The Island Housing Trust’s Ripples Hill Neighborhood in the village of Somesville. The trust builds and renovates homes in the town of Mount Desert for sale to buyers who make no more than 160% of Maine’s median income, according to Executive Director Marla O’Byrne.
Harpswell is not the only place in Maine wanting to figure out how to make housing affordable for its residents. As it gets harder for Mainers to find a place to live, governments, nonprofits and residents across the state are trying out a host of solutions.
“What I’m seeing now is an energy around housing I haven’t seen in my 25 years in Maine,” says Debora Keller, executive director of Bath Housing. Keller and others say there is no single solution or even set of solutions for housing problems. But they also agree that there are more tools available now — some from the state, others conceived locally — than in the past. A look at what other places have tried could help Harpswell as it charts its own course.