Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?
Old 05-09-2019, 08:46 AM   #1
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: exeter
Posts: 381
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?

Hi,
We currently live near the NH seacoast and have been looking for our forever house, looking forward toward retirement. We have accepted an offer on our house and will close by July. We have been looking to stay in NH but, it is very competitive RE market and no luck yet.

Now, if we go over the bridge into southern Maine (Kittery area) the housing options increase dramatically. It's only 10min further north.
We've already seen some nice houses there that we would love to own but, we have hesitated.

The + side:
More available houses
housing prices are lower
property tax is a lot lower than NH
we can afford a house < 1mile from the ocean

The - side:
Maine has 7%+ income tax
Maine has sales tax
infrastructure is leaner in the area (services, healthcare, mass transit)
a bit further north (minor point)


We are very active outdoors people and that area of Maine has a lot to offer.

I've looked at the numbers, factoring in property taxes and income taxes, and it's close to a wash.

I am just wondering if I am missing something. I would love to hear from anyone else who could provide insight, or experiences, in retiring in Maine.
Good idea? Bad idea?

Thx,
Rob
__________________

__________________
What the heck is going on ???
albireo13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 05-10-2019, 10:06 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
Offgrid Organic Farmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: An Un-Organized Township of Maine
Posts: 547
We moved to Maine after I retired.

My pension is enough for me to support a family here in Maine. The local COL is pretty low. I could not afford to do this in California, my home state.

My pension is just barely below the Federal threshold for paying income taxes, and Maine has exempted military pensions from being taxed. So I do not pay income taxes.

I own 150-acres of forest land with a quarter-mile of river frontage, located about 30-minutes from the ocean. And we have a large 2400 sq ft house. Our property taxes run ~$800/year.

I feel that these are exceptionally low taxes, in an extremely low COL region.

Another benefit is that we are located well North of the 'snow-belt' region. As you go South you get into the 'snow-belt' where they routinely get huge dumps of overnight snow [3 and 4 foot of snow at a time]. Here our typical winter is one snowstorm a week, giving us 4 to 6 inches at a time. Followed by 6 days of clear sunny skies.

For the most part the roads are passable each day before the daily commute starts.
__________________

__________________
Retired at 42 and I have been enjoying retirement for 18 years [so far].
Offgrid Organic Farmer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 10:12 AM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
pb4uski's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Vermont & Sarasota, FL
Posts: 22,741
OP, I would look at it carefully before acting.... especially taxes and living costs.

We have friends who moved to Maine and have said that taxes are high as is the cost of living (they are in York and one of the couple is still working). We know another retired couple who moved to Maine from Florida and they had the same impressions. Now on the other hand we know a retired couple who have lived in Maine their entire lives and love it
__________________
If something cannot endure laughter.... it cannot endure.
Patience is the art of concealing your impatience.
Slow and steady wins the race.

Retired Jan 2012 at age 56...60/35/5 AA
pb4uski is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 10:48 AM   #4
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Just North of Boston, Soon on way to Maine
Posts: 664
Well, I am moving to Maine for retirement also. I am coming out of Mass, so, all in the taxes are about the same. The COL is much cheaper in Maine. We are on the Saco River about 8 miles from the ocean. Lots to do outside, we got the same size house for about half the cost. We will not be there full time until year end, but we are looking forward to it.
__________________
Retirement date, July 1, 2019 at 54.
ChiliPepr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 10:57 AM   #5
Full time employment: Posting here.
Offgrid Organic Farmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: An Un-Organized Township of Maine
Posts: 547
Local taxes vary a great deal from one township to another in Maine.

The town to our West has set their mil-rate at exactly double our mil-rate, and the town to our South has their mil-rate at triple our mil-rate.

I live in one of Maine's Unorganized Townships [UTs], UTs are the majority of Maine, and UTs have extremely low taxes. Organized Towns in Maine compete for new residents by offering more services, which in turn raises their taxes.

Maine has the oldest average age among all states, and Maine has the highest percentage of retirees. Most of these people migrated to Maine after they retired. Like I did.
__________________
Retired at 42 and I have been enjoying retirement for 18 years [so far].
Offgrid Organic Farmer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 11:47 AM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
joeea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 3,275
Quote:
Originally Posted by albireo13 View Post
I would love to hear from anyone else who could provide insight, or experiences, in retiring in Maine.
Good idea? Bad idea?
We've owned our summer/vacation beach home in Maine for over 7 years now.

Last month we sold our Massachusetts primary residence and moved to our Maine home full time.

It's been terrific. We love the neighborhood. We love the ocean. We love hiking. We love the off-season quiet. Our grandchildren love it here too. For us at least, it's "The Way Life Should Be".

Income and sales taxes are about the same as Massachusetts. Property taxes are much lower than either Mass or in particular New Hampshire. As a retiree with lower income but larger home, that's a good tradeoff for us. And Maine has a much better Estate Tax limit than Massachusetts.

Obviously, the real thing that matters is personal preference. For us, we love living in Maine, near the ocean, close to the NH border (for tax-free shopping).

