When most people think of calling it quits on a career, they immediately think of a move to Florida.
But not everyone wants to spend their golden years in Florida; some of us want to stay close to friends and family and within the great state of Delaware.
But where exactly in Delaware? Well, there’s only one place to go for the answer — data.
To that end, we have tried to identify the places in Delaware that are safe, affordable, and have plenty of things to keep you busy well into retirement.
What did we find after pouring through all the data? Let’s just say we hope folks in Bridgeville don’t mind us spreading the word.
Here are our top ten places in the First State to retire for 2018:
- Bridgeville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lewes (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Smyrna (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- New Castle (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Milton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Rehoboth Beach (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Greenwood (Homes For Sale)
- Elsmere (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Wilmington (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Newport (Homes For Sale)
How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the First State
To create our list of the best places in Delaware to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the First State — 77 cities and towns.
We then narrowed it down to places with at least 1,000 people that weren’t townships. This left us with 26 places from across the state.
For these 26, we looked at the following criteria taken from the Census, the FBI’s Crime Report, National Weather Service, and OpenFlights:
- Low cost of living as measured by rent
- Low crime
- Things to do (Museums, Colleges, and Libraries in town)
- Nice weather
- Distance to the closest international airport
- Other retirees (High median age)
We then ranked each of these places for each criteria from one to 26, with the lowest number being the best.
Finally, we took the average rank across these criteria. The place, in this case Bridgeville, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers.
Population: 11,081Median Rent: $922
Distance to Closest Airport: 44 miles
Crime Per 100k: 3,429
More on Smyrna: Homes For Sale | Data
Smyrna was originally called Duck Creek Cross Roads and received its current name in 1806 after the Ancient Greek seaport of Smyrna in present-day Turkey. The town was located along the north-south King’s Highway. Smyrna was originally a shipping center along the Duck Creek and was the most important port between Wilmington and Lewes, shipping grain, lumber, tanbark, and produce to points north. After the shipping industry collapsed in the 1850s, the town would continue to be an agricultural center.
4. New Castle
Population: 5,372Median Rent: $1,153
Distance to Closest Airport: 22 miles
Crime Per 100k: 4,113
More on New Castle: Homes For Sale | Data
New Castle was originally settled by the Dutch West India Company in 1651, under the leadership of Peter Stuyvesant, on the site of a former aboriginal village, “Tomakonck” (“Place of the Beaver”), to assert their claim to the area based on a prior agreement with the aboriginal inhabitants of the area. The Dutch originally named the settlement Fort Casimir, but this was changed to Fort Trinity (Swedish: Trefaldighet) following its seizure by the colony of New Sweden on Trinity Sunday, 1654. The Dutch conquered the entire colony of New Sweden the following year and rechristened the fort Nieuw-Amstel (“New Amstel”). This marked the end of the Swedish colony in Delaware as an official entity, but it remained a semi-autonomous unit within the New Netherland colony and the cultural, social, and religious influence of the Swedish settlers remained strong. As the settlement grew, Dutch authorities laid out a grid of streets and established the town common (The “Green”), which continue to this day.
6. Rehoboth Beach
Population: 6,137Median Rent: $958
Distance to Closest Airport: 20 miles
Crime Per 100k: 2,916
More on Elsmere: Homes For Sale | Data
Elsmere dates back to 1886 when real estate developer Joshua Heald bought farmland and converted it into houses, building the first suburb in northern Delaware. The community was built at an intersection of railroad lines and allowed working-class families easy access to Wilmington. Trolley lines were later built leading to Elsmere. In 1909, Elsmere was incorporated as a town.
Population: 71,502Median Rent: $925
Distance to Closest Airport: 18 miles
Crime Per 100k: 6,753
More on Wilmington: Homes For Sale | Data
Wilmington is built on the site of Fort Christina and the settlement Kristinehamn, the first Swedish settlement in North America.
The area now known as Wilmington was settled by the Lenape (or Delaware Indian) band led by Sachem (Chief) Mattahorn just before Henry Hudson sailed up the Len-api Hanna (“People Like Me River”, present Delaware River) in 1609. The area was called “Maax-waas Unk” or “Bear Place” after the Maax-waas Hanna (Bear River) that flowed by (present Christina River). It was called the Bear River because it flowed west to the “Bear People”, who are now known as the People of Conestoga or the Susquehannocks.
Maybe You’re Not Ready To Retire Yet…
So there you have it, the best place to retire in Delaware goes to Bridgeville.
If you’re not ready to hang up your office apparel yet, then these places might be up your alley:
For more Delaware reading , check out:
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Delaware
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In Delaware
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Delaware
Detailed List Of Best Places To Retire In Delaware