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Finding the best place to retire in is a little bit like looking for a mate. There are lots of pretty ones out there. To help weed out the more unattractive ones, we present our third annual (we skipped 2013) list of the worst states for retirement.

There is one main point we want to emphasize – everyone's retirement situation is different, so a one size fits all approach won't work. If your grandchildren live in one of these states and you want to be near them – that makes it a great retirement state for you.

Factors we considered:

High property taxes: If you own property, you can't avoid these taxes. No matter how high or how low your income, you will pay taxes based on the value of your home. Since retirees generally don't have a lot of income, this is our No. 1 negative consideration.

Taxation of Social Security & pension/retirement income: Just about everybody in America will receive Social Security in retirement. It's generally not that much (in 2014, the average couple on Social Security receives $2,111 a month), so the taxes on that income is usually not a critical factor. However, for the fortunate, but shrinking, number of people receiving defined benefit pensions, taxes on those pensions could be a deciding factor on where you decide to retire. The type, and where that pension comes from, has a big effect on state taxation.

For example, is it from in or out of state, or is it a military or other government pension? Even more people are likely to be affected by the taxation of retirement benefits, such as the recommended mandatory distributions (RMDs) that you must start taking the year you reach age 70-1/2. State taxation of pensions and distributions from 401ks, IRAs, etc. is all over the map and difficult to research. On these matters, you should use a tax professional to help make sure you get the most accurate information.

Cost of living: The majority of Baby Boomers won't have the resources to sustain the lifestyle we had in our working days once we retire. So it makes a great deal of sense to look for a place to live where our scarce dollars go further.

Low estate and inheritance taxes: Millions of Boomers have accumulated substantial estates, thanks to hard work and/or good fortune. Assuming we want to pass much of that on to our heirs, the presence and severity of any estate and inheritance factors should be considered. For example, in 2014 the federal estate tax is 40% on anything over $5.340 million (indexed for inflation). But several states are much harsher; two of them start taxing estates under $1 million (New Jersey and Rhode Island).

Other considerations: Warm winter climate, good medical care, where your children, family, and friends live, where you have always wanted to live, recreational and cultural opportunities, natural beauty, transportation, crime and natural disasters.

Our rankings explained: In the spirit of recognizing that what makes a state good or bad for retirement is highly personal, we have refrained from ranking the states on this list. We have simply presented them in the order of property taxes paid as a percentage of home value. That is our No. 1 consideration here, but not our only one. Look at the facts and the pluses and minuses we have provided for each – and rank them based on your own situation. For example, if you are going to receive a large pension and are very concerned about how it will be taxed, stay away from states that will tax it.

Here is our list of the worst states for retirement for 2014:

NEW JERSEY

• Negatives: Highest property taxes in nation. Taxes pensions. Highest estate taxes in the nation with an exclusion beginning at $675,000. One of the highest marginal tax rates at 8.97% on incomes over $500,000. One of the highest cost of living (46 out of 51).

Pluses: The Garden State has a high exclusion for pension income. Social Security benefits are not taxed. Lowest gas tax in the nation (and by law you are not allowed to pump it yourself!). Not to mention some of the world's great beaches. N.J. has a senior tax freeze program, but it is hard to determine if that results in meaningful savings.

ILLINOIS

Negatives: Second-highest property taxes. Has an estate tax and the fifth-highest gas tax.

Pluses: Pensions and social security income are exempt from taxation. Cost of living is about average.

WISCONSIN

Negatives: The fourth-highest property taxes in the United States. Retirement income is taxable. Relatively high marginal income tax rate of 7.75% in the highest bracket (over $225,000).

Pluses: No tax on Social Security benefits. No estate estate tax.

NEBRASKA

• Negatives: The sixth-highest property tax as a percentage of home value. Social Security and pension income are taxed. The marginal tax rate is 6.84%, which starts at a very low $29,000. There is an inheritance tax.

• Pluses: The second-lowest cost of living in the country.

MICHIGAN

• Negatives: High property taxes as a percentage of home value (#7). The current exemptions for pension and retirement income will be eliminated for people born after 1952.

• Positives: Social Security will remain exempt. No estate or inheritance tax. Below-average cost of living (#18).

VERMONT

• Negatives: High property taxes. Social Security and pension income are taxed.There is a high marginal tax rate of 8.95% (on incomes over $405,100). High cost of living (#41).

• Pluses: It is a beautiful state with nice people! Its mountains and forests provide outstanding recreation.

OHIO

• Negatives: Some pension/retirement income is taxed. Marginal tax rate is 5.95%.

• Pluses: Ohio's estate state tax has been repealed. Social Security benefits are not taxed by the state. Cost of living is below average (#15).

CONNECTICUT

• Negatives: The tenth-highest property taxes (since homes are generally expensive here, that means people pay a lot of tax). The fourth-highest gas tax. The fourth-highest estate taxes (16% on anything over a $2 million estate. Top marginal tax rate is 6.7%. Social Security and retirement income is taxable for higher income residents. Cost of living is high (48th of 51).

• Positives: Connecticut has the highest personal exemptions in the country ($24,000 for a couple, and there are some Social Security benefit exemptions.

RHODE ISLAND

• Negatives: High property taxes (#11). Social Security and retirement benefits are taxed. The second-highest estate tax (which starts on estates of $965,000). Marginal income tax rate of 5.99% on incomes over $135,500. High cost of living (#44). The state's finances are under duress from deficits and pension funding.

Positives: So many bays, harbors, and oceanfront property that living near the water is easy.

NEW YORK

• Negatives: The thirteenth-highest property tax as a percentage of home value. Some pension income is taxable. The estate tax kicks in for estates over $1 million. Very high cost of living (49 out of 51).

• Pluses: No tax on social security income. The governor is trying to reduce some of these taxes, especially the estate tax.

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States with high property taxes – but not on our top 10 worst list:

Notice that we did not include all of the states with the highest property taxes on our "10 worst" list. That is because some of them have some positive factors that trump their high property taxes.

They are:

Pennsylvania: Doesn't tax pensions or Social Security. Has an inheritance tax. Relatively low income tax rate of 3.07%, although there are no personal exemptions.

Iowa: Social Security is not taxable as of 2014. Some pensions are exempt. There is a 15% inheritance tax. Cost of living is well below average.

Kansas: Taxes Social Security on higher income residents. Pension income is normally taxable. But there is no estate tax, and the cost of living is low.

New Hampshire: The third-highest property tax in the nation. Although the cost of living is among the highest of any state, there is no sales tax, and the only income that is taxed is interest and dividends.

Texas: Although it has the fifth-highest property tax rates, there is no income or estate tax.

California: Surprisingly enough, the Golden State has below average property taxes as a percentage of home value (#33). Part of that stems from the very high value of homes there, plus Homestead protections. But the state has other problems for retirees: High cost of living, the highest marginal rate in the country (13.3%), traffic, pollution, fiscal woes, and it does tax pensions. Social Security is exempt, and the weather is usually great.

In the end, most of the reasons why states made our 10 worst list have to do with money and taxes. There are more important considerations to think about, however. Use this list as a guide, but pick a place to retire based on the whole picture.

Topretirements.com is a USA TODAY content partner offering retirement news and commentary. Its content is produced independently of USA TODAY.

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