These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Illinois


We analyzed over 285 places in Illinois to identify the ones that offer the most to retirees.

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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 Illinois.

But where exactly in Illinois? Well, there’s only one place to go for the answer — data.

To that end, we have tried to identify the places in Illinois 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 Hanover Park don’t mind us spreading the word.

Here are our top ten places in the Prairie State to retire:

  1. Hanover Park
  2. Melrose Park (Photos)
  3. La Grange Park
  4. Cicero (Photos)
  5. Westchester
  6. Elmwood Park (Photos)
  7. Burbank
  8. Oak Lawn (Photos)
  9. Hickory Hills
  10. Glendale Heights

Why did Hanover Park take the top spot? And where are Chicago and Aurora?

Read on to see see all the golden parachute level details. Or check out the purely worst and best places to live in Illinois.

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How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Prairie State

To create our list of the best places in Illinois to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the Prairie State with a population of at least 5,000 that aren’t townships.

This left us with 281 places from across the state.

For these 281, we looked at the following criteria taken from the Census, the FBI’s Crime Report, National Weather Service, and OpenFlights:

  • Low cost of living
  • Low crime
  • Things to do (As measured by population density)
  • Nice weather
  • Distance to the closest international airport

We then ranked each of these places for each criteria from one to 281, with the lowest number being the best.

Finally, we took the average rank across these criteria. The place, in this case Hanover Park, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers.

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1. Hanover Park

Hanover Park, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 38,331
Cost Of Living: 100
Distance to Closest Airport: 12 miles
Crime Per 100k: 983
Hanover Park ranked 1st overall thanks to it’s 131st place rank for cost of living and it’s 53rd place safety rank.

2. Melrose Park

Melrose Park, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 25,422
Cost Of Living: 97
Distance to Closest Airport: 5 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,624
Melrose Park ranked 2nd overall thanks to it’s 115th place rank for cost of living and it’s 137th place safety rank.

3. La Grange Park

La Grange Park, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 13,596
Cost Of Living: 124
Distance to Closest Airport: 6 miles
Crime Per 100k: 639
La Grange Park ranked 3rd overall thanks to it’s 243rd place rank for cost of living and it’s 20th place safety rank.

4. Cicero

Cicero, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 83,972
Cost Of Living: 94
Distance to Closest Airport: 4 miles
Crime Per 100k: 2,527
Cicero ranked 4th overall thanks to it’s 101st place rank for cost of living and it’s 202nd place safety rank.

5. Westchester

Westchester, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 16,719
Cost Of Living: 106
Distance to Closest Airport: 8 miles
Crime Per 100k: 974
Westchester ranked 5th overall thanks to it’s 171st place rank for cost of living and it’s 51st place safety rank.

6. Elmwood Park

Elmwood Park, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 24,845
Cost Of Living: 107
Distance to Closest Airport: 5 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,388
Elmwood Park ranked 6th overall thanks to it’s 181st place rank for cost of living and it’s 114th place safety rank.

7. Burbank

Burbank, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 29,087
Cost Of Living: 108
Distance to Closest Airport: 2 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,488
Burbank ranked 7th overall thanks to it’s 189th place rank for cost of living and it’s 123rd place safety rank.

8. Oak Lawn

Oak Lawn, Illinois

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 56,774
Cost Of Living: 100
Distance to Closest Airport: 5 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,939
Oak Lawn ranked 8th overall thanks to it’s 131st place rank for cost of living and it’s 161st place safety rank.

9. Hickory Hills


Population: 13,858
Cost Of Living: 106
Distance to Closest Airport: 5 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,334
Hickory Hills ranked 9th overall thanks to it’s 171st place rank for cost of living and it’s 107th place safety rank.

10. Glendale Heights


Population: 34,395
Cost Of Living: 100
Distance to Closest Airport: 9 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,561
Glendale Heights ranked 10th overall thanks to it’s 131st place rank for cost of living and it’s 133rd place safety rank.

Maybe You’re Not Ready To Retire Yet…

So there you have it, the best place to retire in Illinois goes to Hanover Park.

