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Crossing State Lines

August 20, 2009

The money experts at Kiplinger’s point out that federal taxes will be about the same no matter where you live, but state and local taxes vary greatly. Depending on where you live, this can be bad news if you’re retired. However, if you’re considering downsizing, an out-of-state move while you’re at it could mean significant savings now or for your heirs. A new interactive map at http://www.kiplinger.com/tools/retiree_map/ will point you to which states take the smallest and biggest bites out of your assets. You can search by state or by specific criteria from a drop down menu that includes tax-friendly states with no income tax, no sales tax, the lowest median real estate taxes and no tax on social security benefits as well as tax-unfriendly states with the highest income tax rate, overall sales tax, and median real estate tax and those that impose their own estate taxes, too. Keep in mind there are no perfect states. While Oregon, for instance, has no sales tax and doesn’t tax social security benefits, it does levy estate taxes.