There’s more to home affordability than sticker price. A recent study from New York financial technology company SmartAsset finds which cities are most affordable by measuring housing costs relative to income data in cities across the country.

City of Caribou
City of Caribou

Caribou ranked as one of the most affordable cities in Maine this year, coming in number 1, a repeat of their performance in last year's study.

“Once again this data shows what most people in Caribou already know,” said City Manager Austin Bleess. “Caribou is not just an affordable place to live, it’s a great full service community.”

Among that data points that were analyzed are Average Closing Costs, Annual Property Tax, Annual Homeowner's Insurance, Average Annual Mortgage Payment, and Median Income.

Specifically, SmartAsset found the total cost over five years of these four expenses—closing costs, taxes, insurance and mortgage payments—for the average home in every county in the U.S., and every city with a population greater than 5,000. They then took that five-year cost as a proportion of median household income in each county and city to determine affordability. The most affordable cities and counties were those in which total housing costs on an average house accounted for the smallest proportion of the median income.

Caribou took first place in the data sets analyzed, receiving an Affordability Index score of 88.58.

In addition to being named the most affordable place in Maine the second year in a row, Caribou has also received some other great recognition recently.  Zippia, the career expert, has recently named Caribou as the 5th Happiest Place in Maine. According to Niche Caribou is the 5th Best Place to Retire in Maine. Caribou has also been recognized by the State of Maine as a Certified Business Friendly Community.

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