Moving from Colorado to Maryland may seem like a significant change, but the states have some things in common. For those who love having four distinct seasons, you’ll enjoy Maryland with its cold winters and hot summers. You’ll have to get used to more humidity, but you’ll likely be grateful for less snow. While Denver receives about 60.2 inches of snow annually, Baltimore, Maryland, gets only about 18.5 inches, well below the national average.
In other comparisons: Colorado is almost 11 times larger than Maryland but has a smaller population, and age-wise, the demographics are pretty much the same, with the majority of the population being Baby Boomers, Millennials, and Gen Z. People in Maryland are slightly better educated with more holding master’s degrees, and when it comes to crime, Colorado’s rate is higher than Maryland’s.
If you’ve already decided or are contemplating a move to Maryland from Colorado, here’s pretty much everything you need to know. Let’s get started.
The Top 10 Reasons to Move to Maryland
Maryland is steeped in history. Statehood was granted on July 4, 1776, while Colorado didn’t become a state until 100 years later, on August 1, 1876. During the American Revolution, Maryland was nicknamed “Old Line State” as a tribute to the men who fought at Long Island and gained a reputation as saviors of the Continental Army. Before it was a state, Maryland was one of the original 13 colonies. The state is named for Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of then King Charles I.
Maryland is home to a number of firsts:
- The first umbrella factory
- The first telegraph
- The first railroad station
- The first piano built in America
- The first school of dentistry
Francis Scott Key, the composer of the Star Spangled Banner, was born in Maryland. History and firsts aside, there are great reasons to move to Maryland today.
Cost of Living
Where you live in a state makes a difference in the cost of living, of course. Small towns generally are less expensive to live in than large ones, but since most jobs are located in urban centers in both states, we’ll be comparing Denver, CO, and Baltimore, MD. Just as Denver is called the Mile High City, Baltimore’s nickname is Charm City, invented in 1975 in a meeting of advertisers.
Overall, it’s 28.6% less expensive to live in Baltimore than in Denver. We’ll drill down the details later, but In particular, housing costs are much cheaper in Baltimore, as are groceries and housing. Utilities, however, are lower than the national average in Denver and quite a bit higher in Baltimore. Transportation in Baltimore is higher as well.
Chesapeake Bay Crabs
Being a landlocked state means Denver isn’t known for its seafood. No such problem in Baltimore, where crabs are one claim to fame. Delicious blue crabs are available from April to November, and thousands of people from all over flock to the state to get their hands on them.
In fact, the Blue Crab is the state crustacean. Colorado has no state crustacean. Maryland’s crabs are known as the best because of the bright yellow liquid that sweetens the meat to beat out crabs from Louisiana, Texas, and North Carolina. Crab houses and restaurants are prolific, but if you want to catch your own, crab season is open from April 1 to December 31, with June through September being the best crab-catching months. Before you head out, though, you should check the regulations.
The entire eastern seaboard is steeped in history. There’s something for everyone, even the kids, from saluting the flag at Fort McHenry, where Francis Scott Key got his inspiration, to exploring a Civil War sailing ship.
- Maryland State House, Annapolis. Before finally settling in Washington, DC, the U.S. capital moved around a total of nine times. Annapolis was one such capital, and it was where the Treaty of Paris was signed that ended the Revolutionary War. It’s now the seat of the government of the state, and it’s open to the public daily for self-guided tours.
- Tour a 1600s plantation. St. Mary’s city Maryland’s first capital. Visitors can tour a reconstructed state house, a working plantation founded initially in 1634, and climb aboard the Dove, a reconstruction of the ship that first brought colonists to Maryland.
- All aboard! In 1830, the Baltimore and Ohio (B&O) railroad became the first common carrier railroad: the oldest railroad in the U.S. Today, you can visit what’s been called the world’s most important railroad museum. It’s great for the whole family–visit the roundhouse and then hop aboard for a ride on a genuine historic train.
- Antietam National Battlefield. September 17, 1862, saw 23,000 soldiers missing, wounded, or killed after a 12-hour battle. You can see artifacts from the battle, read stories, and tour the battlefield. This national park is open seven days a week.
