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 South Dakota.
But where exactly in South Dakota? Well, there’s only one place to go for the answer — data.
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 2018:
- Lead (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Hot Springs (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Sisseton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Flandreau (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Mobridge (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Beresford (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Madison (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Canton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Belle Fourche (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lennox (Photos | Homes For Sale)
How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Mount Rushmore State
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 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 Lead, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers.
2. Hot Springs
Population: 7,101Median Rent: $505
Distance to Closest Airport: 200 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,126
More on Madison: Homes For Sale | Data
Madison was laid out in 1873. The city was renamed after Madison, Wisconsin.
9. Belle Fourche
Population: 5,696Median Rent: $628
Distance to Closest Airport: 177 miles
Crime Per 100k: 1,562
More on Belle Fourche: Homes For Sale | Data
Belle Fourche (French for ‘beautiful fork’) was named by French explorers coming from New France, referring to the confluence of what is now known as the Belle Fourche and Redwater Rivers and the Hay Creek. Beaver trappers worked these rivers until the mid-19th century, and Belle Fourche became a well known fur trading rendezvous point. During and after the gold rush of 1876, farmers and ranchers alike settled in the fertile valleys, growing food for the miners and their work animals. At the same time, the open plains for hundred of miles in all directions were being filled by huge herds of Texas and Kansas cattle. Towns sprang up to serve the ever-changing needs of the farmers and ranchers. In 1884, the Marquis de Mores, a French nobleman and contemporary of Theodore Roosevelt, established a stagecoach line between Medora, North Dakota, and Deadwood, South Dakota. The Belle Fourche way station included a stage barn and a saloon.
Maybe You’re Not Ready To Retire 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:
- Sioux Falls
- Box Elder
For more South Dakota reading , check out:
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In South Dakota For 2018
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In South Dakota
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In South Dakota
Detailed List Of Best Places To Retire In South Dakota