Living Off The Grid in Maryland (What You Need to Know)

Maryland, which is located on the country’s Eastern Coast, has a population of over 6 million people and is growing by the day. Living off the grid in Maryland isn’t super popular, but it doesn’t imply that people aren’t. In fact, there are many off-grid communities in the state. People that live off the grid, in general, do so between Oakland and Frostburg in the western portion of the state, while there are off-grid communities outside of this area as well.

living off the grid in maryland
Baltimore is the largest city in Maryland.

General Statistics For Living Off The Grid in Maryland

Although it is legal to live off the grid in Maryland, there are definitely some disadvantages. The main issues include high taxes and a high cost of living; moreover, due to the state’s limited size, you may have difficulty finding an appropriate off-grid property. The crime rate is also greater than the national average due to the high population density.

Baltimore, Maryland’s largest city, is located in the heart of the state and has a population of over 600,000. Every year, the cost of buying or renting a home rises, but people continue to flock to this area since it is so close to Washington, DC. Maryland has among the tightest gun laws in the country, which may be a plus for some but a disadvantage for others.

Living off-grid can be risky, especially in high-crime regions of Maryland (although you’ll probably stay away from them when living off the grid in Maryland). Cicadas are also well-known throughout the state, and you’ll see many of them during the summer. Ticks, on the other hand, are a hazard because they transfer Lyme disease and can make you allergic to red meat in some situations. If you’re curious which states are best for off-grid living, read my recent Off-Grid Living Guide to Louisiana

Are There Living Off The Grid Laws in Maryland? 

There are currently no regulations forbidding you from living off-grid, but it will become more difficult as you approach a city, especially if you do not have a septic tank. Frankly, I don’t see this as an issue, though. If you’re living off the grid in Maryland you’re probably looking to get away from the city. The regulations governing homeschooling are not particularly severe, and you should be able to figure out something that is in your best interests.

What’s the Climate in Maryland? 

Maryland features two distinct climates: a continental climate in the western half of the state and a humid subtropical climate in the east. The average summer temperature in the western half of the state is approximately 65 degrees Fahrenheit, and the average winter temperature is around 30 degrees Fahrenheit. The average summer temperature in the eastern half of the state is approximately 75 degrees Fahrenheit, and the average winter temperature is around 35 degrees Fahrenheit.

During the winter and summer, both the west and east regions of the state are fairly humid. The temperatures do not drop significantly in the winter, but the wind will be blowing practically constantly, making it feel much colder than it is. Interest in states nearby? Check out my guide to off the grid life in Connecticut.

What are the Best Crops To Grow In Maryland?

Maryland’s main crops are grain, barley, and soybeans; hence it isn’t the finest state for growing crops. The majority of the crops are cultivated in greenhouses, and most of these are vegetables or ornamental crops such as flowers. 

From the standpoint of living off the grid in Maryland, you could grow some crops if you built a greenhouse; without one, it would be tough but not impossible. The western part of the state, in general, is better for cultivating crops than the eastern part of the state.

What’s Freshwater Availability Like In Maryland?

There are numerous rivers that run across the state, so you’ll have no trouble locating water above and below ground. Currently, rainwater harvesting is permitted, albeit stormwater discharge may be taxed in the future, and this nicely sums up the attitude of the local government toward the populace.

What Kind of Wildlife is in Maryland? 

Raccoons, porcupines, groundhogs, and other rodents are common in Maryland, and you might see a deer here and there, but don’t get your hopes up. Maryland, on the other hand, is abundant in both freshwater and saltwater fish, with everything from striped bass to white bass to bluegill to be found. You’ll need distinct licenses for saltwater and freshwater fishing, as well as hunting, as in all states. 

How to Generate Off-Grid Power In Maryland

Solar Power: Maryland is a fantastic state to power your home with solar panels. The state offers a federal tax credit of roughly 30%, though the proportion varies by county.

Wind Power: The eastern section of the state is far better suited for wind power than the western part, and you can recover up to 60% of your investment back in rebates.

Hydroelectric power: There are currently no incentives for this type of power, although a small hydroelectric generator will likely suffice to power your homestead.

What’s Road Access Like in Maryland? 

In general, road access in the eastern part of Maryland is not an issue; nevertheless, due to its near proximity to the capital, expect a lot of traffic jams, and I mean a lot. In the western section of the state traffic is less congested. Most rural locations in the state usually have dirt roads.

What’s the Price of Land in Maryland? 

The cost of land is relatively high, owing to its location on the outskirts of the metropolis. The closer you get to Baltimore, the more expensive it becomes. In general, the most costly land is in the middle of the state. The most affordable land is in the eastern half of the state. Prices in the western part of the state are more affordable because these areas are less developed.

What’s the Property Tax in Maryland? 

Maryland’s property tax is 1.1 percent, somewhat more than the national average of 1.08 percent. What you’ll notice in Maryland is that everything is taxed, and it’s taxed as much as possible.

What’s the Cost Of Living in Maryland? 

The cost of living is high, in Maryland. It is roughly 10% to 13% higher than the national average. Everything from housing to transportation to groceries is significantly more expensive than in most states. The good news is that when compared to other states, the cost of living in the western section of the state is pretty typical. Baltimore is one of the key causes for the high cost of living; as the city’s population grows each year, so do the taxes.

What’s the Job Market Like in Maryland? 

The unemployment rate in Maryland is at 5.4 percent, which is higher than the national average. The majority of people work in healthcare, social assistance, retail, and government-related industries. You can also find work in the agriculture industry in the western section of the state.

While it obviously peaked during COVID, the unemployment rate has slowly decreased over the past few years. 

What’s the Crime Rate in Maryland? 

Maryland has a high the average crime rate, with roughly 4.7 incidents per 1000 people. The majority of crime occurs in the Baltimore area, while the western section of the state is generally safer. The poverty rate is roughly 21.2%, which is higher, but again relates mostly to Baltimore and the surrounding metropolis. 

Is Maryland Affected by Natural Disasters?

Floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, and winter storms are all reasonably typical natural catastrophes in Maryland. The power grid is a huge issue in this state since it can go down for lengthy periods of time after even minor storms. This is most likely due to the power grid being old and not well maintained.

Can You Live Off-Grid in Maryland? 

To be honest, living off the grid in Maryland isn’t ideal. The state is far too small for the number of people who reside there. This just raises crime and living costs (not great for off the grid life). Although it’s now economical to live off the grid in this state, this will most likely change in the coming years as taxes continue to rise year after year.

If you’re looking for a state in the area, I recommend checking out Maryland’s southern neighbors of Virginia and Tennessee. 

living off the grid in maryland

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