Moving to Maine
If you're contemplating a move to Maine, you're in for a delightful treat! Picture a tranquil haven infused with picturesque shorelines, lush forests, charming small towns, and mouthwatering lobster dishes. Maine's enchanting allure goes beyond its stunning landscapes - the state enjoys a laid-back vibe, rich cultural experiences, and a sophisticated arts scene. So, embark on this journey with the same playful, adventurous spirit as the majestic Maine moose, and explore every nook and cranny of this captivating region through our comprehensive Maine relocation guide.
What to Know Before Moving to Maine
1. Life in Maine is like living in nature's playground
One of the major draws to moving to Maine is the abundance of outdoor activities and natural beauty. From miles of gorgeous coastline to numerous state parks and wildlife refuges, there's always something to explore. Hiking, camping, kayaking, fishing, and skiing are just a few of the activities you can enjoy in this state. If you love nothing more than immersing yourself in nature, Maine is definitely a place to consider.
2. Lobster, lobster, and more lobster
Maine is synonymous with lobster, and it's not hard to see why – the state is responsible for more than 80 percent of the national catch! The iconic Maine lobster roll, fresh lobster, and lobster bisque are just some of the dishes you'll find all over the state. If you’re a seafood lover, you’ll be in heaven living in Maine. And if you ever grow tired of lobster (though we doubt you will!), there's ample supply of other seafood like clams, oysters, and haddock to enjoy.
3. Lower cost of living, but with a trade-off
Maine boasts a more affordable cost of living compared to many other states in the US. While housing and utilities tend to be cheaper, keep in mind that the job market may be tougher depending on your field, as job growth has lagged behind national averages in recent years. However, if remote work or an entrepreneurial spirit runs through your veins, living in Maine could be the perfect mix of affordability and charm.
4. Maine-iacs are no strangers to cold winters
With its location in the northeastern United States, it should come as no surprise that Maine experiences long, cold winters filled with snowstorms and icy conditions (think white Christmases!). If you're planning to move to Maine, proper winter gear and an appreciation for the beauty of snow-covered landscapes are a must. But remember, the state’s many winter activities – like skiing, snowshoeing, and ice fishing – will make the colder months much more enjoyable!
5. Did you know Maine has its own desert?
When you think of Maine, a sprawling desert landscape may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, the Desert of Maine, located in Freeport, is a 40-acre plot of glacial silt that resembles a desert-like environment – a unique site that not many people know about! Complete with sand dunes and guided tours, this quirky attraction showcases Maine's geological history and offers a stark contrast to the surrounding greenery. Living in Maine means you can enjoy lush forests one day, and a desert the next!
6. Maine's official state cat has an interesting history
Have you ever heard of the Maine Coon cat? This large, fluffy, and friendly feline is actually the official state cat of Maine. The breed’s origins are a bit of a mystery, with some legends claiming they're descendants of Marie Antoinette's cats, who were sent to Maine when the queen was trying to escape France. (Don’t worry; we would have brought our cats, too!) True or not, these lovable furballs can be seen all around the state – just one more purrfect reason to move to Maine.
Maine offers so much more than meets the eye for those considering making a move to this picturesque state. With its abundance of outdoor activities, mouthwatering seafood, surprisingly low cost of living, and rich history, living in Maine provides an excellent quality of life for its residents. So pack your bags, get ready for adventure, and start planning your move to this beautiful corner of the United States!
Pros and Cons of Living in Maine
Pros of Living in Maine
Beautiful Scenery and Outdoor Recreation
Maine is known for its breathtaking landscapes, ranging from rugged coastlines to lush forests and picturesque small towns. This natural beauty provides a plethora of outdoor recreational opportunities, such as hiking, fishing, skiing, and sailing.
Low Crime Rates
According to the National Institute of Justice, Maine ranks among the states with the lowest crime rates in the United States. Residents enjoy a safe living environment with reduced risk of exposure to violent crime, burglary, or property crime.