If you’re not ready to hang up your office apparel yet, then these places might be up your alley:

  • Oak Brook
  • Mount Vernon
  • Bartonville

For more Illinois reading , check out:

Detailed List Of Best Places To Retire In Illinois

City Rank Population Cost Of Living Distane To Airport Crimes per 100k
Hanover Park 1 38,331 100 12 983
Melrose Park 2 25,422 97 5 1,624
La Grange Park 3 13,596 124 6 639
Cicero 4 83,972 94 4 2,527
Westchester 5 16,719 106 8 974
Elmwood Park 6 24,845 107 5 1,388
Burbank 7 29,087 108 2 1,488
Oak Lawn 8 56,774 100 5 1,939
Hickory Hills 9 13,858 106 5 1,334
Glendale Heights 10 34,395 100 9 1,561
Brookfield 11 18,966 109 5 1,312
Palos Hills 12 17,545 113 6 758
Orland Hills 13 7,241 116 14 552
Stickney 14 6,778 106 2 1,268
Lyons 15 10,571 109 3 1,371
Western Springs 16 13,133 159 7 350
Wheeling 17 38,008 98 10 1,431
Palatine 18 69,098 112 11 953
Rolling Meadows 19 23,377 106 9 1,120
Clarendon Hills 20 8,641 143 10 208
Berwyn 21 56,414 106 4 2,286
Rock Island 22 38,647 80 4 2,670
Mount Prospect 23 54,552 121 6 1,110
Wood Dale 24 13,908 108 3 1,143
Worth 25 10,776 108 7 1,308
River Grove 26 10,248 111 5 1,239
Park Ridge 27 37,567 137 3 1,232
Des Plaines 28 58,755 110 3 1,312
La Grange 29 15,688 146 6 1,083
Prospect Heights 30 16,331 109 8 1,089
Schiller Park 31 11,813 103 2 2,285
Highwood 32 5,377 135 16 688
Roselle 33 22,911 111 9 1,108
Wheaton 34 53,568 127 13 742
Buffalo Grove 35 41,554 120 13 714
Carol Stream 36 40,228 110 12 1,061
Moline 37 42,805 83 2 3,744
Streamwood 38 40,552 100 14 1,738
Arlington Heights 39 75,721 127 8 1,038
Bellwood 40 19,146 103 6 2,867
Elmhurst 41 45,742 133 5 1,149
Charleston 42 21,257 86 46 635
Oak Forest 43 28,055 109 12 1,290
Mundelein 44 31,550 102 20 868
Westmont 45 25,149 115 11 1,184
Carpentersville 46 38,275 92 22 1,625
Morton Grove 47 23,413 116 7 1,400
Winfield 48 9,543 118 14 440
Summit 49 11,409 108 3 2,778
Chicago 50 2,714,017 103 5 4,025
Posen 51 6,251 101 11 2,367
Park Forest 52 21,831 89 21 2,075
Berkeley 53 5,201 107 6 1,691
Maywood 54 24,029 101 7 3,716
Lindenhurst 55 14,380 104 30 417
Addison 56 37,192 107 6 1,820
Lake In The Hills 57 28,908 104 25 543
Warrenville 58 13,415 104 18 827
Northlake 59 12,339 108 4 2,123
Midlothian 60 14,830 104 11 2,333
Island Lake 61 8,025 95 25 971
Round Lake 62 18,425 101 27 944
Round Lake Park 63 7,989 101 27 1,038
Villa Park 64 21,977 107 7 2,343
Palos Heights 65 12,544 116 8 1,211
Niles 66 29,628 110 5 2,453
Glenview 67 46,559 156 8 867
Cary 68 17,946 107 23 763
Norridge 69 15,023 114 4 3,168
Deerfield 70 18,686 154 13 727
Chicago Ridge 71 14,368 106 5 4,259
Hinsdale 72 17,438 203 9 1,015
South Elgin 73 22,274 104 20 1,180
Evergreen Park 74 19,849 113 5 3,002
Riverside 75 8,779 137 4 1,788
Aurora 76 200,907 97 24 1,762
Round Lake Beach 77 27,936 89 29 2,494
Bartlett 78 41,475 117 18 602
East Moline 79 21,394 82 7 2,430
Wilmette 80 27,367 175 11 1,322
Woodridge 81 33,331 112 15 1,230
Silvis 82 7,546 82 6 3,604
Skokie 83 64,873 116 9 2,347
Glen Ellyn 84 27,894 134 11 1,301
Riverdale 85 13,047 90 11 4,376
Winnetka 86 12,437 227 12 828
Crest Hill 87 20,316 96 23 1,299
Lombard 88 44,025 112 9 2,062
