Finding the most affordable places to live in Michigan is challenging even if you're a native. State-wide, Michigan has a median home value of $228,100. When you add in maintenance costs and property taxes, it can be difficult for many to buy and own a home. Because of that, we scoured the data to find the most affordable cities in Michigan, looking at median home prices, cost of living, and other factors to find your best options.
Looking for the most affordable places in Michigan is a start, but you'll save even more money by working with a great agent. The top Michigan real estate agents know the local market and where to find pockets of more affordable homes. They can also help negotiate a better price when you do find your dream home.
Ready to buy? Clever is a free service that connects you with the best real estate agents in Michigan from top brokers, like Keller Williams and RE/MAX.
With a Clever agent, you'll get instant MLS alerts on affordable Michigan homes, on-demand showings, and an expert negotiator on your side. Even better? Eligible home buyers get a check for up to 0.5% of the purchase price back after closing!
Ready to learn more about the most affordable places in Michigan? These are our top picks.
1. Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor isn’t just one of the most affordable places to live, it’s also a clear favorite. The city is home to about 116,000 residents, a healthy economy, and an affordable housing market. The University of Michigan is located here, which is a driving force behind the city’s culture and economy. Many tech companies have sprouted in close proximity to the university, which is also a major research institution.
Home values have skyrocketed in recent years, jumping 8.7% since last year alone. The median home value is $382,700, but the town still remains one of the most affordable cities in Michigan. Being a large college town, there are tons of free festivals each year, along with activities and points of interest that add to the quality of life without spending a dime.
Midland’s green spaces, arts scene, and highly-rated education system are obvious reasons why people love living in Midland. The city is a mecca for sports lovers, including BMX, tennis, golf, hockey, and even curling. Major employers like the Dow Chemical Company are firmly rooted here and continually contribute to the community’s growth and quality of life.
The housing market lends to the city’s affordability. The median home value is just $140,000, nearly $80K below the national average. For comparison, Midlands median household income is $58,910, which is about $200 under the national median, so your money definitely goes further here.
Finding a home to buy here is easier with a local agent! With Clever, you'll find a great Michigan realtor who can help with your home search.
This Dutch-rooted city in Michigan boasts the only authentic Dutch windmill in the country, but that’s not its biggest draw. The city’s waterfront makes it a prime destination for watersports enthusiasts, fishermen, and beachgoers, along with tourists who want to see the iconic “Big Red” lighthouse. The scenery alone is enough of a magnet to attract newcomers to the area.
The median home value in Holland is $197,400, which is impressive given its location on Lake Michigan. Holland is currently experiencing a seller’s market, which can result in higher selling prices for homes, but values are still well below the national average.
Niche.com rated Okemos as the #1 best place to live in Michigan for 2019, and it’s easy to see why. This little city hosts about 22,000 residents and is an ideal place to live for families with young kids, thanks to a top-notch school system. The area also caters to families and their kids in the form of walking trails, safe parks, nature center, fishing ponds, and other recreational activities.
While the median home value is about $250,000, the money you spend gives you a lot of house. It’s not uncommon to shell out this much for a sizeable mansion with land, so there’s plenty of value built into the market.
Many people are surprised to learn that Lansing, no Detroit, is the capital of Michigan. But what’s even more surprising is the affordable housing market in the capital city. The median home value is just $87,600, making it one of the most affordable big cities in the country.
And because the city is home to multiple government buildings, colleges and universities, and automotive manufacturing, the economy remains healthy and projects a positive outlook for future home values.
How to find affordable homes in Michigan
Whether you want to live in a bustling Michigan metro area or a tranquil small town, there's plenty to love in Michigan. Working with a local real estate agent is the best way to find the most affordable places to live in Michigan.
Ready to start house hunting? Clever is a free service that can match you with the best realtors in Michigan. And, when you buy with a Clever partner agent, you could get 0.5% of your purchase price back as a check after closing. On a $300,000 home, that's an extra $1,500 back in your pocket. That's real money!