Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Retire in Starkville, Mississippi?
Overview: The Oktibbeha County seat, Starkville is in northeastern Mississippi and is adjacent to Mississippi State University (25,000 students). The city is growing, and it is a somewhat liberal place in an otherwise very conservative state. In fact, in 2014 it passed an inclusivity resolution recognizing the inherent worth of all its city’s residents, including people who are gay or transgender.
Although the University is not wholly in Starkville, it is the town's largest employer and source of its cultural and athletic life. The Starkville-MSU symphony orchestra is celebrating more than 30 seasons, and MSU's Lyceum Series presents performances by national musicians, dancers, and dramatists. The University also supports championship football, basketball, and baseball teams. Its horse park is one of the nation's top rodeo spaces, and its 18-hole golf course has won accolades from Golf Digest. The Starkville Community Theatre has a full schedule and has won awards from the Mississippi Theatre Association. The Magnolia Film Festival, the Old Main Music Festival, the Bulldog Bash, and the Cotton District Arts Festival all draw lively crowds.
The Cotton District is a New Urbanism neighborhood with eateries and shops. Otherwise, restaurants are in fairly good supply but not particularly diverse. Many residents travel an hour north to Tupelo for in-depth shopping. Starkville manages public swimming pools, tennis and racquetball courts, as well as parks. The Oktibbeha County Lake is open for fishing, boating, camping, hiking and swimming. Many homes have large lots, and there are some very nice areas. Brick homes are common.
Population: 26,000 (city proper)
Percentage of Population Age 45 or Better: 24%
Cost of Living: 6% below the national average
Median Home Price: $170,000
Climate: Summers are hot and steamy, particularly after the rains come. Winters are mild and damp. On average, the area receives 54 inches of rain per year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? Yes
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No, but OCH Regional Medical Center is accredited by DNV GL Healthcare.
Public Transit: Yes, but it is somewhat limited, and many routes cater to students.
Crime Rate: Meets the national average
Public Library: Yes
Political Leanings: Slightly liberal
Is Mississippi Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Somewhat
Cons: Some people say that Starkville is cliqueish. The poverty rate is above the national average, but much of this is due to the number of students who live in town.
Notes: This area is very pretty in the spring when the wisteria is in bloom. Starkville has grown by 35% within the last 10 to 15 years.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
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.
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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