One slight measure of relief is Utah's tax burden, which is moderate compared to some other states. The owner of a $750,000 home, for example, can expect to pay an annual state property tax of about $5,556. On top of that is a 5 percent state income tax, which is average compared to the rest of the nation, and a combined sales tax of 8.45 percent.

With all this considered, how much wealth do you need to retire in Park City?

For a single person retiring at the age of 65, Thomas believes the magic number is $4 million.

He estimates that such a retiree will have to devote about $1 million of that amount to purchasing a home. For that amount, Thomas said, someone could buy a residence with three or four bedrooms and 2,500 square feet of space, probably on the outskirts of the city. Thomas noted that location is important: In the heart of the city, in a resort area such as Deer Valley, a million bucks would only get you a quarter-acre undeveloped lot.

Considering that many of the people retiring in Park City probably earned in the area of at least $150,000 to $200,000 per year during their careers, Thomas feels a minimum annual budget of $120,000 per year should allow anyone to retire comfortably in Park City.

That should allow someone to live off the interest of $3 million in investments well into their 90s, he said.

For married couples aged 65, he said, bump the assets to about $4.5 million and build a budget of about $150,000 per year.

Thomas notes that it's also important for advisors to keep clients within their budgets, especially in an area such as Park City, where people can become so enamored with locations and luxury homes that they trick themselves into thinking they can afford something they really can't.

"Some of the areas are very showy," he said. "It's very easy for people to get into an area that's too expensive for their long-term plan."

Read other articles on what advisors have to say about retiring in San Francisco, San Diego and New York City.




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