In this Jan. 25, 2023, file photo, a sign announces a home for sale on Munjoy Hill in Portland. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Maine home sales fell again in February amid a shortage of homes on the market.

Buyers scooped up 708 homes in February, which represents a 19.4 percent decline, compared with February 2022, according to the Maine Association of Realtors. That decline is markedly less than the 35 percent fall in January 2023, compared with January 2022.

Meanwhile, the median sales price for a Maine home rose nearly 11 percent to $329,250, compared with February 2022.

Carmen McPhail, the president of the Maine Association of Realtor and associate broker at family-owned United Country Lifestyle Properties of Maine, which has offices in Lincoln, Bangor and Lubec, said Tuesday that buyer demand remains steady, despite the less favorable market at the moment.  

“The shortage of move-in ready homes for sale continues to be the challenge for buyers in today’s market. Homeowners who purchased in recent years with record-low mortgage interest rates are staying put and, like the rest of the country, new home construction in Maine has not kept pace with demand,” McPhail said.


The fall in home sales here mirrors a broader decline in the Northeast and across the country.

Nationally, home sales fell 21.4 percent in February 2023, compared with the same time the year before. In the Northeast, home sales were down nearly 26 percent in February 2023, compared with the previous February, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Unlike Maine, the median sales prices for homes have fallen nationally and in the Northeast, 0.7 percent and 4.5 percent, respectively.

McPhail noted Tuesday that rising mortgage interest rates could lead to “softening of prices” in some counties, which could be a relief for eager homebuyers sitting on the sidelines.

On the county level, the most significant increase in median home prices was in Androscoggin County, where the median price has risen 20 percent for the three-month period ending Feb. 28, compared with the same time last year. The highest median home price for the period was in Cumberland County, where it reached $459,000.

The median home price rose most slowly in Franklin County, where it actually fell 9.1 percent to $225,000. Aroostook had the lowest median home price overall at $132,750. The median home price rose in all but three counties.

On the sales front, sales were down across the board between December 2022 and February 2023, compared with the same time last year. Sales fell most sharply in Lincoln County, where they are down 46 percent. The smallest drop was in Knox, where they fell 18.5 percent.