Harvey 89 25,625 89 13 6,005
Hoffman Estates 90 51,727 112 14 1,175
Pinckneyville 91 5,422 82 72 331
South Holland 92 22,040 101 15 2,009
Bolingbrook 93 74,320 104 19 1,536
Milan 94 5,097 82 2 2,923
Tinley Park 95 57,125 108 15 1,706
Willow Springs 96 5,677 118 7 598
Spring Valley 97 5,365 87 12 1,304
Elgin 98 111,919 97 21 1,981
Chester 99 8,599 82 63 1,023
Hazel Crest 100 13,924 98 14 3,914
Schaumburg 101 74,366 109 9 2,612
Lockport 102 25,096 105 19 1,235
Darien 103 22,232 124 12 1,542
Forest Park 104 14,137 114 6 4,067
Oak Park 105 51,989 135 7 3,206
Rock Falls 106 9,104 83 47 1,889
Northbrook 107 33,538 162 11 1,082
North Riverside 108 6,983 106 5 7,260
Glen Carbon 109 12,782 98 20 938
Broadview 110 7,915 106 7 5,293
Lakemoor 111 6,313 94 29 649
Downers Grove 112 49,555 128 13 1,376
Evanston 113 75,472 128 11 2,717
Troy 114 10,041 98 25 1,234
Swansea 115 13,722 93 24 1,683
East St. Louis 116 26,731 74 15 7,713
Cahokia 117 14,574 74 16 3,574
Waukegan 118 88,159 89 27 3,364
River Forest 119 11,217 161 7 2,335
Maryville 120 7,837 98 21 1,059
Naperville 121 145,789 138 20 1,198
Glenwood 122 8,853 101 18 2,338
Flossmoor 123 9,215 110 17 1,432
Bethalto 124 9,364 87 20 1,484
Monmouth 125 9,272 81 37 2,469
Mascoutah 126 7,917 90 34 543
Alton 127 27,175 78 15 4,912
Barrington 128 10,449 145 16 1,024
West Chicago 129 27,420 105 17 1,353
Glencoe 130 8,870 227 12 1,093
Alsip 131 19,335 108 8 3,118
Itasca 132 8,502 118 5 1,470
Dixon 133 14,802 85 59 1,661
Paris 134 8,413 80 23 2,638
Highland Park 135 29,780 157 14 1,178
Mokena 136 19,839 119 18 1,058
Winthrop Harbor 137 6,832 100 32 819
Lemont 138 16,587 132 14 1,073
Plano 139 11,929 93 38 964
Geneseo 140 6,589 94 18 1,669
Shorewood 141 16,539 109 30 876
Geneva 142 21,732 126 22 846
Montgomery 143 19,055 97 29 1,474
Chicago Heights 144 30,349 95 19 3,670
Homewood 145 19,280 106 16 3,148
Country Club Hills 146 16,794 101 15 3,947
Joliet 147 147,515 91 27 2,361
East Alton 148 6,171 78 16 3,078
Mchenry 149 26,631 97 31 1,336
Plainfield 150 41,881 107 27 842
North Aurora 151 17,612 106 25 1,385
Grayslake 152 21,053 104 25 1,415
Lincolnwood 153 12,637 127 9 3,505
Mount Zion 154 5,894 89 86 610
Bloomingdale 155 22,221 118 9 2,619
Columbia 156 10,193 98 21 1,069
Chatham 157 12,569 102 73 835
Lincolnshire 158 7,291 149 15 644
Richton Park 159 13,668 104 21 2,743
Beardstown 160 6,109 80 87 1,522
Burr Ridge 161 10,736 183 9 978
Hillsboro 162 7,287 84 56 1,180
Marengo 163 8,081 100 40 1,027
Washington 164 16,102 94 75 1,086
Robinson 165 7,447 81 38 2,282
Wood River 166 10,360 80 17 4,662
Kewanee 167 12,755 77 33 3,622
Edwardsville 168 25,044 97 20 1,397
Lake Zurich 169 19,950 127 17 1,578
O’Fallon 170 29,078 101 26 1,626
Algonquin 171 30,413 109 24 1,528
Collinsville 172 24,855 85 20 3,238
Canton 173 14,397 83 65 1,972
Gilberts 174 7,479 109 25 401
Woodstock 175 25,232 95 35 1,557
Sycamore 176 17,611 99 39 1,271
Machesney Park 177 23,002 84 63 1,912
Huntley 178 25,831 110 30 832
Vernon Hills 179 25,910 121 17 2,049
Mattoon 180 17,399 83 56 2,166
Orland Park 181 58,612 120 13 2,243
Galesburg 182 31,469 78 35 3,689
Batavia 183 26,413 119 22 1,544
Peoria Heights 184 6,019 83 68 2,973
Sterling 185 15,071 84 48 3,855
