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Modern House


DON’T Move To Brighton Michigan! Yet..

Over the last couple years I have done several videos about Brighton, and it’s time to do an update, because a lot has changed. If you’re considering a move to Brighton Michigan, I suggest you wait and hear what I have to tell you.

As I mentioned, Brighton has been making quite a bit of changes over the years, and if you’re considering a move there, it would be beneficial for you to hear these things to make the most informed decision possible. Think of this as a new and improved guide and everything you need to know. Be sure to stick around until the end because your wallet will thank you I promise.

For those of you that don’t know, Brighton, Michigan is located in Southeast Michigan in Livingston county.

brighton Michigan

It’s pretty much centralized between Detroit, Ann Arbor and Lansing, which makes any commute a relatively easy one, especially with the On and off ramps of US-23 and I-96 hugging the city. As someone who has spent nearly 25+ years in this fine city, There’s a wonderful downtown being reconstructed which I’ll talk about later, the public schools are among the best in the entire state, and the city's atmosphere gives off a modern, but historic feel that caters to so many current and future residents out here. There’s everything from vibrant on-trend shops, to parades, upscale dining and boutiques, to having a slice of natural beauty with some peace and quiet. I have helped several of my clients move to this fine city, and it’s truly a one of a kind spot with a never ending list of pros and a miniscule amount of cons.


As far as things to do and what Brighton is known for, the list can go on and on, so I'll be sure to link a few resources in the description in case I miss a few. First and foremost, there’s the downtown area that surrounds the mill pond, where there’s easy access and walkability to all of the locally owned businesses, the imagination station which is a huge wooden playground for people to play on near the mill pond, there’s a theater next to the pond and bridges to cross. Places that pique some interest are lu and carls, the bar on the corner of main street, brighton bar and grill, brewery becker, Jack’s custard and cakes, my friends at Brighton coffee house and theater (watch my brighton coffee places video if you haven't), Bourbon’s, Lynn’s on first for breakfast, captains on main, casa tequila, the reserve steakhouse. I mean I could name every restaurant on the strip, but I want your imagination to run wild instead.  Then of course, we have Mount brighton, the ski and snowboard hill that brings a lot of out of towners this way, because let’s face it, there’s not a lot of ski hill options in southeast Michigan besides Alpine Valley in White Lake. There’s also kensington valley ice house where I have played hockey my whole life and still continue to, as well as some nearby golf courses, metro parks, Green Oak village place, the lakes, campgrounds and so much more. 

So what’s new and happening in Brighton? Well, if you haven’t been around lately, It’s changed it’s name to orange barrel city. Kidding of course, but they might as well, with all the construction happening downtown.

downtown brighton michigan

Just 3 weeks ago, main street opened up after being closed for a year or so to make some significant infrastructure improvements. It was a hard time for local businesses, some businesses have had to shut their doors, but other business owners have pulled through and are thrilled to see it back open. Brighton has been an area that has been growing at an extraordinary rate. This city is my hometown, and the growth has been insane to see, so you would think the city of Brighton would expand, might the area more traffic friendly, but they did the exact opposite. On Main street, they actually made the streets a little tighter (in hopes to slow traffic), made the sidewalks wider, and placed more lights to create a better experience for Brighton’s residents.

The goal was to create more foot traffic, and that’s exactly what they did. What else is new? Well, in Green Oak twp off of US-23 is the green oak village place. Over the years there’s been an extreme amount of turnover, and i’d assume it’s because the leases are ungodly high there. As of the beginning of the month, three new tenants have hopped in Green oak, which is a Dollar tree (extremely popular here in Michigan to say the least), X-golf (an indoor golf simulator), and a patient center family medicine practice. With these new tenants, I’d say it would bring in a good chunk of people, especially x-golf, those simulators are few and far between, and with winters here, outside play is a no-go. 

As far as projects in the works, there’s still a few more buttons to tie up in downtown, but as of upcoming projects, MDOT or Michigan department of Transportation met late last month to over a new plan to reconstruct the i-96 interchange, which has been one of the larger headaches for Brighton residents for getting on an offer the interstate.

brighton Michigan i-96 project

It wouldn’t begin until late 2024, and wouldn’t be complete until 2027, so that may be a re-routed disaster for a little while, but long term, it will be okay.

brighton michigan

Now, Let’s talk about how important location is in and around Brighton and why it matters for your wallet. If we pull up a good ole trusty map, by the way, I made this drawing by hand isn’t it pretty? I’m sorry for those of you that are listening, this is a work of art. As you can see, we have the city of Brighton in red, Genoa twp in orange, Brighton twp in green, hamburg and hamburg twp in yellow and green oak twp in blue. All these areas have Brighton addresses within them, so it’s important to think about when it comes to property taxes, but also to get a little more educated about Brighton and its surroundings. And for those of you that are like what in the city, township nonsense is going on here, I’ll link a video in the description that touches on what’s happening there. 

In all my videos pertaining to Brighton, I say Brighton is this, Brighton is that, well all these areas can take advantage of everything this wonderful city offers while not being all that far away, I mean you’re in Brighton’s backyard really. With that being said, I want to tackle all these different prices and tell you what that means for property taxes.