Quality Education System
Maine has a strong public education system, with several highly-ranked schools and a commitment to equal educational opportunities for all students. Its colleges and universities, like Bowdoin College and the University of Maine, are well-regarded.
Relaxed Pace of Life and Friendly Communities
Many who move to Maine appreciate the slower pace of life and the close-knit, supportive communities that can be found throughout the state. This relaxed atmosphere can be a welcome change for those seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle of city living.
Affordable Housing and Cost of Living
Compared to other states in the northeast, Maine has a relatively lower cost of living and affordable housing options. This is particularly attractive for people looking to downsize, start a family or retire in a more budget-friendly environment.
Cons of Living in Maine
Long Winters and Cold Weather
The winters in Maine can be long, cold, and snowy. Heavy snowfalls and frigid temperatures can lead to difficult travel conditions and cabin fever for residents who might not be used to such lengthy cold spells.
Lower Job Opportunities
The Maine economy is not as robust as other states, and job opportunities can be limited, especially outside of tourist destinations like Portland. The state's rural nature and reliance on certain industries, such as fishing and logging, may present employment challenges for those seeking high-paying jobs in fields unrelated to these sectors.
Isolation and Lack of Diversity
Maine has one of the most homogenous populations in the United States, and its rural nature can make it difficult for newcomers to find communities that share their cultural backgrounds or interests. Additionally, some may find the rural lifestyle isolating and less accessible to amenities and services found in larger cities.
Although the cost of living and housing in Maine is relatively affordable, the state does have higher property taxes and income taxes compared to other states. This may impact budget considerations for those considering a move to Maine.
Limited Public Transportation Options
Public transportation in Maine is limited, especially in more rural areas. Those living in the state may need to rely on personal vehicles to travel throughout the region. This may present challenges for those who prefer access to robust public transportation options.
Is Maine a Good State to Live In?
Maine is a great place to live because of its beautiful nature, abundance of outdoor activities, and low crime rate. In addition, the state offers affordable housing, a tight-knit community feel, and delicious fresh seafood to satisfy any foodie.
What Is Maine Famous For?
Acadia National Park
Acadia National Park is a stunning outdoor paradise known for its rocky coastline, dense forests, and clear blue waters. Visitors can enjoy activities such as hiking, biking, and wildlife watching during their trip to this breathtaking gem in Maine.
Maine is famous for its delectable lobster, which is often considered the best in the world. Served steamed or as a lobster roll, these tasty crustaceans attract foodies near and far to get a taste of the state's culinary treasure. You can checkout Maine Lobster Now for some of the finest selections.
With over 60 picturesque lighthouses scattered along its rocky shores, Maine has earned its nickname "The Lighthouse State." These historic structures not only offer captivating backdrops for photos but also provide glimpses into the maritime history of the region. More about these majestic lighthouses can be known here.
Renowned horror novelist Stephen King hails from Maine, and fans can visit the state to see places that inspired his spine-chilling stories. From his hometown of Bangor to the fictional town of Derry featured in "It," Maine offers plenty of possibilities to embrace the eerie side of the area. Check out this official site of Stephen King for more details.
Overview of Tax Rates
Maine's property tax rate is approximately 1.27% of a property's assessed value as of 2023. This rate is above the national average and places Maine among the states with the highest property tax rates in the country.
Residents of Maine face a sales tax rate of 5.5%, which is lower than the national average sales tax rate across the US. This sales tax rate is considered moderate compared to other states, with some states having higher rates and others having lower or no sales tax.
Maine uses a progressive income tax system, with rates ranging from 5.8% to 7.15% as of 2023. These rates place Maine among the states with one of the highest income tax structures, although they remain lower than some states like California and Oregon.
