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Old 01-26-2017, 12:53 PM
 
915 posts, read 1,158,710 times
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Given what you've said, I'd pick Milford, due to the diversity in restaurant choices, shopping and lots of nature.

However, I agree that Milford traffic at peak hours is crazy.

I'd also put the South Lyon area on the list because it's close to Mayberry State Park.

Traffic's going to be a problem wherever you live around here.

I really don't see the attraction to Brighton, except location and price, because it's just like Novi in many respects.

If you really want to keep it small and rural, I'd look at Green Oaks Township or Salem Township.

Rent before you buy in the area. Every city has its own character/charm, but isn't for everyone.
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Old 01-26-2017, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
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Brighton has a downtown. It is all strip mally and chain stores like Novi in the outskirts, but unlike Novi, it has a town.
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Old 01-26-2017, 05:01 PM
 
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Glad someone else asked this question. Have similar interests & income and have a possible job relocation from Arizona to Farmington Hills early this spring. I'm into trail running & hiking and would like to be no more than a 10-15 minute drive from trails. Would prefer an older home and probably rent for at least the first year. More than likely a short term transfer for 3-4 years then move back to Arizona. So not sure if we would want to buy anything.

So trying to get the lay of the land from 2000 miles away is tough. Somewhat familiar with the south side of Detroit because I grew up in Toledo and made many road trips up to Detroit for ball games, concerts and shopping when I was a teen. But it's been almost 30 years since I've been back.
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Old 01-26-2017, 07:43 PM
 
Location: Southeast Michigan
1,281 posts, read 1,072,078 times
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Farmington, which is an extremely easy commute to Novi and adjoins Farmington Hills, has a downtown with an increasing number of good restaurants, farmer's market, ice skating. We drive to pick up/drop off our kid in E.Lansing (MSU) and it generally takes about and hour and 10 minutes,usually less, to get to the dorms. And here is more info on Heritage Park, which is a real treasure! Also beautiful trails, nature center, cross-country skiing. Worth a visit, for any of you.
Farmington Hills, MI - Heritage Park

I almost forgot the new, large Fresh Thyme grocery in downtown Farmington, as well as the library and gym and more shopping, all close by in the center of town. It really does sound a lot like what the OP says she likes about her current location. Seriously, why live a half hour away by freeway, when your commute can be a very easy ten minutes on surface roads?

Last edited by mgkeith; 01-26-2017 at 08:08 PM..
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Old 01-27-2017, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Oakland County, MI
56 posts, read 41,147 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgkeith View Post
Farmington, which is an extremely easy commute to Novi and adjoins Farmington Hills, has a downtown with an increasing number of good restaurants, farmer's market, ice skating. We drive to pick up/drop off our kid in E.Lansing (MSU) and it generally takes about and hour and 10 minutes,usually less, to get to the dorms. And here is more info on Heritage Park, which is a real treasure! Also beautiful trails, nature center, cross-country skiing. Worth a visit, for any of you.
Farmington Hills, MI - Heritage Park

I almost forgot the new, large Fresh Thyme grocery in downtown Farmington, as well as the library and gym and more shopping, all close by in the center of town. It really does sound a lot like what the OP says she likes about her current location. Seriously, why live a half hour away by freeway, when your commute can be a very easy ten minutes on surface roads?
I rent in this area and I would agree, Heritage park is great and there are a couple of other parks in the immediate vicinity that are pretty nice too. There are a lot of activities going on at Heritage and they have a community stage / theater area. They also have some sort of children activities too, I think there may be a pre-school / daycare set up there but I am not sure.

Though, if that is your thing, I'm sure going to the same places frequently could get annoying. But within the 15-30 minute driving radius of the Farmington Hills area there are a lot of great parks (Maybury State Park and Island Lake State Recreation Area to name a few. As well as Mt. Brighton and Alpine Valley in the winter months).

Fresh Thyme is great, a lot of healthy organic options and you can make your own peanut butter there too Other than that, most of the western suburbs are easy to get to via Grand River / M-5 / Eight Mile. The drive to Novi would be a breeze. I-275 / I-96 / I-696 are not far either.
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Old 02-04-2017, 07:34 AM
 
Location: Pure Michigan!
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Before our son and daughter-in-law moved there, I knew virtually nothing about Novi and considered it just more ex-urban sprawl filled with mcmansions. While parts of it are like that, there is a whole area around Walled Lake (the lake itself, not the town, although the two towns do border each other) that is surprisingly natural.