Brighton michigan home prices

Looking at this graph of the city of Brighton, it shows the average sale price over the last 3 years, which was a 6.5% increase year over year coming in at just over $355,000. In a tax perspective, we’ll look at the Michigan property tax calculator, punch in $177,500 for section #1 which is half of the average sale price in the city and go through the prompts of county, city, and school district to find that a $355,000 home would have an estimated tax amount of over $7,300 as a primary residence at a millage rate of 41.42 and over $10,500 for a non-primary residence home with a village rate of 59.6.

Brighton michigan home prices

If we take a look at this chart for the average sale price of the 4 townships in the first map I showed, blue being genoa twp, green being green oak twp, yellow being hamburg twp, and red being brighton twp, we can see the progression over the last 3 years and see the increase in prices year over year while green oak twp actually dropped 2.5%. Next, I’m going to take the 50% of each of these sale prices to get the amount for prompt one on the tax calculator and go through each briefly to show the differences and how much more or less you could be paying being just a few short miles down the road based on the average sale price for the area. I know this stuff isn’t incredibly exciting, but it’s worth looking more into, especially with where inflation is. 

Keep in mind that the millage rate calculator is based on 2022 millage rates, so they could’ve fluctuated a couple points based on the services they implemented or removed. 


Starting with Genoa twp, we have the amount for $229,012 or half the average sale price, same county, city, and school district. It pumps out an estimate for $5,581 with a millage rate of 24.37 and a tax amount of over $9,700 and a millage rate of 42.55 for non homestead residences.


Next we have green oak twp with an estimated tax amount of $6,068 and a millage rate of 28.16 and a non homestead tax amount of over $9,900 and a millage rate of 46.34.


Next we have hamburg twp with an estimated tax amount of $5,986 with a millage rate of 27.16, and a non homestead tax amount of $9,992 with a millage rate of 45.34.


Lastly we have brighton twp, with an estimated tax amount of $5,838 and a millage rate of 24.46, and anon homestead tax amount of $10,176 and a millage rate of 42.64.

As you can see, the taxes are relatively close to one another but can definitely make a huge difference depending on the price of the home you decide to go with, so do yourself a favor and consider that before you commit to an area. You may be wondering why the city of Brighton has a millage rate nearly double that of the townships and the answer is due to the city offerings, just like in a village, cities tend to offer more public services, weather it be street cleaners, fireman, police offers, schools, overall downtown maintenance. These things require additional funding, hence why the taxes are more expensive. With all this in mind, be conscious of where you move to. For example, my parents live in Green Oak twp, they are saving quite a bit on property taxes, they’re located 5 minutes away from downtown, and are situated on an acre of land, which is another thing that isn’t always possible when located in the city of Brighton since it tends to be a little more close knit, and the homes that are on more property are oftentimes situated on a busier road, instead of subdivision.

If you’re looking for a home in and around Brighton, I wouldn’t cross these areas off your list by any means, i’d include them all in your search, based on your budget and see what it can get you. Maybe it’s a home on minimal acreage in downtown Brighton, you can just take a few minute walk by sidewalk. Or maybe it’s a home situated in an established neighborhood on an acre or two, but it more like a 5-10 minute drive without sidewalks. These may be little things to consider, but worth thinking about depending on how you value and prioritize the downtown area.

Me for example, I grew up 5 minutes away without direct sidewalks to downtown, so I wasn’t going downtown too often, and biking along a busy street wasn’t always ideal, but I’m someone who also enjoys have more space and being more of a homebody so this worked for me, it may not for you. As far as setting some expectations for buying a home in the area, the average age of a home in Brighton is 34 years old or built in 1989, and if you didn’t know the most popular home style during that time was a two story colonial, so there tends to be a fair share of those here in Brighton. Some are updated, some still have the orange shag carpets. I know some of you might be thinking (because some of my clients are) what about the new construction opportunities? And when we factor in the city of Brighton and the townships, there’s a good chunk of not only new construction communities, but some one off builds as well, ranging from a $319,900 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom, 1,470 square foot condo in Brighton twp to $1.625 million country french ranch with 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 4,630 square feet, on 1.03 acres in genoa twp. There’s 40+ options as of recording this video, so if you have any interest, please don’t hesitate to reach out and I can send you over some options to peak at. 


The last aspect I want to touch on is transportation, i have been getting a lot of people commenting about public transportation on other videos, so I wanted to make sure I included the options here. The most common form of public transportation is through livingston essential transportation services or LETS, and I can link to their routes, where they have an app that makes it much easier. Then there’s Mass Transportation Authority, which will depart from the Silver Lake road Park and ride in Green Oak twp, which I will link to their routes as well. Then there’s people’s express that picks people up from Brighton and the nearby Whitmore Lake to Ann Arbor. And again I'll link all those in the description for you.

If you’re looking to buy, sell or invest in Michigan, please don’t hesitate to reach out, i’d be happy to be your go-to resource for all things Michigan. Until next time!



Andrew McManamon is a Michigan REALTOR® with Signature Sotheby’s International Realty and provides real estate services to Buyers, Sellers and Investors throughout SE Michigan including Livingston County, Oakland County, Washtenaw County, Genesee County & beyond. Andrew has become one of the rising stars of Michigan real estate agents. Prior to his real estate career Andrew was responsible for managing a senior living facility in Brighton, Michigan as a dining supervisor and an activities assistant. Andrew’s passion to help people is unlike any other, and he continues to strive to be best resource he can be. Andrew graduated from Cleary University in Howell, Michigan with a double major and currently resides in Brighton, Michigan.


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