The evidence demonstrated on
this page is compelling:
- - - Pennsylvania
- - - Kiplinger,
5 Smartest Cities for Retirees
- - - Kiplinger,
50 Smart Places to Live
- - - Places Rated Almanac,
Most Livable US
- - - National Geographic
Pittsburgh; Top Adventure City in America
- - - Forbes, The World's
- - - TopRetirements.com
America's Top Ten Value Cities: #7 Pittsburgh
- - - Forbes
10 Most Stable Housing Markets in 2007
- - - Smart Money
Pittsburgh rated 4th highest
recession-proof city for retirees, 2-25-08
- - - Low cost of living
Pittsburgh No. 2 on a list of the
top 10 "values" for big-city retirement
- - - Pennsylvania
Retirement Housing on LESS Than a Shoestring
- - - All About Pennsylvania
Taxes for Retirees
- - -
A unique Pennsylvania Prescription Drug Program For Retirees
- - - Where are the most
courteous drivers in the US?
- - - 53
Great Pennsylvania Towns for Retirees
Don't miss our internal
Retirement Housing on LESS than a shoestring.
You may also like to read:
Fun in Pennsylvania, and
Best Kept Vacation Secret.
on August 4, 2011: Chris Matthews on the MSNBC show
Hardball, when discussing awful American airports said: "Now
Pittsburgh, THAT'S a great airport" Could we be more proud?
Pennsylvania State Flower
The State Flower is the Mountain Laurel, as
enacted by the General Assembly on May 5, 1933. The mountain
laurel is in full bloom in mid-June, when Pennsylvania's woodlands
are filled with its distinctive pink flower.
Five Smartest Cities For Retirees
Three rivers run through
Pittsburgh's green, orderly downtown, but retirees will find even
greater charm in the city's outlying,tree-lined neighborhoods,
such as Shadyside (median house value: $199,000) and Squirrel Hill
($184,000). "If you'd like to retire in a place where you wouldn't
think twice about borrowing your neighbor's hairdryer in a pinch,
Pittsburgh's small neighborhoods are for you," says Abby Mendelson,
an author of books on the Pittsburgh Steelers and local culture.
see all 5
Interior of Historic Banks Bridge (more photos)
50 Smart Places to
"You told us your ideal city is fun,
vibrant and affordable. We found dozens that fit the bill."
#9 Pittsburgh, Pa.
Currently undergoing a
renaissance, this hidden gem has distinctive neighborhoods,
tree-lined streets, glittering skyscrapers, upscale shops and a
See Top 10.
Livable City" in America
1. Pittsburgh, PA
2. San Francisco, CA
3. Seattle, WA
4. Portland, OR
5. Philadelphia, PA
6. Rochester, NY
7. Washington, DC
8. San Jose - Sunnyvale, CA
9. Boston, MA
10. Madison, WI
(KDKA) PITTSBURGH "There's a
good news bombshell for civic pride here in Pittsburgh.
Our city is returning to the top spot in a new ranking of the
nation's most livable cities."
How was this top ranking determined?
The 2011 Global Livability
Rankings are in, and the most livable city in America is
Pittsburgh, Pa. The study was completed by London-based
Economist Intelligence Unit. While top cities in the world
were: Vancouver, British Columbia; Melbourne,
Australia; and Vienna, Austria
respectively, Pittsburgh was the top ranking American city...
has been named the
Top Adventure City in America by
in their article:
Top Adventure City in America
to Live and Play: 31 Adventure Towns"
Pittsburgh Among Cleanest Cities in the World
ranked Pittsburgh 10th among thousands in its review of all the world's cleanest
Read the recommendation for Pittsburgh as the
#7 Retirement Value Destination in the US.
10 Most Stable Housing Mkts
Median home price:
Annual price change from 2006: 2.7%
change to 2008: 3.37%
July 31, 2008 Update
Pittsburgh rated 4th highest recession-proof city for retirees
After all those decades of stashing money away for retirement,
retirees should look for a place that will not only make them
happy, but also keep their nest egg intact. Areas with a track
record of slow, steady economic growth and home price appreciation
are ones that will hold onto their value best, notes Walter Molony,
a spokesman for the National Association of Realtors. These same
places are also more likely to rebound quickly when nationwide
economic conditions improve.
Forbes - February 26, 2010 The best place to
buy right now: Pittsburgh. For a housing market to be
attractive it should have appreciating prices that show
homeowners are making wise investments; an affordability
rating that gives middle-class families with good credit entry
into the market; and a relatively low number of foreclosures,
which keeps prices stable and indicates there isn't an excess
Pittsburgh has all three. In the metro area, 85 percent of
homes are affordable to those making the median family income
of $62,500. At the same time, foreclosures are low: Only one
home is in foreclosure for every 120 housing units — the
second-best record of all the cities we ranked; and home
prices are expected to increase 2.67 percent by the end of the
The Pittsburgh region offers retirees the
active lifestyle of a major
city at a relatively
low cost, earning it the No. 2 spot on a list of the
top 10 "values" for big-city retirement, compiled by Warren
Bland, author of "Retire in Style: 60 Outstanding Places across
the USA and Canada."
