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Book Review

A Useful Rating System on the Best Places to Retire

"Retirement Places Rated, Fifth Edition"; by David Savageau; (Macmillan Publishing, New York), 1999, $21.95, 263 pages.

July 18, 1999|ROBERT J. BRUSS

For the past 17 years, David Savageau has researched the best retirement havens in the United States. Even though his rating system has become a bit complicated, the results are fun and profitable to study, and this edition is by far his best.

To determine the ratings, Savageau looks at crime rates, cost of living, medical care, income, sales and income taxes, climate, work opportunities, and recreation.

Potential retirees who are planning a move should study this detailed book, which includes the ratings, suggested sources for more information, and comparison lists and charts. There's even information on driver's license requirements, which can be of major interest to senior citizens.

The book's graphics and layout are superb. Two-color printing adds to the readability. If this book has a flaw, it is the large amount of information in so many different categories.

You won't find ratings of locations such as Leisure World, Del Webb Sun Cities and specific retirement projects. Instead, "Retirement Places Rated" focuses on the best towns for retirement.

The book discusses virtually every desirable retirement location. Some states have none. Florida, California, Arizona and the mid-Atlantic area have the most.

Where are the best places to retire? After putting all factors together, Savageau concludes they are Fort Collins, Colo.; Charleston, S.C.; Henderson, Nev.; Wickenburg, Ariz.; and St. George-Zion, Utah.

On a scale of one to 10, this book rates a 10.

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