Moving to Detroit
Allow us to offer a warm, Midwestern welcome as we prepare to launch into a comprehensive exploration of all things Detroit! Detractors may be quick to highlight the city's challenges, but there's a vibrant, resilient energy humming beneath the headlines. We invite you to join us as we explore Detroit's rich culture, pioneering spirit, and rising innovation. If you're considering a relocation, our all-inclusive guide aims to inspire your decision-making with substantial Detroit intel - from booming neighbourhoods to artistic movements and hearty fare. Join us, as we dive deep into the reincarnation of this iconic American metropolis.
What to Know Before Moving to Detroit
1. Detroit Knows How to Rock, and it's not just about Motown
If you've always been under the impression that Detroit's musical fortes have been limited to Motown, you're in for a big surprise! Yes, the Motor City did boom to the beats of iconic Motown artists like Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, and Stevie Wonder. But Detroit also birthed the hard rock/MC5/Iggy and punk vibes of The Stooges, the jazzy rhythm of Donald Byrd, and hip hop reign of Eminem. Get ready to experience this ever-evolving music scene firsthand in renowned venues like the Fox Theatre and Saint Andrew's Hall.
2. Auto Industry and Beyond
There's a reason why Detroit proudly wears its moniker, Motor City. This is the home of Henry Ford, and the automobile industry that has been shaping America and the world. But Detroit isn't just about cars. The city is now a breeding ground for innovative industries. With surprisingly affordable living costs, it's becoming a hub for entrepreneurs and creatives. Downtown Detroit is brimming with coworking spaces, art studios, and tech startups.
3. The Food is Seriously Good
Foodies rejoice! Detroit offers a range of culinary experiences to satiate your tastebuds. The Detroit-style pizza, a square deep-dish style pizza with a thick, crispy base and caramelized cheese edges is a must-try. But beyond that, the city's food scene encompasses everything from Greek, Italian to soul food. Plus, the Eastern Market, America's oldest continually operating open-air market, offers a smorgasbord of fresh, local produce.
4. DIY Mindset Prevails
Here's something most people don't know - Detroit is a city of makers. A city that was built, fell, and is rapidly rising once again, Detroit embodies a robust DIY culture. You'll find flourishing maker spaces, such as Ponyride or OmniCorpDetroit, where you can learn everything from metalwork to 3D printing. This gritty, never-say-die attitude is visible in all aspects of Detroit from art to entrepreneurship.
5. Detroit's Art Scene is on Fire
Art lovers moving to Detroit; get ready to be enthralled! Detroit's art scene is vibrant, eclectic, and expansive. From numerous art galleries to public art installations, Detroit takes its art seriously. The internationally acclaimed Detroit Institute of Arts holds one of the largest and most significant art collections in the United States. On top of that, Detroit's street art scene, highlighted through projects like the Detroit Mural Project, is simply awe-inspiring.
6. Yes, there's an Island!
Here's another under-the-radar fact - Detroit has an island park! Belle Isle Park, a 982-acre island park in the Detroit River, is the perfect urban oasis, offering a zoo, conservatory, museum, and even a beach. It's a great place to jog, picnic, or just bask in nature's abundance without leaving the city. Think of it as Detroit's mini Central Park - albeit with less crowd.
Overall, Detroit's allure lies in its gritty charm, resilience, and creativity. It's a city that's been knocked down but never out. Moving here could be your chance to join its journey and contribute to its exciting evolution. Pack your stuff; Detroit is ready to welcome you with open arms and a warm square slice of pizza!
Pros and Cons of Living in Detroit
Pros of Living in Detroit
Unique and Rich History
Detroit has a unique and rich history that ranges from being the birthplace of Motown Records to its key role in the automobile industry. History enthusiasts can delve into the city's past at the Detroit Historical Society or the Detroit Institute of Arts, as well as several other museums and historic sites.
Thriving Art Scene
Detroit is home to a diverse and vibrant art scene. The city boasts numerous galleries, studios, and theaters. Areas like the Detroit Cultural Center and the Heidelberg Project provide a haven for artists and art enthusiasts alike to be inspired by a wide array of artistic expressions.
Abundance of Sports Teams
Sports enthusiasts will find a lot to love in Detroit. The city is home to four major sports teams - the Tigers (MLB), Lions (NFL), Pistons (NBA), and Red Wings (NHL). This ensures a year-round availability of exciting professional sports events.