Steger 186 9,535 95 22 4,803
Godfrey 187 17,809 90 16 1,869
Eureka 188 5,827 92 81 1,201
Homer Glen 189 24,385 124 16 705
Jerseyville 190 8,502 87 25 3,069
Sandwich 191 7,491 98 43 1,321
Manhattan 192 7,405 107 27 702
Urbana 193 41,941 89 65 3,807
St. Charles 194 32,745 116 21 1,557
Hampshire 195 5,732 106 32 348
Clinton 196 7,195 84 100 1,959
Harvard 197 9,589 91 48 1,178
Bartlett 198 41,475 117 119 602
Macomb 199 18,771 87 68 1,885
Pontoon Beach 200 5,753 87 15 2,468
Decatur 201 74,063 78 55 3,483
West Frankfort 202 7,941 78 97 2,027
Zion 203 24,195 89 33 4,079
Carlinville 204 5,297 83 45 3,228
Crystal Lake 205 40,475 102 28 2,208
Channahon 206 12,329 106 36 527
Libertyville 207 20,435 140 21 1,350
Champaign 208 84,672 93 68 3,400
Pekin 209 34,003 87 76 2,355
Rockford 210 149,597 82 62 5,513
Roscoe 211 10,666 95 64 1,012
Freeport 212 24,784 83 73 2,767
Frankfort 213 18,415 126 20 825
Lake Villa 214 8,916 112 31 841
Spring Valley 215 5,365 87 59 1,304
Hawthorn Woods 216 7,590 159 19 289
Minooka 217 11,786 103 36 1,060
Highland 218 9,839 90 37 1,951
Taylorville 219 11,081 83 79 1,489
New Lenox 220 25,347 114 22 1,297
Pana 221 5,673 81 81 2,132
Highland 222 9,839 90 39 1,951
Normal 223 54,534 97 101 2,127
Jacksonville 224 19,042 85 68 2,825
Fairview Heights 225 16,793 86 22 4,174
Braidwood 226 6,102 96 43 1,540
Shiloh 227 13,050 98 28 1,593
Mendota 228 7,182 89 68 1,684
Antioch 229 14,342 104 33 1,680
Quincy 230 40,689 83 97 3,816
Spring Valley 231 5,365 87 69 1,304
Carterville 232 5,742 89 97 1,149
Bourbonnais 233 18,607 101 42 2,203
Peoria 234 115,990 85 66 4,842
Lake Forest 235 18,881 214 18 778
Streator 236 13,163 83 72 3,692
Northfield 237 5,374 193 10 1,711
Danville 238 32,030 81 50 6,949
Watseka 239 5,318 83 69 3,384
Crete 240 8,215 98 24 1,716
Oswego 241 33,245 113 30 1,576
Decatur 242 74,063 78 90 3,483
Mahomet 243 7,996 102 76 637
Mount Carmel 244 7,048 82 75 2,454
Du Quoin 245 5,932 80 80 1,820
Morton 246 16,343 101 79 1,052
South Beloit 247 7,589 87 65 2,095
Loves Park 248 24,499 84 61 2,987
Harrisburg 249 9,418 80 121 2,219
Yorkville 250 18,436 109 35 949
Campton Hills 251 11,500 144 26 313
Lincoln 252 14,253 86 107 3,381
Rantoul 253 13,238 82 73 3,218
Princeton 254 7,741 91 54 1,731
Rockton 255 7,596 92 67 1,750
Chillicothe 256 6,169 91 63 1,928
Olney 257 8,931 81 65 3,504
Bradley 258 15,668 96 43 4,295
Kankakee 259 26,424 89 47 5,498
Hoopeston 260 5,245 80 72 4,156
Ottawa 261 18,707 93 63 2,683
Centralia 262 12,696 80 69 5,639
Matteson 263 19,146 107 19 5,014
Bloomington 264 78,368 102 104 2,545
West Dundee 265 7,369 115 24 2,469
Pontiac 266 12,016 86 77 3,087
Spring Grove 267 5,578 121 36 806
Herrin 268 12,868 82 97 3,085
Vandalia 269 6,758 82 69 3,048
Peru 270 9,913 91 71 2,178
Springfield 271 116,745 87 81 5,810
Morris 272 13,930 102 45 2,476
Gurnee 273 31,070 112 27 4,570
Metropolis 274 6,366 77 107 4,869
Effingham 275 12,650 89 70 3,644
Carbondale 276 26,066 89 94 4,135
East Peoria 277 23,090 91 73 3,148
Johnsburg 278 6,285 110 32 2,004
Bartonville 279 6,406 87 71 3,824
Mount Vernon 280 14,880 83 83 7,661
Oak Brook 281 7,988 189 10 5,345

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