10 good reasons to move to Maryland. One maybe.

When someone mentions moving to Maryland, its tasty crab cakes seem to always come up. But there’s more. it’s home to many firsts. It’s home to our country’s first umbrella factory, our first railroad station, the first telegraph, and the first American built piano. Plus, the Star-Spangled Banner was written here.  At the Preakness Race, you can drink a Mint Julip if you missed the Derby. And yes, there really is replica Statue of Liberty in the Susquehanna River.

Before we get started, by way of introduction, we’re Bellhop Movers with many convenient locations in the state to help: Baltimore, Rockville, Columbia, Ellicott City, Gaithersburg, Glen Burnie, Silver Spring, and movers throughout the country). So check out our local services or call just to say hello.

maryland business at night

Move to Maryland if you love the out-of-doors

Maryland is a truly stunning state when it comes to the great outdoors with easy access from even its largest city.

The coastal tidewater area of the Chesapeake Bay is rich in history, small-town vibes, and yes, crab cakes. ‘The Bay’ dominates most of the Eastern portion of the state. It comes with sandy beaches, tons of islands, coves, and freshwater creeks. The Naval Academy in historic Annapolis and the brick lined streets and academy are worth a walk around. So is the famous boardwalk along the beach at Ocean Shores. The coastal barrier island Assateague is home to a large herd of wild ponies that have been running wild since the 1600s and definitely worth seeing too.

The rugged western half of Maryland has two mountain ranges–– the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains. Most folks don’t know the state’s highest point is 3,360 feet. Or that there are 40 miles of relatively easy hiking on the Appalachian Trail, like the highly rated hike to the top of Annapolis Rock. It’s an easy 40-minute drive from Baltimore to the trailhead.

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Check out small town Thurmont with home prices ($352,000 according to Zillow) lower than the state average ($401,000). Thurmont is located smack between two stunning state parks: the Cunningham Falls State Park and the Catoctin Mountain Park.

In between the bay and the mountains are gently rolling hills where most of the population lives. This is also ‘horse country.’ It’s worth a spring drive alongside beautifully fenced fields to watch happy horses under flowering cherry trees.

A diverse economy with a good mix of large and small companies

Maryland is home to many large corporations that are always looking for talent. The economy is diversified, meaning non-tech companies abound: Marriott International, McCormick, Under Armour to name a few.

Tech and aerospace do play a big role. Lockheed Martin is headquartered here. In 2018 the state claimed:

  • ‘Maryland ranks third among the states in the percentage of professional and technical workers (27.8%) in the workforce.
  • Maryland has the highest concentration of computer information and research scientist in the nation.’
maryland waterfront

A diverse population where you can find your ‘flock’

The population of Maryland is representative of the recent cultural and immigration changes we see in America. Maryland’s historical population of White and Black now also includes many Hispanics and Asians. And like in many other states the ‘mix’ varies by location. Large Baltimore is predominantly Black. Suburban townships show a mix of all four races like Columbia and Gaithersburg. More rural towns like Thurmont are predominantly White. U.S. Census Quick Facts makes it easy to compare. Schools in southern Maryland are particularly strong, if you want a high-quality, culturally diverse education for your kids. 

Large and varied housing market

The cost of living in Maryland is higher than in other mid-Atlantic states as reported by RentCafe. Most of the cost is in housing. Fortunately, you can handle it with a smart choice of location.

Like most big cities nearby (Philly and Richmond) Baltimore’s average home price is a lower, a lot lower, ($171,000) than the state’s average ($401,000). Suburban areas and areas closer to D.C. (and its federal jobs) can cost more, though still cheaper than comparable Virginia suburbs close-in to D.C. (Arlington $759,000 and Alexandria $612,000):

  • Columbia – $469,000
  • Silver Springs – $548,000
  • North Bethesda – $524,000
  • Gaithersburg – $498,000
  • Rockville – $606,000

Suburban homes in areas outside of the D.C. ‘zone’ have a lower average price. It’s worth checking out on Zillow places like Glen Burnie with average home prices of $356,000. Or read more at our full discussion to find best suburbs for Baltimore.

The Better Way to Move

Baltimore made headlines a few years back with crime stats. Things are better now. The Baltimore housing market varies a lot by location in Baltimore. It’s also a welcoming town with a strong inclusive streak that extends to LGBTQ+. We talk about Baltimore’s varied house options here, so check what looks good for you.

harfords farms in maryland

Close to everything on the east coast

If you want to wander and explore greater America, Maryland is a good base. Baltimore to Washington D.C. is about an hour, Delaware’s beaches, Philadelphia and those rugged mountains about two hours, and New York City three.

Moderate politics and policies

It’s unfortunate that we have to talk about politics and policies that may impact your personal life choices. Yet, the good news is that Maryland seems to be a ‘work together for everyone,’ moderate-leaning state. Its recent governor was a very moderate Republican who worked with a Democratic legislature to tackle tough problems. The state has always seemed to be that way, not truly identifying as either a ‘northern’ or ‘southern’ state even though the Mason-Dixon Line that was used to separate southern ‘slave states’ defined it as one.

D.C.-centric but not D.C. Huffy

D.C. has an oversized impact on the economies of Maryland and Virginia. Along with the power comes the ego. For some reason Maryland is a low-key alternative to Virginia as a place to live. Still acceptable but not as chic. That was the vibe and the response I got when I told D.C. folks that I lived in Maryland. If you’re ok with that, you can pocket the difference.

Four seasons without the extreme climate issues that can impact other states

Maryland’s weather is typical for the mid-Atlantic: four relatively temperate seasons with hot and humid summers. Extreme weather events are rare. Most hurricanes strike further south and are downgraded to tropical storms by the time they work north. Yes, trees do fall down. Flooding could be a problem in some older towns built on streams and rivers, so don’t live next to one. (Flood zones are mapped).

Good transportation alternatives if you like to travel

Transportation networks started in the colonial era connecting north-south routes and later east-west trails as pioneers headed west. That continued to today’s major highways (I-95), Amtrak rail, and major airports like Dulles and Baltimore/Washington International Airport, a major hub for Southwest. This means if you travel, it’s a great base. Then Senator Biden always took Amtrak home each night to Wilmington, Delaware. So, if it works for a senator, Amtrak could be your set of wheels too.

Lots to See and Do

Families will appreciate the many world-class activities available. Buy the cotton candy at Six Flags amusement park. Dive into the National Aquarium in Baltimore. Tour the made-over Baltimore Inner Harbor shopping and living area. Visit historical places like Fort McHenry or the Antietam National Battlefield.

One Reason Maybe Not to Move to Maryland

Like we said earlier, Maryland’s cost of living is higher than other nearby places, mostly because of home values. Still, you can find cheaper places like Thurmont with its incredible natural beauty ($352,000).

 Sometimes it’s just plain important to find ‘home’ in a place that matches you. We could tell you to move to Takoma Park ($650,000) to be a part of a long-running hippie community next to D.C. Or to Frederick ($436,000) for its easy access to five different airports.

But we think Baltimore is the move if you’re a young and nimble professional looking for a growing community. Baltimore continues to offer great value, diversity, and entertainment. An article published in The Smithsonian, “How Baltimore Quietly Became the East Coast’s Next Cool City,” describes the transformation of the city in great detail.

Still researching a move to Maryland?

If you decide to move in or to Maryland don’t hesitate to reach out. We coordinate local and long-distance moving services in Maryland, and we would love to help.

Or if you’re still just researching ‘home,’ we offer moving services nationwide. We’re great at making moving affordable and painless. Thanks for reading this far!

Warren Sly