Good idea? Bad idea? That depends on what makes for a good or bad location to you specifically. There is a wide variety of locations and experiences to choose from in state as large as Maine. Seacoast towns in Southern Maine are a lot more expensive than many Down East or inland parts of Maine. Even Kittery has a wide variety of housing options and prices.
__________________
Old enough to know better.
joeea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 12:02 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
joeea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 3,275
Quote:
Originally Posted by pb4uski View Post
We have friends who moved to Maine and have said that taxes are high as is the cost of living (they are in York and one of the couple is still working).
York is one of the wealthier towns in Maine.
__________________
Old enough to know better.
joeea is offline   Reply With Quote
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?
Old 05-10-2019, 12:41 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Golden sunsets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 1,328
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?

With the exception of 5 years spent in CA and NY, we have lived in ME all of our lives. We love it. We do escape for warmer climates during the winter, but if youíve been residing on the NH seascoast, you have been experiencing the same climate, so no changes there. Ignore Off Grid Farmerís comments about 3 and 4 foot regular snow falls. That is just not true.

One thing you might enjoy if you move to York county, is trips into Portland, which is a vibrant and increasingly popular small city full of terrific restaurants and many breweries. The southern Maine coast is beautiful.

For what itís worth, social security is not taxed, and the top tax bracket of 7.15% does not kick in until after income exceeds $103,400 for MFJ and that income is net of a standard deduction of $27,000 for couple over 65 and also a personal exemption of $8,300.

New Hampshire is known for its high RE taxes in lieu of sales and income taxes. As you say itís pretty much a wash.
__________________
"Luck favors the prepared mind"
Pasteur
Golden sunsets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 01:03 PM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
KM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 443
We live in the seacoast area of NH....just across the border from ME.

IMO, thereís little difference between being in Kittery/York etc vs. Portsmouth/Hampton etc. (in terms of entertainment, life style options). Theyíre a stones throw apart.

Youíve pretty much hit the key points. Overall, housing and property taxes are generally less in ME. Sales and income tax higher in ME. But if youíre retire, the income tax hit should be less or non-existent. As far as sales tax goes, you can cross the border and skip the sales tax for a lot of small ticket items (ie groceries, clothes). As Iím sure you know, most border people do.

When I was working I had lots of friends who bought their homes in Maine. I ran the numbers. It (total tax burden) wasnít cheaper then....because of the income tax. But retirement takes care of that (unless you have a pension).

Frankly Iím surprised Kittery is cheaper than seacoast NH these days?
KM is offline   Reply With Quote
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?
Old 05-10-2019, 02:04 PM   #10
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Rural community
Posts: 121
Moving to Maine from New Hampshire for retirement?

I look at the sea coast region of NH and Kittery as being the same in terms of quality of life. Theyíre both lovely! Iím surprised that housing costs are that much cheaper in Maine. I know property taxes are high in NH and no state income taxes but as you say itís a wash. Iíd go for the less expensive house in Maine.
nhcycling is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 02:06 PM   #11
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
imoldernu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Peru
Posts: 6,218
I would have loved to have spent my early retirement years in Maine. I still have about 25 or 30 of my college friends... (Bowdoin College, Brunswick Me. class of '58.) who still live in the general area. Until recently, Bowdoin was an all-male school.

jeanie and I lived at the YMCA Camp on Lake Cobbeseconte, Me., where I was waterfront director for the summer beginning the week after our marriage in '58. Three meals a day eating with 250 young men in the dining hall.

Memories of paths that crossed the campus, where you couldn't see where you were going, because of 7 foot walls of snow. Cold but beautiful, and still in my teens, who cared about the cold.?

My very best friend's family owned the Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Brunswick, and he and I studied at the very secretary where "Uncle Tom's Cabin" was written. His great uncle was Governor Baxter of Maine. We sailed his "Lightning" around Harpswell and Baileys Island. Early spring "cold" skin diving for lobsters. Forty hours of studying and 25 hours of swim training each week made life full and fun for four years. (broken up by fraternity life and parties), when jeanie would take the train up from Boston College to join with the girls from Smith, Skidmore, Sarah Lawrence and most N.E. girls colleges.

How could one not want to live in Maine? A little too late to change now, but wonderful, wonderful memories.
__________________
We grow too soon old, and too late smart-
Old Dutch saying
imoldernu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 03:45 PM   #12
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Golden sunsets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 1,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
Memories of paths that crossed the campus, where you couldn't see where you were going, because of 7 foot walls of snow. Cold but beautiful, and still in my teens, who cared about the cold.?

How could one not want to live in Maine? A little too late to change now, but wonderful, wonderful memories.


Ha. 7í walls of snow are no longer a reality and havenít been in my 70 year old life. And I live within hollering distance of Bowdoin. We all romantisize the ďold daysĒ.
__________________
"Luck favors the prepared mind"
Pasteur
Golden sunsets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2019, 05:19 PM   #13
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: exeter
Posts: 381
As kids we used to vacation in Maine a lot .. in the Oguncuit area.
We currently live in Exeter, NH ... land of high property taxes!
My tax bill last year was $12K, for a 3 bedroom house. Ugh.

We are considering Kittery, Maine .. just over the bridge.
By crossing the bridge, RE cost drops as does property tax.
Infrastructure may take a hit ... healthcare, etc.

