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Old 08-24-2017, 11:39 AM
 
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
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I would like to know which state is better in terms of education, housing, job market, and cultural activities?
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Old 08-24-2017, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit
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I have obvious bias on this, but unquestionably Michigan. And my bias isn't that strong, as I'm a recent Michigan transplant. I chose to move here. The only thing Arkansas really has on Michigan is a better winter and spring, but Michigan has a better summer and fall.

Schools: Statistically Michigan is overall considered to have mediocre schools, but this varies a TON. Schools in some of the large blighted core cities (Detroit & Flint) are garbage, but the schools in the suburbs of those cities are among the best in the country. Oakland County (Suburban Detroit) has some incredible schools, in areas where you can buy a home for under 200k. Most schools in smaller cities and out-state areas are relatively average. I can't speak much for the specifics of Arkansas, but statistically speaking it's usually among the Bottom 5 of all states, and I highly doubt they have areas with schools approaching the quality of those in places like Ann Arbor, Northville, East Grand Rapids, Okemos, or Troy. As far as University education goes, U of M and MSU >>> U of A.

Housing: This is very dependent on the specifics of where you move. City? Rural? Suburb? Some of the hottest housing markets in the nation right now are suburban Detroit and urban Grand Rapids. I've not bought a home in Arkansas recently, but I know when I bought one in suburban Detroit there was a lot of competition and a lot of options for the money. I ended up in a safe, upper middle class neighborhood with great schools and a walkable downtown, for about 200k. I will say Arkansas has lower property taxes though, but the flip side of lower taxes is of course fewer services. Michigan is a Yankee state at its heart, it's culturally based on collectivism and an acceptance of taxes for services.

Job Market Arkansas has a lower unemployment rate (3.4% in AK vs 3.8% in MI). Michigan has a higher median household income ($51,000 in MI vs $40,000 in AK). As for the largest metro areas:
Metro Detroit has a median wage of $50,960,
Lansing has a median wage of $47,550,
Grand Rapids Metro has a median wage of $43,610.
Fayetteville Metro has a median wage of $44,980.
Little Rock has a median wage of $43,060.
It's all relative to what you're looking for and what you do, I suppose. Are you an engineer? Probably Michigan. Are you an agricultural scientist? Probably Arkansas.

Cultural activities
This is also dependent on where you live. I imagine Little Rock has far better cultural activities than Grayling, Michigan, but nothing in Arkansas is going to compare to the number of cultural activities available in Detroit. You're talking about a metro area of 4.5 million people. There is a lot of things to do, places to see, and adventures to have. So overall, Michigan by a mile, but if you move to West Branch, don't expect anything in the realm of cultural activity to exist.
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Old 08-24-2017, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Kansas City, MISSOURI
9,013 posts, read 2,730,310 times
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Michigan. NO contest!
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Old 08-24-2017, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Illinois
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This isn't even close. Michigan is one of my absolute favorite states and Arkansas has to be in the bottom 10, if not bottom 5.
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Old 08-24-2017, 03:32 PM
 
Location: MichOhioigan
1,546 posts, read 2,536,197 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Bond 007 View Post
Michigan. NO contest!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kmanshouse View Post
This isn't even close. Michigan is one of my absolute favorite states and Arkansas has to be in the bottom 10, if not bottom 5.
Agreed. Not sure this is even a serious question. I can't think of any category that Arkansas beats Michigan. Unless you really like hot weather.
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Old 08-24-2017, 04:37 PM
 
Location: Phoenix
5,643 posts, read 7,445,655 times
Reputation: 4317
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geo-Aggie View Post
I have obvious bias on this, but unquestionably Michigan. And my bias isn't that strong, as I'm a recent Michigan transplant. I chose to move here. The only thing Arkansas really has on Michigan is a better winter and spring, but Michigan has a better summer and fall.

Schools: Statistically Michigan is overall considered to have mediocre schools, but this varies a TON. Schools in some of the large blighted core cities (Detroit & Flint) are garbage, but the schools in the suburbs of those cities are among the best in the country. Oakland County (Suburban Detroit) has some incredible schools, in areas where you can buy a home for under 200k. Most schools in smaller cities and out-state areas are relatively average. I can't speak much for the specifics of Arkansas, but statistically speaking it's usually among the Bottom 5 of all states, and I highly doubt they have areas with schools approaching the quality of those in places like Ann Arbor, Northville, East Grand Rapids, Okemos, or Troy. As far as University education goes, U of M and MSU >>> U of A.

