With its sunny weather, picturesque landscapes, and vibrant communities, Arizona has long been a sought-after destination for retirees seeking an active lifestyle. Whether you've long considered Arizona or it's a recent addition to your retirement dream list, we’re here to guide you through all you need to know before making the transition to a 55+, All Ages or Boutique community in the Grand Canyon State.

What you will learn: 

Estimated Reading Time: 8.0 minutes 

The Pros of Retiring in Arizona 
55+ man playing golf on green golf club
Year-Round Sunny Weather 

Arizona is famous for its sunny climate. In fact, Phoenix and Tucson land the number one and two spots as the sunniest cities in the United States, each with over 300 days of annual sunshine. The nonstop sun makes the state ideal for retirees who enjoy outdoor activities and want relief from cold, snowy weather — and all the hassles that come with it.

Even better? Some studies show that dry, warmer weather may benefit bone and joint-related health conditions that affect many retirees, including arthritis and stiffness. While you shouldn’t expect a miracle cure, any chance for less pain slowing down your active lifestyle is a win!

Potential Tax Benefits for Retirees    

Arizona's relatively retiree-friendly tax structure may make it a great destination for your financial future. Social Security income isn’t taxed, and there are favorable perks for pensions, retirement savings accounts, and other types of retirement-related income.

Arizona's sales tax and overall tax burdens are quite low compared to many other states popular for retirees. The state has modest property taxes and offers exemptions for seniors, which can be substantial for retirees who own a home in Arizona and those on a fixed income. 

In general, here is how taxes in Arizona compare to other states popular for retirees:  

As tax rates regularly change and vary based upon many circumstances, always talk with a tax expert to determine your exact situation.

Relatively Lower Cost of Living When Compared to Other States 

In Arizona, the overall cost of living is comparatively lower than in other western states like California and Colorado. Relative to those higher-cost areas, there are also many affordable and cost-effective homeownership opportunities for retirees, especially in Arizona, which could make it a good choice for anyone looking to maximize their budgets. 

Endless Outdoor Activities
55+ couple walking in the arizona desert

Arizona is famous for its sunny weather, plentiful outdoor activities, and diverse natural landscapes. From extraordinary hiking and golfing to exploring 64,000 acres of state parks, Arizona is a paradise for anyone who loves to be out in nature.

Arizona is also renowned for its three national parks. Grand Canyon National Park showcases vast and awe-inspiring settings. Saguaro National Park celebrates Arizona’s iconic desert environment with massive cacti, and the fascinating Petrified Forest National Park gives visitors a journey back in time with its ancient, fossilized landscapes. 

Excellent Health Care and Wellness
people doing yoga outside

Arizona has top-rated hospitals and specialized healthcare centers, including the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix and the Banner Health System. Additionally, a growing number of retirement communities are designed with healthcare access, active living options, healthy dining restaurants, and wellness programs tailored to the needs of older adults. 

Vibrant Arts, Culture, and Food Scene 

Arizona is an arts and culture hub with museums, destinations, and events that offer something for everyone, including the Scottsdale Arts District, Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona Opera, Grand Canyon Music Festival, Heard Museum, and so much more. The diverse culinary scenes in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tucson, and beyond also boast next-level Michelin-starred restaurants and prestigious James Beard award-winning chefs. 

Nonstop Sports 

Whether you’re passionate about football, hockey, soccer, college sports, or pickleball, the competition is alive in Arizona. And don’t forget about Major League Baseball's (MLB) Cactus League Spring Training, based annually in the greater Phoenix area.  

Pro and College Sports Teams in Arizona:

Here's a list of a few of the prominent professional and college sports teams to cheer on in Arizona: 

  • Arizona Cardinals (NFL)
  • ​​Phoenix Suns (NBA)
  • Arizona Diamondbacks (MLB)
  • Arizona Coyotes (NHL)
  • Phoenix Rising FC
  • Arizona State University Sun Devils
  • University of Arizona Wildcats 
A Golfer’s Paradise

The beautiful, panoramic desert backdrops, variety of world-class golf courses, and mild winters make Arizona a prime destination for golf enthusiasts. Check out these fantastic golf courses in Arizona, each with its balance of natural beauty, challenging gameplay, and high-quality facilities. 