- Benjamin Banneker Historical Park and Museum. Benjamin Banneker was born to a free mother and a father who had been enslaved. Although he had very little formal education, he became a self-educated naturalist, mathematician, astronomer, and author of almanacs. Banneker also was a landowner, a surveyor, and a farmer. He and Thomas Jefferson regularly corresponded about racial equality and slavery. Today, a park and museum honor him on the site of his former farmstead, the largest African-American historical site in the United States.
- Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park. Located in Church Creek, this 17-acre park and visitor center is a permanent tribute to Tubman’s life, her formative years, and the Underground Railroad movement. You also can visit Bucktown Village Store in Dorchester County. This is where Tubman was hit on the head by an overseer for helping an enslaved individual. This caused her health problems throughout her life. The store is part of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway.
- The USS Constellation. This 22-gun ship served for 100 years, playing a big part not only in military actions but in ending the foreign trade in enslaved people, which was outlawed in 1807. However, some traders defied the law, and the USS Constellation was there to capture their ships–three total–and free 705 Africans. The sloop also served the Union in the civil war, helping to capture the Confederate ship, USS Sumpter. Today, you can imagine living life at sea and walking the historic decks. The ship is open every day except Tuesday and Wednesday.
We already talked about those tasty Maryland blue crabs, but the state is home to a number of iconic dishes. You can enjoy as many as you like because restaurant prices are 11.82% lower in Baltimore than in Denver. Must-try items include:
- Snowballs. These icy treats became popular during the Great Depression. The Maryland version is a bit different. The shaved ice is covered in flavored syrup as per usual, but then it’s topped with marshmallow fluff.
- Smith Island Cake. This is the official Maryland state dessert, named after an island in the Chesapeake Bay. Since the 1800s, women would bake these cakes for their husbands to take with them on the annual oyster harvest. Traditionally, eight to 12 layers of vanilla cake were smothered in chocolate fudge icing and then topped with pieces of peanut butter cup. Today, many variations exist, and you can find Smith Island cake among restaurant dessert menus.
- Berger Cookies. These are shortbread cookies covered in chocolate ganache. These yummy treats originated in 1835 in Baltimore and are named after the Berger family, who moved to Baltimore with their German recipes. It’s since become a Baltimore staple.
- Pit Beef. It’s barbecue but leveled up. Beef is grilled over charcoal, sliced paper thin, and stacked on a roll. It’s then usually covered with horseradish, onion, and barbecue sauce. The beef may be seasoned with a dry rub or a spicy sauce before being grilled. You can find pit beef on many a highway and byways.
- Coddie. A hand-formed salt cod and potato cake, coddie is known as the poor man’s crab cake. It’s deep-fried and served between two saltines and topped with yellow mustard. Their popularity has waned over the years, but you can still find them at some restaurants and diners that serve crab cakes.
Art and Culture
If history isn’t your thing, there are some notable museums in Baltimore:
- The Baltimore Museum of Art is home to the planet’s largest collection of painter Henri Matisse’s art, along with changing exhibitions and events. Admission is free.
- The Walters Art Museum is one of the very few museums featuring art from 3,000 BC to the early 1900s. Admission is always free.
- The Baltimore Museum of Industry located in an old cannery has exhibits that show types of manufacturing and industry dating from the early 1900s. Visitors can see working exhibits and touch and feel objects from the Industrial Revolution.
- American Visionary Art Museum is an “outsider museum” showcasing art from artists who are self-taught. They have a number of permanent collections, as well as various exhibits that combine art, philosophy, science, social justice, and science.
- Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum is where Edgar Allan Poe lived in the 1930s. They have various exhibits about Poe’s life and regular happenings to honor his legacy. This house is where he wrote poetry, literary criticism, and some of his early short stories.
- Baltimore Symphony Orchestra doesn’t just feature classical music. It’s a hub for distinguished speakers and even Calypso music and children’s programs.
- Baltimore Opera was founded in 2009 and presents concert opera, fully-staged opera, civic practice, and educational programs for both children and adults.