While Maine's housing market is generally more affordable compared to other states, the recent surge in demand has resulted in a spike in both rental and home prices. The median home price in Maine was $267,500 in May 2021, which is considered reasonable when compared to the national average. However, a limited inventory of listings poses a challenge for potential buyers. Meanwhile, renters face an average monthly rent of $1,200 for a one-bedroom apartment, marginally lower than the national average. Prospective residents should be prepared for competition in a market balancing affordability with high demand.
Cost of Living
Maine's cost of living is relatively affordable compared to other states in the US, with a cost of living index of 96.3, below the national average of 100. Housing and transportation costs are comparatively lower, while healthcare and miscellaneous expenses are slightly higher. As a result, Maine provides a charming experience for residents who enjoy a combination of rural and coastal living without sacrificing accessibility to urban amenities.
Weather & Natural Disasters
The climate in Maine is characterized by a humid continental climate, featuring cold, snowy winters and warm, pleasant summers. Temperatures in the winter months can average below freezing, with coastal areas experiencing milder conditions compared to the interior regions. Snowfall is abundant, often exceeding 100 inches annually in many areas. During the summer, temperatures naturally rise, averaging around 70°F to 80°F as warm breezes blow from the Atlantic Ocean, creating comfortable conditions for outdoor activities.
Weather can be quite variable across the state, with occasional heatwaves, thunderstorms, and dense fog. Coastal locations experience more moderate and stable weather patterns due to the influence of the ocean. As with all coastal regions, Maine is prone to nor'easters, which are powerful storms bringing heavy precipitation and strong winds. Although it is rare, Maine can occasionally experience tropical storms and hurricanes. Along with these meteorological events, natural disasters such as flooding, severe storms, and ice storms can also impact the state.
Economy & Job Market
Healthcare and social assistance
Accommodation and food services
Finance and insurance
Maine's economy has historically been driven by industries such as shipbuilding, fishing, and forestry. However, as these industries have evolved over the years, the economy has shifted to welcome a range of new and diversified sectors. Today, some of the largest industries in Maine include healthcare and social assistance, retail trade, accommodation and food services, educational services, and finance and insurance. Additionally, the state has a growing tech sector and is known for its green technology and renewable energy efforts.
If you're considering a move to Maine and want to find a job, it's essential to know where to look and what to expect from the job market. While the state's unemployment rate was relatively low before the pandemic (hitting a record low of 3% in 2019), it has since seen fluctuations alongside the rest of the country. However, it is important to note that job opportunities can vary greatly depending on the location within the state. The southern portion of Maine, including the Greater Portland area, boasts a stronger job market compared to the rural northern regions. If you're open to working in any of the top industries mentioned, it's likely that you will find plenty of opportunities available upon your arrival in Maine.
Traffic and Transportation
Oh Maine, you glorious treasure chest of lobsters and lighthouses! For a state overflowing with rustic charm, your traffic and transportation scene is equally quaint and delightful. In your bustling metropolises (or should we say large towns?), like Portland and Bangor, average commute times are a dreamy 20-25 minutes. No honking, bumper-to-bumper traffic here!
Need to bounce around the city? Your public transportation options have got you covered. Portland's METRO bus system gallantly gallops through the city, while Bangor's Community Connector lets you hop on and off to explore all its nooks and crannies. And let’s not forget the heart-warming ferries connecting Maine's island communities. Ahoy there, matey!
For those with an adventurous spirit eager to take to the skies, Maine's got you covered. Portland International Jetport and Bangor International Airport let you slip in and out of the state with ease. So buckle up, friends, and immerse yourself in the beauty of the Pine Tree State!
Things to Do
Maine, known for its stunning coastline, charming lighthouses, and delicious seafood, offers a plethora of activities and attractions to cater to every type of visitor. If you're moving to The Pine Tree State, you're in for a real treat! We're sharing some of the must-try experiences, including the popular tourist destinations and a few lesser-known gems you won't want to miss! So, let's dive right in!
