Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Retire in Grand Junction, Colorado?
Overview: Grand Junction sits on a scenic high desert plateau west of the Rocky Mountains in western Colorado. It dates from the 1880s and has had a history of cattle ranching, farming and energy exploration. Today, it is growing and home to Mesa University (11,000 students).
An unassuming, quiet place, Grand Junction has a mix of outdoor types, families and retirees in addition to college kids. It also known as a mountain biking hub, with riders coming from across the West to test their skills on nearby world class, single lane mountain trails. Residents enjoy hiking and camping in nearby Colorado National Monument and rafting and fishing along the Colorado River and Gunnison River. The downtown area is cozy and cute with outdoor restaurants, art galleries, sculptures, breweries and tree lined streets. The University's lovely Moss Performing Arts Center hosts music and theater productions. Neighborhoods within town are typically suburban and well maintained with bungalows, ranch ramblers and raised ranch ramblers.
Outside of town, beautiful homes are nestled in the scrub brush and rocky red terrain. Gorgeous Redlands Mesa is a master planned development that has been called one of the world's most exceptional golf course communities (the area has eight golf courses). Mesa Mall has J.C. Penney, Sears, Target, Cabelas and specialty stores.
Population: 61,000 (city proper)
Percentage of Population Age 45 or Better: 40%
Cost of Living: 2% above the national average
Median Home Price: $240,000
Climate: This area has a semi-arid to arid climate. Summer temperatures can reach 100 degrees, and winter temperatures are in the teens, 20s and 30s. On average, the area receives 8 inches of rain and 20 inches of snow per year. The elevation is 4,640 feet above sea level.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? Yes
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? Yes (and one is a Level IV adult trauma center and one is a Level II adult trauma center).
Public Transit: Yes, and the city has a regional airport. Amtrak has a station here with daily service to California and Chicago.
Crime Rate: Meets the national average
Public Library: Yes
Political Leanings: Very conservative
Is Colorado Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Cons: The Grand Valley, where Grand Junction resides, is a "bathtub" that traps bad air. Mesa County enacted an ordinance in 2017 that limits open burning - weeds, yard waste and farm fields - yet a large wildfire in California or Utah can affect ground-level air for days or weeks, making life difficult for people with respiratory issues.
Notes: Grand Junction sits along Interstate 70 but can still feel a little isolated.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Similar to California, the Colorado area was surrendered to the United States in 1848 at the end of the Mexican-American War. It did not become a state until 1876, 100 years after the nation's birth.
The Centennial State's geography includes high plains, deserts, foothills, and mountains. Its Rockies are part of the 3,000-plus mile geologic uplift known as the North American Cordillera. More than 50 of the Cordillera's peaks taller than 14,000 feet are in Colorado. Outdoor recreation ranges from backpacking and climbing to road cycling and skiing.
With roots in mining and agriculture, Colorado's economy has branched in many directions. It currently has a high concentration of tech and scientific research companies. Food processing, manufacturing, and tourism round out the state's industries.
The Centennial State maintains a long list of superlatives. It has the highest paved road, the deepest geothermal hot spring, and the nation's largest concentration of scenic byways. Colorado is the only state in the Union to reject the Olympics and one of the first to legalize recreational marijuana.
Population - 5,540,322
Persons 65 years old and over - 13%
High school graduates, age 25+ - 91%
Bachelor's degree or higher, age 25+ - 38%
Persons of Hispanic or Latino origin - 21%
White persons, not Hispanic - 68%
Median household income - $60,422
Median home value - $247,800
Social Security taxed? Yes
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
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