These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In South Dakota For 2019


We analyzed over 27 places in South Dakota to identify the ones that offer the most to retirees.

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Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the best places to retire in South Dakota.

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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 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 South Dakota.

Where exactly in South Dakota is the best place to retire? Well, there’s only one place to go for the answer — data — which returns Lead as the best place to hang up your cleats.

To that end, we have tried to identify the places in South Dakota 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 Lead don’t mind us spreading the word.

Here are our top ten places in the Mount Rushmore State to retire for 2019:

Why did Lead take the top spot? And where are Sioux Falls and Aberdeen?

Read on to see see all the golden parachute level details or check out the best places to retire in America.

For South Dakota state reading:

How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Mount Rushmore State for 2019

To create our list of the best places in South Dakota to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the Mount Rushmore State — 381 cities and towns.

We then narrowed it down to places with at least 2,000 people that weren’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 Lead, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers.

Lead, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 3,050
Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 17)
Median Rent: $545
Distance to Closest Airport: 167 miles
More on Lead: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Lead is a city in Lawrence County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 3,124 at the 2010 census. Lead is located in western South Dakota, in the Black Hills near the Wyoming state line.

Hot Springs, SD

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 3,570
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 7)
Median Rent: $594
Distance to Closest Airport: 154 miles
More on Hot Springs: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Hot Springs is a city in and the county seat of Fall River County, South Dakota, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 3,711. In addition, neighboring Oglala Lakota County contracts the duties of Auditor, Treasurer and Register of Deeds to the Fall River County authority in Hot Springs.

Sisseton, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,682
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Rent: $562
Distance to Closest Airport: 158 miles
More on Sisseton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Flandreau, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 2,164
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 3)
Median Rent: $505
Distance to Closest Airport: 176 miles
More on Flandreau: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Mobridge, SD

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 3,460
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Rent: $587
Distance to Closest Airport: 191 miles
More on Mobridge: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Beresford, SD

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 2,324
Rank Last Year: 28 (Up 22)
Median Rent: $589
Distance to Closest Airport: 191 miles
More on Beresford: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Madison, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 7,101
Rank Last Year: 20 (Up 13)
Median Rent: $505
Distance to Closest Airport: 200 miles
More on Madison: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Madison is a city in Lake County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 6,474 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Lake County and is home to Dakota State University.

Canton, SD

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 3,306
Rank Last Year: 21 (Up 13)
Median Rent: $658
Distance to Closest Airport: 192 miles
More on Canton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Belle Fourche, SD

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 5,696
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 3)
Median Rent: $628
Distance to Closest Airport: 177 miles
More on Belle Fourche: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Belle Fourche is a city in and the county seat of Butte County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 5,594 at the 2010 census.

Lennox, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,095
Rank Last Year: 26 (Up 17)
Median Rent: $752
Distance to Closest Airport: 206 miles
More on Lennox: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Maybe You’re Not Ready To Retire In South Dakota Yet…

So there you have it, the best place to retire in South Dakota goes to Lead.

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

  1. Sioux Falls
  2. Box Elder
  3. Tea

For more South Dakota reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places To Retire In South Dakota

Rank City Population Median Rent
1 Lead 3,050 $545
2 Hot Springs 3,570 $594
3 Sisseton 2,682 $562
4 Flandreau 2,164 $505
5 Mobridge 3,460 $587
6 Beresford 2,324 $589
7 Madison 7,101 $505
8 Canton 3,306 $658
9 Belle Fourche 5,696 $628
10 Lennox 2,095 $752
11 Sturgis 6,711 $604
12 Winner 2,843 $662
13 Chamberlain 2,662 $514
14 Spearfish 11,176 $641
15 Yankton 14,585 $580
16 Aberdeen 27,783 $616
17 Brandon 9,674 $838
18 Huron 13,149 $569
19 Brookings 23,292 $675
20 Pierre 13,959 $579
21 Watertown 22,026 $659
22 Vermillion 10,778 $695
23 Summerset 2,155 $863
24 Mitchell 15,610 $654
25 Tea 4,628 $853
26 Box Elder 9,126 $946
27 Sioux Falls 167,884 $749

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