Emerging Food Scene
Detroit is experiencing a food revolution with an array of restaurant and dining options emerging throughout the city. With everything from haute cuisine to food trucks, Detroit has an option for every palate which all add to a vibrant and evolving culinary scene.
Great Outdoor Spaces
Detroit offers a variety of public parks and outdoor spaces like the Detroit RiverWalk and Belle Isle Park. These spaces provide residents with the opportunity to engage in various outdoor activities such as walking, biking, and picnicking. A sure treat for nature-lovers and fitness enthusiasts alike.
Cons of Living in Detroit
The city has been struggling economically for years. Even though the situation has improved recently, job opportunities can still be scarce and the city's economy less robust compared to other cities of a similar size.
High Crime Rate
Detroit has a higher crime rate compared to other U.S. cities. This does not mean that all areas of the city are unsafe, however, it's something to be aware of when considering moving to certain neighborhoods.
Poor Public Transportation
Detroit's public transportation system has not kept pace with the needs of its residents. Many areas are poorly served or not served at all, making car ownership almost a necessity in Detroit.
Challenging School System
Despite efforts for improvement, Detroit's school system still faces significant challenges. Parents with children may want to delve deeper into the specific issues and potential schools before making the decision to move to Detroit.
Detroit struggles significantly with urban decay, also known as urban blight. This can be seen in the form of abandoned buildings and properties throughout the city, which can bring down the attractiveness and value of some neighborhoods.
Is Detroit a Good Place to Live?
Detroit, MI is a great place to live because it offers a rich cultural scene with vibrant art and music, plentiful historic landmarks, and fantastic food options! The city is also a sports lover's dream, hosting numerous professional sports teams. Moreover, its cost of living is relatively low, allowing residents to enjoy a high quality of life that includes a diversity of opportunities for outdoor activities, thanks to its nearby beautiful lakes and parks.
What Is Detroit Famous For?
The Motown Sound
Born in Detroit, the record company Motown gifted the world with a new style of soul music with a distinct pop influence. Founded by Berry Gordy Jr. in 1959, Motown Records introduced us to legendary artists like Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, and the Jackson 5.
Detroit is widely known as the car capital of the world. It's the birthplace of the American automotive industry with the "Big Three" car manufacturers (General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler) all headquartered here. Detroit put the world on wheels!
Art Deco Architecture
One of the defining characteristics of the Detroit skyline is its collection of Art Deco buildings, which were built during the city's growth spurt in the 1920s and 30s. Pearls of this style include the Guardian Building and Fisher Building, noteworthy for their technicolor, ornate interiors and detailed exteriors.
Detroit does pizza in its own unique way! Detroit-style Pizza is a square pie with a thick, crunchy crust, topped with brick cheese and a characteristic "racing stripe" of sauce on top. It's an absolute must-try for pizza enthusiasts.
Overview of Tax Rates
The 2023 property tax rate in Detroit, MI is roughly 1.5% for homeowners, which is considerably higher than the national average property tax rate of approximately 1.07%. Some suburbs have a lower rate, but the city itself has one of the highest rates in the state.
The current sales tax rate in Detroit, MI, in 2023 is at a statewide uniform rate of 6%. This is relatively lower than other cities in the US, which average around 8.62% when factoring in both state and local sales taxes.
As of 2023, residents of Detroit face a local income tax rate of 2.4% on top of the statewide income tax of 4.25%. This is notably higher than most other US cities, many of which do not have a local income tax.
Detroit's housing market presents unique opportunities. Median house values, at just over $48,000, fall dramatically below the national average, signaling great opportunities for buyers seeking affordability. Rent prices are similarly low, averaging around $800 monthly, compared to over $1,000 nationally. However, Detroit's weaker job market and higher crime rates factor into these figures. As such, this market may appeal to discerning investors or those looking for lower-cost living, provided they navigate associated challenges. Therefore, it's crucial to conduct in-depth research and potentially secure local assistance when exploring the Detroit housing market.
