Small town

When it comes to picking a city to settle down in and buy or rent a place to live, affordability is a key factor. I don’t think many people go into life saying, “I want to find the most expensive city to live in and make that my home.”

Smaller towns have often been considered more affordable than their larger counterparts. But, some small cities are much more affordable than others. There are obviously many factors that go into whether a city has low housing prices, a low cost of living and general good affordability rate, and that varies greatly from town to town.

GreatLakesEcho.org recently published an article looking at the affordability of small towns throughout Michigan. The publication analyzed date from a recent WalletHub study about affordable small cities and dug deeper to find Michigan’s most affordable spots.

“The study based affordability on median household income, cost of living, homeownership rate, housing costs and the number of households in which housing was a financial burden. Housing value and homeownership were large parts of what made a city affordable or not,” the publication states. As it turns out, there’s quite a big discrepancy. For example, GreatLakesEcho.org points out, “Southfield’s median home value is about $10,000 cheaper than Holt. The median price of a house in Holt from 2015 to 2019 was $162,500 while in Southfield it was $155,700, according to the US Census Bureau.”

So, what are the most affordable small cities in Michigan? Read on for the top five most and least affordable cities in the state. I’m familiar with most of these, and it’s interesting to know they’re such a steal when it comes to housing costs, the cost of living and median household income. Find the full study here.

  • Top 5 Most Affordable Michigan Small Cities

    GreatLakesEcho.org named the top five most affordable Michigan small cities in this recent article, as well as the least affordable. Check out the full list here!

  • 5. Rochester Hills

    Rochester Hills, MI

    Established in 1984, the City of Rochester Hills is a prosperous community offering residents and businesses superior services. Voted one of the top places to live by several sources including CNNMoney magazine, Rochester Hills is committed to sustaining its position among the nation's preeminent places to live, work and raise a family.

  • 4. Holt

    Holt

    The Holt area has eight parks, which include a beachfront swimming area, a sledding hill, hiking and biking trails available for year round activitiy.Greater Lansing is Michigan's capital region with one-of-a-kind [...]

  • 3. Allen Park

    Welcome to Allen Park, MI

    Located in the heart of Wayne County, Allen Park is an appealing city that offers the perfect blend of small-town charm and big-city convenience. Whether you're here for a short visit or planning to make this your home, we're delighted to have you here.

  • 2. Troy

    Welcome to City of Troy, Michigan

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  • 1. Livonia

    Livonia, MI | Official Website

    The City of Livonia home page.

  • Top 5 Most Expensive Michigan Small Cities

    And now, these are the least affordable Michigan cities, based on the same study. These are pricey!

  • 5. East Lansing

    East Lansing, MI - Official Website | Official Website

    Create a Website Account - Manage notification subscriptions, save form progress and more.

  • 4. Pontiac

    Welcome to Pontiac, MI

    General Employees Retirement System Board of Trustees

  • 3. Flint

    Home - City of Flint

    Flint was founded as a village by fur trader Jacob Smith in 1819 and became a major lumbering area on the historic Saginaw Trail during the 19th century. From the late 19th century to the mid 20th century, the city was a leading manufacturer of carriages...

  • 2. Saginaw

    Saginaw, MI | Official Website

    Take a stroll around the island and enjoy a slice of lush, natural beauty and wildlife in the heart of the City. Click the image to learn more about Ojibway Island.

  • 1. Southfield

    Home | City of Southfield

    The City of Southfield strives to help all businesses succeed! The Southfield Business Development team offers many convenient online resources to provide entrepreneurs and businesses access to information about the local economy, customers and competition to help make smarter, faster and better business decisions.

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