Georgia retirees need to have $851K in savings, according to report

Retirement involves a lot of financial planning. When you retire, the goals you hope to achieve and how much in savings you need are important considerations that play a role in living a comfortable life post-retirement.

GoBankingRates published a report on annual costs and the retirement savings needed for retirees to live their best, most comfortable lives in each state. They calculated expenditures on housing, groceries, transportation and utilities and adjusted the prices to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center’s cost-of-living index. Additionally, GoBankingRates added a 20% savings buffer to the budget for a comfortable retirement.

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For Georgians, that means retirees have an annual cost of $50,066 and should have $851,122 in savings. In another GoBankingRates report, data show that the Peach State is the fifth cheapest state in the country to retire in with Social Security covering around half of the annual cost of living.

The average retirement report showed that some of the most expensive states to retire in were Hawaii, the District of Columbia, California, Alaska, Oregon and New York. Residents living in these states needed over $1,200,000 in savings to retire comfortably and prepare for annual costs that are over $78,000.

The average retirement age in Georgia at 63, which is more than three to four years short of the age needed to receive full Social Security benefits. However, retirees in Georgia don’t pay tax on Social Security benefits and pay below average on sales and property taxes.

World Population Review ranks Georgia as the No. 3 best state to retire.

“Georgia’s cost of living is about 7% below the national average and has the sixth-lowest average cost for a retired couple in the U.S. Georgia also has favorable tax conditions,” the website said.

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“Social Security is exempt from state taxes in Georgia and up to $35,000 of most types of retirement income for those between 62 and 64, and up to $65,000 per taxpayer 65 and older ($130,000 per couple). Combine all of that with warm summers and mild winters, and Georgia is an ideal retirement state.”

Nearly half of all American families, including ones approaching retirement, do not have a retirement savings account, according to a publication by the Economic Policy Institute.

“But the amount of money you need to retire depends on where you live, due to state-by-state differences in the cost of living. In some areas of the country, a nest egg of a bit more than $500,000 may be sizable enough for retirement. In other regions, you have to build up your savings even more to reach at least $1.8 million in retirement funds,” a GoBankingRates report said.

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