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retire

Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!

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Retire in Ocean Springs, Mississippi?

Overview:   The tranquil hamlet of Ocean Springs sits on Biloxi Bay on Mississippi's east Gulf Coast and has a history of endurance. It began as the first permanent settlement in French Louisiana in 1699. In the mid-1800s, it became a resort town and garnered accolades for its healing waters. In 2005, it was severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina but has mostly rebuilt.

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Fishing is a way of life in Ocean Springs. Each morning fishing boats venture out to sea, returning in the afternoon with nets full of fresh crab, shrimp and oysters. Much of this bounty finds its way into dozens of local markets and very good restaurants. In recent years, Ocean Springs has also become known for its eclectic arts scene. The Walter Anderson Museum of Art celebrates the work of its namesake, and the beautiful Mary C. O'Keefe Cultural Center has art classes, exhibits and performances. Downtown is cute and leafy with galleries, pubs, sidewalk cafes and shops. Residents enjoy an organic grocery, three golf courses, lots of festivals and plenty of opportunities for fishing, swimming and boating.

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Front Beach and East Beach have both been restored since Katrina and have a boardwalk. Home styles include ranch rambler, plantation and Colonial.

Population: 18,000 (city proper)

Percentage of Population Age 45 or Better: 37%

Cost of Living:  4% below the national average

Median Home Price: $155,000

Climate:  A coastal city, Ocean Springs is hot and sticky in the summer and mild and a little less sticky in the winter.  Summer temperatures are in the 80s and 90s, and winter temperatures are the 50s and 60s.   On average, this area receives 62 inches of rain per year.

Public Transit:  Yes, provided by CTA.  It makes stop at Walmart, the hospital, the post office and a nearby casino.

Crime Rate:  Meets the national average

Public Library:  Yes

Political Leanings:  Very conservative

Is Mississippi Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement?   Somewhat

Cons:     The tornado risk is 85% greater than the national average.  Thanks to Hurricane Katrina, homeowner insurance is expensive and harder to get the closer to the water a house is.

Notes:    Traffic throughout the city and along the main highway is frequently congested.   Some people say that the city is a little cliquish. Ocean Springs has grown by 20% within the last decade or two.

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Recommended as a Retirement Spot?    Yes

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Mississippi:

The Magnolia State entered the Union on December 10, 1817. Prosperous cotton plantations dominated the landscape during the first half of the 19th century. After the American Civil War, the state struggled to find a new economy. Mississippi became a battleground for the Civil Rights Movement.

The state's topography is primarily hilly. The flat, alluvial Mississippi Delta stretches between two rivers and contains 2.7 million acres of wetlands. Blues music has its origins there. Residents of the state experience long, hot summers and short, mild winters.

Mississippi continues to produce cotton, but over cultivation has led to diversification. Rice, soybeans, and aquaculture have helped boost the state's fragile economy. Petroleum and natural gas mining are recent developments and have helped the state move toward the manufacture of chemicals and plastics.

Musicians born in Mississippi include Jimmy Buffet, Elvis Presley, and Leontyne Price. Doctors at the University of Mississippi Medical Center performed the world's first human lung transplant in 1963 and the first heart transplant in 1964.

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Stats:

Population - 2,988,726 

Persons 65 years old and over - 15%

High school graduates, persons age 25+ - 82% 

Bachelor's degree or higher, persons age 25+ - 21% 

Persons of Hispanic or Latino origin - 3% 

White persons, not Hispanic - 56% 

Median household income - $39,665 

Median home value - $103,100 

Social Security taxed? No

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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