Those hoping to age with grace and dignity may want to think about where they will live out their golden years.
And a new report from Caring.com has a suggestion: Utah.
On Wednesday, the site released its annual list of best and worst states for senior living, which took into account nursing home costs, elderly well-being assessments, affordability, overall quality of care, the site’s own senior living community reviews, and more to come up with a comprehensive view of growing old across the U.S.
“We want to use this research as a starting point for really important conversations between family members,” Tim Sullivan, vice president at Caring.com, said in a statement. “Too many people avoid thinking about senior care until it hits a crisis point. There are good options in every state, but it can take some time to sort out the best approach.”
Beyond incorporating 150,000 reviews of senior care facilities submitted by users, the study also incorporated Genworth’s 2016 Cost of Care Survey, the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, and the Long-Term Services & Supports State Scorecard.
Overall, Utah ranked as the best state for seniors thanks to its scores in the life/healthcare category and cost of living. The rest of the top 10 best states for seniors includes Iowa, South Carolina, Washington, Nebraska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Colorado, and Oregon.
On the flipside, Caring.com’s analysis found the 10 worst states to grow old in are Rhode Island, Kentucky, Ohio, Mississippi, New Jersey, Wyoming, North Dakota, New York, Indiana, West Virginia due to their poor quality of care and high cost of living.
“I think when people are looking to move they need to think long-term,” said Debbie Fins, board member of the Aging Life Care Association, said in a statement. “They should look at what the medical care is like. Can they get a doctor? What are the support systems for aging? And can they afford to live there?”
Moreover, Fins noted that thanks to America's ever increasing longevity, seniors needs to think about just how far their retirement dollars will stretch and figure out “where your dollar is going to go furthest with the kind of services you want to have.”
Check out where your state ranks here.