This natural diversity means retirees can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, from hiking, bicycling and bird-watching, to boating, kayaking and fishing. Oklahoma also lays claim to more than 50 Native American tribes in the nation — among the most in the nation, giving retirees a chance to explore the rich culture.
A number of universities are located throughout the state, most notably Oklahoma State and Oklahoma University, and residents are fervent fans of the schools’ basketball and football teams. Attending games is often a favorite pastime.
Retirees will benefit from Oklahoma’s low cost of living (14 percent below the national average), and tax incentives.
Con: The state lies in the path of “Tornado Alley”
Best For: Nature Lovers
Cost of Living: 14% lower than national average
Median Home Cost: $99,000
Top State Income Tax: 5.25%
There are no taxes on Social Security or Civil Service retirement benefits, and a number of tax exemptions for seniors.
The state’s median home price is less than $100,000, and a number of communities throughout the state may appeal to retirees. Popular Oklahoma retirement destinations include Bartlesville (home to Frank Lloyd Wright’s only hotel project), Oklahoma City and Tulsa. The large number of manmade lakes in the eastern part of the state, near towns such as Ardmore, have made this a popular region for retirees, as well.
While Oklahoma has a generally mild climate, it does like in a region known as “Tornado Alley,” and, yes, you guessed it, tornados often blast through parts of the state.