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Michigan: A Hidden Gem

Michigan’s Comeback Is Happening


I’ve lived in Michigan my whole life. I’ve lived through the very difficult and challenging times Michigan has had economically- almost a one-state depression. To be honest, I never thought a time like this would occur, that I would be able to write an article like this, seeing Michigan’s horizon so bright. I am excited when I look at the bright horizon of Michigan economic future. There were so many charming positives that were being overshadowed by the economic strains that it was hard to fully appreciate what this great state has to offer.

Michigan's history is marked by great highs and deep lows, particularly in the eastern part of the state. This great state can be likened to a valiant knight of yesteryear, who has endured countless challenges but remains steadfast. Though he may have been knocked down, he has always risen to his feet, ready to continue the battle.

I see six highly compelling factors why Michigan is poised for incredible growth and development in the upcoming decades. An increasing number of individuals have already relocated to the area, and I anticipate a significant influx of newcomers in the future.


Fresh Water

Michigan is a wonderful place to call home, offering a multitude of benefits that make it truly special. From the stunning beauty of its shoreline to the abundance of clean drinking water, Michigan is a place that is rich in natural resources. These resources are put to good use, with the fertile farmland supporting a thriving agricultural industry and the vast bodies of water providing opportunities for recreational activities like fishing and boating. Additionally, one of the greatest advantages of living in Michigan is the lack of plastic waste and the absence of the massive trash islands floating in the ocean that are becoming so common in other parts of the world. Whether you enjoy ice fishing in the winter or walleye fishing in the summer, there's always something to do on the water in Michigan. Perhaps one of the most surprising things about the Great Lakes is the sheer size of these fresh bodies of water, which many people simply don't understand. When you take friends out on the bay and they think they're on the ocean, it truly highlights the majesty of this beautiful state.

Michigan is truly blessed with its vast water resources, including the Great Lakes, and in addition, the state also sets aside 4.6 million acres of state land for public use, providing ample opportunities for outdoor recreation. The day when the true worth of this resource will be fully realized is rapidly approaching. With the western states grappling with a severe and prolonged drought, wells are running dry and groundwater levels are plummeting alarmingly. Meanwhile, the coastal waters that once lured people to the shores are now becoming a growing threat, with ocean water impacting freshwater aquifers in Florida, increased ocean levels destroying building foundations, and insurance companies fleeing from many areas due to increased insurance claims.

In contrast, the Great Lakes in Michigan offer a much more secure and stable water source, with levels that provide safer shorelines. This makes Michigan an even more desirable place to live, and this resource will be one of the key drivers of growth and prosperity in the coming decades.


Rising Temperatures

Regardless of your beliefs on global warming, it's undeniable that weather patterns are shifting and Michigan is poised to be one of the biggest beneficiaries. Especially during the summer, Michigan truly shines as an amazing place to be, with the northwest side being particularly magical. As the summer season continues to grow longer year after year, more and more people are discovering the beauty of this great state. From the bustling ports filled with large boats and yachts to charming destinations like Traverse City and Mackinac Island, Michigan has so much to offer.

Within the not-so-distant future, the changing weather patterns will also have a positive impact on agriculture, with crop seasons increasing, increasing the variety of crops, and driving land values higher. The future looks bright for Michigan, with temperature reports predicting weather similar to Tennessee in just 20 years.


Cost of Living

The median home value in Michigan is $214,710, which is significantly lower than the national median home value of $310,683. Lower housing costs and the relatively lower cost of living make Michigan an attractive place for home buyers. This allows residents of Michigan to enjoy a higher standard of living, as they will have more disposable income and additional purchasing power with their salaries. The recreational activities and the natural beauty of Michigan add to the quality of life and the work life balance that so many crave. Michigan is home to many energetic and growing cities which offer excellent employment opportunities and a higher quality of life.