- The Performing Arts are alive and well in Baltimore in theaters such as Baltimore Center Stage, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, Everyman Theatre, Hippodrome Theatre, Iron Crow Theatre, and more.
Maryland is home to about 55 colleges and universities, including some of the top educational institutions in the country. Among them is Johns Hopkins University, home of the Bloomberg School of Public Health and an acclaimed School of Medicine. The school is also highly ranked for the School of Education, the Whiting School of Engineering, and Johns Hopkins Hospital. The state also has the United States Naval Academy. Graduates earn a Bachelor of Science degree and then serve in the Navy or Marine Corps.
Loyola University is a private Jesuit university that offers in excess of 30 majors, and 60% of its students participate in their study abroad program.
As a landlocked Coloradan, you may not fully enjoy the joys of beach life, but the shore, as it’s called in Maryland, offers opportunities for fun as well as the sun. Here are some of the best:
- Ocean City. There’s a boardwalk with plenty of shopping, amusement rides, and arcades. You can also get away and sunbathe on the powdery sand or simply sit and enjoy the beauty of the Atlantic Ocean.
- Assateague Island is just 10 miles south of Ocean City and is the home of herds of wild horses. You can kayak, canoe, or just walk along the beach. Camping is popular here.
- Calvert Cliffs State Park is situated along 25 miles of imposing cliffs overlooking the Chesapeake Bay. The actual beach area is small, but there are 13 miles of hiking trails and a playground. There are also 600-plus fossil species to discover.
- Gunpowder Falls State Park is another place with a small beach, but there are plenty of other activities, including fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and even sailing. Some short hiking trails offer the opportunity for more exploration.
- Sandy Point State Park is 786 acres with golden sand and gorgeous views of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. You can fish or swim in the bay or rent a boat. Amenities include concession stands and bathrooms.
Don’t be surprised to hear locals refer to Baltimore as Smalltimore. It’s a city with a tight-knit social scene and a sense of community. If you like to know your neighbors, your barista, or your sales clerk at a local store, it’s a great place.
Despite its Reputation, Baltimore is Safe
Like any city, suburb, or rural area, there is crime. But most of the crime happens in specific areas that are easily avoided. These impoverished, drug-riddled, and gang-riddled areas include West Baltimore. There’s much less concern in other areas that include Inner Harbor, Mount Vernon, Federal Hill, and Fells Point.
Great Public Transportation
Don’t have a car or don’t want one? In Baltimore, that’s perfect. Public transportation options include local buses, Metro-Subway, Light Rail, MARC train, or Airport shuttle. And, of course, there’s Lyft and Uber. On a day off of work, try the Baltimore Water Taxi, which for one price, offers all-day service with unlimited on-off so you can visit more than 30 neighborhoods and attractions.
How Much Does it Cost to Move from Colorado to Maryland?
According to Colorado movers, for a four-bedroom home, you should budget from $9,000 to $13,000 without packing services. Of course, it depends on how much you have. It also depends on the mover you hire.
Denver Moving Group offers affordable moving services with consistently great reviews on Google and Home Advisor. Get a quote today from a long-distance moving company in Denver.
What Will I Pay to Rent A House or Apartment in Maryland?
You’ll be happy to know that rent prices in Baltimore are 29% lower than in the Mile High City.
- The average rent of a one-bedroom apartment in Baltimore is $1,535.
- For a two-bedroom house or apartment in Baltimore, you would pay $1,835.
- A three-bedroom house or apartment would set you back $2,025.
- A four-bedroom house or apartment is about $2,300.
Baltimore also has more available vacancies than Denver.
What’s the Cost of Living in Maryland?
It is definitely cheaper to live in Maryland than in Colorado. Here’s how things break down:
- A basic meal at an inexpensive restaurant will cost you 22.7% less in Maryland.
- Fast food is even 5.1% cheaper.
- Local cheese is 7.3% cheaper, although bread to put it on costs about the same.
- Buying a car costs 27.7% less in Maryland.
- If you need a taxi, it’s 16.3% cheaper.
- Childcare is 17.7% less expensive in Maryland.