Housing: This is very dependent on the specifics of where you move. City? Rural? Suburb? Some of the hottest housing markets in the nation right now are suburban Detroit and urban Grand Rapids. I've not bought a home in Arkansas recently, but I know when I bought one in suburban Detroit there was a lot of competition and a lot of options for the money. I ended up in a safe, upper middle class neighborhood with great schools and a walkable downtown, for about 200k. I will say Arkansas has lower property taxes though, but the flip side of lower taxes is of course fewer services. Michigan is a Yankee state at its heart, it's culturally based on collectivism and an acceptance of taxes for services.

Job Market Arkansas has a lower unemployment rate (3.4% in AK vs 3.8% in MI). Michigan has a higher median household income ($51,000 in MI vs $40,000 in AK). As for the largest metro areas:
Metro Detroit has a median wage of $50,960,
Lansing has a median wage of $47,550,
Grand Rapids Metro has a median wage of $43,610.
Fayetteville Metro has a median wage of $44,980.
Little Rock has a median wage of $43,060.
It's all relative to what you're looking for and what you do, I suppose. Are you an engineer? Probably Michigan. Are you an agricultural scientist? Probably Arkansas.

Cultural activities
This is also dependent on where you live. I imagine Little Rock has far better cultural activities than Grayling, Michigan, but nothing in Arkansas is going to compare to the number of cultural activities available in Detroit. You're talking about a metro area of 4.5 million people. There is a lot of things to do, places to see, and adventures to have. So overall, Michigan by a mile, but if you move to West Branch, don't expect anything in the realm of cultural activity to exist.
Just to clear up any confusion:

AK= Alaska
AR= Arkansas
AZ= Arizona
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Old 08-24-2017, 05:09 PM
 
Location: Somewhere below Mason/Dixon
6,515 posts, read 7,456,802 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kmanshouse View Post
This isn't even close. Michigan is one of my absolute favorite states and Arkansas has to be in the bottom 10, if not bottom 5.
People are being hard on Arkansas. Much of Arkansas is very pretty, lots of outdoor type things to do. It is an underrated state IMO.

Michigan is also an underrated state as well. Whether one prefers one over the other is a matter of taste. The northern part of Michigan is beautiful, the Great Lakes are beautiful and like Arkansas it is an outdoor kind of place. Where Michigan fails is its larger cities. Southeast Michigan contains places like Detroit, Flint, Pontiac etc. This is the rust belt exemplified. Run down, even dangerous. Arkansas vs SE Michigan, then its Arkansas hands down. That being said some of eastern Arkansas is a bit run down as well, the central and western parts of Arkansas are the nicest, places in or near the ozark to be specific.

Climate is another concern, again matter of preference. Michigan is a cold upper Midwest state, everyone should know what to expect. Arkansas is a warm humid upper south state, again we all should know what to expect climate wise. If you like cool crisp air, snow and mild summer then it's obvious which to choose. Hate cold and winter? Again obviously you choose Arkansas.

Hard to say which is a better choice because so much depends on your taste. Upper Midwest yankee culture your thing or southern culture? Water, woods and flat farm country or woods and small mountains? Both states are overlooked in thier respective regions, both states underrated. I believe Michigan is more challenged with its run down cities and over reliance on an unreliable auto industry, but if you avoid south east Michigan you can enjoy the rest of Michigan without some of the negative issues associated with the state.
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Old 08-24-2017, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Brew City
4,220 posts, read 2,503,558 times
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You should be comparing cities, not states. All of these factors could vary greatly across the state.

Either way, Michigan is the better state overall.
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Old 08-24-2017, 05:40 PM
 
17,666 posts, read 4,062,179 times
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I would much rather live in Arkansas because its one of my favorite states.
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Old 08-24-2017, 07:24 PM
 
2,200 posts, read 2,318,579 times
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I think it's Michigan on the listed criteria, Arkansas on everything else.
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