Comfortable retirement places

Wednesday night, my husband and I were having a lovely dinner outside on a restaurant patio in Houston. October is one of several gorgeous months here. The summer is hell on earth. October. April, and New Year’s Day is God apologizing to Texans.

On the restaurant patio we both exclaimed “perfect weather” and decided to find out the perfect places for retirement climate-wise: 70ish and humidity around 60%.

“Feels like San Diego”, I said. He gave me that look. (the taxes, housing and culture). San Diego would eat us and our nest-egg alive.
Property tax $5,000
CA tax: $5,000 + 9.3%
Food tax
In addition to federal income tax.

There’s even a mental health tax on those with incomes over $1M.

We like the South. Neither of us are originally from here, we just like the manners, inclusive culture, international flavour and food. “But rascism!” some might say. In my experience, it’s more prevalent in the North, spoken by the ignorant and shut down by yours truly.

It’s 2014, c’mon!

Foodies! Give us some interesting wagyu or creole (locally made and grown stuff) with a good climate on a patio and we are happy campers and we spend hours talking and solving world problems.

It seems there have been a few attempts to make a map of “perfect weather”; one by a traveler who has disdain for long stretches of cold (me too). He looked at places of extreme temperatures (below 45 F and above 85F for extended #’s of days) . Of his bottom 5 places NOT to live, 2 places in Montana held that spot. I can attest to that: I had field camp there in a tent for 2 weeks and it snowed.

In late June.

I was a very miserable camper.

Southern CA got all the happy dark blue circles on his map…

but so did Houma, Louisiana.

There is a Walmart there and a daiquiri bar and greasy frog-legs that will sit in your gut like an anvil.

Another guy has a site that is interesting if you already have an idea what cities you are considering. I have to say that it took Atlanta right out for us. You put in cities with great climate, like San Diego, then you can compare. It includes “comfort factor” and days of over 85 and under 45. Really quite helpful:

I wanted to see entire areas though.
I attempted overlaying avg month temps Jul-Aug with humidity using screen grabs and powerpoint and came up with possible areas. 75 degrees and lower-pretty much inland in the SE, which is good, because although I love the ocean, I don’t want to endure another hurricane. My husband said that investigating Zillow showed him many many houses on stilts recently “renovated”. Mm, no. The South is usually about 60% humidity everywhere we are considering.

I’m still searching for actual GIS (Geographic Info System) data that I can overlay and filter, perhaps make a Google map for y’all. Noaa has a website with the data to download-it’s confusing even for a map and data nerd like me.

I want to be comfortable in retirement- and that includes climate. “Can you imagine a patio in the shade with an outdoor kitchen?” Asked my husband. “Yes, I can, I replied, yes, I can.”

(I may have also mentioned a hammock and a few plants to clip too. But just a few).


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