Best Places to Live in Maine (2012)

This article, the thirty-first in a 50-state series, ranks the best places to live in Maine based on three criteria: (1) median household income (adjusted for cost of living); (2) educational attainment (% of residents 25 years and over who have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher); and (3) property crime rates per 1,000 residents (burglary and automobile thefts). For purposes of these rankings, “places” are incorporated municipalities with populations greater than 2,000.

Among the twenty best places to live in Maine, fourteen are suburbs or exurbs of Portland, four are suburbs of Augusta, and two are suburbs of Bangor. By county, eight of the best places to live in Maine are located in Cumberland County, five in York County, two in Kennebec County, and one each in Androscoggin, Hancock, Knox, Penobscot,and Sagadahoc Counties.

After reading “Best Places to Live in Maine (2012),” return to this link to read “Largest Cities in Maine (2012).” A collection of similar articles for the remaining 49 states can be found at these links: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

For the culmination of the 50-state series, read “Best Places to Live in America (2012).”

This article may be updated as new facts become available.

1. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Cape Elizabeth, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 8,813

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $76,604
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 62.7%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 1.37

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 64 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 9 miles NNW

2. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Cumberland, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 7,513

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $90,196
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 60.4%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 1.96

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 49 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 10 miles SSW

3. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Falmouth, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 10,668

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $79,105
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 61.8%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.44

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 51 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 6 miles S

4. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Hampden, ME (Penobscot County)

Population: 6,849

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $72,803
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 42.2%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.43

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 62 miles SW
Bangor, ME: 5 miles NE

5. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Yarmouth, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 8,152

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $68,731
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 55.4%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.72

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 45 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 11 miles SSW

6. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Scarborough, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 19,017

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $70,416
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 45.9%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.22

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 62 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 7 miles NNE

7. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Harpswell, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 5,247

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $65,954
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 44.3%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.06*

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 47 miles N
Portland, ME: 41 miles SW

8. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Kennebunkport, ME (York County)

Population: 3,981

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $49,258
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 49.0%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 1.99

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 84 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 29 miles NNE

9. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Bar Harbor, ME (Hancock County)

Population: 5,112

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $49,408
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 42.8%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 1.94

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 102 miles W
Bangor, ME: 48 miles NW

10. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Durham, ME (Androscoggin County)

Population: 4,042

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $77,761
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 28.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.35*

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 37 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 25 miles SSW

11. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – North Yarmouth, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 3,541

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $66,564
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 46.2%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.72

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 50 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 15 miles S

12. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Rockport, ME (Knox County)

Population: 3,516

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $68,996
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 41.4%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.53

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 40 miles WNW
Portland, ME: 79 miles SW

13. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Bowdoinham, ME (Sagadahoc County)

Population: 2,766

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $69,347
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 32.8%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.35*

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 24 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 33 miles SSW

14. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Freeport, ME (Cumberland County)

Population: 8,188

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $55,142
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 42.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.06

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 39 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 18 miles SSW

15. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – York, ME (York County)

Population: 13,641

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $55,573
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 40.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.25

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 99 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 44 miles NNE

16. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Kennebunk, ME (York County)

Population: 11,401

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $61,610
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 46.3%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.9

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 84 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 29 miles NNE

17. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Eliot, ME (York County)

Population: 6,319

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $65,474
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 42.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 3.16

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 108 miles NNE
Portland, ME: 51 miles NNE

18. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – South Berwick, ME (York County)

Population: 7,191

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $61,422
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 39.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 2.36

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 100 miles NE
Portland, ME: 45 miles NE

19. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Manchester, ME (Kennebec County)

Population: 2,546

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $72,522
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 36.8%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 5.27*

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 4 miles ESE
Portland, ME: 57 miles SSW

20. Best Places to Live in Maine (2012) – Readfield, ME (Kennebec County)

Population: 2,546

Median household income (adjusted for cost of living): $69,354
Bachelor’s degree or higher (25 years and over): 35.1%
Property crime rate per 1,000 residents (burglary and auto thefts): 5.27*

Distance to Familiar Cities:

Augusta, ME: 12 miles SE
Portland, ME: 62 miles SSW

*In some cases, municipalities do not report their crime statistics to the FBI or they contract for services with the state or a county law enforcement agency. For those towns, crime rates are extrapolated from municipal, county, state, or contiguous municipality data.

Source(s):

“All Cities in Maine,” City-Data.com
” American Community Survey ,” U.S. Census Bureau
” American Fact Finder ,” U.S. Census Bureau
“Uniform Crime Report,” Federal Bureau of Investigation