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Average Cost Of Living In Michigan And Breakdown By City

Carey Chesney4-Minute Read
December 04, 2020

When you’re deciding where you should live, you may notice that Michigan is a great – and affordable – settling place.

Sand dunes leading into the Great Lakes, incredible wooded trails, vibrant urban centers and epic sunsets are hard to put a dollar value on, but there are a number of other categories we can monetize and review to show you why it might make financial sense to move to Michigan.

Cost Of Living Defined

To put it simply, cost of living is the amount of money needed to cover basic expenses such as housing, food and health care in a certain place and time period. Let’s summarize and explain the key factors that go into determining cost of living.

  • Housing: How expensive the average home costs, what most people pay for monthly rent, property taxes, etc.
  • Groceries: The average cost of a number of grocery staples (coffee, sugar, bread, potatoes, etc.).
  • Health: The average costs of health care services as well as the availability of those services.
  • Transportation: Access to affordable public and private transportation.

Average Cost Of Living In Michigan

Keep in mind that the cost of living index we’re discussing is based on a national average score of 100. The Great Lakes State has a pretty low cost of living overall, coming in at 89.6, which means the cost of living in Michigan is around 11% below the national average.

The Stats:

  • Median home price: $207,800
  • Median household income: $49,087
  • Groceries: 93.4 cost of living index score
  • Health: 86 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 115.1 cost of living index score

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Annual Cost Of Living In Michigan By City

Now that you have a snapshot of the state, let’s take a closer look at some of the top real estate cities in Michigan to give you an overview of the median income, how much you’ll need to buy a house and much more.

Ann Arbor

Home to the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor is one of Michigan’s most desirable cities. In fact, it’s often mentioned on lists compiling the best places to live in the country.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 117.5
  • Median home price: $418,300
  • Median income: $56,835
  • Groceries: 102.6 cost of living index score
  • Health: 86 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 100.1 cost of living index score

Ann Arbor Real Estate Listings

Ann Arbor Trend Report

Detroit

The largest city in Michigan sits on the Detroit River and represents a buzzing metropolis full of action. Known for its rich musical and automotive history, Detroit is often referred to as The Motor City or Motown.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 87.6
  • Median home price: $68,600
  • Median income: $26,095
  • Groceries: 89 cost of living index score
  • Health: 84.3 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 178.3 cost of living index score

Detroit Real Estate Listings

Detroit Trend Report

West Bloomfield

Located in southeast Michigan, West Bloomfield is sometimes referred to as the “lake township of Oakland County” due to its abundance of small and medium-sized lakes.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 116.5
  • Median home price: $369,900
  • Median income: $90,317
  • Groceries: 100.5 cost of living index score
  • Health: 81.4 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 125 cost of living index score

West Bloomfield Real Estate Listings

West Bloomfield Trend Report

Grand Rapids

The second-largest city in Michigan, Grand Rapids is located in the west central part of the state, roughly 30 miles east of Lake Michigan.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 87.8
  • Median home Price: $228,000
  • Median Income: $39,913
  • Groceries: 95.2 cost of living index score
  • Health: 83.4 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 95.1 cost of living index score

Grand Rapids Real Estate Listings

Grand Rapids Trend Report

Royal Oak

Developed as a suburb of Detroit in the early 20th century following Detroit's booming growth in the auto industry, Royal Oak is often referred to as “the city of trees.”

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 104.6
  • Median home price: $284,700
  • Median income: $64,873
  • Groceries: 98.4 cost of living index score
  • Health: 81.4 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 113.9 cost of living index score

Royal Oak Real Estate Listings

Royal Oak Trend Report

Holland

Situated near the eastern shore of Lake Michigan on Lake Macatawa, tulips and sandy beaches contribute to Holland’s small-town charm.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 90.6
  • Median home price: $263,400
  • Median income: $44,619
  • Groceries: 95.6 cost of living index score
  • Health: 87.1 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 87.8 cost of living index score

Holland Real Estate Listings

Holland Trend Report

Dearborn

Considered part of the Detroit metropolitan area, Dearborn is the eighth-largest city in the state.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 94.6
  • Median home price: $184,400
  • Median Income: $46,776
  • Groceries: 95.1 cost of living index score
  • Health: 84.3 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 149.7 cost of living index score

Dearborn Real Estate Listings

Dearborn Trend Report

Canton

Known as the Sweet Corn Capitol of Michigan, Canton is nestled equidistant between Detroit and Ann Arbor.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 108.1
  • Median home price: $331,300
  • Median income: $82,243
  • Groceries: 99.2 cost of living index score
  • Health: 84.3 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 125.8 cost of living index score

Canton Real Estate Listings

Canton Trend Report

Lansing

Home to the state capitol, Lansing is situated on the banks of Michigan’s Grand River.

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 76.5
  • Median home price: $125,300
  • Median income: $35,675
  • Groceries: 91.1 cost of living index score
  • Health: 83.6 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 94.8 cost of living index score

Lansing Real Estate Listings

Lansing Trend Report

Sterling Heights

With a dense suburban feel, Sterling Heights is the second largest suburb in Metro Detroit and the fourth-largest city in Michigan. 

The Stats:

  • Overall cost of living score: 101.4
  • Median home price: $262,600
  • Median income: $58,800
  • Groceries: 96.9 cost of living index score
  • Health: 82.1 cost of living index score
  • Transportation: 132.3 cost of living index score 

Sterling Heights Real Estate Listings 

Sterling Heights Trend Report

The Bottom Line

To sum it up, the Great Lakes State is a great place to live when it comes to cost of living. We can see why the overall population is going up year after year in each city. Looking to relocate to Michigan? You can start your search by working with a Rocket HomesSM Verified Partner Agent today.

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Carey Chesney

Carey Chesney brings a wealth of residential and commercial real estate experience to readers as a Realtor® and as a former Marketing Executive in the fields of Health Care, Finance and Wellness. Carey is based in Ann Arbor and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he majored in English, and Eastern Michigan University, where he recieved his Masters in Integrated Marketing & Communications.