1. Explore Acadia National Park
Maine's most famous attraction, Acadia National Park, showcases the beauty of the state's rugged coastline, displaying a gorgeous array of granite peaks, crystal-clear lakes and ponds, and dense forests filled with wildlife. Enjoy hiking, biking, rock climbing, and even horseback riding on the more than 120 miles of picturesque trails. The park is especially majestic during fall foliage season, so prepare to snap some mesmerizing shots of the vibrant colors engulfing Cadillac Mountain.
2. Taste Maine's Signature Dish: Lobster!
Maine lobster is renowned worldwide for its succulent taste and tender texture. You can savor this delightful dish at lobster shacks and seafood restaurants sprinkled all along the coast, like Red's Eats in Wiscasset, widely regarded as serving one of the best lobster rolls in the state. Pro tip: Visit during the annual Maine Lobster Festival held in August in Rockland to enjoy mouthwatering dishes, cooking demonstrations, and some good old-fashioned Maine hospitality!
3. Take a Lighthouse Tour
With over 60 historic lighthouses guarding the rocky shores of Maine, exploring these nautical treasures is a must! You can embark on boat or helicopter tours for breath-taking views, but one of our favorite ways is by bike. Pedal along the stunning scenic trails and take guided or self-guided tours to explore these iconic structures, like the famous Portland Head Light, which sits at the entrance of the harbor in Cape Elizabeth.
4. Experience a Unique Adventure at the Desert of Maine
Did you ever imagine that a desert could exist in the middle of Maine's lush forests? Well, the Desert of Maine in Freeport is your chance to experience this peculiarity! A glacial sand deposit left behind after the Ice Age, this 40-acre tract of land offers a serene escape with several walking trails, a butterfly garden, and even some fun desert-style activities like sand sculpting. Make sure to visit soon, as it's being reclaimed by nature as the years go by.
5. Walk Through the Covered Bridges of Maine
Romantic and charming, the covered bridges found in Maine have a rustic appeal that attracts visitors from far and wide. While some may argue that neighboring New Hampshire has a more significant collection, Maine showcases a different, understated beauty. Places like Henniker Bridge in New Portland and Hemlock Bridge in Fryeburg exude a sense of tranquility and timelessness, perfect for a reflective stroll or a unique photoshoot.
6. Relish the Coastal Beauty of Kennebunkport
The picturesque coastal town of Kennebunkport boasts a delightful combination of rocky shorelines and serene sandy beaches, along with a lively art scene. Visit the Seashore Trolley Museum to explore the largest exhibit of mass transit vehicles in the world or embark on a scenic boat tour through the harbor, taking in the charming mansions dotting the coastline. Don't forget to stop by the stunning St. Ann's Episcopal Church to enjoy the beautiful ocean views!
7. Discover the Secrets of Vinalhaven Island
An off-the-beaten-path destination, Vinalhaven Island is perfect for those seeking an island escape without the crowds. Enjoy hiking, sea kayaking, or unwind on its lesser-known, pristine beaches (like the crescent-shaped Sands Beach). This island is also a bird-watching haven, as it hosts a variety of species, including the iconic puffins! Make sure to check out the island's rich history in the Vinalhaven Historical Society Museum and savor its fresh local seafood.
Let your Maine adventures begin! With endless coastal beauty, fantastic seafood, and hidden gems waiting to be discovered, this captivating state will leave you enchanted and excited for more! So pack your bags and immerse yourself in the wonders of life in Maine!
Find Movers for Your Maine Relocation
Now that you've discovered the countless benefits and beautiful attractions Maine has to offer, it's time to make your dream relocation a reality. Allow Great Guys Moving to simplify your moving process by connecting you with the most reputable, licensed, and insured moving companies that provide quality service and affordable pricing. Take the first step to starting your new life in Maine by submitting your move details and obtaining a free moving quote from trusted professionals. Don't wait any longer; let Great Guys Moving help you embark on your exciting journey to Maine today!
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