Magazine touts retirement benefits of Dover

DOVER— Curtis Satterthawiate, spent so much time in Dover when he served in the United States Air Force that it became a second home to him.

“I retired from the United States Air Force and spent 20 years at the Dover Air Base,” Mr. Satterthawaite said. “I had my youngest daughter and she remains here.

“I live in Florida and for the summers I come up here to visit my grandchildren and youngest daughter. I feel like it’s a second home. I spent so much time here during my Air Force career.”

The capital city continues to be a prime location for retirees, as it was named one of Money magazine’s best places to retire in its July issue.
Delaware has long been one of the most tax-friendly states. There is no sales tax or income tax and property taxes are incredibly low, averaging under $1,000.

“Dover is a great-sized community,” said Cindy Small, executive director of Kent County Tourism. “It’s culturally diverse, it has the Dover Air Force Base, plus its home to four colleges.

“You cannot beat Delaware’s property taxes, yet the consumer still gets a lot of bang for the buck. Compared to the metro areas around us, our real estate is a bargain.”

Mr. Satterthawiate agreed.

“The tax rate is somewhat favorable,” Mr. Satterthawaite said. “It’s the best and we don’t have any sales tax.”
Wayne Deaton, a retiree, who has been a resident of Dover for 52 years, said the city is a good place to retire, but believes it’s changing.

“It’s not as good as it used to be for me,” Mr. Deaton said. “I’m used to slower Delaware. It’s getting faster all the time.

“I didn’t know retirees were coming here until about 10 years ago. When people retired from the Air Force a lot of them left, but nowadays people stay here because of the tax structure and it’s a reasonable place to live.

“People that I’ve met from Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey moved here because the cost of living. That attracts people.”

He also said there are a lot of activities for retirees to do in the area.

“People can go to the beach,” Mr. Deaton said. “There are golf courses, horse racing and the casinos are here too if you like to gamble.

“It’s conveniently located on the East Coast. You have D.C. Maryland, Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia all within a two and half hour ride.”
Ms. Small shared the same sentiment.

“Dover is centrally located within a four hours’ drive of 10 million households, so it’s close to a lot of metro areas from which people are retiring and looking for location or retirement spots,” Ms. Small said.

“Also we’re close to the beaches, but not in the congestion or pricing of the beaches.”

But Mr. Satterthawaite said reminiscing with other retirees is what brought him back to Dover.

“I know a lot of people that have retired in the area,” he said. I like airplanes and cars. People from the base that I know we reconnect on those things.

“It’s always good to talk about old times and how things used to be.”

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