Best Retirement Destinations for LGBTQ Seniors - WTOP News (2024)

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When deciding the best place to retire, you have to consider a variety of factors, such as cost of living, accessibility to health care and proximity to family. For an LGBTQ+ senior, inclusivity and community amenities are equally important.

If you’re ready to settle in a community of like-minded retirees, you’ll need to do your research and choose the right towns and retirement communities for your needs. Retirees shouldn’t have to sacrifice their identity, and these retirement destinations can help LGBTQ+ seniors feel at ease.

Throughout the U.S., many retirement communities offer an inclusive and welcoming environment to LGBTQ+ seniors. Consider these six cities and the LGBTQ+ retirement homes in them.

— Charleston, South Carolina

— Asheville, North Carolina

— Portland, Oregon

— Denver

— Austin, Texas

— Cleveland

[The Best Places to Retire Overseas for LGBTQ+ Seniors]

Charleston, South Carolina

Darren Colananni, wealth management advisor for Centurion Wealth Management, recommends Charleston based on its climate, affordable cost of living and health care.

Although it’s located in the traditionally conservative South, Charleston has evolved into a popular LGBTQ+ destination over the years, with neighborhoods such as Riverland Terrace serving as a hub for the community.

If you are seeking a retirement community in the Charleston area, nearby Columbia, South Carolina, offers several options, including Mill Creek Manor and Holiday by Atria.

Asheville, North Carolina

With a vibrant LGBTQ+ community that spans the entire city, Asheville is another great choice for seniors. You’ll enjoy plenty of recreational activities and an affordable cost of living in a scenic city.

Grace Ridge retirement community in nearby Morganton is one potential place to settle down, with a picturesque location in the Blue Ridge Mountains and a SAGECare credential for LGBTQ+ inclusivity.

[READ: Affordable Mountain Towns for Retirement.]

Portland, Oregon

Portland is known for its progressive values and diverse population, both of which make it an especially welcoming place for LGBTQ+ seniors,” says Linda Chavez, CEO and founder of Seniors Life Insurance Finder in Los Angeles.

Despite a higher cost of living than other areas of the country, Portland’s inclusive community and values make the Pacific Northwest an appealing locale for queer seniors looking for a place to settle down.

Local retirement communities include Rainbow Vista, an active senior community specifically for LGBTQ+ residents 55 and older.


Colorado is another state well-known for its inclusivity. According to U.S. Census Data, Colorado has a high percentage of same-sex couple households.

“With its increasing population of seniors, there are plenty of affordable housing options available as well as easy access to quality health care,” Chavez says.

As a bustling metropolitan area, Denver offers a wide variety of senior living solutions for all kinds of needs, whether you plan to live independently, in a retirement community or in an assisted living center. For instance, Brookdale Senior Living offers assisted living services, including specialized dementia care.

Austin, Texas

Retiring doesn’t mean giving up an active lifestyle, and Austin can be the perfect place to embrace one.

“Austin is known for its vibrant music and art scene, making it a great place for LGBTQ+ seniors to settle down in retirement,” Chavez says.

A liberal hub in a conservative state, Austin has a large, active LGBTQ+ community.

For seniors looking for a dedicated community, there are plenty of local options, including the up-and-coming Kindred Uncommon, a unique community being built in nearby Buda.

[READ: The Best Places to Retire in Mexico.]


With an affordable cost of living and proximity to both the Northeast and Midwest, Cleveland can be a great location for seniors looking for the perfect balance of accessibility and amenities in their retirement locales.

The town has an active LGBTQ+ community as well, including the Rainbow Pioneers senior organization, specifically founded to support the needs of queer individuals over 50.

Local retirement communities include A Place for Us Housing, the first LGBTQ+ senior housing community in Ohio.

Why Choose an LGBTQ+ Retirement Community?

Whether you plan to live independently or in one of the housing centers mentioned here, LGBTQ+ seniors should feel free to live as their authentic selves without discrimination. Choosing one of these communities can help ensure you are surrounded by like-minded retirees with access to amenities tailored to your needs, such as LGBTQ+ health care and volunteer opportunities.

More from U.S. News

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Top Travel Destinations for Retirees

How to Create a Retirement Budget

Best Retirement Destinations for LGBTQ Seniors originally appeared on

Update 06/25/24: This story was previously published at an earlier date and has been updated with new information.

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