Looking into moving to Fenton, Michigan and wondering about the good, bad and the ugly? This video touches on just that! I’ll take some time going over the pros and cons of living in Fenton, Michigan. From the lifestyle to the community that make up this small town. Find it all here.
This blog is a direct transcript from the video below. This comes in 3 versions: You are able to watch the video, read the blog for your convenience or listen to the audio experience (which is linked under the video below).
As you may or may not know, Fenton, Michigan is the middle child that has to have everything. In this case, Fenton lies across not only Genesee county, but Livingston and Oakland county too.
That may sound like a large surface area, but whatever you do, don’t blink or you’ll miss the 6.97 square miles we like to call Fenton. With a population of around 12,000 people, there’s roughly 10 residential households or 0.11 square miles sitting in Livingston county, and a very miniscule portion of 0.01 square miles extends into Oakland County. Pretty goofy I know.
Something you may not have known is that Fenton is actually somewhat affordable. I have helped several first time homebuyers find their new homes in Fenton, because the prices weren’t so incredibly inflated. Before the pandemic hit the housing market, the average home price in Fenton was around $175,000. Which is very low for the area, as most Michiganders will tell you that seeing something in the 100’s is amazing, unless you're in no man's land or taking on a full gut job in a Detroit suburb. The median sale price now is around $215,000.
Don’t let that discourage you, as of the recording of this video, roughly half the inventory is under the average price point. Another notable point about housing in Fenton, is how many options there truly are. You could get your hands on a Victorian style cottage, a manufactured home, lakeside mansion, apartment or high-end condo. There’s so many different options that are truly catered to your needs.
I know what you’re thinking, that means this is some one horse town that has a gas station 20 miles away, and no signs of life. Wrong, it’s only 6.97 square miles, remember and is right off the US-23 expressway for a great commute to the nearby cities of Hartland, Holly, Linden, Argentine. Those names probably don’t stick out to you very much, as they are small towns that offer their own uniqueness as well. Most towns like this, you’d have to drive 10-15 minutes just to find an on-ramp, but that is not the case in Fenton. Just to put into perspective, it takes about 25 minutes to get from Fenton to Brighton, 31 minutes to get from Fenton to Auburn Hills (which is considered to be one of Michigan’s global addresses which I talk more about in another video I’ll link below), and about 40 minutes from Fenton to Ann Arbor.
Fenton is such a laid back community that’s growing in such a steady but not alarming pace with new buildings and businesses being developed. There’s so many restaurants, shops and social activities to keep you busy such as the AppleFest, the nearby recreational parks and lakes. Fenton also appreciates some fine art and you’ll find that to be true after a visit or 6.
Jumping to the ugly, the biggest con is the traffic. Just like any smalltown with a thriving economy, there’s a lot of people at any given time, in and out of the city. The positive to this is that the city of Fenton acted quickly when they started bursting at the seams and put in their first roundabout late 2019 to keep the flow of traffic consistent. This is a step in the right direction, but the desirability of this smalltown has been increasing tremendously as remote work is made permanent and no one feels the need to have a closer commute to their workplaces since they don’t see signs of having to go in, so Fenton’s atmosphere has been a large appeal to that population.
Another complaint is the lack of stuff to do aside from eating at a different restaurant each day of the week. I’ll be sure to link Fenton’s event page below just in case some of those activities interest you. The calendar is lacking a little bit, but being as it’s hardly 30 degrees outside these days, I can understand that.
An uncontrollable con that just proves how cool the laid back town of Fenton actually is, is a frequent complaint about how once you step out of Fenton, the small town atmosphere diminishes. Less local owned businesses, more chains, less sidewalks and a less tight community overall. With Fenton being so small, you’re passing in and out of it more than you know.
Question of the day: What is your preference, city or small town living and why? Drop your answers in the comment below.
If Fenton isn’t your cup of tea, take a look at some of the other videos I have created about cities throughout southeast, Michigan. And if you have any questions, don’t hesitate at all to reach out to me anytime.
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.