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8 Things to Know Before Moving to Ocean City, MD

Written by Brittany Slagle

Situated on the eastern coast of the Atlantic Ocean is the renowned vacation destination of Ocean City, Maryland. This coastal gem is celebrated for its breathtaking sandy beaches, vibrant boardwalk, a plethora of family-friendly activities, and lively entertainment scene, making it the ultimate coastal playground!

Perched atop Fenwick Island, nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and the Isle of Wight Bay, Ocean City seamlessly blends its rich history with contemporary attractions. Its sun-drenched shores and bustling boardwalk warmly welcome approximately 8 million visitors each year, promising endless fun and relaxation for all who visit.

Let’s check out eight things to know before making the move to Ocean City, MD.

1. The cost of living is 3% higher than the national average 

With an index of 103, the cost of living in Ocean City is only slightly higher than the national average. The median home price is $448,450, higher than the national average of $417,000. 

To live comfortably in Ocean City, Maryland, it is recommended to have a minimum annual income of $83,160 for a family and $32,800 for a single person.

2. Live in communities like Makai or Antigua Condominiums, The Latitudes, or Sunset Island

Ocean City boasts a variety of exceptional condo and townhome communities, each offering residents access to the city’s vibrant atmosphere along with unique perks. Whether situated along the bay or overlooking the ocean, these communities cater to a range of styles and budgets.

Constructed in 2007, Makai Condominiums are located just one block from the ocean, nestled along the Isle of Wight Bay. This community comprises 96 units and is conveniently close to Ocean City’s restaurants, entertainment venues, beaches, and more.

For those seeking direct oceanfront living, the Antigua is a high-rise condominium building offering well-appointed units. Alongside beachfront access, residents of Antigua can enjoy amenities such as a heated outdoor pool, kiddie pool, volleyball courts, saunas, and private parking.

Another newer addition to Ocean City’s housing options is The Latitudes, a townhome community boasting over 100 feet of waterfront. These three-story homes offer stunning bay views, quality construction, private balconies, and spacious interiors, providing residents with ample living space. Centrally located on 25th Street, The Latitudes provides quick access to Jolly Roger Amusement Park, restaurants, shops, and the ocean.

Situated on a private 73-acre island off the shores of Ocean City, Sunset Island offers condominium and townhome living in a peaceful and secluded setting. Despite its tranquil location, Sunset Island is conveniently close to a variety of restaurants, services, and entertainment options, providing residents with the best of both worlds.

3. Worcester County School District serves the city 

While Ocean City is primarily known as a vacation destination, there is a sizable population of full-time residents in the coastal town. For families with school-aged children, education plays a crucial role. Students residing in Ocean City are enrolled in schools managed by the Worcester County Public School District.

Committed to delivering quality education from kindergarten through high school graduation, the Worcester County School District prioritizes creating safe and inclusive learning environments for all students.

Ocean City Elementary School stands out as a distinguished Blue Ribbon School of Excellence, catering to students from kindergarten through fourth grade. With an enrollment of around 600 students, this highly esteemed school ranks higher than 96.2% of Maryland’s elementary schools.

For students in grades four through six, Berlin Intermediate School provides a top-rated educational experience. Drawing students from farms, small towns, and Ocean City, the school offers a wide range of extracurricular activities, clubs, groups, and sports teams, fostering a vibrant learning environment for approximately 810 students.

Catering to students in grades seven and eight, Stephen Decatur Middle School, along with Stephen Decatur High School for grades nine through twelve, maintains high academic and personal standards. Students at both schools benefit from a safe and friendly atmosphere, dedicated teachers and staff, and a diverse array of programs, courses, and extracurricular opportunities.

4. Visit the Jolly Roger amusement parks with the kids

Visitors to Ocean City often set aside time to explore the excitement of Jolly Roger amusement parks. With two locations—one on the pier along the Ocean City Boardwalk and another on 30th Street—Jolly Roger guarantees hours of entertainment for families. Featuring a variety of rides, games, food options, and activities, both parks cater to guests of all ages.

Thrill-seekers can enjoy a multitude of rides, carnival games, bumper cars, and mini-golf, along with Splash Mountain and a comprehensive water park. Additionally, both locations boast a go-kart track for racing enthusiasts.

Ocean City is also home to Trimper’s Rides Amusement Park, a historic landmark established in 1893 and boasting over a century of operation. This renowned park offers a nostalgic experience, adding to the city’s appeal for visitors.

5. Don’t miss the Ocean City Boardwalk

Ocean City is a haven of local amenities that cater to residents and visitors alike. The iconic Ocean City Boardwalk serves as a bustling center, offering a wealth of entertainment options, from amusement parks and arcades to seafood restaurants and souvenir shops. For residents seeking relaxation, the city boasts an extensive network of parks and nature reserves, with Northside Park being a favorite spot for recreational activities and community events.

Among the many attractions, the boardwalk stands out as a culinary hotspot, featuring renowned establishments like Fisher’s Popcorn, Thrasher’s French Fries, Dumser’s Dairyland, and a variety of other beloved eateries.

6. Attend festivals like Sunfest, Springfest, or Bike Week

Ocean City’s vibrant community spirit is deeply rooted in a shared passion for coastal living. Seasonal events play a pivotal role in uniting residents through music, culinary delights, and lively celebrations. Among the most anticipated annual events are Sunfest, Springfest, Bike Week, and the enchanting Festival of Lights during the Christmas season.

Adding to the city’s lively atmosphere is the Roland E. Powell Convention Center, a bustling hub of activity. The center hosts diverse events, including the prestigious World Championship Wildfowl Carving Competition, concerts featuring renowned artists, and thrilling sporting events such as boxing and professional wrestling matches.

7. The tourism sector is the major employer

Although tourism is the economic lifeblood of Ocean City, the town offers a wide range of employment prospects beyond just boardwalk attractions and amenities. The hospitality sector, encompassing hotels, eateries, and entertainment venues, provides both seasonal and year-round job opportunities. 

For those drawn to water recreation, marinas, and aquatic adventure companies have a ton of activities available, while professionals in retail and service industries play a pivotal role in maintaining the town’s vibrant ambiance.

Ocean City’s commitment to environmental preservation has led to growth in ecotourism, providing jobs for those dedicated to protecting the area’s coastal habitats and ecosystems. 

8. The Atlantic Ocean makes the weather bearable 

Ocean City residents are fortunate to experience an ideal climate year-round. The summer months bring hot, humid conditions to the city. However, its coastal location along the Atlantic Ocean provides refreshing ocean breezes that temper the heat, creating perfect weather for enjoying the beach. The warm summer air makes swimming in the cool ocean waters an invigorating treat. At the same time, the ocean breeze ensures a comfortable environment for relaxing on the sand and soaking up the sun’s rays.

When the busy tourist season winds down in the winter, year-round residents can savor the tranquil atmosphere the beach town offers. Locals can still visit their favorite restaurants and attractions without having to battle summertime crowds. They can take advantage of all the area has to offer with fewer people around.

In Summary 

Ocean City, Maryland, offers a vibrant coastal lifestyle with a range of amenities and activities for residents and visitors alike. From its iconic boardwalk to its renowned festivals and employment opportunities beyond tourism, Ocean City provides a unique blend of community spirit and natural beauty. 

With its ideal climate tempered by ocean breezes, Ocean City promises a comfortable and enjoyable living experience for all who call it home.

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