Bay City, for example, is a hidden gem, a town that offers a fantastic, budget-friendly lifestyle. With a little bit of smart financial planning, you can live a comfortable life here. Unlike many places on the west coast, where even a $100,000 income can feel tight, Bay City offers a cost of living that allows people to stretch their dollar more than most. The housing costs, in particular, are a pleasant surprise for many, with prices that are incredibly low, especially for properties on the water. Furthermore, Bay City's proximity to an airport makes it an even more appealing location. The ease of travel provides residents with access to global destinations and opens up opportunities for business and leisure travel. This added convenience further enhances the town's overall appeal for those seeking a comfortable and affordable lifestyle and retirement, as Michigan is highly regarded as a top destination for retirees, as ranked by AARP.


Lack of Natural Disasters

When a storm approaches Michigan, in comparison to other regions of the country, we don’t worry about the safety of our real estate investments. We don't worry about our insurance being canceled or the cost being raised so high that we’re forced to sell. We also don't worry about fires destroying everything in their path or the pollution from the fire lasting for months. And we never have to worry about the beauty of our vacation destinations being ruined.

Michigan has a unique beauty, with seagulls, loons and other types of water life, freshwater that is a boater's dream for a boat life cycle and maintenance, sand beaches with breathtaking sunsets and sunrises, and fantastic hunting and recreational opportunities in Northern Michigan. While there may not be any palm trees, Michigan still has so much to offer.

The Great Lakes region is experiencing the effects of global warming faster than any other area in the U.S. This warming is welcomed by many, as it brings a longer summer season and a milder winter while increasing agricultural output. While it may not be as welcome in other parts of the world, people are moving to Michigan from other regions. The natural beauty and affordability make Michigan a great place to live and play.


Midwest Values

People from Michigan are known for their hardworking nature, which has been noticed by other regions in the country when they hire us. This strong work ethic is highly valued by companies looking for places to invest in and develop. With the recent trend of bringing manufacturing back to the US, Michigan's rich history of manufacturing, combined with its skilled and dedicated workforce, makes it a desirable location. Additionally, the cost of living in Michigan is also attractive to industries. The state has a strong desire to grow and surpass its former glory.

Midwesterners are generally friendly, kind, and have a strong sense of community and giving back. Michigan is a prime example of these qualities and the Midwestern way of life. While destinations such as Grand Rapids and Holland may be at the forefront of this friendly atmosphere, it is not limited to just those two cities. My experiences in Bay City have also shown me a strong sense of personal integrity, combined with hard work and a commitment to a balanced life.

Amid the current social and political tensions in the country, Michigan has managed to remain relatively neutral. Its focus on the well-being of its own state and citizens is appreciated in a country that is tired of the extreme views and conflicts. Although Michigan has experienced changes in political power, its overall balance has allowed for a stable and mature approach to governing that appeals to others.


Economic Strength

As Michigan moves forward into the future, the state's financial stability is solid with a fund balance of $9.2 billion. The government is taking steps to improve the economy by reducing state taxes from 4.25% to 4.05%, a move that doesn't occur often.

Michigan's infrastructure, including its roads, airports, freeway systems, and more, is equipped to handle a potential increase in population. With changes taking place in the manufacturing industry, the state is poised to reap the benefits. Repurposing existing buildings and constructing new ones will not only increase the tax base but also boost the construction industry, which is a major piston in the state's economic engine.

Gone are the days when the ups and downs of the automotive industry greatly impacted Michigan's economy. Over the years, the state's economy has become more diverse and stable, rebranding since the decline of the Big Three in the 1980s. This diversity makes Michigan better equipped to weather economic storms and look forward to a bright future.


Conclusion

While I have cherished my vacations around the country, my time in Michigan, especially at Higgins Lake, holds a special place in my heart. The memories created with my family and friends at the lake, whether it be on the pontoon boat, around the fire pit, playing golf, or at the beach, are truly priceless. The picture-covered walls of our cottage are a testament to the joy and love that we've shared in Michigan, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to experience it all. This realization reaffirms that sometimes the best memories can be made right at home, in the heart of Michigan.



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