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Old 07-30-2011, 08:26 PM
 
14 posts, read 16,853 times
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Hi all,
After lurking for a while, I am ready to post Looking to move to Maine (from the Finger Lakes area of NY) in a few years, so plenty of time to research and visit, visit, visit. I am trying to get a handle on a couple of things to be sure that this move is feasible for us:


-Need to be able to find work as an RN, so I at least need to be near enough to drive every day.
-Kids will be college age, so no need to worry about schools, sports, etc.
-Husband will be retiring early, so no need for him to find work.
-Prefer to live in town, in an area that is walkable. To me, walkable means able to walk the dog & exercise safely; not necessarily being able to walk to stores, etc.

-Will want to purchase a home in the $250-$300K range. Prefer older homes with character to the newer cookie-cutter variety. In looking at real estate listings online there seem to be plenty of options?


We are familiar with the Portland area a little bit, and like it very much. But we arenít wedded to it. We are visiting the Bar Harbor area next month, so hopefully Iíll have some more ideas from that trip, too. . Any suggestions on other areas of Maine that may be a good match for us, is much appreciated!
Also a quick question about heating the home in winter: Is heating oil primarily what most Mainers use?
Thank you!
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Old 07-30-2011, 09:27 PM
 
Location: Gorham, Maine
1,818 posts, read 4,281,477 times
Reputation: 1240
Quote:
Originally Posted by kpav View Post
Hi all,
After lurking for a while, I am ready to post Looking to move to Maine (from the Finger Lakes area of NY) in a few years, so plenty of time to research and visit, visit, visit. I am trying to get a handle on a couple of things to be sure that this move is feasible for us:


-Need to be able to find work as an RN, so I at least need to be near enough to drive every day.
-Kids will be college age, so no need to worry about schools, sports, etc.
-Husband will be retiring early, so no need for him to find work.
-Prefer to live in town, in an area that is walkable. To me, walkable means able to walk the dog & exercise safely; not necessarily being able to walk to stores, etc.

-Will want to purchase a home in the $250-$300K range. Prefer older homes with character to the newer cookie-cutter variety. In looking at real estate listings online there seem to be plenty of options?


We are familiar with the Portland area a little bit, and like it very much. But we arenít wedded to it. We are visiting the Bar Harbor area next month, so hopefully Iíll have some more ideas from that trip, too. . Any suggestions on other areas of Maine that may be a good match for us, is much appreciated!
Also a quick question about heating the home in winter: Is heating oil primarily what most Mainers use?
Thank you!
Welcome kpav. Maine has the oldest housing stock in the nation and as you've seen there are plenty on the market. As I look at the numbers for June for homes sold by REALTORS, the median sales price of a single family home in Cumberland County is 235,000, the highest in the state, while Hancock (where Bar Harbor is) it is 157,250. In Piscataquis, where only about 12 homes are sold a month, the median sales price is just 59,000. Of course in all cases, waterfront will push the numbers way up and distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales) will push the numbers down.

As an RN, you obviously will want to focus on areas with healthcare and many other posters will fill you in. Maine has many hospitals throughout the state, although I believe your odds will be better in Portland, Bangor and Lewiston-Auburn as that is where the major population centers are.

The number that is floating around in my head from a few years back was 80-85% of homes in Maine have oil as their primary heat source. With the spike in prices a few years back and then again recently, one might assume it's about 75%. Natural Gas is very limited in Maine, although many homes are heating and cooking with propane tanks, which isn't cheap either, but seems to burn cleaner as the new furnaces are over 90% efficient compared to 80-85% with oil. These gas furnaces are smaller and need maintenance less often, many of my buyer clients are actively seeking these out.
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Old 07-31-2011, 11:11 AM
 
14 posts, read 16,853 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoFanMe View Post
Welcome kpav. Maine has the oldest housing stock in the nation and as you've seen there are plenty on the market. As I look at the numbers for June for homes sold by REALTORS, the median sales price of a single family home in Cumberland County is 235,000, the highest in the state, while Hancock (where Bar Harbor is) it is 157,250. In Piscataquis, where only about 12 homes are sold a month, the median sales price is just 59,000. Of course in all cases, waterfront will push the numbers way up and distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales) will push the numbers down.

As an RN, you obviously will want to focus on areas with healthcare and many other posters will fill you in. Maine has many hospitals throughout the state, although I believe your odds will be better in Portland, Bangor and Lewiston-Auburn as that is where the major population centers are.

The number that is floating around in my head from a few years back was 80-85% of homes in Maine have oil as their primary heat source. With the spike in prices a few years back and then again recently, one might assume it's about 75%. Natural Gas is very limited in Maine, although many homes are heating and cooking with propane tanks, which isn't cheap either, but seems to burn cleaner as the new furnaces are over 90% efficient compared to 80-85% with oil. These gas furnaces are smaller and need maintenance less often, many of my buyer clients are actively seeking these out.
Thank you for this very helpful information! Online real estate research and vacations aren't the same thing as living there or learning from the local folks, so it is much appreciated. Maine is everything that I am looking for, and in the right price range.

We currently heat with oil, and use wood as a backup, so I am sure we will be one of those families seeking alternatives. But at least oil & wood are already familiar to us.
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Old 08-21-2011, 07:20 PM
 
Location: Wells, Me.
1 posts, read 1,753 times
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Default southern maine

Have you tried southern Maine? I live in Wells, Me. very accessible to Boston Portsmouth and NH but still small town living.
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Old 08-21-2011, 09:20 PM
 
Location: Sacramento, CA/Dover-Foxcroft, ME
1,808 posts, read 2,899,848 times
Reputation: 2826
Look at Eliot and South Berwick too. Close to all mentioned and still rural in southern Maine.

I lived in Eliot in the 60's and early 70's. Still hasn't changed much and is very close to NH shopping, several beaches and Boston/Portland.
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Old 08-22-2011, 08:21 AM
 
14 posts, read 16,853 times
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We have visited Southern Maine several times and love it! However, we have only visited as tourists and mostly in the summer, so it is time to come back and try to think like a resident. I have seen some pretty busy traffic in the towns along Route 1, starting in Kittery - is that pretty common for much of the year, or does it more or less die down once summer is over? I do want to spend some time in the 'western' part of southern Maine (west of I-95), so another trip for a fall weekend is in the works.

The proximity of these areas to Boston is enticing because our son would most likely locate in the Boston area, and he would be close enough to come see us in Maine regularly.

Thank you all so much for your guidance, it is most helpful!
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Old 08-22-2011, 08:50 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
1,031 posts, read 2,054,885 times
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Traffic in Kittery to Kennebunkport isn't too heavy except for May through early September. Traffic is really only steady year-round in major city areas like Portland and Bangor. Each city is notably different from the others, so it will be a matter of personal preference regarding which town you'd like to work in. Portland for the most part feels more urban than Bangor.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:47 AM
 
Location: Bar Harbor, ME
1,922 posts, read 3,676,107 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kristin85 View Post
Traffic in Kittery to Kennebunkport isn't too heavy except for May through early September. Traffic is really only steady year-round in major city areas like Portland and Bangor. Each city is notably different from the others, so it will be a matter of personal preference regarding which town you'd like to work in. Portland for the most part feels more urban than Bangor.
I know that traffic is a concern for some. But its a relative statement. Most people who live currentling in the northeast or near any of the tourist meccas in the northeast from Washington through Boston, are not going to find nearly anyplace in Maine to have very much traffic. Have any of you traveled on 95 in the corridor, or on 70 west of Baltimore Washington?
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:57 AM
 
14 posts, read 16,853 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarathu View Post
I know that traffic is a concern for some. But its a relative statement. Most people who live currentling in the northeast or near any of the tourist meccas in the northeast from Washington through Boston, are not going to find nearly anyplace in Maine to have very much traffic. Have any of you traveled on 95 in the corridor, or on 70 west of Baltimore Washington?

I agree, it is relative, so probably not a great question from me. Yep, we have spent plenty of time in and around the DC area (DC-Baltimore; Capital Beltway, etc), and you're right, Maine traffic is nothing by comparison! The traffic I saw in Maine wouldn't scare me off, I just wondered whether Mainers found it an inconvenience, minor nuisance, etc. Maine has so many wonderful things going for it, a little summer traffic wouldn't change my mind! Thank you very much for your input!
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:03 PM
 
Location: Bar Harbor, ME
1,922 posts, read 3,676,107 times
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Traffic in and out of Mount Desert Island can be a pain...sometimes. Everybody knows that on Saturday morning there will be a bottleneck at the entrance the island, and then again preceding the first traffic light into Ellsworth near the Home Depot. But the one on the two lane entrance to the island is really not too bad, and everyone who is not a tourist knows the back way into Ellsworth to avoid the hold up at the lights. The biggest one is on July 4 leaving the fireworks. So you catch the fireworks on a boat or you go to Getty's for a drink after the fireworks and bingo... all the traffic is gone.
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