Cost of Living
The cost of living in Detroit, MI is considerably lower compared to many other U.S. cities. Housing is predominantly affordable with costs 70% lower than the national average. However, healthcare and transportation costs are slightly above the national average. Despite its economic challenges, Detroit offers a unique blend of rich cultural experiences and promising development projects, which contribute to an overall appealing quality of life. The city shines as an attractive option for those seeking an urban living experience at a reasonably manageable cost.
Weather & Natural Disasters
Detroit, Michigan, situated in the Midwestern region of the U.S., experiences a humid continental climate. This means that residents can expect four distinct seasons. Summers are typically warm to hot and humid, with temperatures averaging around 83degF (28degC), while winters can be brutally cold and snowy, with temperatures often plummeting below freezing. Rainfall is evenly distributed throughout the year, but spring and summer tend to see marginally more precipitation. As for natural disasters, the city is moderately susceptible to severe thunderstorms, flooding, extreme snowfall, and tornadoes. Detroit's location away from fault lines significantly minimizes the risk of earthquakes. Despite these challenges, the climate provides a fascinating backdrop of changing landscapes and the opportunity for a host of seasonal activities which make Detroit an engaging city.
Economy & Job Market
With a rich history and a heart as solid as steel, Detroit, Michigan is the long-standing home of the automotive industry. From the iconic line of Henry Ford's Model T's to the modern engine roar of a Chevy Corvette, Detroit has been vroom-vrooming since the early 20th century and hasn't slowed down since. Detroit isn't just cars though; the city has radically diversified its industries to include booming sectors like health care and technology. Don't be surprised to find your local car mechanic tinkering with AI stuff. And with a plethora of universities, the education sector is alive, vibrant and the source of many a freshly-minted diploma. Taking a look at the modern skyline, you can't miss the financial and business services that have sprouted, adding a lively hustle and bustle to Detroit's economic vibe.
Packing your bags ready for the big move to Detroit? That's awesome, just don't forget to pack some job-hunting gumption too. As of recent stats, Detroit's job market positively leans towards job seekers with the unemployment rate below national average. Some sectors like technology, health care, and finance have more job open doors than others, so having skills in these areas could land you that dream job faster. But of course, it's Detroit, so there's always room for you car enthusiasts. Don't just restrict yourself to downtown - places like Midtown and New Center also hold great job promise. So, buckle up and gear up - it's time to seize the job opportunities that Detroit has to offer!
Traffic and Transportation
Get ready for a jolly joyride through Detroit, MI - Motor City! Detroiters enjoy a fairly quick zip to work with average commute times of about 24 minutes, quicker than the national average. But who wants to drive all the time in the birthplace of Motown? Unleash your inner wanderlust with the Detroit Department of Transportation's buses, or hop on the Detroit People Mover, an automated light rail system offering scenic views of the downtown district. Craving a more 'private' travel experience? The QLine Streetcar awaits you, running a 6.6-mile loop along Woodward Avenue. For jetsetters, the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, or as the locals call it, Detroit Metro Airport will whisk you away to more than 140 destinations worldwide! So buckle up, and join us in Detroit, where your journey is just as fun as your destination!
Best Neighborhoods in Detroit
Midtown has established itself as the cultural epicenter of Detroit. The area boasts a smorgasbord of museums with the likes of Detroit Institute of Arts and Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit making it a haven for art lovers. If you're a foodie, there's a medley of eateries bound to tantalize your taste buds, from upscale restaurants to trendy food trucks. Midtown is also home to Wayne State University, infusing the neighborhood with an exuberant college town vibe. Plus, it's a neighborhood that thrives on community activities, hosting numerous annual festivals and weekly farmers' markets!
Embracing its rich history, Corktown is Detroit's oldest neighborhood but it's far from stuffy. This area has charm in spades with its perfectly preserved Victorian-era homes lining the streets. It's a place where the cool and the classic blend harmoniously. Think old-school barber shops nestled next to hip coffee houses and craft beer pubs. There's no shortage of entertainment either, Tigers Stadium and several music festivals are just on its doorstep. And let's not forget the brewing renaissance with local distilleries like Two James Spirits!
Who doesn't love the exhilarating hum of a city's downtown district? Downtown Detroit offers the perfect cocktail of work and play, making it an attractive option for young professionals. Offering an impressive skyline, world-class sports venues, opulent theaters, and luring restaurants, downtown Detroit has it all. Beyond the workday hustle and high-rise apartments, it's the destination for sporting enthusiasts with home grounds for the Lions, Tigers, and Redwings.
