Migration back to small rural Maine towns.
It’s happening and it’s not a fluke. This blog post is a look at why the former trend of outward migration and population loss is reversing in my small town rural area of Maine. I see it and hear the reasons why every day as a Maine real estate broker. The call of the country and simpler living up in Maine. It’s all causing the relocation to Vacationland pace to pick up speed.
The tug on the heart strings to move back to Maine small towns.
For some it is an easy decision to make.
They remember growing up in small Maine towns and know what they are missing from first hand experience.
Jobs and financial career goals the only reason that forced the move away from small town living in the first place. It was a reluctant but necessary natural progression. Population centers offered the largest variety of good paying jobs. Maine is a great place to live, always has been. But the catch is you have to be able to make a decent wage.
You gotta eat and want more than a hand to mouth existence if what you or your parents did for employment was tied to farming, fishing, mill work or cutting pulp in the Maine woods.
Bustling small Maine towns before the Interstate and Internet were vibrant with flourishing small Maine businesses. Working hard with the owner in the store dedicated to serving your friends, family and neighbors. Performing with fierce pride in your local school sport teams too. Maine rural communities offer a tightly connected small town way of life.
Able to telecommute to work online remotely during COVID was the dress rehearsal.
Folks everywhere across the land and around the globe learned we can do it from the comfort of our own home sweet home. We’re moving. Lower overheard for companies, happier workers not wasting time socializing around the water cooler. No hassles with traffic, crime, carrying a tazer. It all helped fuel the migration to Maine. Packing the Worldly possessions along with the current job and heading North up the pike to to work remotely in Maine. IF that last mile of Internet broadband connection is long and strong in place to make it a viable relocation option.
You are no longer in a city skyscraper corner office when the kids come home after school living in rural Maine.
The kids can now walk home from school because everything is so close in small Maine towns.
A block to the store, two blocks to school, and kids hoof it rather than parents providing the valet drop and pick up daily dance. Multi generations living together is more efficient and the kids benefit from the wisdom of older family members nearby or sharing the same roof line. You don’t have the giant city salary but your expenses are way way lower to the ground. No worry about a white van kidnapping your kid either. The village watches and raises all the children.
You do more for yourself than hiring it out in small rural Maine towns.
The cost of living is lower in small town rural Maine because insurance is cut in half. No white vans lurking near your home that you worry about snacking your kids in the 4th lowest crime state either.
So so many Maine vacation places overhauled to be way way more than a three day or week long take a break stay.
When the COVID sky started falling and toilet paper was scarce. As the initial wave of adjustment to life as we knew it hit, anyone with a Maine coastal, lake shore, riverfront, woods retreat toyed with the thought.
What if I packed it in and headed up to Maine as my refuge to regroup?
To weather the COVID storm and tough it out for a spell until things settled down. But COVID is the hangover that did not go away. The virus is not a temporary condition and forces everyone to consider where they hang their hat and why for quality of living.
For many close to retirement, the memory of sea gulls and lake loons on Maine vacations is the all natural pure and simple drug. A carryover flashback OF memories of good times enjoyed during time spent here on the fun Maine rest and relaxation stint. For young folks struggling to make ends meet in the city, getting more for less financial overhead in small Maine town living has appeal.
Less people, more down to early friendly folks and all this four seasons outdoor unspoiled natural beauty.
Maine is a place you love her for what she offers and what she does not at the same time. Less traffic, lower crime, cheaper to live in Maine. That coupled with the friendly people and more elbow room. The ability to pitch in and feel you can make a difference as you add your talents to the mix. You are needed in the small Maine town special home grown connection. The village raises the kids and you are closer to the day to day action in smaller circles you travel in small Maine towns.
When COVID’s trapped inside living stress doubled up, the little space with far too many people in the city made urban dwellers hanker low population Maine.
The common sense and pitch in to help out approach to living in small Maine towns looked pretty darn appealing. Small Maine towns are really like large families. You don’t pay to attend events, you are working them behind the scenes year after year.
Home grown beats store bought and the hands on to make the next event even better causes others around you to dig in and do more. That’s how small Maine towns work. You don’t just live and work there. Instead, you are the small Maine town and go above and beyond to maintain and increase the quality of life for others.
The polarity and division of the last national election just added fuel to the fire to pick up and move to Maine.
