These Are The 10 Best Places To Live In Michigan For 2018


We analyzed over 170 places in Michigan to determine the cream of the crop.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out that we updated it for 2018.

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Where are the best places in the state of Michigan?

To the untrained eye they are the places that have awesome economies. They’re the places in Wolverine State where people have the best jobs, residents are all above average, and the sun shines the most.

However, here at HomeSnacks, we don’t trust the untrained eye and instead look to data to understand the best places to call home in Michigan.

There might be some surprises on this list, but when you look at the unbiased data, it’s hard to argue against.

After analyzing 145 places in Michigan, we came up with this list of the best places:

  1. East Grand Rapids (Photos)
  2. Huntington Woods (Photos)
  3. Birmingham (Photos)
  4. Beverly Hills (Photos)
  5. Berkley (Photos)
  6. Plymouth (Photos)
  7. Grosse Pointe Woods (Photos)
  8. Northville (Photos)
  9. Farmington (Photos)
  10. Grosse Pointe Farms (Photos)

Follow along as we provide more insight into how we reached our overall best places to live in Michigan.

If you’re looking for something more national, check out the best states in America or the best places to live in America.

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The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Lansing with a population of 114,773 against places with a population of 18?

We firmly decided no, that just isn’t fair.

So to create our ranking, we broke places to live into three tiers:

  • Cities — Populations over 5,100
  • Towns — Populations between 1,000 and 5,100
  • Small Towns — Populations below 1,000

This left us with 145 cities, 257 towns, and 261 small towns.

We then decided, no matter how much anyone loves their town, the best places have more of everything and therefore you need to have over 5,100 people to truly be ‘the best’.

Now we also realize that city living might not be your cup of tea, so we ran the following analysis on towns and then again for small towns.

You can see those two top tens at the bottom of the post.

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How We Calculated The Best Place To Live In Michigan

Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.

We ranked each place in Michigan across a number of criteria from one to 145, with one being the best.

We then took the average rank across all criteria, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title “Best Place To Live In Michigan”.

The criteria we looked at were:

  • Median Home Values
  • Median Income
  • Population Density (Higher better)
  • Unemployment Rate
  • Commute Time
  • Crime
  • Education Levels
  • Health Insurance Coverage
  • Poverty rates

Sources of criteria include the New Census Data and FBI Crime Data.

If your city or town isn’t among the top 10, jump down to the bottom of the post to see a detailed chart of the best places in Michigan.

Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with East Grand Rapids at the end of the cul-de-sac.

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1. East Grand Rapids

East Grand Rapids, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 11,297
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Home Values: $303,400 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% (3rd best)
East Grand Rapids has a really low crime rate (12th lowest) and only 3.4% of the people are unemployed. Additionally, residents here have high paying jobs ($118,393). And that goes a long way.

The population is growing at a steady clip, and the cost of living is lower than it should be. So people have an extra incentive to live in East Grand Rapids.

2. Huntington Woods

Huntington Woods, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,330
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Home Values: $298,800 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% (10th best)
Huntington Woods is a cute little city where crime is far below the state average, and where it’s affordable. The schools are also solidly rated.

Home prices clock in at $298,800 and households earn a median salary of $121,528. One could get used to that.

3. Birmingham

Birmingham, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 20,653
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Home Values: $439,000 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.6% (5th best)
There’s two types of people who live in Birmingham. Either the old hold outs who have lived there forever and are watching their home values skyrocket, or those d who can afford to buy a $439,000 home there.

Either way, you’re set. Your kids go to great schools, there’s a ton of things to do, and you earn a great salary. Birmingham is exactly what you hoped for when you played that board game, LIFE as a kid.

4. Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 10,450
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Home Values: $320,200 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.3% (1st best)
Beverly Hills is by far one of the best places to live in Michigan: the math proves it! This city has the 2nd lowest unemployment rate and the 5th highest median income in all of Michigan.

Plus, the median home values are the 2nd highest in the state. And if all of that isn’t enough to convince you, then check this out: their crime rate is the 7th lowest in the state, making Beverly Hills a safe and great place to live.

5. Berkley

Berkley, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 15,239
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 4)
Home Values: $159,400 (31st best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.4% (15th best)
There’s two types of people who live in Berkley. Either the old hold outs who have lived there forever and are watching their home values skyrocket, or those d who can afford to buy a $159,400 home there.

Either way, you’re set. Your kids go to great schools, there’s a ton of things to do, and you earn a great salary. Berkley is exactly what you hoped for when you played that board game, LIFE as a kid.

6. Plymouth

Plymouth, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 8,956
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 1)
Home Values: $240,200 (14th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.6% (5th best)
Well, I guess technically 3.6% of Plymouth residents who want to have a job can’t find one, so not everyone has a job, but it’s the 5th closest of any city in Michigan.