4. West Village
West Village is a snapshot of tranquil urban living. This east-side neighborhood flaunts beautiful historic houses, all located along quiet, tree-lined streets. The area offers small-town serenity, but with its range of cute shops and locally-owned restaurants, it's far from sleepy. Add the fact it's just a quick bike ride away from Belle Isle Park, it's a perfect place for nature lovers and those seeking a chilled-out lifestyle.
5. New Center
New Center perfectly balances the glamour of yesteryears and the dynamism of today. You'll find stunning historical architecture sitting comfortably beside modern developments. Key attractions include the Fisher Building and Motown Museum, enticing architecture buffs and music lovers alike. Food, entertainment, and shopping are all within walking distance and the efficient QLine makes commuting downtown a breeze. If you're all about convenience and a dash of history, New Center is the place to be.
In conclusion, Detroit's neighborhoods each have their unique character, from the bustling heart of Downtown to the tranquil charm of West Village. Sure, moving to a new city can be overwhelming, but with so much to see, taste, and experience in Detroit, you're bound to find a home that not only suits your needs but also packs a punch of personality that will enrich your life in the Motor City.
Things to Do
Motor City, the D, Motown -- whatever you call Detroit, it's a town full of history, excitement, and adventure. Whether you're moving here for a job or just finding a change of scenery, you've got tons of experiences waiting for you. Here are our top seven picks for things to do; don't say we didn't warn you about falling in love with this city!
1. Visit the Detroit Institute of Arts
If you're an art buff or just someone who likes a splash of color, the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) is a must-visit. It's home to over 65,000 works of art, from the ancient world to modern day. Be sure to check out the Detroit Industry Murals by Diego Rivera - they're a true Motor City landmark!
2. Explore Belle Isle Park
Want to take a break from city life? Belle Isle Park gives you a lush escape right in the heart of Detroit. Hike, bike, or just picnic in this 982-acre park. Don't miss the Belle Isle Aquarium and the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory while you're there!
3. Get Groovy at Motown Museum
When you're living in Motown, how can you not visit the place where it all began? The Motown Museum is housed in Berry Gordy Jr.'s converted home and studio where artists like Stevie Wonder, the Supremes, and the Jackson 5 recorded their hits. Do a little shimmy; you're standing where music history was made!
4. Discover the Detroit International RiverWalk
The RiverWalk gives you unparalleled views of the Detroit River and Windsor, Canada. It's the perfect spot for jobbing or biking. Or get on a RiverWalk cruise and explore the waterway with the wind in your hair.
5. Dine at the Lafayette Coney Island
You can't live in Detroit without tasting the classic Coney Island hot dog, and Lafayette does it best. Situated downtown, it's been a Detroit staple since 1914. The fun part is, there's a friendly rivalry with American Coney Island right next door. Try them both and pick a side!
6. Stargaze at Detroit Observatory
Ready for a mystery? The Detroit Observatory, tucked away on the University of Michigan's campus, is a hidden gem. It's one of the oldest observatories in the country where you can gaze upon galaxies and nebulae. Pop in for a guided tour and uncover the secrets of the cosmos.
7. Watch a Show at the Detroit Opera House
For an elegant night out, dress up and catch a ballet or opera performance at the Detroit Opera House. With its grand, French Renaissance-style architecture and acoustics, it'll be a night to remember. The Opera House provides a needed dash of glittering sophistication to balance out Detroit's edgier side.
From the delicacies of Coney Island to the melodies of Motown, Detroit has something to delight every newcomer. We hope this list of adventures help sparks an unending romance with the city. Welcome, and dive right in!
Find Movers for Your Detroit Relocation
Having explored the vivacious life, vibrant culture, and bountiful opportunities Detroit, MI offers, Great Guys Moving is primed to be your facilitator for a smooth transition. We streamline the moving process by connecting you with skilled and trustworthy movers offering top-notch service at affordable prices. Forget the hassle of hunting for movers. Simply provide us with a few details about your move and we'll introduce you to suitable, licensed, and insured moving companies within our network. It's time to embark on your Detroit adventure. Request your free moving quote from Great Guys Moving now and experience a fuss-free moving journey.
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