By Catey Hill
In reporting my “Retire Here, Not There: Texas” piece about the best places to retire in the Lone Star state, I came across a bunch of worthy towns. One that didn’t make the cut may still be worth a look: Weatherford.
Weatherford offers a quaint small town experience, where retirees can take it down a notch, but also has easy access to Fort Worth — just 33 miles away.
The picturesque town is perhaps best known for its horses — it’s the “Cutting Horse Capital of the World” (cutting horses help handle herds of cattle), and there are a number of horse trainers in the area as well as miles of horseback trails.
Throughout the city, retirees will also find an abundance of historic homes and buildings, including more than 60 Queen Ann, Victorian and other historic homes lining Weatherford’s tree-lined streets, as well as the renowned Parker County Courthouse, built in 1866. The quaint downtown offers a variety of shops, boutiques, salons and museums, and for an even richer cultural experience, residents are only an hour from Dallas. For the outdoor enthusiast, Lake Weatherford offers plenty of water sports, and there are a number of golf courses in the area as well.
And then there’s the low cost of living. The median home costs just $131,700, the overall cost of living is 8.4% lower than the U.S. average, according to Sperling’s Best Places, and the state has no income tax.
Of course, there are some downsides: Due to low water levels, public boat ramps on the lake are currently closed, so that may limit opportunities for that pontoon boat cruise. Plus, the small size of the town — there are just 25,000 residents — means that restaurant and shopping choices right in town are a bit limited.