Top 10 Most Affordable States for Veterans

affordable states for veterans

Top 10 States to Live in After the Military Based on Affordability

One of the challenges many military families make when deciding to transition out of the military is where to live. Some families will move back home and some families want to find a new home. Whether you retired out of the military or separated before retirement you will want to make sure to live in a state where your money will go far.

We have compiled a list of the top 10 states to live in based on cost rank which consists of what it costs to live in each state based on grocery, housing, utilities, and transportation expenses. When deciding where to live it is also important to consider if there are any veteran benefits the state offers, companies that hire veterans, and what you can expect to pay to purchase a home or to rent. Some states on our list even offer free college.

Please note that the higher the number for Cost of Living, the more expensive it is to live there.

#1 Mississippi

Cost of Living: 86.1

Median Household Income: $43,567

Median Home Value: $130,200

Median Rent: $762

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 7.07%

Top Benefit: Homestead exemption

Top Veteran Employer: Huntington-Ingalls

#2 Arkansas

Cost of Living: 86.9

Median household income: $45,726

Median Home Value: $129,500

Median Rent: $729

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 9.47%

Top Benefit: State Tax Exemption on Military Retirement Pay

Top Veteran Employer: The State of Arkansas

#3 Oklahoma

Cost of Living: 87

Median household income: $51,424

Median Home Value: $125,400

Median Rent: $793

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 8.94%

Top Benefit: 100% Veteran Disability Tax Exemption

Top Veteran Employer: For more information click here

#4 Missouri

Cost of Living: 87.1

Median household income: $53,560

Median Home Value: $163,700

Median Rent: $809

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 8.18%

Top Benefit: State Veterans Services Program

Top Veteran Employer: Boeing

#5 New Mexico

Cost of Living: 87.5

Median household income: $48,059

Median Home Value: $197,400

Median Rent: $828

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 7.82%

Top Benefit: Veterans Property Tax Exemption

Top Veteran Employer: Veterans Business Development Division

Veteran Tuition Benefit: Wartime Veteran Scholarship Fund

#6 Tennessee

Cost of Living: 88.7

Median household income: $50,972

Median Home Value: $170,800

Median Rent: $841

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 9.53%

Top Benefit: Property Tax Relief For Disabled Veterans

Top Veteran Employer: Fedex Express World Hub

Veteran Tuition Benefit: Helping Heroes Grant

#7 Michigan

Cost of Living: 88.9

Median household income: $54,938

Median Home Value: $154,500

Median Rent: $850

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 6.00%

Top Benefit: Michigan Veterans Trust Fund (MVTF)

Top Veteran Employer: DTE and Consumers

#8 Kansas

Cost of Living: 89

Median household income: $57,422

Median Home Value: $141,500

Median Rent: $831

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 8.68%

Top Benefit: Hunting and Fishing Fee Discount

Top Veteran Employer: The State of Kansas

#9 Georgia

Cost of Living: 89.2

Median household income: $55,679

Median Home Value: $193,500

Median Rent: $968

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 7.31%

Top Benefit: Free License Plates for Veterans

Top Veteran Employer: The Southern Company.

# 10 Wyoming

Cost of Living: 89.3

Median household income: $62,268

Median Home Value: $236,100

Median Rent: $843

Combined State and Local Tax Rate: 5.34%

Top Benefit: Veterans and Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit

Top Veteran Employer: Walmart

Veteran Tuition Benefit: Free tuition for overseas combat veterans, surviving spouses, and their dependents.

 

Choosing a state that allows your hard-earned money to go further is an advantage in making sure you are financially secure in retirement. If you are going to school after transitioning out of the military and planning on using your GI Bill, check out the Basic Allowance For Housing (BAH) Calculator by College Recon.

 

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About the author

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Lori Waddell serves as Co-director of an emergency response COAD in Montana, a freelance writer, and an Air Force Key Spouse. She is passionate about empowering communities and individuals through knowledge and resources. She currently lives in Montana with her husband and two children.