5 Things to Know Before Retiring in Boston

Exploring the best retirement communities in Massachusetts and wondering what it’s like to live a little closer to Boston? There are some interesting benefits to consider when retiring in Massachusetts. Let’s dive into daily life and retirement communities in MA.


Cost of Living

Overall, Boston itself is more expensive to live in than many other areas across the United States. And Massachusetts itself is still more expensive than states like Texas, if you like it hot, or Illinois if you prefer the colder weather. But there’s also a lot of history in Massachusetts that you can’t find anywhere else.


The cost of living index is about 162 in Boston and 127 in Massachusetts. That’s compared to the national average, which is set at 100. In areas like Texas or Illinois, that number is just below 90. The median home cost in Boston is over $780k, with groceries hitting just over the 100-index at 111 or so.


Health Care

If you’re curious about retiring in Massachusetts, you might also be concerned about the cost of health care. The good news is that while other areas of life might be more costly in Boston, healthcare is more affordable than in other areas. On the index, the cost of healthcare hits at about 84, or 16 points below average.


And Boston is often considered the leader in healthcare. In part because of the many healthcare innovations that have been born in the state, including the discovery of a vaccine for smallpox, new techniques to grow human skin to treat burn victims, and countless cancer innovations.



Massachusetts has a flat tax rate, similar to Illinois, while Texas charges no income taxes and California charges a graduated rate. That rate is 5 percent in MA, compared to over 13 percent in California and 4.95 percent in Illinois.


However, for people considering retiring in Massachusetts, it’s worth noting that the state is moderately friendly to retirees when it comes to taxes. The state fully exempts Social Security retirement benefits, however, it does tax most other forms of retirement income. As an added perk though, the Massachusetts estate tax has an exemption of $1 million, tied for the lowest in the U.S.

Retirement Communities in Boston, MA

If you’re in search of the best retirement communities in Massachusetts, Del Webb offers new construction active adult communities near Boston and around the state. From condos to one and two-bedroom houses that offer the type of amenities to help you stay active, healthy, and engaged.


At Chauncy Lake, you can find new construction condos overlooking 400 acres of open space. All just 2 miles from downtown Westborough. You’ll also enjoy a lakeside clubhouse, fitness room, and planned, onsite social events. Condos start at just over $300k and it’s only a 45-minute drive to Boston proper.


Want to be even closer to Boston? Explore retiring in Massachusetts at Pennington Crossing, a 55+ active adult community surrounded by trees and walking trails. Just a 20-minute walk from Boston proper, you can find one or two-bedroom homes starting below $350k. That means enjoying all of the cultures Boston has to offer, while still having the perfect place to hideaway.

Getting Around

Once you’ve browsed through your top active adult communities in Massachusetts, you’ll want to know the best ways to get around. If your plan for retiring in Massachusetts involves a car, you might want to keep it local. Boston in particular is known to have bad traffic. But the good news is that they have a very accessible public transit system with both local subways and commuter trains, in addition to busses that will help you connect to both.


There are many perks to retiring in Massachusetts and many active adult communities in Boston area suburbs that are worth considering. But outside of finding the right sort of active adult communities, you can also find a strong sports culture, making Massachusetts a great place for sports fans. And while winters can run long, summers in Boston are beautiful and the seafood is world-renowned. Plus you’ll also enjoy a diverse economy and rich history. And thanks to the top-notch schools in the area, you’ll also get care from some of the best hospitals in the nation.


Explore what retirement communities in MA have to offer you and find exactly the type of life you’re looking for, so you can retire happily.



Contributed to The 55+ Society

Looking for more Society tips and learnings? Return Home here.

Published 10.15.21

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