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 Nebraska.
But where exactly in Nebraska? Well, there’s only one place to go for the answer — data.
To that end, we have tried to identify the places in Nebraska 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 Sidney don’t mind us spreading the word.
Here are our top ten places in the Cornhusker State to retire for 2018:
- Sidney (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Blair (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Alliance (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Beatrice (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Plattsmouth (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Holdrege (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Gering (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- York (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Chadron (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Seward (Photos | Homes For Sale)
How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Cornhusker State
To create our list of the best places in Nebraska to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the Cornhusker State with a population of at least 5,000 that aren’t townships.
This left us with 27 places from across the state.
For these 27, 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 27, with the lowest number being the best.
Finally, we took the average rank across these criteria. The place, in this case Sidney, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers.
Population: 6,875Median Rent: $627
Distance to Closest Airport: 125 miles
Crime Per 100k: 2,196
More on Sidney: Homes For Sale | Data
The city was named for Sidney Dillon, president of the Union Pacific Railroad. It was founded in 1867 by the Union Pacific and grew up around the military base of Fort Sidney (also known as Sidney Barracks), where soldiers were stationed to guard the transcontinental railroad from potential Indian attacks.
Population: 8,007Median Rent: $673
Distance to Closest Airport: 127 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,398
More on Blair: Homes For Sale | Data
Blair was platted in 1869 when the Sioux City and Pacific Railroad was extended to that point. It was named for railroad magnate John Insley Blair, who was credited with bringing the railroad to town. Within its first year, Blair was designated county seat. Blair was incorporated as a city in 1872.
Population: 8,469Median Rent: $545
Distance to Closest Airport: 180 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,452
More on Alliance: Homes For Sale | Data
The town was originally named Grand Lake. When the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad came to Grand Lake in 1888, the railroad superintendent, G.W. Holdrege, wanted to change it to a simple one-word name closer to the beginning of the alphabet, which he thought would be better for business. The U.S. Post Office gave Holdrege permission, and he picked ‘Alliance’ for the new name of the town. Alliance was incorporated as a city in 1891.
Population: 12,358Median Rent: $632
Distance to Closest Airport: 127 miles
Crime Per 100k: 3,147
More on Beatrice: Homes For Sale | Data
Gage County was one of the 19 counties originally established by the Nebraska Territorial Legislature in 1854. At the time of its establishment, there were no settlers living within it.
Population: 6,476Median Rent: $733
Distance to Closest Airport: 121 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,744
More on Plattsmouth: Homes For Sale | Data
The Lewis and Clark Expedition passed the mouth of the Platte River, just north of what is now Main Street Plattsmouth, on July 21, 1804.
Population: 5,545Median Rent: $548
Distance to Closest Airport: 259 miles
Crime Per 100k: 2,452
More on Holdrege: Homes For Sale | Data
Holdrege was established in 1883 when the railroad was extended to that point. It was named for George W. Holdrege, a railroad official. Holdrege was designated county seat in 1884.
Population: 8,401Median Rent: $731
Distance to Closest Airport: 145 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,487
More on Gering: Homes For Sale | Data
Gering was founded in 1887 at the base of the bluff that is now the center of Scotts Bluff National Monument. It was named for Martin Gering, a pioneer merchant. The city of Scottsbluff was founded across the North Platte River from the bluff in 1900. Separated only by the river, the two cities have since grown together and now form the 7th largest urban area in Nebraska.
Population: 5,792Median Rent: $617
Distance to Closest Airport: 175 miles
Crime Per 100k: 2,348
More on Chadron: Homes For Sale | Data
Succeeding cultures of indigenous peoples lived in the area for thousands of years. In historic times, tribes such as the Oglala Lakota (Oglala Sioux Tribe), Cheyenne and others lived in the area. The Sioux used this territory as a hunting ground after pushing other tribes to the west.
Population: 7,133Median Rent: $711
Distance to Closest Airport: 167 miles
Crime Per 100k: 813
More on Seward: Homes For Sale | Data
Seward was platted in 1868. It was named from Seward County. The railroad was built through Seward in 1873.
Maybe You’re Not Ready To Retire Yet…
So there you have it, the best place to retire in Nebraska goes to Sidney.
If you’re not ready to hang up your office apparel yet, then these places might be up your alley:
- Grand Island
For more Nebraska reading , check out:
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In Nebraska
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Nebraska
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Nebraska For 2018
Detailed List Of Best Places To Retire In Nebraska