If you’re preparing to retire in the near future, you might be wondering where the best place will be for your lifestyle preferences, interests, budget, and more. If Texas is on your radar for retirement, you’re in the right place.
In retirement, you’ll be able to start a new chapter in life and have the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of your work and pursue your passions at your own pace.
Where you choose to live is crucial in this journey, and the Lone Star State is an incredible place to consider. Although seen as fiscally conservative, it’s the 5th most generous state concerning public pension payouts and social security benefits.
Whether it’s coastal living, Hill Country, or a bustling city you’re dreaming of, we’re here to help you choose from the many best places to retire in Texas, covering factors like cost of living, healthcare options, community engagement, and recreational activities.
Austin is a fantastic city by many measures and factors and is growing in size each year.
For retirees who don’t necessarily need all the “relaxation” of retirement and would rather enjoy the bustle of a lively, quickly developing city environment but not feel swallowed by Houston and Dallas, Austin might be the standout choice.
Its population is inching towards 1 million, and 16% of the population is over 60 years old, so although Austin is seen as a thriving city of young adults, you’ll be able to find plenty of peers and like-minded communities across town.
It’s also ideal for seniors who wish to stay active and take care of themselves to ensure longer, healthier, and less painful aging. There are plenty of easy-going hiking, biking, and walking trails around the city, and you can also rent boats and kayaks to row down Lady Bird Lake.
You can also walk around food markets, art galleries, botanical gardens, and city tours. Even with your now-ample free time, you’ll never get bored in this city.
Homes are getting increasingly pricier in this city, averaging around $560,000, but the property taxes remain low at about 2%.
2. Corpus Christi
Corpus Christi, located on the gorgeous Gulf Coast, is a true haven for retirees for several reasons. It’s warm, charming, cultural, and maintains a low cost of living that’s unbeatable for all it offers.
If you don’t like the sound of busier surroundings, dodging nightlife, or paying high housing prices, then Corpus Christi might be a better retirement city for you. It’s ideal for seniors looking for a more laid-back lifestyle, as it has a slower-paced environment.
Additionally, it has excellent, moderate weather for most of the year, allowing retirees to enjoy outdoor activities like walking trails, golf courses, and plenty of serene community parks.
You can go fishing, swimming, boating, and birdwatching.
And, of course, there are beaches nearby for that picturesque scene you might’ve always dreamed of.
While it’s suitable for a slower pace, it’s the eighth-largest city in Texas, thus striking a balance between urban amenities and a relaxed atmosphere. You’ll be able to rejuvenate and get quiet time while still being able to conveniently access the resources and services you need most.
Plus, when you want to get out and be entertained, you’ll have your pick between numerous galleries, museums, and theaters. Other interesting spots include USS Lexington, the Texas State Aquarium, and South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center.
The two other standout aspects of Corpus Christi are its relatively low housing cost, averaging around $200,000 for a single-family home, and its larger retiree community, as about 20% of the population is 60 years or older.
That said, you can make the most of your retirement savings while still finding a safe, stable, gated retirement community.
Killeen is an incredible destination for retirees who want access to all the goodness of Texas while resorting to a smaller, quieter, simpler, and more affordable inland community.
It’s within driving distance to all the Texas heavy hitters like Austin, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio, which is perfect if you still have family and friends living in those cities and want to make it convenient to visit them (or for them to visit you).
Killeen is also known for having a remarkably friendly atmosphere, and about 16% of the population is over 60, so it’s a nice option if building a stable, amicable community is of the utmost importance to you.
Killeen’s small-town charm and proximity to Fort Hood military base also make it ideal for born-and-raised Texans who love to celebrate an authentic, relaxed Texan lifestyle. Plus, it has a very affordable cost of living, making it an attractive choice for budget-friendly retirement.
And although it’s inland, there are still plenty of nature activities to partake in. You can head to Stillhouse Hollow Lake and Belton Lake to go fishing, boating, and hiking while enjoying gorgeous landscapes all the while. There are also plenty of parks for casual strolls and picnics.
Finally, retirees love living in Killeen because there are many organizations, social clubs, and recreational programs specifically catered to the retirement community, which helps hold them accountable for getting out, staying fit, making new friends, pursuing new hobbies, and more!
The Dallas-Forth Worth area is a sprawling, bustling city that might come off as particularly appealing for retirees at first. However, if you prefer to stay connected to the scene and want to benefit from high-resource, modern living, Dallas can be a great choice.
A standout benefit of retiring in Dallas, especially for older retirees, is having major healthcare providers nearby, such as Baylor University Medical Center and the UT Southwestern Medical Center.
Some people don’t want to think about needing medical services, but it’s nice to know they’re conveniently located just in case.
Plus, just because you’re no longer working doesn’t mean you’re no longer a sports fan. Retired sports fans benefit from access to watching the Mavericks, Mavericks, Rangers, and Stars in their respective games.
Furthermore, living in the vibrant city of Dallas is enticing for retirees who love cultural and entertainment opportunities, such as visiting the Dallas Museum of Art, exploring the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, or seeing an opera.
And for those who maintain their foodie ways after retirement, it’s hard to resist living in one of the best cities in Texas for a diverse range of culinary experiences.
Finally, although you’re in a big city, you’ll still be able to appreciate aspects of the natural environment, perhaps by heading to Klyde Warren Park with its many green spaces and trails or White Rock Lake, where you can go boating or set up a picnic.
The cost of living in Dallas is certainly more expensive than Corpus Christi or Killeen, at around $400,000 for a single-family home. However, it’s still relatively affordable for a metropolitan city that offers everything Dallas does.
Last but not least, Fredericksburg might be seen as a bit of a tourist town, but it’s perfect for history-buff retirees who enjoy surrounding themselves with iconic cultural landmarks and historic buildings.
If strolling around the Pioneer Museum before heading to your favorite local cafe for a cup of coffee sounds like an ideal retirement afternoon to you, Fredericksburg might be your spot.
It’s nested in the Texas Hill Country, giving it a charming and scenic appeal as well as an air of southern, small-town hospitality. Retirees who want tranquility in a culturally rich environment should strongly consider Fredericksburg.
This town has a prominent German influence, which you’ll find in its cuisine, architecture, and festivals like Oktoberfest.
Additionally, nature enthusiasts can feel enchanted by the rolling hills, vineyards, and wildflowers that surround this town and perhaps visit the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area for easy hiking (or wine-sipping).
And living in a tranquil environment doesn’t have to mean sacrificing safety. There are excellent healthcare facilities in the area that allow retirees to maintain their peace of mind in this peaceful environment.
There are plenty of fantastic places to retire in the Lone Star state, but these five stand out in their own unique ways for plenty of the retirees already living there.
Houston, San Antonio, El Paso, Port Arthur, Brownsville, McAllen, and others are also fantastic options, but each of the cities on this list stands out above the rest for specific reasons.
Austin is fantastic for a balance between urban living and outdoor activities, while Corpus Christi is ideal for budget-friendly living. Killeen is the best for the community; Dallas is ideal for modern amenities and opportunities; and Fredericksburg is perfect for history lovers.
You’re sure to find your perfect spot out of the best places to retire in Texas. And if we missed any or have any questions about our list, please let us know in the comments below!
If you are more interested in a small town, consider our best small towns to retire to in Texas article as a great reference for small town living in the lone star state.