Still looking ....
__________________
What the heck is going on ???
albireo13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 09:06 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 1,123
It's really all one region. Most people on the ME side of the bridges shop in NH anyway, so sales taxes only apply to large purchases like cars. Only the fools from MA come all the way up to Kittery to pay sales tax on clothing (not taxed in MA) at the phony "outlet" malls. Locals go to Portsmouth or Dover.

Not sure how health care would be any different, unless you're on some kind of state program. We go to doctors on both sides of the border.

Seacoast NH real estate prices have gone through the roof. Adjacent areas of S. Maine are catching up fast. But all real estate is local. You have to run the numbers for your situation and what your requirements are. A lot of people find that the property taxes offset the income taxes.
CaptTom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 11:17 AM   #15
Full time employment: Posting here.
Offgrid Organic Farmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: An Un-Organized Township of Maine
Posts: 547
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptTom View Post
It's really all one region. Most people on the ME side of the bridges shop in NH anyway, so sales taxes only apply to large purchases like cars. ...
That might apply to folks who live within an hour of the bridge. But it does not apply to those of us who live over an hour from that bridge.

I go years at a time without even seeing that bridge.
__________________
Retired at 42 and I have been enjoying retirement for 18 years [so far].
Offgrid Organic Farmer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2019, 11:27 AM   #16
Recycles dryer sheets
KM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 443
One other thing to consider.....

You donít mention how your retiree health insurance will be handled. If youíll need Obamacare for any period of time, you might want to look into options in each state. I havenít (as I donít need it), but i have heard rumblings from some Mainers that their rates/options are terrible. No idea if thereís any truth to it or not, but worth looking into if youíll need it.
KM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-12-2019, 11:12 AM   #17
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 1,123
Quote:
Originally Posted by Offgrid Organic Farmer View Post
That might apply to folks who live within an hour of the bridge. But it does not apply to those of us who live over an hour from that bridge.
Right. We were talking about the Kittery-York area.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KM View Post
One other thing to consider.....

You donít mention how your retiree health insurance will be handled. If youíll need Obamacare for any period of time, you might want to look into options in each state. I havenít (as I donít need it), but i have heard rumblings from some Mainers that their rates/options are terrible. No idea if thereís any truth to it or not, but worth looking into if youíll need it.
I have no clue either, but the political landscape in Maine has changed lately, and the ACA and Medicare may be looked on a little more favorably in the future.
CaptTom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-12-2019, 11:13 AM   #18
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
imoldernu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Peru
Posts: 6,218
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden sunsets View Post
Ha. 7’ walls of snow are no longer a reality and haven’t been in my 70 year old life. And I live within hollering distance of Bowdoin. We all romanticize the “old days”.
Funny...
The paths were cut by tractors that tossed the snow up into the air, and on the side of the paths. Then a second tractor would come by and slice a vertical wall. Sometimes even 8 feet high. If you've been to the campus, you know the crisscross paths between the many building. Moe than once, going from my fraternity on Boody Street to Curtis Pool or Sills Hall, I'd end up on the wrong path. Kind of like walking through a tunnel with cross paths every 100 feet.

I missed my 60th reunion last year... and now, instead being in the "Class of..." am now a member of the "Old Guard"...

Guess this belongs in the thread "Memory Lane".
__________________
We grow too soon old, and too late smart-
Old Dutch saying
imoldernu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-12-2019, 11:45 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
joeea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 3,275
Quote:
Originally Posted by KM View Post
You donít mention how your retiree health insurance will be handled. If youíll need Obamacare for any period of time, you might want to look into options in each state. I havenít (as I donít need it), but i have heard rumblings from some Mainers that their rates/options are terrible. No idea if thereís any truth to it or not, but worth looking into if youíll need it.
Having just switched from MA to ME, the rates are comparable between the two.

Of course that doesn't stop lots of folks from their usual "my insurance costs too much" rumblings. But that's a different story...
__________________
Old enough to know better.
joeea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-12-2019, 12:14 PM   #20
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
friar1610's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 1,054
I live in MA but was stationed in ME in the Navy years ago and liked it. We considered ME as a retirement location but didn't end up there. We've recently been consulting with an eldercare attorney here in MA to get some documents updated. Although we kinda,sorta knew that MA had a state estate tax, we didn't really realize how onerous it is if your estate (including real estate) is even $1 over a $1M exemption. I just did a comparison of MA vs ME in that regard and see that ME estate exemption is at the federal level, a much better deal for most middle class people than MA. Of course, NH has no estate tax.
__________________

__________________
friar1610
friar1610 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Upstate New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, or Maine Rob Life after FIRE 3 03-11-2008 12:10 AM
Voting Problems in New Hampshire Trek Other topics 1 01-12-2008 04:54 PM
New Hampshire: any opinions? Orchidflower Life after FIRE 47 11-19-2007 07:04 AM
New Hampshire for retirees? Bad idea Orchidflower FIRE and Money 6 10-19-2007 09:27 AM
New Hampshire Cool Dood Life after FIRE 24 06-11-2006 08:16 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:29 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.