What is the cost of living in Maine?

1 min readLast updated March 6, 2024by Charlie Barton

Wondering about the cost of living in Maine? This article summarizes everything you need to know, from tax rates to healthcare costs.  

When considering a move to a new state, understanding the cost of living is vital for effective budgeting and financial planning. If Maine is at the top of your list, here are some current statistics related to the cost of living in the state that could help you make up your mind.    

The average cost of living in Maine 

As well as being a popular tourism destination, Maine is home to around 1.4 million people.  

According to Bureau of Economic Analysis data for 2021, the average annual cost of living in Maine is $50,559.  

While according to data gathered in 2022 from MERIC, the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center, the state ranks 40th in a list of states with the lowest to the highest cost of living. 

Housing costs in Maine 

As of March 2023, the average home value in Maine is estimated to be around $351,375, according to the Zillow Home Value Index as of March 2023.  

It’s important to note that housing prices can significantly differ across various regions within the state. Here are some examples of typical home prices based on Zillow's data: 

CityAverage Home Value
Portland $501,165
Lewiston $267,257
Bangor $248,382
South Portland $467,510
Auburn $276,528

The monthly rental price ranges across the state for those considering renting in Maine. The average rent price is between $1,425 and $4,420.  

The starting rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Portland, ME, is $1,372, and $1,622 for a two-bedroom apartment. 

Utility costs in Maine 

Utility costs play a significant role in Maine's overall cost of living. According to Forbes, the average monthly cost is around $432.  

UtilityAverage cost in Maine
Energy bill $99.44
Monthly water bill $24
Internet $45
Natural gas $104
Phone bill $114
Streaming $46.50

Grocery and food costs in Maine 

When it comes to groceries and food costs, Maine generally aligns with prices found elsewhere in the United States.   

According to Zippia, those in Portland pay over $372 on average each month.   

According to 2021 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average spending on food at home is $5,259 annually, or about $438 per month for US households.   

Transportation costs in Maine 

Transportation costs, including gas prices and vehicle maintenance, impact Maine's overall cost of living.  

According to MIT, a single adult with no children can expect to pay upwards of $4,400. 

Gas prices in Maine are typically in and around the national average. At the time of writing, Maine was just below the national average. These prices fluctuate over time.   

It is also worth noting that prices can vary across different regions within the state.  

Healthcare costs in Maine 

Understanding healthcare expenses is crucial when considering the cost of living.  

The specific healthcare costs in Maine can vary depending on factors such as insurance coverage and individual circumstances. Therefore, it is advisable to research and consult with healthcare providers and insurance companies to obtain accurate cost estimates. 

MIT estimates:  

ScenarioAnnual healthcare expenditure
One adult, no children $3,107
One adult, one child $9,381
One adult, two children $9,391
Two adults (one working), no children $6,611
Two adults (one working), one child $9,391
Two adults (one working), two children $9,316
Two adults (two working), no children $6,611
Two adults (two working), one child $9,391
Two adults (two working), two children $9,316

You can also check out the complete guide to retirement in Maine here.

Childcare costs in Maine 

Families in Maine currently pay around $9,314 per year for childcare for one child. This figure doubles for two children.   

However, it's important to note that this figure can vary across the state.  

Taxation in Maine 

Maine’s state income tax rates range between 5% and 7.15%. 

Here's a comparison of income tax rates among some neighboring states:

StateIncome Tax Rates (2021)
Maine 5.00% - 7.15%
New Hampshire No state income tax
Vermont 3.35% - 8.75%
Massachusetts 5.00% - 12.00%
New York 4.00% - 8.82%

The sales tax rate in Maine is currently 5.50%. However, it's important to note that Maine also allows local municipalities to impose an additional local option sales tax, which can range from 0.50% to 1.50%. This means that the total sales tax rate can vary depending on the location within the state. 

The bottom line 

The amount of money needed to live comfortably in Maine can vary depending on location, lifestyle, family size, and personal preferences. However, as the most expensive state in the US, you may need more than you first think. 

It's essential to consider these factors, along with personal circumstances and preferences, when evaluating the cost of living in Maine. In addition, consulting with a financial advisor can provide valuable insights and assistance in managing expenses and financial planning. 

Get expert financial advice and learn more about the cost of living and how to manage it with an SEC-regulated advisor. Let Unbiased match you with the best financial advisor for your needs. 


Charlie Barton

Charlie Barton is a writer at Unbiased. He has been writing about personal finance and investing since 2017, with extensive knowledge of platforms and products. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics.