Best Places To Retire In Michigan For 2020


We analyzed over 86 places in Michigan to identify the ones that offer the most to retirees.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the best places to retire in Michigan.

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Michigan is famous for many reasons: it is one of the snowiest states in America, it borders four of The Great Lakes, and it has some of the best places to retire.

Whether you're a fan of long summer nights, long winters, long naps, or you're just 'Smitten with The Mitten,' Michigan has an ideal place for every retiree. Needless to say, it was very difficult to narrow down the top ten best places to retire in Michigan for 2020.

But, HomeSnacks did it. How'd we determine the best places to retire in Michigan? Well, we know that when people are searching for the best places to retire, they are also looking for things like convenience, affordable healthcare, and an economy that protects their bottom line. So, to identify Michigan's top ten, we consulted the numbers. In total, we analyzed 88 cities. We looked at important factors like cost of living, crime, amenities, rent and distance to closest national airport for every place with over 10,000 residents. Incidentally, this is our sixth time ranking the best places to retire in The Great Lakes State, so believe us when we say that these are the best of the best.

We discovered that people in this demographic are starting to move to bigger cities so that they have better access to public transportation, healthcare options, and programs designed especially for them. This trend is happening in Michigan, and this is why we find most of the state's best places to retire centered around Detroit. But, there are other areas in this flyover state that are just great. So definitely give places like Marquette and Midland a second look.

So, where are the best places to retire in Michigan? Keep reading.

Why did Midland take the top spot? And where are Detroit and Grand Rapids?

When you choose to live in one of Michigan's best places to retire, you are choosing to live where your dollar will go the furthest, where your safety is a priority, and where you will have the most fun.

So, where is the best place to retire in Michigan? According to the latest data, Midland is the best place to retire in MIchigan for 2020.

To see how your favorite places in Michigan compared, take a look at the list below; and if you don't see it there, head to the bottom.

For more Michigan state reading:

The 10 Best Places To Retire In Michigan For 2020

Midland, MI

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 41,963
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Rent: $754
Distance to Closest Airport: 9 miles
More on Midland: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Midland is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan in the Tri-Cities region of Central Michigan. It is the county seat of Midland County. The city's population was 41,863 as of the 2010 census. It is the principal city of the Midland Micropolitan Statistical Area, part of the larger Saginaw-Midland-Bay City Combined Statistical Area. In 2010, Midland was named the no. 4 Best Small City to raise a family in by Forbes magazine.

New Baltimore, MI

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 12,365
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Rent: $720
Distance to Closest Airport: 18 miles
More on New Baltimore: Real Estate | Data | Photos

New Baltimore is a city and a historic, coastal resort community in Macomb County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 12,084 at the 2010 census. New Baltimore is in Metropolitan Detroit.

Rochester, MI

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 13,130
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Rent: $1,002
Distance to Closest Airport: 11 miles
More on Rochester: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Rochester is a city on the north side of the Detroit Metropolitan Area, in Oakland County, in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 12,711 at the 2010 census.

Clawson, MI

Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 12,029
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Rent: $858
Distance to Closest Airport: 13 miles
More on Clawson: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Clawson is a city in Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan. It is part of the Detroit metropolitan area. At the 2010 census, its population was 11,825.

Trenton, MI

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 18,368
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Rent: $746
Distance to Closest Airport: 37 miles
More on Trenton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Trenton is a small city in Wayne County in the southeast portion of the U.S. state of Michigan. At the 2010 census, the city population was 18,853. The city is part of Downriver, a collection of mostly blue-collar communities south of Detroit on the west bank of the Detroit River. Trenton is known for its waterfront and growing boating community.

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 14,638
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 4)
Median Rent: $755
Distance to Closest Airport: 22 miles
More on Fraser: Real Estate | Data

Fraser is a city in Macomb County of the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 14,480 at the 2010 census. The city is part of the Metro Detroit region.

Wixom, MI

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 13,870
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Median Rent: $713
Distance to Closest Airport: 13 miles
More on Wixom: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Wixom is a city that lies in the borders of northwest Novi and southwest Commerce Township in Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 13,498 at the 2010 census. The city was home to the former Wixom Assembly Plant, which produced the Lincoln LS, the Ford Thunderbird, the Ford GT, and the Lincoln Town Car. The plant closed its doors on May 31, 2007.

South Lyon, MI

Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 11,786
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 2)
Median Rent: $970
Distance to Closest Airport: 20 miles
More on South Lyon: Real Estate | Data | Photos

South Lyon is a city in Southwestern Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan, in Metro Detroit. The population was 11,327 at the 2010 census. The city is part of the South Lyon-Howell-Brighton Urban Area, which had a population of 106,139 according to the 2000 census. South Lyon is located in Oakland County's Lyon Township, near the Livingston County and Washtenaw County lines. The city is 19 miles north of Ann Arbor, 45 miles west of Detroit and 58 miles east of Lansing.

Birmingham, MI

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 21,066
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Median Rent: $1,481
Distance to Closest Airport: 10 miles
More on Birmingham: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Birmingham is a city on the north side of Metro Detroit in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2010 census, the population was 20,103.

Alpena, MI

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 10,086
Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 4)
Median Rent: $591
Distance to Closest Airport: 110 miles
More on Alpena: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Alpena is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan and the county seat of Alpena County. It is considered to be part of northern Michigan. The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary is located in the city. The population was 10,483 at the 2010 census. The population swells with a large number of visitors in the summer.

How We Determined The Best Places To Retire In the Wolverine State for 2020

To create our list of the best places in Michigan to retire, we first used Census data to find all places in the Wolverine State -- 692 cities and towns.

We then narrowed it down to places with at least 10,000 people that weren't townships. This left us with 88 places from across the state.

For these 88, we looked at the following criteria taken from the Census, the FBI's Crime Report, National Weather Service, and OpenFlights:

  • Low cost of living as measured by rent
  • Low crime
  • Things to do (Museums, Colleges, and Libraries in town)
  • Nice weather
  • Distance to the closest international airport
  • Other retirees (High median age)

We then ranked each of these places for each criteria from one to 88, with the lowest number being the best.

Finally, we took the average rank across these criteria. The place, in this case Midland, with the lowest average rank was crowned the best of the best, a place for you to start your second careers. You can download the data here.

Maybe You're Not Ready To Retire In Michigan Yet...

So there you have it, the best place to retire in Michigan goes to Midland.

If you're not ready to hang up your office apparel yet, then these places might be up your alley:

  1. Muskegon Heights
  2. Lincoln Park
  3. Inkster

For more Michigan reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places To Retire In Michigan?

Rank City Population Median Rent
1 Midland 41,963 $754
2 New Baltimore 12,365 $720
3 Rochester 13,130 $1,002
4 Clawson 12,029 $858
5 Trenton 18,368 $746
6 Fraser 14,638 $755
7 Wixom 13,870 $713
8 South Lyon 11,786 $970
9 Birmingham 21,066 $1,481
10 Alpena 10,086 $591

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.