So you’re thinking about making the move from Illinois to the fine state of Michigan? Maybe it’s been a thought for quite some time or maybe you just happen to stumble across this video to see what all the racket is about, whatever the reason may be, be sure to stick around until the end to understand why you should move immediately! Let’s get to it
I’ve been getting several calls, texts and emails from people who are residents of Illinois, anywhere from the Chicago area to Springfield looking for a change, and that change came down to the one and only state of Michigan.
What’s going on everyone, my name is Andrew McManamon with living in Michigan, a Michigan realtor helping people like you buy, sell and invest in the amazing state of Michigan, so if there’s ever anything you need find my contact information in the description and reach out anytime, I’d be happy to be your go-to resource.
I’ll be touching on several reasons why real people who contacted me are planning to leave the state of Illinois just to give you some insight on why you should consider it as well.
Illinois ranked #3 for places people moved from to the state of Michigan behind Ohio and Indiana, which I have videos for and will link in the description. 2019 data gathered by stacker.com found that over 10,000 people moved from Illinois to Michigan within a year's time and I’m going to tell you the reasons why they did outside the fact of moving for family.
COST OF LIVING + HOME PRICES
The first thing I want to tackle before we get any further is the cost of living and home prices just to put the rest of my points into better context. Taking a look at these two charts side by side provided by bestplaces.net, you can see on the left that Michigan ranks 91.5 overall and on the right Illinois ranks 93,7 overall. Of course it’s a given, being how similar these states are with their geographic locations and offerings that nothing would be too dramatically unbalanced. The couple items that stand out much higher on Illinois list opposed to Michigan’s is the health, housing, median home cost and the miscellaneous section slightly. The health section is based on the standard daily room rate, costs of doctors visit, dental visits, etc. And of course the Northwestern Memorial hospital is ranked among the top across the country, but the university of Michigan healthcare system ranks a little higher on the list according to Newsweek and several other sources that make U of M ranked #8 and Northwestern ranked #15th. As far as housing and the median home price, of course at a glance this $27,000 or so difference isn’t huge by any means, but it can make a big difference for first time home buyers wanting to get into their first home.
Maybe not so much on the monthly payment side of things, but when you think about all the people who max out on a $200,000-$215,000 pre-approval, which is very common here in Michigan, the median home cost in Illinois wouldn’t be attainable for this whole buyer pool, but I can agree that not all homes are priced that high or higher, it’s just something to consider when choosing one state over another, because at the end of the day thousands of people from California pour into Michigan every year to watch their dollar stretch further, and people from Illinois do the same exact thing, it’s just not to that extreme extent. As far as miscellaneous, that would be your goods and services, from shopping, entertainment, restaurants, repairs, etc. And when it comes to Michigan’s transportation being higher, it has to do with car costs and insurance, which I will link to a video I did a little bit ago in the description so you can see the recent changes that have helped decrease this overall transportation score. Michigan used to have some crazy car insurance requirement where you’d have to have max coverage on certain things and they just fixed that to a certain extent in 2020.
WHY PEOPLE ARE LEAVING ILLINOIS
Transitioning into why Illinoisans are leaving their state. One of the most frequent things that I heard from a few of these residents, and have even read in several articles is that even Illinoisans think that the state they live in isn’t a good place to live. Of course I’d have to assume it depends on where you are in the state, but I heard it frequently enough that I wanted to bring it up. I believe there was a 1 in 4 ratio of people who thought their own state of Illinois was a bad place to live. I couldn’t imagine what that does to the mindset and overall atmosphere of the state when negativity and complaints come to the forefront and cover up the pieces of good a state actually offers. Of course, there’s instances like that In Michigan just like there are across any other state across the country, but Michigan is by no means known for hating its own state. I have talked quite a bit about what Michigan is like, how the people are and what not in other videos, and the consensus is Michiganders are passionate about their sports, their lakes, the products that have originated here such as vernors, better made chips and our amazing Detroit style pizza with perfectly cooked edges and ingredient ratio that can’t be replicated, while Chicago has this raised edged pie where each bite is just a mouth full of sauce, it kinda gives me the chills just thinking about it, so I’m not going to. Of course we don’t eat, sleep, breath and obsess over it every second of the day like a raccoon with rabies, we just appreciate what we have and what we've made, and I truly feel that aspect alone can make or break a community feel no matter where you live, sleep and play.
