Michigan is second only to Texas in number of affordable cities in which to retire. Worried about your safety? Michigan has a lower average crime rate than most of the country. Need quality health care? Michigan has many of the top rated facilities in the nation. College towns have traditionally proven to be affordable places to retire. They are surrounded by cultural activities. They are also recession proof. Here are two Michigan college towns that are affordable meccas for seniors to consider when retiring.
Cheap Places to Retire in Michigan: Holland
Holland, Michigan is located on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan on Lake Macatawa. Holland had a population of 32,030 in 2007. Touting itself as “the All-American city with the Dutch accent,” Holland was named one of the top five places to retire by CNN Money. In 2010, the Gallup Well-Being Index named Holland the second happiest place to live in America after Boulder, Colorado.
Holland is home to Hope College, Western Theological Seminary, Western Michigan University (branch), Grand Valley State University (branch) and Davenport University. Holland, Michigan is alive with culture. The Holland Tulip Festival is held every May. The Holland Museum, Cappon House Museum and Settlers House Museum are open year round. The Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival is held every year celebrating the Latino culture in Holland. The Holland Harbor Lighthouse, DeZwaan 250-year old Dutch windmill and H.J Heinz Company (the world’s largest pickle factory) are also places of interest. For those seeking outdoor pursuits, Holland has many green spaces including Holland State Park, Tunnel Park and Riley Trails.
Holland enjoys four distinct seasons and changing temperatures throughout the year. The warmest month is July with average high temperatures in the mid 70’s. The coldest month is January with average low temperatures around 25 degrees. There are usually a number of days each year below zero and above 90 degrees. Holland receives an average of 31″ of rainfall and 75″ of snowfall each year. There are a high percentage of sunny days in spring, summer and autumn.
In the winter, residents can enjoy Holland’s downtown shopping district without all the snow and ice thanks to the city’s snowmelt system on the streets and sidewalks. Summer in Holland brings the return of the farmers market, free concerts in Kollen Park, downtown Street Performers, and the Summer Repertory Theatre at Hope College. Need to relax a bit? Holland has a beach located on Lake Michigan, lake cruises, outdoor dining and Windmill Island.
The average home price of $160,000, low real estate taxes and relatively low 3.9% income and 6% sales taxes make Holland a financially sound choice for seniors. Holland also has many health care options including Holland Hospital.
Cheap Places to Retire in Michigan: Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor, Michigan is located 35 miles west of Detroit and has a population of 114,386. Approximately 36,892 of those are college students. Since Ann Arbor is so close to Detroit there is an airport and other amenities of the big city close by. Ann Arbor is home to the University of Michigan, Concordia University (branch), University of Phoenix (branch), Cleary University, Thomas M. Cooley Law School (branch) and Washtenaw Community College.
Ann Arbor is a college town that caters to its retirees as well as its young people. Seniors receive free bus fares and discounted rates on taxi rides. Ann Arbor is full of cultural activities for seniors. Art fairs, concerts, sporting events, lectures, museums, enrichment courses and other attractions usually can be attended for free. Ann Arbor has excellent health care choices for seniors including the University of Michigan Medical Center, University Hospital, C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, Women’s Hospital, Department of Veterans Affairs medical facility and nearby Saint Joseph Mercy Hospital.
Ann Arbor enjoys four distinct seasons and changing temperatures throughout the year. July is the warmest month with average high temperatures in the low 80’s. The coldest month is January with average low temperatures at 16 degrees. The city receives about 35″ of total precipitation per year.
The average home price in Ann Arbor is $230,000. Much of the economy of the city is tied to the University of Michigan which employs about 30,000. The University flourishes even in times of economic hardship. Because of this, Ann Arbor’s economy is considered relatively recession proof.
U.S. News & World Report
Wikipedia: Holland, Michigan
Wikipedia: Ann Arbor, Michigan