couple walking outside
A couple explores Lititz, PA, in Lancaster County. (Photo courtesy of Discover Lancaster)

Two cities in Pennsylvania best meet Americans’ expectations of a retirement destination, with healthcare and housing affordability high priorities, according to the U.S. News & World Report’s 2022-2023 Best Places to Retire rankings.

When choosing a place to live while nearing or at retirement age, Americans are currently most concerned about housing affordability, healthcare, desirability, overall happiness, retiree taxes and job market ratings , the news outlet reported. Housing affordability was the most heavily weighted of the six factors used in this year’s methodology, its analysts said.

With those factors considered, the top five places to retire are:

  1. Lancaster, PA, moving up four spots based on its scores on healthcare for older adults, retiree tax rates and overall resident happiness;
  2. Harrisburg, PA, rising 11 positions to the No. 2 spot; 
  3. Pensacola, FL, moving up seven positions;
  4. Tampa, FL moving up two positions; and
  5. York, PA, which saw the largest jump to a top five position, rising 12 positions.

Lancaster, Harrisburg and York are near one another in the Keystone State. Lancaster, PA, also was tops in 2018 and 2019 and was No. 5 on the 2020-21 list.

“The drastic shift in the housing market, high inflation and concerns of a pending recession have retirees weighing housing affordability more heavily when considering where to retire,” said Emily Brandon, U.S. News senior editor for retirement. “Additionally, with COVID still a concern and access to good, affordable healthcare being of importance to retirees, Pennsylvania dominated the Best Places to Retire ranking’s top positions, taking five of the top 10 spots on the list.”

Recognition of those concerns led to major changes in the rankings, the authors said. Fort Wayne, IN, jumped 43 spots to No. 15, for example. And eastern Pennsylvania landed two more spots in the top 10, which also included Naples, FL, Daytona Beach, FL, Ann Arbor, MI, Allentown, PA and Reading, PA.

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