5 Southeastern cities where you can retire on a budget

$3,000 a month goes a long way for retirees in these cities

So you’re ready to retire and have $3,000 a month to spend. Although it might not seem like a lot of money, in certain parts of the country, it’s enough.

According to a GoBankingRates study, living on a $3,000 budget can cover health care, transportation, groceries, utilities and more for people 65 and older in some regions. The study used data based on a livability score greater than 70 that measures health and safety, community amenities, cost of living, and more.

Based on the information collected, here are five cities to retire to in the Southeast where $3,000 goes further.

Hattiesburg, Mississippi

Where to Retire magazine called Hattiesburg one of the best retirement towns in America because of its atmosphere and small-town charm.

Utilities are above the national average, which can be expected because of the sweltering heat in the summer. However, the average rent costs $1,208, which combined with transportation, groceries and other necessities comes to $2,905. That makes its livability score 76, according to GoBankingRates.

Little Rock, Arkansas

According to Livability, 13% of the Little Rock community — about 200,000 residents — are over the age of 65. Its livability score of 71 is because its low-cost health care is 8% below the national average. Rent of $1,185 combined with other necessities brings monthly costs to around $2,824.


The cherry blossom capital of the world’s average monthly needs cost $2,922, with average monthly rent at $1,182. The livability score is 73, and the city is below the national average for transportation and grocery costs. Macon is one of the highest in the study for utilities, which can be expected given air-conditioning costs during the summer.

Jacksonville, North Carolina

Jacksonville is perfect if you’re looking to live close to a beach, as it’s about 30 miles from the Atlantic Ocean.

While transportation costs are 27% below the national average, health care is 20% above the national average, making its livability score 70. Average monthly necessities are around $2,969, while rent is $1,188.

Bossier City, Louisiana

Boisser City has the highest rent in the Shreveport area, averaging $1,321. Although that price is something to be cautious about, the other amenities make up for it. Health care, transportation, utilities and groceries all fall below the national average, making its livability score 71. Average costs total around $2,996 each month.

Retirement should be a time of excitement, relaxation and leisure. Living on a budget doesn’t have to prevent you from enjoying the best years ahead of you. When looking for a new place to call home, consider the livability index, weather, health care and community.