Thinking about relocating to one of West Michigan’s thriving communities? This would not be a bad time to do so, as the real estate market, the job market, and the overall economy are showing steady growth year over year. Even though its communities are rapidly growing, the cost of living in West Michigan remains affordable, and homes will generally retain if not grow in value.
There are many different types of homes available in many different communities, ranging all the way from starter homes to large lakefront properties. If you like the hustle and bustle of a medium-sized city, visit Grand Rapids or Kalamazoo. If you’re addicted to the beach during the summer, we recommend looking into Holland, Saugatuck, or Douglass. If hunting, fishing, or quiet walks through the woods are more your thing, check out Muskegon and Ludington. If you can’t decide, there are dozens of communities between these in quiet rural areas.
Below, you can read a little bit more about some of the bigger cities in West Michigan and what makes them unique.
Grand Rapids, MI
As the largest city in West Michigan, Grand Rapids acts as an economic and cultural hub for the surrounding areas. With events like The Festival of the Arts and ArtPrize, plus numerous museums, concert halls, and scores of restaurants and craft breweries, Grand Rapids is an excellent place to visit and an even better place to live. Read more here.
As the second-largest city in West Michigan, Kalamazoo features many different neighborhoods to call home and attractions for both residents and tourists alike. Kalamazoo is home to the wildly-popular Bell’s Brewing Company, makers of the go-to summer beer Oberon, and you can sample their craft beer at the Eccentric Cafe. While downtown you can also visit the sprawling farmers market for locally-grown produce. Kalamazoo also boasts an exciting nightlife. You can catch a live show at one of the many theaters, or watch a movie while sipping your favorite beer at the Alamo Drafthouse.
Located right on the Lake Michigan waterfront, Holland is perhaps best-known for their annual Tulip Time Festival in the spring, but the town has plenty more to offer its residents and visitors. Holland features some fantastic window shopping, beautiful beaches, excellent food, drink, and sweets, and a renowned farmer’s market. Holland is one of the best places in Michigan to raise a family and has a growing job market.
Grand Haven & Spring Lake, MI
These two charming little towns sit right where the Grand River meets Lake Michigan. Both are very attractive places to live and work, with many waterfront homes and an excellent school system. Spring Lake features quiet neighborhoods and a charming shopping center while being just a short drive away from the Grand Haven strip. There’s plenty to do in Grand Haven, especially in the summer. You can grab a bite at the Kirby House, do some window shopping, and take a stroll on the beach and down the pier, all without any driving between. Grand Haven is also famous for their annual Coast Guard Festival.
Situated a short drive north of Grand Haven, Muskegon is another popular travel destination on the West Michigan Lakeshore due to its multitude of parks, its white-sandy beaches, shopping centers, and proximity to an amusement & water park.
Why Move to Michigan?
If you’re thinking about relocating to Michigan, there are few better places to live, work, or raise a family. There are steady real estate and job markets in major cities like Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Lansing, and Detroit – which is on the mend and become a paradise for young homebuyers and investors alike.
Michigan is dotted with charming small towns and beautiful scenery to be enjoyed no matter the season. In the spring, visiting Holland, MI for their tulip festival is a must. During the summer months, chances are you can get to a beach in under an hour. That way, you can spend the day swimming in one of Michigan’s “Freshwater Seas,” and not in the car. Although, long drives aren’t so bad here either, with rolling scenery and wooded highways that are especially beautiful in the fall.
In the winter, Michiganders take their holiday decorating very seriously, so expect brilliant displays of colored lights above sparkling snow. If you’re looking for more reasons to move to Michigan, or even just to plan your visit, check out Michigan.org