Tags: Retirement | retirement | Montana | cost of living

Retirement Cost of Living in Montana

By    |   Monday, 08 Jun 2015 08:27 PM

Retirement to the Treasure State can take some treasure. Property prices, and the taxes on them, can be high, especially close to the resort areas. The distances to drive can affect everything from your travel costs to the prices of the things you need to buy. For all that, though, Montana's in the middle when it comes to cost of living. Here are some costs to consider when planning your retirement in Montana.

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Overall, according to Sperling's Best Places, Montana's cost of living in 2014 was 6.9 percent higher than the national average, and Bankrate rated Montana 27th best in cost of living. Breaking that down farther, Sperling's Best Places says grocery costs are about 9 percent higher, health care costs about 5 percent higher, housing (both ownership and rental) about 17 percent higher. However, Utilities and Transportation are slightly cheaper than the national average.

Depending on who you ask and when, the median cost of a home ranged from $159,000 in mid-2013, according to TopRetirements.com, to $198,400 in 2014, according to Sperling's Best Places, which also noted prices appreciating at 4.2 percent a year.  A median cost that came in between the two at $176,300 was reported by TaxRates.org, with higher home prices closer to the cities and in resort areas.

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High prices bring high property taxes, of course, though there are exemptions.  Occasionally, resort taxes can offset the property tax burden, this was the case in the ski-resort haven of Flathead County, where Whitefish City Council reduced the property tax rate after a resort tax was approved, as was reported in the Flathead Beacon.

However, Retireinmontana.com notes prices vary widely across the state. Resort hot spots like Flathead County, which includes Kalispell and Whitefish, can see median home prices above $300,000, but head over to Butte or the veterans' favorite, Great Falls, and see houses go for about a third of that. Bankrate rates Montana 13th best in the nation for tax rates.

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Retirement to the Treasure State can take some treasure. Property prices, and the taxes on them, can be high, especially close to the resort areas. The distances to drive can affect everything from your travel costs to the prices of the things you need to buy.
retirement, Montana, cost of living
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2015-27-08
Monday, 08 Jun 2015 08:27 PM
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