Retire in Bend, Oregon
Bend Oregon is a Great Place to Retire!
My own hometown, Bend, Oregon was rated as one of the top places to retire in the United States! It has been highlighted in a recent edition of America's Best Low-Tax Retirement Towns.
One of the key reasons for the selection is its low overall tax rate. Among other things, there is no sales tax in Oregon (which makes shopping so much more fun!) Property taxes are fairly reasonable.
Although there is a state income tax, payment of the tax is deductible on your federal tax return. The rate is not exorbitant, either. Of course, during retirement, you are not usually earning money. So income tax may be less relevant.
In determining the "best low-tax retirement towns," researchers collected information on tax rates in states across the nation and in Washington, D.C. Then, they calculated potential tax liability for a range of income-level couples.
Bend, Oregon's rank was 7 out of 173 towns in the income/home value scenario of $30,000/$125,000. Housing and living costs, recreational opportunities, overall climate and other factors were also included in award of certain cities as top retirement spots.
* All photographs in this hub are the property of the author, Stephanie Hicks. Please contact me for permission to reprint or reuse.
Here's the Book!
Why is Bend Oregon a Great Place to Live?
Although I'm nowhere near retirement yet, I can definitely attest to the fact that relocating from Seattle, Washington, to Bend, Oregon has saved our family a lot of money.
Bend is still a relatively small city, only 75,000 people. However, including the greater area, with Redmond, Sisters and Prineville, Central Oregon now boasts well over 150,000 residents. An international airport serves the region, in Redmond, approximately 20 minutes north of the city. Daily flights to Portland, Oregon, Seattle, Los Angeles and Las Vegas are available.
Among the many budget-friendly aspects of living here, are the following:
1. Short commute. We live only 4 miles from downtown (as opposed to 25 miles out of Seattle, previously). With a 10-minute drive to work, trips to the gas pump are far less frequent than they were before. Given the price of gas these days, we have saved over $50/month, on each vehicle! Its amazingly easy to get around here.
2. Lower child-care costs. This was really unbelieveable! The cost of twins in daycare was - and is - exorbitant. However, we are saving over $300 per child here in Central Oregon, compared to the cost in the Seattle area. Over the course of a year, we ended up funneling the extra money from these savings into college accounts.
3. Fun, outdoor recreation. We save a ton of money by playing and exploring outside. Instead of trips to the movies or the mall, the weather in Bend is usually sunny, allowing us more frequent opportunities to hike or swim in one of the many beautiful areas surrounding our home.
Guides to Everything You'll Need for Central Oregon Retirement
What to Do in Bend, Oregon
The area is a tourist destination much of the year. Great skiing and snowboarding is available at Mt. Bachelor, 20 minutes west of the city. During the summer, sunny warm days draw crowds to the area to enjoy fishing, swimming, boating, and hiking. The Deschutes River flows right through downtown. Many parks line the river, allowing for casual enjoyment of its natural beauty.
Festivals and farmers markets are a regular staple of the summer season. Very inexpensive and family-friendly, some of these events are even free! Don't forget the BendFilm Festival in the fall - an independent film enthusiast's dream! And, you can attend an outdoor concert at the Les Schwab Amphitheatre, right in the heart of the Old Mill Shopping District. Again, the cost of these events is much more affordable than "big city" prices.
Easy living in Bend, Oregon is fun and affordable. Its no wonder that retirees looking to save some money during their golden years will choose to spend them in Central Oregon.
© 2008 Stephanie Hicks
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