Cons of Retiring in Arizona

While Arizona offers many incredible lifestyle benefits, there are also some potential challenges for retirees to consider before making the move: 

High Temperatures

Sunny weather can come at a cost. Arizona gets hot, especially in the southern parts of the state, like Phoenix and Tucson. In July, expect the average highs to hit around 91°F, with temperatures regularly reaching over 100°F. If you’re from a cooler climate, adjusting your lifestyle during the summer months is essential, so pay attention to hydration and heat exposure. 

Thankfully, there are plenty of great ways to escape the heat in Arizona. From relaxing in the pool, visiting a nearby lake or river, or soaking in the A/C at a shopping mall, museum, community clubhouse, or indoor sports arena, you’ll never worry about temperature affecting your active lifestyle. 

Limited Public Transportation

Arizona's public transportation system is less developed than many other public transit systems, especially outside the urban cores of Phoenix and Tucson. This can be challenging for retirees who don’t or prefer not to drive a car. If you’re looking to live in a more isolated setting, have a reliable vehicle, or choose a community with regular shuttles or other options to get you wherever you need to go easily.  

Seasonal Population Changes

During the “snowbird” season, thousands of retirees head from cooler to warmer climates for the winter. While you might dream of joining the flock yourself (and Arizona is an amazing option), do consider this annual population change if you’re looking for a stable, year-round community dynamic. 

Best Places to Retire in the Phoenix, Arizona Area
Queen Creek

Nestled in a tranquil and scenic environment yet still within the greater Phoenix area, Queen Creek effortlessly balances peaceful living with urban opportunities. Queen Creek prides itself on its close-knit community feel, outdoor lifestyle with trails, golf courses, parks, farmers markets, and easy access to the amenities and cultural perks of big city living. living. 


Famous for its rich Western heritage, Wickenburg is an ideal locale for a unique and community-focused retirement experience. Located an hour from Phoenix, Wickenburg provides an escape from the city’s hustle and bustle while keeping urban amenities within reach. Enjoy many activities, from exploring the Desert Caballeros Western Museum to participating in the annual Gold Rush Days to soaking up peaceful walks along the Hassayampa River Preserve.  

Rio Verde

Just northeast of Scottsdale, the Rio Verde area offers residents an unparalleled experience designed for retirees. Enjoy everything a dream retirement has to offer, including top-rated golf courses, tons of activities and events, quick access to big city amenities, and the beautiful Sonoran Desert landscape at your front door.  


Nestled in the heart of the Phoenix metropolitan area, Peoria stands out as a premier destination for retirees seeking a perfect blend of tranquility and urban convenience. Peoria offers easy access to a variety of restaurants, shopping, and cultural experiences, such as its two community theatres, art museum, and year-round festivals and events. Peoria is home to 55+ communities like Ridgecrest™—A Trilogy® Boutique Community, offering residents a vibrant lifestyle with a fun, sophisticated vibe within an intimately sized community. 

Explore more places to retire in the Phoenix, Arizona, area here.  

Is Arizona a Good Place to Retire?

While there are pros and cons to retiring in Arizona, choosing the Grand Canyon State for your retirement can offer endless experiences from vibrant communities, gorgeous weather, a rich culture, exciting outdoor activities, and financial benefits. The decision ultimately lies in your hands — Arizona provides the canvas, but your retirement story is yours to craft. 

Why Choose Trilogy® by Shea Homes® for Your Next Chapter? 

Embark on your next adventure with Trilogy by Shea Homes in Arizona — a haven for those seeking an active and fulfilling lifestyle. Our thoughtfully designed all-ages and 55+ resort communities embody the essence of Arizona living, providing an environment where every day is filled with possibilities.  

Experience the joy of a sun-soaked retirement surrounded by like-minded individuals, and discover why Trilogy® is the preferred choice for retirees

0 Comment

Leave a Comment

*Required Fields

Thank you for submitting your comment!


Get the latest community news and Shea updates via email and text

*Required Fields


Keep an eye on your inbox for all the latest news and updates from Shea, including tips for buying a home, community info, and more.

Back to top

Contact Shea Homes

How Can We Help You?

Interest List


Receive news and email updates about communities you like.

Request a Tour


Request to schedule a tour with one of our representatives.

General Inquiries


Submit a request for information or leave a comment.

Service Request

Service Request

For current homeowners to contact customer care.