The overall cost of living in Maine is 3.5% lower than average for the United States. Groceries, health, housing, and utilities are near or above the national average, while transportation costs are more than 20% lower. The cost of living among cities varies by location. South Berwick is 11.4% higher than the rest of the state, while Oakland is 11.3% lower. Hermon is 3.2% cheaper, and Scarborough is 47% more expensive. Your financial situation should dictate where you can afford to live, but there are plenty of low-cost areas throughout the state.
Average Home Prices in Maine
The median price of a home in Maine is $229,400, which is less than 1% lower than the national average of $231,200. Scarborough is a more expensive city and has an average price tag of $571,600. In Lewistown, Bangor, and Augusta, you'll pay in the $140,000 range, while in Fairfield the average is $101,500. It's not too difficult to find affordable homes in the state, which makes Maine an excellent choice if you're looking for a rent-to-own home.
If you're interested in Maine rent-to-own homes, don't forget to consider important factors in addition to monthly living costs, such as average commute, taxes, crime rates, etc. The following are some common Maine statistics compared to the U.S. national average.
| ||Maine Averages ||National Averages |
|One-Way Commute ||23.8 minutes ||26.4 minutes |
|Violent Crime ||10.4 ||22.7 |
|Property Crime ||24.4 ||35.4 |
|Unemployment Rate ||3.2% ||3.9% |
|Income Tax Rate ||7.2% ||4.6% |
|Air Quality ||83 ||58 |
|Water Quality ||64 ||55 |
|Median Household Income ||$48,804 ||$53,482 |
|Median Property Taxes ||$1,936 ||$2,200 |
|Utilities ||$107/month ||$112/month |
|Monthly Rent ||$831 ||$1,470 |
|Median Home Cost ||$229,400 ||$231,200 |
|Median Home Age ||39 years ||40 years |
Popular Maine Cities
Portland - The most-populated city in Maine had 66,215 residents in 2019. The downtown is now a beautifully revitalized arts district with several museums of culture and arts, several galleries, a theatre for concerts and shows, and the Maine College of Arts. Major industries in the city include financial services, health care, and transportation, but a lot of commerce comes from its position as a port city.
Bar Harbor - This coastal town consists of 42.24 square miles and has a population of only 5,559. Many people who go to Acadia National Park shop and dine in Bar Harbor. Visitors enjoy the boutique hotels, friendly bed and breakfasts, restaurants, local breweries and coffee roasters, and local shops. In addition to the year-round community, the town is a popular vacation spot for people who enjoy nature, water sports, lobstering, and sightseeing.
Sanford - Anyone looking to move to Maine should consider laying their roots in Sanford. The city had a 105.79% population increase between 2000 and 2014 and currently has 21,223 residents. Sanford has a regional airport, a country club with an 18-hole golf course, and a minor league stadium. This city, which has an unemployment rate of 2.8% - well below the U.S. average of 3.9% - is located at the foot of the White Mountains, has a serene environment, and is an excellent place to raise a family.
Popular Amenities and Attractions in Maine
More than 37 million tourists passed through Maine in 2018. The homey feel people get from its artisanal eateries, the appeal of its old lighthouses along the Atlantic Coast, and the state's sizable forest areas are more attractive to visitors than any specific attraction.
If hiking is your thing, you should visit the final 281 miles of the Appalachian Trail, which ends in Maine. Climb over mountain peaks, check out the waterfalls, and dive into one of the many natural water bodies along the way. When you're ready to call it a day, find one of the campsites and spend the night under the stars.
Maine is famous for its many lighthouses. These structures help guide seafarers back to land. Many of the light towers - some dating back to the 1700s - are open to visitors. You can tour these structures by boat, check out architecture from more than 200 years ago, and see how they operate in modern-day fashion. Many are steeped in local folklore that's sure to entertain you.
Acadia National Park is a 47,000-acre preserve with endless outdoor adventure possibilities. Explore the 57 miles of carriage roads and bridges, where you can bring your own horse or enjoy horse-drawn carriage tours. Go fishing or do the six-mile bike ride around the 436-acre Eagle Lake and enjoy its picturesque views and calming environment. Go kayaking, sail boating, canoeing, or motorboating in one of the many lakes, check out the breathtaking mountain views, or just sit near a waterfall while relaxing. You can spend days or weeks in Acadia National Park, and you won't run out of things to do.