Maryland may have it all -- big cities, ocean beaches and a mild climate -- but it's not known as an affordable place for retirement. The Baltimore Sun reports that Maryland has a cost of living that averages 25 percent higher than the rest of the country. You won't enjoy any state or local tax exemptions, either, but if you have the income, a few places are attractive to retirees in the Free State.
Quaint Berlin is the ideal setting if you prefer the slow pace of a small town, and it's only 15 minutes away from the noise, amusements and restaurants of Ocean City. For outdoor enthusiasts, the beach is 7 miles away, while Assateague Island National Seashore is just 8 miles east of town. The cost of living is 15.7 percent higher than the rest of the U.S., but that figure is lower than the state average. The median house value is $226,380. As for medical facilities, Atlantic General Hospital is located in the town, so residents have easy access to clinics and services.
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Historical and Military
The downtown area of Annapolis is a National Historic Landmark, which history buffs may find appealing. The nation's capital is just 30 minutes away when you need more excitement. The U.S. Naval Academy is located in the town of almost 39,000 people, and it attracts many retired military personnel. You'll find plenty of sailing, rowing and boating opportunities because the city sits on the Chesapeake Bay. The cost of living is 37.8 percent higher than the U.S. average with median home prices at $351,100. The Naval Health Clinic and the Anne Arundel Medical Center offer easy access to health care services.
A more affordable option for oceanside living can be found in Easton, situated on the east side of Chesapeake Bay. The cost of living is about half that of Annapolis, although it's 20.1 percent higher than the national average. Home prices are better, too, with median home costs of $230,700. Golf enthusiasts will find five courses to play, while history buffs may want to become involved with the Historical Society of Talbot County, located in downtown Easton. Medical facilities are available locally at the University of Maryland Shore Memorial Center with more options available in nearby Baltimore, Annapolis and Wilmington.
If living along a lake where boating and water sports are popular sounds ideal, the town of Oakland fits the bill. The small community is situated along the banks of Deep Creek Lake, the largest man-made lake in the state at 3,900 acres in size. Residents enjoy a relatively low cost of living that is just 1.2 percent higher than the national average. The median home cost is $134,300, which helps make up for the fact that you have to drive around the lake a bit to access restaurants, shopping and health care services at the Mountain Laurel Medical Center or the Garrett County Memorial Hospital.