The 10 best cities to live in if you want to retire early

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The South’s low cost of living makes it an ideal place for anyone vying for early retirement.
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iStock / Sean Pavone

For many people, the prospect of retiring before 65 is a lofty dream. But early retirement is becoming increasingly common – and achievable.

A lot of factors determine if you’re able to retire early – salary, savings rate, cost of living – and where you live can play a major role in how these factors pan out.

MagnifyMoney evaluated 217 US cities on cost of living (50%), quality of life (30%), and employability (20%) to determine which places in America are ripest for setting an early retirement plan into motion. You can read a full breakdown of the methodology here.

Southern states topped the charts in terms of cost of living, while the Northeast earned higher scores for quality of life. The South won out overall, with eight of the top 10 cities residing there, including the top two places: Memphis and Knoxville, Tennessee.

If you’re considering early retirement, read on to check out the best places in America to make that a reality.


10. McAllen, Texas

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Reynosa Blogs/Flickr

Cost of living score: 100

Quality of life score: 41

Employability score: 58


7. (TIE) Evansville, Indiana

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Wikipedia

Cost of living score: 90

Quality of life score: 57

Employability score: 63


7. (TIE) Hattiesburg, Mississippi

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Dudemanfellabra/Wikimedia Commons

Cost of living score: 96

Quality of life score: 41

Employability score: 72


7. (TIE) Cleveland, Tennessee

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Google Maps

Cost of living score: 98

Quality of life score: 39

Employability score: 72


5. (TIE) Jonesboro, Arkansas

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The City of Jonesboro AR/Facebook

Cost of living score: 97

Quality of life score: 40

Employability score: 75


5. (TIE) Wichita Falls, Texas

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Barbara Brannon/Flickr

Cost of living score: 99

Quality of life score: 48

Employability score: 60


2. (TIE) Benton Harbor, Michigan

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Russell Sekeet/Flickr

Cost of living score: 92

Quality of life score: 63

Employability score: 59


2. (TIE) Sherman, Texas

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Sherman, Texas – Class Town. Broad Horizon./Facebook

Cost of living score: 93

Quality of life score: 51

Employability score: 77


2. (TIE) Memphis, Tennessee

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Shutterstock

Cost of living score: 97

Quality of life score: 38

Employability score: 88


1. Knoxville, Tennessee

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iStock / Sean Pavone

Cost of living score: 98

Quality of life score: 41

Employability score: 83