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Facts About Retiring in Wisconsin

By    |   Monday, 04 Jan 2016 11:08 PM

With its proliferation of cities both large and small, friendly communities, and diverse industrial landscape, retirement in Wisconsin can be an attractive option for senior citizens.

“Nicknamed ‘America’s Dairyland,’ Wisconsin is known for its agriculture along with industries like manufacturing, paper products, information technology, healthcare, and tourism,” Livability.com said.

Furthermore, the cost of living in Wisconsin is below the national average, as its food, housing, and utilities compare very well against those costs in other states, according to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center. Here are four facts for senior citizens who are considering retiring in Wisconsin.

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1. Income Tax
While the cost of the average home falls below the national average, unfortunately Wisconsin’s state income tax does not. It’s one of the highest state income taxes in the country. That could be a vital factor to consider for retirees who are living on a strict budget. MarketWatch said: “But personal income taxes here are high (the top rate being 7.75%), meaning that this state has the 11th highest personal income tax burden in the nation.”

2. Retirement Taxes
In Wisconsin, pensions are taxable, per the Wisconsin Department of Revenue. However, Social Security benefits are not taxed, which is a nice bonus that could offset its higher income tax rate. Thirteen states currently employ some kind of tax on Social Security. Wisconsin is not one of them.

3. Outdoor Adventure
The Badger State boasts a surplus of opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts, with the Great Lakes in close proximity. It’s also a popular destination for avid hunters, as there are over 5 million acres of public hunting lands available year-round. Even golfers have easy access to several noted golf courses including Whistling Straits and Blackwolf Run. MarketWatch said: “Fishermen, boaters and nature enthusiasts enjoy access to 15,000 inland lakes, two Great Lakes and more than 33,000 miles of rivers and streams.”

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4. Related Taxes
Outside of income tax and retirement benefit taxes, it’s important to consider the ancillary taxes that could arise with retirement in Wisconsin. For instance, the property tax in Wisconsin is quite high, typically ranking in the top 10 most expensive states in the country. However, there is also a homestead tax exemption which allows for the protection of $75,000 in equity and $150,000 if filing with a spouse. Furthermore, Wisconsin has an estate tax but not an inheritance tax. Also, TopRetirements.com noted, “Some lower income retirees can deduct a portion of their qualified retirement income.”

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With its proliferation of cities both large and small, friendly communities, and diverse industrial landscape, retirement in Wisconsin can be an attractive option for senior citizens.
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2016-08-04
Monday, 04 Jan 2016 11:08 PM
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