Feeling like buying 40 acres up in Maine might be the answer caused more emails, texts, office visits and phone calls to pour into our small Maine town real estate office. Land big and cheap. To plant a large garden, to cut, split and stack the winter wood. With next year’s stash for heating your home already steadily added to to be boy scout prepared.
Migration back to Maine for locals that had picked up roots and moved.
That’s part of the Maine real estate market activity. Others buying vacation property that could be more if the new owner decides to head to Maine. This market segment hedging their bets and looking for a fun but sensible insurance policy investment. Maine land is way way under valued and boy can you produce a lot of farm to table food if you work it. Enriched living, everyone from the smallest to the oldest family member has a role in the household.
Taught how to do it, to develop the right attitude for success. To approach a task carefully and perform it slowly. Easy does it. Like the early on advice to never run with scissors and to avoid getting hurt. But with expertise to plan your work and work that plan learned from past experience growing up in small town Maine.
Everyone is assessing today what exactly “quality of life” really means.
How to achieve it, maintain it, make it last. Maine small towns have far less obstacles and in most cases, money is not the deciding factor on where you live anymore. We Mainers are more hands on, have a skill set and don’t have to wait around for others to do everything for us. Raised in Maine, kids learn work ethic, gain self confidence and are shaped for adulthood. Happier, independent, not blaming others for why their life did not turn out the way it looks around the artificial social media circuits. “If it is to be, it is up to me” and being grateful enriches your life and those of the folks around you.
When you live in a city, the options to provide kids with their own hard earned money are not so common. Obstacles to work… that’s part of it. But also parents that don’t push for Jimmy and Jane to do chores and hold down entry level jobs. COVID fear make parents hover even more but also work legislation restrictions threatens skill building and opportunities first jobs.
In Maine small towns, kids mow lawns, deliver newspapers, have odd jobs around the neighborhood and bag groceries, stock shelves. If kids work out in the gardens, stack wood, pitch in with daily chores around a Maine household. Good things are going to happen.
But if mom and dad hand you $20 bills and Zeke or Pebbles’ cell phone and car are better than their parents have.
If teenagers are not cutting grass, flipping burgers, delivering papers or helping area farmers, small businesses. Oh oh.
When they don’t babysit and are slumped on a couch peering into an eerie blow glow device, a full and rich dynamic life is not automatic. No skills, lazy, depressed and not able to connect the dots why happens.
Kids suffer when adults are hired to do those jobs they need to learn self sufficiency … that’s another part of it.
Outward migration from say Florida with over 400 people per square mile or California at 250 plus or New Jersey with over 1200 head count.
That’s another piece of the labor shortage puzzle. And why employers are paying so much to attract a labor force. That means the cost of goods and services provided will be sky high too.
A kid getting $14 an hour or higher working at a fast food outlet is too much and only going to lead to wanting higher wages than the job warrants.
The raking blueberries, picking potatoes, apples, working on a farm in Maine builds stamina, responsibility, develops a hustle in your step. You earned every cent you made when it is the sweat of your brow manual entry level kind.
My rural Aroostook County area is growing with folks rethinking where they live in a crowded areas with high cost of living, traffic, crime.
You will never ever see local signs stating “no one wants to work” because lazy is the by far worst label anyone could wear.
We are not lazy. All raised to work hard, pitch in and make a difference. The local Louisiana Pacific plant is expanding, Smith and Wesson employee numbers are going up and small rural areas a
re booming with work options.
Some of the reasons to explain the move to Maine population increase numbers.
A change of pace and getting healthy by hiking, biking, skiing, kayaking and daily exercise. That’s another perk living in big and beautiful wide open Maine. Maine is the way life should be. Life longer, live better up in Maine is the conclusion more folks are drawing these crazy days. Recreation is second to none on your own and the parks and rec programs are extensive. Lakes, rivers, mountains, scenic trails, picnic spots. Our backyard is outdoors everywhere you look out over the land in Maine.
This blog post nails down the reasons for why people moved away and now are returning to small town rural Maine.
Why new to the area folks are picking Maine as their next mailing address. Real estate inventory is being snatched up to meet the demand and the transplants from out of state are so amazed at small town living benefits. Their kids are learning the skills to be successful adults for wherever they end up living from growing up in small Maine town communities.