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Cost of moving: Maine

Celebrated horror author Stephen King is just one of many who call Maine home.

Celebrated horror author Stephen King is just one of many who call Maine home.

The Atlantic coast of Maine is known for its jagged shores and quaint lighthouses, lobster fishermen and sailors. From Kittery to Lubec and everything in between, the coast of Maine is a beautiful place to call home.

Many people are most familiar with Maine through the eyes of horror writer Stephen King. The author and his wife, Tabitha, call the Pine Tree State their home and spend most of the year at their house in Bangor. The old writing idiom says to write what you know, which King must have taken to heart - nearly all of his books are set in his home state. Fortunately he never wrote about a demonic moving company, otherwise people might never settle in Maine again!

Straddling the Penobscot River, Bangor is roughly 30 miles north of the coast. Although it's the third most populous city in Maine, it houses just over 35,000 people. Despite its comparatively small size, Bangor boasts a number of cultural institutions, including two ballet companies, a symphony orchestra and a history museum. Each August, the city hosts the three-day American Folk Music Festival, which draws acts from all over the country.

The cost of living in Bangor is comparable to the rest of the United States when it comes to groceries, goods and services and utility costs, according to real estate guru Bert Sperling. He places the median cost of a home in the area at roughly $131,900.

Farther south - and directly on the coast - is the city of Portland. The metropolitan area houses roughly half a million people, roughly one-third of the total population of the state. The city is home to the Portland Head Light, the oldest lighthouse in the state. It was commissioned by George Washington in 1791 and currently houses a museum and gift shop, though the U.S. Coast Guard still maintains the light and fog horn to warn ships as they approach the rocky shores.

Life is a little more expensive in Maine's metropolis than the country as a whole, but with median home prices of $215,000 according to Sperling, it's still quite affordable.