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10 Gay Retirement Destinations


As I reported Monday, there are many new retirement options for gay and lesbian seniors, ranging from continuing care facilities to dedicated senior centers to affordable housing developments. Part of the appeal of these communities, experts say, is that some gay and lesbian seniors want to retire around other like-minded individuals.

To that end, Encore looked into the cities where the most gay couples, per capita, live.  Here are the top 10 as of 2010:

  1. Provincetown, Mass.: 163 gay couples per 1,000 households
  2. Wilton Manors, Flor.: 140 / 1,000
  3. Palm Springs, Calif.: 115 / 1,000
  4. Rehoboth Beach, Del.: 107 / 1,000
  5. Guerneville, Calif.: 87 / 1,000
  6. West Hollywood, Calif.: 77 / 1,000
  7. Pleasant Ridge, Mich.: 60 / 1,000
  8. New Hope, Penn.: 59 / 1,000
  9. Rancho Mirage, Calif.: 57 / 1,000
  10. Oakland Park, Fla.: 56 / 1,000

Many of these places are pretty pricey, however,  so SmartMoney.com analyzed each to determine which of destinations provide the most value.  Here’s how they stacked up:

Cost of living Median home cost State income tax rate
Provincetown, Mass. 86% higher than average $668,900 5.3%
Wilton Manors, Flor. 19% higher than average $272,900 None
Palm Springs, Calif. 18% higher than average $255,400 1 – 9.3%
Rehoboth Beach, Del. 82% higher than average $650,800 2.2 – 6.95%
Guerneville, Calif. 33% higher than average $323,000 1 – 9.3%
West Hollywood, Calif. 77% higher than average $622,600 1 – 9.3%
Pleasant Ridge, Mich. 10% higher than average $251,600 4.25%
New Hope, Penn. 1% lower than average $156,400 3.07%
Rancho Mirage, Calif. 40% higher than average $395,100 1 – 9.3%
Oakland Park, Fla. 6% higher than average $193,800 None

Indeed, the best bets in terms of affordability may in Florida — New Hope, Oakland Park and Wilton Manors – thanks in part to its lack of state income. Pleasant Ridge also has relatively low cost of living and tax rates. California, on the other hand, is relatively expensive throughout the state, and both Rehoboth Beach and Provincetown have a very high cost of living and real estate prices that are well above average.

This data comes from an analysis of Census Bureau data by the Williams Institute.   To read more of their research, click here.


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    • Saw this article and it makes some good points. I live in a large 55+ condo community in Florida that has an active gay social club. We get the advantages of the facilities here while living among our straight neighbors and creating a more diverse community. lambdaclearwater.blogspot.com

    • The Palms of Manasota in Florida is the nation’s first lesbian and gay over 55 retirement community. Located about 20 miles north of Sarasota and an equal distance south of St. Petersburg, it, this quiet very nicely landscaped, well-kept community is quiet but not far from gay destinations in those two cities as well as Tampa.

      Founded in the late 1990′s, the community is still very much alive. One can buy at resale a very nice 3 bedroom 2 bath home in the mid to upper $100K RANGE.

      If this interests you, contact me for more information:

About Encore

  • Encore examines the changing nature of retirement, from new rules and guidelines for financial security to the shifting identities and priorities of today’s retirees. The blog also explores news that affects retirement, from the Wall Street Journal Digital Network and around the web. Lead bloggers are reporter Catey Hill and senior editor Jeremy Olshan. Other contributors include The Wall Street Journal’s retirement columnists Glenn Ruffenach and Anne Tergesen; the Director for the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, Alicia Munnell; and the Director of Research for Pinnacle Advisory Group, Michael Kitces, CFP.