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Corpus Christi among top retirement choices

Corpus Christi has much to offer visitors and retirees. Courtesy photo

Affordability and lifestyle options rank it No. 2 for best Texas mid-size cities to retire

Corpus Christi was recently ranked the second-best mid-size city in Texas to retire by Texas Real Estate Source. Three factors made up the ranking: cost of living, access to healthcare, and lifestyle.

Retirement Rankings For Popular Texas Cities looks at small town, mid-size, and large cities in the state. Its methodology assigns scores on a scale of 1-5 for the three factors and is weighted as follows:

  • Cost of living: 40 percent
  • Access to healthcare: 35 percent
  • Lifestyle and access to amenities: 25 percent

On the Lone Star Index developed by TRES, Corpus Christi earned a 5 for cost of living, a 3 for healthcare, and a 4 for lifestyle, giving it a score of 93. A perfect score would receive 100 points.

Danny Evatt, co-founder and real estate broker with Texas Real Estate Source, said two primary factors attract retirees to the state.

“First is the Texas culture of living at a slower pace and an overall friendliness/helpfulness about the people that is very pleasant to be around. People tend to retire from work to get out of the fast-paced, stressful lifestyle that often comes with a career and now want to relax and live at their chosen pace, on their time. Alongside that is having no state income taxes,” he explained.

The cost-of-living index in Corpus Christi is 83.1, much lower than the Texas average of 93.7. Homes for sale in Corpus Christi often start at about $150,000 and go upwards of $800,000.

The healthcare industry is strong in Corpus Christi, with major hospitals such as CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital South and Corpus Christi Medical Center. With 97.1 physicians per 100,000 people, Corpus is in the top 10 percent of physicians per capita.

A thriving cultural scene ranks Corpus Christi high in lifestyle, with nearby art districts and activities, beautiful weather, and beach landscapes. The score includes the percentage of residents ages 65 and older. In Corpus Christi, 14 percent of people are over 65, or 44,500 people out of a total population of 317,863, according to the 2020 U.S. Census.

“Texas is a place where you can live at your own pace, keep more of your money, and become friends with most everyone. In addition, Texas is geographically central enough to have numerous travel options, with multiple major hub airports,” Evatt said.

The raw data on cost of living and access to doctors will likely not influence where someone chooses to retire, but it can make an impact on where they look.

The retirement ranking is not meant to be the only resource for choosing a place to retire, Evatt said.

“It's impossible to account for personal preferences with just a number,” he continued. “Hobbies and preferences are very difficult to take into consideration for an index. Ultimately, the decision of where to retire is highly personal.”

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