Spokane, Washington – Retirement Guide

Spokane, Washington   Retirement Guide

Washington State’s bad rap as a haven for soggy weather often spooks retires away from considering it as a destination. Truth be told, the Evergreen State has a number of nooks where the weather is downright amenable. Case in point: Spokane. This town of just over 210,000 residents offers all manner of amenities, and boasts 4 distinct seasons, as well as more than 260 clear days annually.

Sunny, temperate weather means there are ample days to enjoy Spokane’s beautiful natural scenery and outdoor activities. Seniors with a penchant for the Great Outdoors can tee off at one of Spokane’s 33 courses, which are often nestled amidst shady pines, and adjacent to sparkling rivers and lakes. The town even lies in proximity to one of the nation’s top-ranked (and most photographed) greens, the Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Course with its famed “floating green.”

Still, Spokane offers active retirees far more than the chance to practice their golf swing. Five ski resorts lie within easy driving distance, and water lovers can boat, kayak, fish or swim at one of the regions 76 lakes.

Pros: Excellent golfing, major medical centers, historic downtown, low median home prices
Con: High unemployment rate

At a Glance
Best For: Golf lovers
Population: 210,103
Cost of Living: 7% lower than national average
Median Home Cost: $134,920
Unemployment: 9.1%
Top State Income Tax: No state income tax
Crime Rate: 66% higher than national average

The Spokane River runs through the town, incredibly, and bubbles with rapids; there’s even a 37-mile bicycling and walking trail. For retirees not afraid of a drive, Spokane is situated within a day’s drive from a number of National Parks, including Yellowstone and Glacier.

Spokane’s historic downtown is a thriving hub of restaurants, boutique shops and galleries. Culture lovers can also take in a performance of the well-regarded Spokane Symphony, or the Fox Theater. Spokane also hosts a number of annual festivals, including MusicFest Northwest, and the Spokane Fall Folk Festival, featuring folkloric arts.

Retiring to Washington’s second largest city doesn’t come with a steep price tag. In fact, Spokane’s cost of living is comfortably below the national average, and the median home price is $134,920. Retirees considering a working retirement should take pause and know that Spokane’s unemployment rate is 9.1 percent.

Medical care is also stellar in Spokane. The town is the medical hub for this corner of the Northwest, and 2 major medical centers can be found in town.

Top Retirement Cities in Washington:  Bellingham | Spokane | Walla Walla

Photo by James Hawley via Flickr. All statistics were up to date as of publication. See these sources for the most current data.