You can tell they take business seriously as they have by far the coolest Chamber of Commerce website we came across in our research.

In addition to its incredibly low unemployment rate, Plymouth also ranked well for crime (18th) and median income ($78,254).

7. Grosse Pointe Woods

Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 15,785
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 1)
Home Values: $197,600 (18th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.8% (47th best)
Who wouldn’t want to live in a place where there’s low crime and everyone is rich? That’s the case with Grosse Pointe Woods.

Things are looking peachy keen here. The unemployment rate is the 48th lowest in Michigan and the median income comes in at $93,404.

This is the kind of place you brag to your friends on Facebook about.

8. Northville

Northville, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,986
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Home Values: $298,900 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.5% (35th best)
The Town of Northville might be a bit of a surprise to some in terms of how well it ranks according to science.

The crime rate in Northville isn’t amazing, but it’s far below the state average. The homes are valued at $298,900 here, and the schools get some of the most funding in Michigan.

If Northville can get some more of their residents to work, things will look even rosier here. The unemployment rate (5.5% is the 35th highest in the state.

9. Farmington

Farmington, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 10,526
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 3)
Home Values: $165,800 (27th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.8% (25th best)
Farmington has it made. In fact, according to science, it’s one of the best places to live in the state of Michigan.

The unemployment rate is the 25th lowest in the state at 4.8%, and residents make a pretty penny. Median incomes are $64,388, and the average cost of a home is $165,800. Which is an indication that lots of people want to live here.

We wouldn’t be surprised if more and more publications call Farmington one of America’s gems.

10. Grosse Pointe Farms

Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 9,265
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 5)
Home Values: $287,100 (9th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.7% (22nd best)
At an umeployment rate of 4.7%, everyone who wants a job can get one in Grosse Pointe Farms. And the residents command high salaries ($119,500 a year combined income), and live in big fancy homes ($287,100 each).

We’re not saying money is why these cities are the ‘best’ in Michigan. What we’re implying is that money means safety and peace of mind. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Wrapping Up The Best Of The Best In Michigan

If you’re looking at areas in Michigan with the best economic situations, where there’s lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

East Grand Rapids made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for 2018.

Best Towns To Live In Michigan

  1. Pleasant Ridge (Pop. 2,562)
  2. Village of Grosse Pointe Shores (Pop. 2,933)
  3. DeWitt (Pop. 4,657)
  4. Franklin (Pop. 3,262)
  5. Frankenmuth (Pop. 4,992)
  6. Caledonia (Pop. 1,871)
  7. Spring Lake (Pop. 2,424)
  8. Lathrup Village (Pop. 4,127)
  9. Fruitport (Pop. 1,374)
  10. Bloomfield Hills (Pop. 3,984)

Best Small Towns To Live In Michigan

  1. Shoreham (Pop. 918)
  2. Eagle (Pop. 104)
  3. Barton Hills (Pop. 293)
  4. Lake Leelanau (Pop. 206)
  5. Richland (Pop. 858)
  6. Michiana (Pop. 187)
  7. Westphalia (Pop. 995)
  8. Village of Clarkston (Pop. 902)
  9. Lake Angelus (Pop. 260)
  10. Suttons Bay (Pop. 540)

If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Michigan:

  1. Highland Park (Pop. 10,978)
  2. Detroit (Pop. 683,443)
  3. River Rouge (Pop. 7,609)

For more Michigan reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Cities In Michigan

