U.S. News & World Report unveiled the 2019 Best Places to Retire in the U.S. The rankings offer a comprehensive evaluation of the country's 100 largest metropolitan areas based on how well they meet Americans' expectations for retirement, with measures including housing affordability, desirability, health care and overall happiness.
Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which sits in a county dubbed the "Garden Spot of America," is now considered the top place to retire in the nation. Up from No. 2 last year.
Due to increases in desirability and happiness scores, Fort Myers, Florida, jumps from No.15 to No. 2.
Due to a decline in both overall happiness and desirability, Sarasota, Florida, falls from No. 1 to No. 3.
Three Texas cities made the top 10: Austin rose five spots to No. 4, San Antonio fell five spots to No. 8, and Dallas-Fort Worth advanced two to No. 9.
Nashville, Tennessee, No. 35 last year, filled out the Top 10 at No. 7.
"Deciding where to retire is a big decision," says Emily Brandon, senior editor for Retirement at U.S. News.
"The Best Places to Retire offers a way for future retirees to make a more informed decision based on what matters the most to them. Whether that be housing affordability, access to quality hospitals or the desirability of a place in general, the rankings offer a comprehensive list that can point people in the best direction for their needs."
This year, U.S. News increased the weight of the desirability metric from 10 to 15 percent, as it provides a more balanced understanding of the opinions gathered through consumer surveys.
The study included data about housing affordability, happiness, desirability, retiree taxes, the job market and access to quality health care.
These measures were selected and weighted based on a public survey of pre-retirees (age 45-59) and retirement-age (age 60+) individuals across the U.S to find out what matters most when considering a place to retire.
Data sources include the U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as well as U.S. News rankings of the Best Hospitals.
Best Places to Retire is part of U.S. News' expanding Real Estate channel, which provides rankings, tools and advice to help individuals navigate the housing market, from getting a mortgage and working with an agent to buying and selling a home.
Top 10 - 2019 U.S. News Best Places to Retire Rankings