CARI: Center for Applied Rural Innovation


Date of this Version

September 2007


Published by the Center for Applied Rural Innovation, University of Nebraska – Lincoln. Copyright © 2007 by D. Peters, R. Cantrell, M. Carranza, B. Johnson, and R. Vogt.


Key Findings

• Younger people in their 20s are unsure of their plans to move in retirement (65%). Those in their 30s and 40s are also unsure (about 55%), but are also more likely to stay where they currently live (about 35%) than younger people.

• Plans to move become more definite as people get older. Those in their 50s and early 60s either do not plan to move (45%) or are still unsure (40%), while those 65 and older overwhelmingly plan to stay where they are (62%) rather than being unsure of their plans to move (20%).

• Only around 10 percent of rural Nebraskans plan to leave the state upon retirement, although younger people are slightly more likely to prefer leaving than older people.

• An overwhelming majority (over 80%) of rural Nebraskans say being closer to family is one of the most important factors in their decision to move in retirement, regardless of where they plan to live.

• Proximity to health care facilities is also important to a majority of rural residents (over 70%), and is an especially important factor in decisions to move to urban and rural areas of Nebraska (85%).

• Finding a lower cost of living is important for a majority of those leaving Nebraska and those undecided (70%), and to a smaller extent is important for those moving to rural Nebraska or staying where they currently are (60%).

• Lastly, the availability of outdoor and fitness activities is an important factor cited by those planning to leave the state (75%), those who are unsure of their plans (65%), and those moving to rural Nebraska (60%).

• Looking at rural Nebraskans who plan to leave the state in retirement, the main reasons given for leaving Nebraska are to be closer to outdoor and fitness activities, to find a more favorable climate, to be near family, and to find a lower cost of living.