City Rank Previous Rank Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
East Grand Rapids 1 2 11,297 3.4% $303,400
Huntington Woods 2 1 6,330 4.1% $298,800
Birmingham 3 3 20,653 3.6% $439,000
Beverly Hills 4 4 10,450 3.3% $320,200
Berkley 5 9 15,239 4.4% $159,400
Plymouth 6 7 8,956 3.6% $240,200
Grosse Pointe Woods 7 6 15,785 5.8% $197,600
Northville 8 8 5,986 5.5% $298,900
Farmington 9 12 10,526 4.8% $165,800
Grosse Pointe Farms 10 5 9,265 4.7% $287,100
Saline 11 16 9,082 3.7% $215,100
Grosse Pointe 12 13 5,256 5.9% $288,800
Royal Oak 13 11 58,823 4.3% $175,200
Grosse Pointe Park 14 14 11,276 5.1% $313,300
Rochester 15 10 12,969 5.7% $308,700
Rochester Hills 16 15 72,987 4.6% $247,500
Clawson 17 20 12,008 5.6% $139,100
Novi 18 21 58,233 3.9% $266,000
Farmington Hills 19 19 81,154 4.7% $216,200
South Lyon 20 22 11,672 4.2% $161,100
Milford 21 40 6,434 4.5% $189,800
Ann Arbor 22 18 118,087 5.6% $250,200
New Baltimore 23 17 12,266 4.8% $191,000
Troy 24 24 82,982 5.3% $247,200
Livonia 25 23 94,849 5.5% $162,000
St. Joseph 26 28 8,307 4.6% $164,000
Trenton 27 61 18,426 4.4% $123,400
Allen Park 28 31 27,519 5.6% $99,800
Grand Ledge 29 25 7,794 5.5% $124,500
Brighton 30 27 7,550 3.9% $174,100
Chelsea 31 29 5,140 9.9% $193,100
Petoskey 32 26 5,731 7.0% $169,500
Woodhaven 33 30 12,590 7.0% $135,000
Midland 34 36 42,063 7.5% $140,900
Walled Lake 35 38 7,102 4.5% $122,700
Milan 36 33 5,917 6.9% $137,900
Portage 37 42 47,854 5.2% $148,900
Marysville 38 37 9,775 5.2% $116,500
Rockford 39 32 6,044 4.8% $151,000
Mason 40 34 8,334 5.6% $115,800
Grand Blanc 41 44 8,039 7.7% $138,100
St. Clair Shores 42 47 59,916 7.7% $102,400
Walker 43 46 24,458 3.6% $148,400
St. Johns 44 50 7,951 5.3% $120,300
Sterling Heights 45 49 131,674 6.5% $154,000
Flushing 46 45 8,129 10.6% $115,000
Tecumseh 47 59 8,370 4.3% $112,600
Wixom 48 55 13,733 4.5% $205,900
Marshall 49 53 7,046 5.0% $109,000
St. Clair 50 62 5,395 7.1% $138,900
Zeeland 51 43 5,595 4.3% $123,100
East Lansing 52 35 48,395 10.1% $176,500
Houghton 53 39 7,924 5.7% $138,500
Grandville 54 54 15,842 3.3% $139,000
Iron Mountain 55 48 7,535 5.2% $75,100
Marquette 56 59 21,282 7.8% $166,300
Fraser 57 51 14,620 6.1% $121,000
Kingsford 58 52 5,086 6.0% $83,800
Wyandotte 59 64 25,225 8.8% $86,200
Riverview 60 41 12,208 5.8% $123,200
Norton Shores 61 56 24,091 7.0% $114,100
Flat Rock 62 57 9,836 7.8% $115,100
Grand Haven 63 58 10,853 7.7% $121,400
Ferndale 64 71 20,167 6.0% $111,000
Hudsonville 65 66 7,278 9.3% $134,500
Howell 66 73 9,507 5.6% $144,300
Kentwood 67 68 50,761 5.7% $132,000
Richmond 68 75 5,844 6.8% $133,800
Holland 69 69 33,581 6.0% $121,900
Mount Pleasant 70 67 25,896 11.4% $128,800
Southgate 71 70 29,355 7.8% $87,900
Allegan 72 82 5,051 6.6% $86,900
Monroe 73 78 20,243 9.4% $105,700
Swartz Creek 74 84 5,617 7.0% $108,200
Ishpeming 75 74 6,509 5.7% $80,500
St. Louis 76 79 7,302 8.5% $73,900
Southfield 77 76 73,055 9.8% $113,100
Auburn Hills 78 71 22,342 7.5% $121,000
Oak Park 79 86 29,751 8.5% $82,500
Hastings 80 87 7,312 6.6% $94,700
Hillsdale 81 91 8,203 10.5% $81,800
Westland 82 83 82,218 7.6% $96,700
Manistee 83 63 6,100 10.8% $95,900
Eaton Rapids 84 90 5,212 6.1% $95,400
Fenton 85 92 11,471 7.4% $108,500
Holly 86 88 6,171 7.9% $84,300
Wyoming 87 81 74,692 6.1% $100,600
Alma 88 85 9,222 11.7% $79,700
Madison Heights 89 88 30,168 6.5% $84,000
Ludington 90 93 8,051 14.2% $111,200
Charlotte 91 77 9,043 8.1% $105,400
Grand Rapids 92 96 193,887 8.5% $113,600
Dearborn Heights 93 95 56,329 8.7% $84,900
Menominee 94 97 8,378 9.6% $73,200
Dearborn 95 101 95,520 9.0% $112,200
Alpena 96 100 10,213 9.0% $76,500
Big Rapids 97 98 10,495 14.1% $88,400
Ypsilanti 98 107 20,577 10.9% $130,000
Ironwood 99 105 5,089 12.3% $54,100
Warren 100 104 135,069 10.3% $93,400

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