The 10 Best Places To Retire In Arkansas For 2021


We analyzed over 34 places in Arkansas to identify the ones that offer the most to retirees.

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Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2021. This is our seventh time ranking the best places to retire in Arkansas.

What do 500,000 Arkansas retirees know that the rest of America does not? HomeSnacks knows.

Yes, we've done the unthinkable and created a list of the top ten best places to retire in Arkansas for 2021 and listed them below. There are a couple of things, however, that you should know before scrolling down to our list, so we suggest you get comfortable and keep reading.

First up, we obtained the data for our list by looking at the latest FBI and Census reports for 33 Arkansas cities with 10,000 residents. We then looked at how safe, affordable, and the proximity of each place to an international airport.

We discovered that Arkansas is safe and affordable; but sadly, you're going to be out of luck if you're looking to live close to an international airport: there are none. But, the state does have seven passenger airports ready to connect you to your family and friends when you need a break from retirement life. But, you really shouldn't need a break from The Natural State because there's a ton of stuff to do. Like, taking a Lake of the Ozarks dinner cruise on the Belle of the Ozarks or playing a round at Stonebridge Meadows in Fayetteville.

And if you do start to get bored, you can always be a greeter at Walmart: Bentonville is after all the birthplace of the big box store.

So, want to know where you can live out your best years in Arkansas? Keep reading, you're almost there.

Why did Blytheville take the top spot? And where are Little Rock and Fort Smith?

When you choose to live in one of Arkansas' best places to retire, you are choosing to live where your dollar will go the furthest, where your safety is a priority, and where you will have the most fun. And word on the street, parking is easy in these places and there are a ton of drive-up pharmacies.

So, where is the best place to retire in Arkansas? According to the latest data, Blytheville is the best place to retire in Arkansas for 2021.

To see how your favorite places in Arkansas compared, take a look at the list below; and if you don't see it there, head to the bottom.

For more Arkansas state reading:

The 10 Best Places To Retire In Arkansas For 2021

Blytheville, AR

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 14,011
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Median Rent: $639
Distance to Closest Airport: 3 miles
More on Blytheville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Batesville, AR

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 10,706
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Median Rent: $598
Distance to Closest Airport: 94 miles
More on Batesville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Harrison, AR

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 13,063
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Rent: $620
Distance to Closest Airport: 154 miles
More on Harrison: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Mountain Home, AR

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 12,393
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Rent: $686
Distance to Closest Airport: 138 miles
More on Mountain Home: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Pine Bluff, AR

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 43,091
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 8)
Median Rent: $727
Distance to Closest Airport: 129 miles
More on Pine Bluff: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Paragould, AR

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 28,568
Rank Last Year: -
Median Rent: $716
Distance to Closest Airport: 32 miles
More on Paragould: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Camden, AR

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 10,999
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 2)
Median Rent: $511
Distance to Closest Airport: 155 miles
More on Camden: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Van Buren, AR

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 23,413
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 2)
Median Rent: $724
Distance to Closest Airport: 100 miles
More on Van Buren: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Fort Smith, AR

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 87,743
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 2)
Median Rent: $685
Distance to Closest Airport: 103 miles
More on Fort Smith: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Siloam Springs, AR

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 16,715
Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 2)
Median Rent: $743
Distance to Closest Airport: 75 miles
More on Siloam Springs: Real Estate | Data | Photos

How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Natural State for 2021

To create our list of the best places in Arkansas to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the Natural State -- 538 cities and towns.

We then narrowed it down to places with at least 10,000 people that weren't townships. This left us with 33 places from across the state.

For these 33, we looked at the following criteria taken from the Census, the FBI's Crime Report, National Weather Service, and OpenFlights:

  • Low cost of living as measured by rent
  • Low crime
  • Things to do (Museums, Colleges, and Libraries in town)
  • Nice weather
  • Distance to the closest international airport
  • Other retirees (High median age)

We then ranked each of these places for each criteria from one to 33, with the lowest number being the best.

Finally, we took the average rank across these criteria. The place, in this case Blytheville, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers. You can download the data here.

Maybe You're Not Ready To Retire In Arkansas Yet...

So there you have it, the best place to retire in Arkansas goes to Blytheville.

If you're not ready to hang up your office apparel yet, then these places might be up your alley:

  1. Jacksonville
  2. Bryant
  3. North Little Rock

For more Arkansas reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places To Retire In Arkansas?

Rank City Population Median Rent
1 Blytheville 14,011 $639
2 Batesville 10,706 $598
3 Harrison 13,063 $620
4 Mountain Home 12,393 $686
5 Pine Bluff 43,091 $727
6 Paragould 28,568 $716
7 Camden 10,999 $511
8 Van Buren 23,413 $724
9 Fort Smith 87,743 $685
10 Siloam Springs 16,715 $743

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.