on a variety of personal finance topics for SmartAsset, with a special expertise in savings, banking and credit cards. She is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance® (CEPF®) and a member of the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. Lauren has a degree in English from the University of Rochester where she focused on Language, Media and Communications. She is originally from Los Angeles. While prone to the occasional shopping spree, Lauren has been aware of the importance of money management and savings since she was young. Lauren loves being able to make credit card and retirement account recommendations to friends and family based on the hours of research she completes at SmartAsset.
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