Assisted Living in South Dakota

Natural beauty, wide-open spaces, and relatively inexpensive living costs make South Dakota an ideal retirement destination.

Officially nicknamed “The Mount Rushmore State” for its top tourist attraction, South Dakota stands out geographically from other states in the Great Plains. It has its share of wide-open grasslands, particularly in the central and eastern areas of the state around Pierre and Sioux Falls. But the farther west you go, unique land formations like buttes begin popping up from the prairie, and South Dakota starts to look more like the American West. Badlands National Park resembles a miniature desert mountain range with peaks you can traverse in just a few minutes. In the southwestern corner of the state are the more wooded Black Hills – a small, isolated mountain range home to the gigantic granite monuments Mount Rushmore and the work-in-progress Crazy Horse Memorial.

Currently, A Place for Mom partners with 10 senior living communities in South Dakota that provide assisted living.

The median monthly cost of assisted living in South Dakota is about $3,700.

Top cities in South Dakota

Assisted Living in South Dakota

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South Dakota Assisted Living Regulations

Assisted living communities are regulated by the South Dakota Department of Health. Public access to assisted living records and violations history in South Dakota is rated as basic. You can view the state’s nursing home survey reports online. To research the inspection or violation history of an assisted living community, you can contact the state by sending an FOIA request by mail.

In South Dakota, an assisted living facility or assisted living center is any institution, rest home, boarding home, place, building, or agency that is licensed by the state to provide personal care and services — such as help with activities of daily living (ADLs) — beyond basic food, shelter, and laundry. ADLs include but are not limited to: bathing, dressing, eating, walking, physical transfer, giving medications, or helping residents give themselves medications. These facilities may only admit and retain residents who do not require more than intermittent nursing care by a licensed nurse, and they may provide home health agency services or short-term skilled services for a specific medical reason.

Cost of Living

Overall, the cost of living in South Dakota is considered to be slightly more affordable than the national average. The following index scores are based on a scale with the national average set at 100.

Price Indexes

  • Cost of Living: 99
  • Groceries: 107
  • Housing: 110
  • Utilities: 92
  • Transportation: 90


About 17% of South Dakota’s population are seniors. In the 2016 presidential election, South Dakota leaned conservative.

2016 Presidential Election

  • 32% voted Democratic
  • 62% voted Republican
  • 6% voted third party


  • Median age: 37
  • Over the age of 55: 30%
  • 2018 population: 882,235
  • 2020 population: 900,409
  • Estimated 2025 population: 947,499


  • 36% regularly attend a religious service
  • 31% consider themselves atheist, agnostic, or a non-believer
  • The state has a total of 1,819 congregations
  • There are 83 Masonic lodges in the state

Climate and Weather

South Dakota is a northern Great Plains state and has a range of climate types, but most of the state’s climate is considered humid continental. This means South Dakota has four seasons, including hot summers and cold, mostly dry winters. However, the state often has extreme temperatures in both summer and winter, and during spring and autumn, the temperature can swing wildly within a single day. Some northern areas of the state experience a subarctic climate, whereas the southwestern portion of the state has a more desert-like, semi-arid climate.

Humidity and Precipitation

  • Average humidity level: 66%
  • Average monthly precipitation: 2”
  • Average maximum monthly precipitation: 5” (May)

Air Quality

  • Average air quality index rating: 35 (Good)
  • Average maximum air quality rating: 48 in August (Good)

Seasonal Temperatures

  • Average temperature: 46°F
  • Average summer temperature: 70°F
  • Typical summer high: 91°F (July)
  • Typical summer low: 47°F (June)
  • Average winter temperature: 21°F
  • Typical winter high: 44°F (February)
  • Typical winter low: -1°F (January)

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Cities in South Dakota
and surrounding area