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March 6, 2023

Maine's out-of-state homebuyers came from these states last year

Courtesy / Maine Listings Mainers led all buyers of Maine homes in 2022, followed by Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Florida.

Where did single-family home buyers come from in 2022 and why?

Using data from Maine Listings, my team and I took a look at where Maine home buyers are coming from and discussed the trends that might be leading them to choose the Pine Tree State. This information is important to inform local and statewide housing policy decisions as well as help determine home values now and in the future.

Tom Landry
Courtesy / Benchmark Real Estate
Tom Landry

After decades of little to no growth, Maine saw a population increase over the last two years. According to recently released Census data, Maine’s total population in 2022 stood at 1,385,340. This is up from 2020 when it was 1,362,359.

Maine’s population increase has been fueled largely by people moving here from other states. 

Mainers felt this change as more and more out-of-state buyers moved to every area of the state in what became the COVID housing boom. Driven by the desire for more space and fewer lockdown restrictions, many buyers from larger metropolitan areas scooped up listings as fast as they hit the market.

With the relaxation of nearly every COVID restriction, many anticipated a corresponding decline in population in 2022. So far, the data show otherwise. Those in real estate see many of these population changes firsthand. Based on my experience, I don’t see a big drop in Maine’s population coming anytime soon. 

Driven by many factors, the state is in the midst of a real estate renaissance that should continue for decades. People are moving to Maine for many reasons, ranging from quality of life and climate migration to remote work and new employment opportunities.

With the demand high, Maine home prices have increased as well. Looking back over the past four years we see a steady and remarkable 30% increase in statewide median sale price. 


  • 2022: $335,000 (a 12.04% increase compared to 2021)
  • 2021: $299,000 (a 16.8% increase compared to 2020)
  • 2020: $256,000 (a 13.78% increase compared to 2019)
  • 2019: $234,000 (a 7.83% increase compared to 2018)

But as a result of factors such as rising interest rates and lack of inventory, there was a precipitous drop in statewide overall single-family sales volume in the past year. This reflects a normalization of the number of sales following the "escapism buying" during the pandemic. Also, with rates up, fewer buyers can qualify and fewer sellers are willing to move from a lower rate on an existing home to a higher rate on a new one. 

  • 2022: -17.49% decrease (over the previous year)
  • 2021: +2.42% increase
  • 2020: +9.82% increase 
  • 2019: +23.21% increase 

As with previous years, current residents moving within the state accounted for just over 67% or 11,301 sales in 2022. This number represents a significant decrease compared to 2021 when 13,418 moved locally. However, the percentage change in the overall drop in sales volume is negligible, 67.14% in 2022 compared to 67.77% in 2021. The real trend emerges when we look back to 2020 when 70.29% of all sales were people moving within the state.

2022 Top Ten

  1. Massachusetts 1,430
  2. New Hampshire 669
  3. Florida 366
  4. New York 303
  5. California 301
  6. Texas 211 (up 3 places since 2021)
  7. Connecticut 195 
  8. Pennsylvania 172 
  9. Virginia 149 (first time in the top 10)
  10. New Jersey 132 


2021 Top Ten

  1. Massachusetts 1,910
  2. New Hampshire 817
  3. Florida 456
  4. New York 448
  5. California 410
  6. Connecticut 273
  7. Pennsylvania 216
  8. New Jersey 209
  9. Texas 197
  10. Colorado 175

Although time will tell, we fully expect the trends highlighted above to continue. The slow but steady increase in Maine’s population and the lack of new housing inventory will result in continued increases in the median sale price and a decrease in sales volumes. This is welcome news for sellers but continues to reflect a very challenging environment for buyers. It also points to the need for more housing in many areas of Maine. 

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