Study shows Tallahassee as number one destination for Baby Boomer retirees

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A revealing new analysis of trends and preferences indicates that tens of millions of Baby Boomers searching for the ideal place to retire should look to Southern collegetowns for the best combination of climate, cost of living, health care and other top priorities, according to a report from The Washington Economics Group (WEG). And in the scientific comparisons of 20 prospective ideal “Boomer” retirement communities, Florida’s capital city, Tallahassee, ranks number one in the country.

The WEG report, “Best Choice for Retiring Boomers: Head South – An Analysis of Selected U.S.Cities,” builds on the first major survey in 10 years of retirement relocation preferences, which wasrecently conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research. The survey found that fully one-third of Baby Boomers would consider moving to another state to find the desirable conditions they mostvalue. Chief among those conditions identified by “Boomers” in the poll are a mid-sized town thatoffers a pleasant warm climate with a mild hint of winter, a low cost of living and favorable tax rate,and a top quality health care system, among other key priorities.

“Through the Mason-Dixon Poll, we’re learning exactly what Baby Boomers are looking for as theynear retirement and where they can find it,” said nationally renowned economist Dr. Tony Villamil,Founder and Principal Advisor with The Washington Economics Group.

“The Mason-Dixon survey provided an intriguing snapshot of what matters to this important group of 78 million Americans. Wethought it would be beneficial to take the analysis a step further and ask the key question of whichcities come closest to offering Baby Boomers what they’re looking for.”

The answer, at least in large part, appears to be Southern college towns. The top-ranked communityin the WEG analysis is Tallahassee, Fla., capital of the Sunshine State and home to two state universities. Tallahassee’s winning assets also include quality affordable housing, the nation’s top-rated Medicare program in its Capital Health Plan, an ideal array of outdoor activities and the highest percentage of other key attributes that Boomers identified as priorities. Three of the next five citiesare also homes to ‘Deep South’ universities: Athens, Ga. (3); Tuscaloosa, Ala. (4); and Oxford, Miss (6).

The full study can be viewed here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.