Home values: Median prices in 12 cities

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Portland, Maine

This three-bedroom, two-bath ranch, custom built in 2003, has a lot of convenience features and little details “that you don’t see in this price range,” says Joe Connolly, broker with Re/Max By The Bay.

The living room features an arched entryway, hardwood floors and a ceiling fan. The kitchen has oak cabinets, tile floors, a walk-in pantry, and a large, eat-in area, he says.

The formal dining room with arched entryway opens to the deck and could serve as an office or study. An old-fashioned mudroom leads out to the potting shed. It has a full basement and is within walking distance from shopping.

Price: $199,900

Area median price: $202,800 (down 13.14 percent)

  • 3 bedrooms/2 baths
  • 1,360 square feet
  • 0.13 acre lot
  • Covered front porch
  • Hardwood floors
  • Deck

Price trend:
The Portland area is a hub for Maine, says Connolly. As a result, for the median price in the Portland area, buyers are generally “going to find older homes,” he says. Homes in and around the city will be “closer to 1,000 square feet” at that price range, he says.

For more space, “You have to move to the outlying areas — more rural,” Connolly says. “But then you don’t have city water and city sewer.”

In many cases, a rural environment is exactly what buyers are seeking. “Here people want to be outside and rural,” he says. And in the outlying areas, the $202,000 price range will fetch “a Cape Cod two-story (with) a garage,” he says. Chances are buyers will also need to spend a little up front, he says. Many of the properties in that price range in the area “are going to need $10,000 or better” in paint and repairs.

In the Portland, Maine, area the median price for the fall of 2008 was $233,500 according to the National Association of Realtors.