Some of you might be asking yourself, at this very moment: is Michigan a good place?
The answer is unequivocally yes… if you know where to locate the best places to live in Michigan.
Lucky for you, we’re here to help you identify the best counties to live in the Wolverine State based on the most recently available data from the Census. And this isn’t our first rodeo — we’ve been helping people find the best places to live in America for years.
So, the question becomes, if you wanted to relocate to the best part of Michigan, where would you go? To answer that we looked at crime, cost of living, and demographic data for all 83 counties in the state.
After the analytic dust settled, we identified the 10 best counties to live in Wolverine State for 2022.
The 10 Best Counties To Live In Michigan For 2022
Leelanau County is the county to be when it comes to living the good life in Michigan. And you might want to avoid Oscoda County if you can — at least according to the data.
So if you’re thinking of making the move Michigan, we’ve got you covered. Keep on reading for a detailed methodology.
Or, check out the best places to live in Michigan and the cheapest places to live in Michigan.
The Best Counties To Live In Michigan For 2022
1. Leelanau County
Biggest Place: Traverse City
Median Income: $67,330.0 (7th best)
Median Home Price: $285,700.0 (best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% (12th best)
More on Leelanau County: Photos | Data
2. Ottawa County
Biggest Place: Holland
Median Income: $72,418.0 (5th best)
Median Home Price: $209,400.0 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (8th best)
More on Ottawa County: Photos | Data
3. Livingston County
Biggest Place: Fenton
Median Income: $84,274.0 (best)
Median Home Price: $256,100.0 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% (5th best)
More on Livingston County: Photos | Data
4. Midland County
Biggest Place: Midland
Median Income: $64,078.0 (16th best)
Median Home Price: $145,900.0 (27th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.5% (15th best)
More on Midland County: Photos | Data
5. Grand Traverse County
Biggest Place: Traverse City
Median Income: $66,457.0 (8th best)
Median Home Price: $225,400.0 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% (3rd best)
More on Grand Traverse County: Photos | Data
6. Emmet County
Biggest Place: Petoskey
Median Income: $55,947.0 (26th best)
Median Home Price: $206,900.0 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (7th best)
More on Emmet County: Photos | Data
7. Antrim County
Biggest Place: Mancelona
Median Income: $57,256.0 (23rd best)
Median Home Price: $161,700.0 (19th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (14th best)
More on Antrim County: Data
8. Eaton County
Biggest Place: Lansing
Median Income: $67,440.0 (6th best)
Median Home Price: $160,000.0 (20th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.6% (20th best)
More on Eaton County: Photos | Data
9. Dickinson County
Biggest Place: Iron Mountain
Median Income: $51,704.0 (38th best)
Median Home Price: $109,300.0 (65th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% (4th best)
More on Dickinson County: Photos | Data
10. Clinton County
Biggest Place: Lansing
Median Income: $72,490.0 (4th best)
Median Home Price: $185,500.0 (10th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% (2nd best)
More on Clinton County: Photos | Data
Methodology: How do you determine which Michigan county is the best?
To give you the best county in Michigan, we have to look at a handful of metrics that signal the quality of a place. To do that, we need to make some assumptions about what’s a “best county” and what isn’t. And, for reference, we are trying to make the kind of argument you’d make at a bar using facts, don’t take this analysis to court.
With that in mind, we went to two of the best sources of data on the internet; the American Community Survey data and FBI Crime data for the most recent time period.
We paid particular attention to:
- Violent Crime Rates
- Property Crime Rates
- Median Home Values
- Median Income
- Unemployment Rates
- Adult Education Levels
- Health Insurance Coverage
- Poverty Rates
We then ranked each county in Michigan across each of the criteria from one to 83, with one being the best.
Taking the average rank across all criteria, we created a quality of life score with the county posting the lowest overall score being the “Best County To Live In Michigan”.
The result is some of the safest, quiet, and best counties to raise a family in the Wolverine State.
Read on to see why Leelanau County is the best county, while Oscoda County is probably in contention for being the worst county in Michigan.
Summary: The Best Counties In Michigan To Call Home For 2018
It turns out living in Michigan can vary from one part of the state to the next — who woulda thought?
But now you the know the really good parts and the parts to avoid and that’s why you came here to learn at the end of the day. And for that, you are welcome.
Here’s a look at the worst counties in Michigan according to the data:
- Oscoda County
- Lake County
- Montmorency County
For more Michigan reading, check out:
- Best Counties To Live In Michigan
- Best Places To Raise A Family In Michigan
- Safest Places In Michigan
- Best Places To Retire In Michigan