A recent study by a financial technology company found that Washington County is one of the best counties for retirees in Illinois.
SmartAsset analyzed Social Security income, cost of living data, and taxes across all counties to determine where people are getting the most mileage out of Social Security, and Washington County ranked among the top spots in Illinois.
Based on cost of living and the annual amount paid by Social Security, the study showed that Washington County was the tenth best place to live in Illinois for people relying primarily on Social Security income.
First, the study looked at the average Social Security income for each county and calculated the taxes a typical retiree would pay on that income based on the state-specific Social Security tax rules. Analysts subtracted the taxes from that average Social Security income to determine the net income from Social Security.
From there, SmartAsset calculated how far that net income would go in every county to cover the basic necessities, subtracting the county-level cost of typical living expenses from each county’s net Social Security income.
For Washington County, the cost of living was calculated at $18,018. The annual Social Security benefit is $19,237.
The results were indexed the results to 100, with 100 showing where Social Security would cover the most needs. Higher scores reflect a better environment for living primarily or exclusively off of Social Security benefits.
Based on those criteria, Washington County was assigned a score of 80.54, which made it the tenth highest on the index measuring how far Social Security goes in Illinois.