- Beer is about the same price, but a cappuccino will cost you 13.7% less.
- Jeans are 11.9% cheaper, dresses 20% cheaper, and you’ll pay 3.6% less for that pair of Nikes
Your internet connection will cost you 5.6% more; for gasoline, add about 4.5%, and you’ll pay about 3.5% more for a gallon of milk.
The Pros and Cons of Living In Maryland
Aside from all the great things we’ve already mentioned, including history, culture, food, beaches, and the cost of living, there are a lot of positives about living in Maryland. These include:
- A culture that meshes the north and south, and Maryland, per WalletHub, named Maryland the ninth most diverse state in the U.S.
- You are mere hours away from Washington, DC, Philadelphia, and New York City, which is excellent for weekend getaways without paying for airfare.
- There’s a lot of unique housing, including in old factories and mills.
- There are plenty of festivals and events.
Of course, no matter where you live, there are things not to like. Among the things that make Maryland less than perfect are:
- Traffic congestion, especially around Baltimore and National Harbor. Two toll tunnels contribute to the congestion–the Fort McHenry and Baltimore Harbor.
- Unhoused people. Denver’s homeless population almost doubled in 2021, while Maryland’s increased by 7%. Homelessness is a chronic problem in all American cities.
- High winds. Although you’re used to high winds in Colorado, the offshore winds in Maryland can be especially cold.
Weird laws. In Colorado, you can’t buy a car on Sunday. In Maryland, you can’t buy liquor. Other weird laws include:
- It’s illegal to eat while swimming in the ocean
- In Baltimore, it’s illegal to take a lion to the movies
- It’s illegal for a man to buy a drink for a female bartender
- If you are a woman married to a man, you can’t go through your husband’s pockets while he’s asleep
- In Baltimore, fortune tellers are illegal
- If you wear a sleeveless shirt in a public park, you can be fined $10
What are the Best Places to Live in Maryland?
Some of the best places to live in Maryland include:
- North Potomac has supportive neighbors and excellent public schools. Pop. 24,146 and is an unincorporated area in Montgomery County.
- South Kensington has great public schools and a population of 8,494 for those who like small-town life.
- North Bethesda has a population of almost 50,000, with great public schools and people in all stages of life.
- Potomac is a village with a population approaching 47,000.
- Bethesda has a population of about 65,000 and is considered a paradise for walkers, and there’s Metro access. It also has some of the best schools in this big city.
- Ellicott City, close to Baltimore, is a very diverse community.
- Chevy Chase is quite an affluent community close to Bethesda, with a population of under 10,000.
How is the Job Market in Maryland, and What are the Best Career Options?
Like everywhere else, there’s a worker shortage in Maryland, with an unemployment rate of 4.3%. Here are the top fastest-growing jobs in the state:
- Translator and Interpreter
- Information Security Analyst
- Home Health Aid
- Personal Care Assistant
- Meeting Planner
- Occupational Therapy Assistant
- Physical Therapist
- Fitness Training
- Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
Curious about the highest-paying jobs in the state? Those go to those in upper management, plus consultants and sales representatives. Take into consideration that Colorado has a flat state income tax of 4.55%, and Maryland has tax brackets.
What are the Largest Industries in Maryland?
Based on the fastest-growing jobs, you’ll probably guess at many of these top industries, which include:
- Life Sciences
- Cybersecurity and IT
- Distribution, Warehouse & Logistics
- Offshore wind (renewable energy)
- Data centers
- Emerging technology
Unlike some other east coast states, Maryland’s economy is healthy and was ranked by CNBC in 2021 as one of the most improved states for business.
There are a lot of Positives About Moving to Maryland
The Eastern Shore of Maryland was lauded by National Geographic as one of the best in the world based on adventure, family, culture, sustainability, and nature.
Baltimore ranked 61st in world cities by a Spanish University based on categories that included the economy, environment, technology, and urban planning, among others.
With a booming job market, great healthcare, abundant outdoor activities, incredible seafood, a great cost of living, and proximity to some of America’s best cities, Maryland might just be your perfect place.
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