PITTSBURGH: From "Voice of America", July
Sixty years ago, Pittsburgh was known mainly for one thing. It
was the capital of the American steel industry, then the world's
mightiest. But then, one by one, the steel works closed as the
industry shrank. Today two steel factories remain in Allegheny
County; both are outside the city. Pittsburgh has worked hard to
rebuild itself -- and the world is taking notice.
Last October, BusinessWeek magazine named Pittsburgh one of best
places to live during a recession.
And, last month, the Brookings Institution in Washington listed
the city among the twenty economically strongest in America.
Pittsburgh earned eighteenth place as researchers pointed to a
relatively stable economy based on higher education and health
Researchers from the Pew Charitable Trusts recently looked at
how thirteen American cities are trying to balance budgets in a
time of recession. Pittsburgh was the only one not predicting a
deficit for two thousand nine or ten. In fact, the city has a
Over the years, when its sports teams have done well, Pittsburgh
has been called the "City of Champions." Two of its major teams
are the current champions of their leagues. The Pittsburgh
Steelers won the Super Bowl in the National Football League. And
the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup in the National
The city is also known for its arts tradition. Veronica Corpuz
is public relations director for Pittsburgh's Cultural District.
She says the arts in Pittsburgh have generally done well even in
the recession. The Cultural District is a fourteen block area of
downtown that includes public spaces, art galleries and six
Pittsburgh reinvented by GREEN TECHNOLOGY
August 9, 2009 Plextronics is one of more than 2,600
environmentally friendly companies that have settled in
Pittsburgh and revitalized the local economy through
Do you notice that Pittsburgh
and surrounding area keep appearing on nearly every
"best-retirement-destination" , and "best places to
Need to Cut Those
Housing Costs to the Bone? Check Out THIS Great Pennsylvania Town
Great Pennsylvania Retirement Housing on Less than a
Are you entering
retirement fearing that you may not be able to make ends meet? You
have a "little" equity in a
home, or "some" savings but are paying rent. Or no savings and are
paying rent. You know that you can't afford to stay in the
high-cost area where you have been, but don't know where to go?
One of our
volunteers faced the exact same situation, and has created a
special SeniorArk feature to show you what he and his wife did
about housing as they entered retirement.. This section is
probably not for those with lots of options. It is about going
back to basics in housing in order to survive in retirement. No,
he doesn't live in a van---down by the river. He lives in a nice
home in a wonderful community. This
article shows us that there are affordable places for
retirees to live.
All About Pennsylvania Taxes
Pennsylvania retirees really benefit here
Pennsylvania Named in 2007 as one of the
Best Retirement Tax Havens by
Pennsylvania is ranked at #32 in terms of state and local
taxes. (50 is lowest) We would fare much better if the ranking
were done for Seniors. SeniorArk recently saw an MSN article
quoting a Kiplinger survey of property taxes on a selected
property in each state capital. They used a house in Harrisburg
the most expensive suburb of Harrisburg)
that had very high taxes, and used that to say that Pennsylvania
was not a tax-friendly state for Seniors. Not so folks. First,
how can you select one property, and paint the entire city, or
state with its statistics? Property tax varies wildly within the
state, and even within every city. So when shopping, seniors,
buy carefully. You can choose a property with low taxes. Also,
the Kiplinger study did not take into consideration the
statewide homestead exemption, and further Senior rebates on
property taxes. Governor Rendell in 2008 is working on a plan to
eliminate state real estate taxes altogether. This is the
problem with simplistic surveys. Pennsylvania is a VERY
Senior-Friendly tax state. The evidence:
State Sales Tax:
from tax are: food; clothing, text books, heating fuels,
prescription and non-prescription drugs) Other taxing entities may add up
Diesel Fuel Tax: 39.2 cents/gallon
Cigarette Tax: $1.35/pack of 20
Personal Income Taxes
Rate Range: Flat rate of 3.07%
At 59½, Social Security,
civil service, state/local government, and private pensions are
IRAs are exempt
as are out-of-state government pensions.
Retired Military Pay:
after age 59 1/2.
Military Disability Retired Pay:
Disability Portion - Length of Service Pay: Member on
September 24, 1975 -- No tax; Not Member on September 24, 1975
-- Taxed, unless combat incurred. Retired Pay -- Based
solely on Disability. Member on September 24, 1975 -- No tax.
Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation:
Not subject to federal or state taxes
Military SBP/SSBP/RCSBP/RSFPP: Generally subject to state
taxes for those states with income tax. Check with state
department of revenue office.
Property taxes are levied by local governments (counties,
municipalities and school districts). The tax cannot exceed 30
mills on the assessed valuation of the property without special
permission from the courts. Households with claimants or
spouses 65 years of age or older, widows or widowers 50 years of
age or older and the permanently disabled 18 years of age or
older meeting income eligibility requirements may qualify for
this program. Rebates of paid property tax or rent, up to a
maximum of $500 per year, are available. To qualify, annual
household eligibility income must not exceed $35,000.
Property Tax/Rent Rebate program
allows residents to
exclude 50% of Social Security payments and 50% of Railroad
Retirement benefit payments from eligibility income. The
maximum rebate is $650. Counties may levy an intangible personal
property tax, which taxes stocks, bonds and other personal
property taxpayers may own. Not all counties levy this tax.
YOU may qualify for a Property Tax/Rent Rebate
boost the PA tax-rank-by-state for
Seniors in Pennsylvania)
Tax/Rent Rebate program has been expanded as part of a broad tax
relief initiative. The deadline to apply (has been extended) for a rebate is
December 31, 2007.
eligible if you are:
New annual income guidelines:
** Remember to count
only half of your Social Security as income.
$0 - $8,000
$15,001 - $18,000
$18,001 - $35,000
click to see if you qualify
Note: Senior citizens -
who are the hardest hit by rising property taxes - will get
the extra help they need by a major expansion of the state
Property Tax and Rent Rebate Program. An additional 420,000
senior citizens will receive help paying their property taxes
or rent, and an estimated 146,000 senior citizens will have
their school property taxes completely eliminated.
"Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program"
SeniorARK adds: We
have observed that real estate taxes can be considerably
higher in larger cities than in the smaller towns in
Pennsylvania. Buy carefully to avoid having a big yearly bite removed from your available funds.
A home in a smaller town might be taxed at $500 -$1,300, while
a similar property in a larger city might have a $3,000-$4,000 annual
Retirement funds are
generally not taxed, food and clothing are not taxed, and
there are many perks specifically designed for Senior
survival. Buy where real estate taxes are low, and you have it
made in Pennsylvania.
and Estate Taxes
The Pennsylvania inheritance tax is calculated at a percentage
of the value of the assets transferred which is determined by
the relationship of the heir to the decedent and the decedent's
date of death. The tax rate is 4.5% for transfers to direct
descendants (lineal heirs), 12% for transfers to siblings, and
15% for transfers to other heirs (except charitable
organizations, exempt institutions, and government entities).
Property owned jointly between husband and wife is exempt from
the tax, while property inherited from a spouse, or from a child
21 or younger by a parent is exempt. The estate tax is related
to federal estate tax collection.
further information, visit the
Pennsylvania Department of Revenue site or call
Tax Ranking By State
Bureau of Economic Analysis, Census Bureau and Tax Foundation
Taxes (State and Local) State Ranking The
A unique Pennsylvania Drug Program For Retirees
PACE Plus Medicare - click
for information and qualifications
PACE and PACENET offer
comprehensive prescription coverage to older Pennsylvanians and
cover most medications that require prescriptions, including
insulin, syringes and insulin needles. These programs are
administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Aging and funded
by the Pennsylvania Lottery.
There are no premiums or
monthly fees charged to people who enroll. These
programs do not cover over-the-counter medicines, medical
equipment or doctor, hospital, dental or vision services.
For information or assistance with the
application process, call PACE/PACENET cardholder Services toll
free at 1-800-225-7223
Choose any of the following links for more
Do I qualify for PACE or PACENET?
For consumers who do not qualify for PACE/PACENET
here to find
the Medicare Part D plan that is best for you.
How do I enroll in PACE or PACENET?
Frequently Asked Questions about PACE &
Other Pharmaceutical Programs
PACE/PACENET Reports & Publications
Note: (This is
not a PACE item) A 96-page bill containing
Gov. Ed Rendell's universal health care plan covering all
Pennsylvanians was introduced in the state House on March 18,
One more thing to put into
the equation when deciding where to retire.
Survey of top 25 US cities.
Least to Most Courteous drivers.
Pennsylvania Towns for Retirees
Bridge ( more photos),
Between New Castle
and New Wilmington, PA
SeniorArk was presenting 52 links to great Pennsylvania towns. CNN
no longer offers the information that was offered here. For the
time being, click this link:
Then enter a Pennsylvania town, and you should be taken to its web
site. Our thanks to reader, Bill O'Brien, for calling our
attention to the bad links.
Here is a list of the towns that were on the list:
New Castle *
King Of Prussia
*New Castle is the home
get additional, and more detailed information on these towns at: