% over 50: 38%
Top state income tax: None
Cost of living
(as % of national median): 96%
For retirees who are looking for lower taxes, cheap housing and a gentle
climate, Cape Coral scores on all fronts. Home prices here, for example, have
fallen more than 60% since the 2006 peak. For homebuyers, that means a lot of
bang for the buck: A newly renovated three-bedroom, 1,800-square-foot house
with a pool was recently bought here for $145,000.
Lots of Florida towns have seen dramatic price drops, of course, but Cape
Coral has something else going for it: It's paradise for water lovers. The town
is sliced with 400 miles of canals, half of which have access to the Gulf of
Mexico, about 20 minutes away by boat.
This quiet place doesn't offer much nightlife. But there's a public golf
course, a weekly farmers' market with live music, and a nearby outlet mall.
Training camps for the Boston Red Sox and Minnesota Twins are just 15 minutes