THINGS TO DO
Now let’s talk about things to do. Many Illinois residents have said the only thing the state offers is Chicago, and the rest is just rural farmlands, which has made the state known to have air pollution problems due to the increased use of chemicals related to agricultural use. Of course, there are a lot of areas in Michigan that share that same truth, not so much the pollution part, but aside from Rockford, Peoria, Springfield, the areas sharing the Missouri border by St. Louis, and the outskirts of Chicago, many people just didn’t have a lot to say about the plethora of small towns throughout Illinois. Geographically speaking, Chicago butts up to Lake Michigan, and the only other bodies of water around are the Illinois river, Mississippi river, and a few connecting lakes and reservoirs. Michigan is completely surrounded by water so aside from having the ability to do whatever your little heart desires on the water, there’s coastal cities all the way around the mitten state that are unique in their own way and should definitely be added to your bucket list. Of course there’s Illinois beach state park, the Navy pier, the art institute of Chicago, Six flags, along with several other state parks. Illinois and Michigan are fairly similar in their offerings in that regard, but Michigan still most definitely beats Illinois in natural beauty, landscapes, lakes, etc., and on top of that you can have a lower cost of living.
So where does that leave the winter season? Just like my videos talking about Indiana and Ohio, these states are very close to each other so they still experience the 4 distinct seasons mother nature offers, but just to put this into more perspective, I'll compare the two cities people think of most when talking about Illinois and Michigan and that’s Chicago and Detroit. Of course I'll preface this by saying Chicago is at the most northern part of Illinois so the snowy experience will be similar to Michigan’s, but if you scurry on south some more you may be able to cut the rain and snowfall inches in half. On average, Detroit has 183 sunny days a year when Chicago has 189. Detroit gets about 33.5 inches of rain a year whereas Chicago gets 38.2 on average. Detroit averages 33 inches of snow a year whereas Chicago gets about 35.1 inches. So these two cities are very comparable to one another, Chicago just gets more rain and snow while Detroit has a few less sunny days.
BUSINESS + JOB OPPORTUNITIES
With these two states being similar in many aspects, where does that leave business and job opportunities? Well, it’s not a secret that Michigan is the auto capital of the world, employing tens of thousands of people every single year, and several of my clients coming from out of state are within the auto industry to capitalize on the opportunity of being in the automotive powerhouse we call Michigan. Illinois is seeing a mass exodus form not only residents that live in the state but companies as well being as the infrastructure and incentives to do business in the state actually do more harm than good, so several businesses will just station themselves 20+ miles away in Indiana so they can actually operate without being swallowed whole by the taxes they have to pay. Which transitions into another thing that has been brought to my attention and that’s crooked politicians, of course I’m not going to try and put my debate hat on and talk politics, because each state and country across the globe could probably use a better somebody up there making better decisions, but it was interesting to find and hear time and time again about the crooked politicians of Illinois. Whether or not this fact is true or not, I heard 3-4 out of the 5 governors they’ve had have spent time in prison and that is just wild to me, and all the charges seem to come down to personal financial gain, so the argument of Illinois's government not having their best interests in mind, get spit into further perspective.
And last but not least, we have the quality of life. As I mentioned before, the state of Illinois is losing residents and businesses by the day which will decrease the amount of tax revenue that could be used to help improve the state's quality of life. The concern a lot of Illinois residents have is without Chicago, the state is nothing, because so much time, effort and money has been poured into the city of Chicago, but that can’t be said about the other cities in the prairie state.
For those of you that have lived in Illinois or moved out of the state, what’s something I missed? Drop your experiences and thoughts in the comments below.
MENTIONED LINKS 🔗
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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 White Lake, Michigan.