Our son lives in one of the neighborhoods right off of S. Lake Drive in Novi, which borders the lake. There is a huge nature preserve just behind their neighborhood with access through Lakeshore Park off of S. Lake Drive with several miles of hiking and mountain biking trails. I had no idea that any of this was there, but with that nature preserve and the opportunity to partake of all kinds of water sports on Walled Lake and other regional lakes only minutes away, Novi itself is actually a pretty great place for outdoorsy folks, and then you still have the convenience of the Novi Rd. corridor which is filled with any type of restaurant or chain store you could ever want, along with a very nice, two story regional mall, Twelve Oaks. So really, you can have the best of both worlds living right in Novi and your husband would probably be able to bike to work in nice weather.

There are deer and other kinds of wildlife everywhere around that specific area. Our son and his wife wake up almost every day to see families of deer standing in their or their neighbors' yards. If you don't like deer, you wouldn't like this area of Novi, but if you love wildlife you would enjoy it immensely. There are also swans and any number of wild water fowl out on the lake during the more temperate months.

Housing can be pricey in Novi, but many of the neighborhoods along the lake are older and you can find some bargains, even with lake access (although not lakefront, as those homes go for $500,000+ unless they are fixer uppers).

This is a link to the trail map for Lakeshore Park. It is amazing that you can be this close to so much shopping/dining/civilization and still feel like you are out in the north woods.

http://www.cityofnovi.org/City-Servi...ParkTrail.aspx

Best of everything to you! I love the Novi area and would move there in a second if my DH didn't think that there are too many people and too much traffic as compared to our little cornfield town in Monroe County.
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Old 02-06-2017, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
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This is not a decision you should make quickly or based on input from 2000 miles away.

One of the best things about Metro Detroit is a huge and vastly different variety of very nice towns and suburbs in the area. As point out above, many areas that might otherwise be awful to you, have pockets that might be ideal. Only you can know what you want or prefer, and our preferences are only going to help you so far along the path.

We spent 2 years checking out areas in Metro Detroit before deciding and then it came down to where we happened to find a house that excited us. There were several areas we thought would be wonderful, but we got outbid, out offered, or simply could not negotiate a manageable price for the first four houses we tried to buy in different communities. We had first, second third etc options on a list, but the order they appeared moved as we learned more and more about different areas and/or as particular homes became available or not. Sometimes, there are issues you will never think of that will become big pluses or minuses after you move or as your family grows and ages. My suggestion is gather all the information, suggestions, data you can, then come out and look around. Then make a list of ten or so preferences, then study each one, visit them visit the schools, look at growth trends, try the commute you will have. Finally I suggest you rent for a while before you commit to a purchase. Join some clubs or something in each of the areas you are considering.

The big risk is not that you will chose a terrible place, but that you will choose a great place, and then find some place that is even more perfect for your family.

I grew up and live here until I was 25, and after 18 years in California, we still had a very difficult time choosing and we still occasionally second guess our decision. (For me the biggest second guessing is how things would have been if we had chosen someplace closer to mom & dad. An hour away seemed reasonable, but it is a bit of an ordeal for a quickie visit. However other things come into play. I love being ont he water, but on the other hand, I would have liked being closer to Kensington and Ann Arbor. I love our small school system, but regret the fact that the fabulous music director retired after our first year and was replaced by a young peppy and absolutely irresponsible and untalented (at teaching), music teacher.

There are a lot of things to consider and then some things that refuse to stay the way you want them. Take a ton of time.
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Old 02-08-2017, 10:10 AM
 
384 posts, read 287,820 times
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since when did Michigan become "outdoorsy"?
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Old 02-08-2017, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethnicappalachian View Post
since when did Michigan become "outdoorsy"?
Since January 16, 1837.
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Old 02-12-2017, 07:25 PM
 
Location: Pure Michigan!
4,486 posts, read 7,747,935 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethnicappalachian View Post
since when did Michigan become "outdoorsy"?
Seriously? Have you ever been here? Do you realize that the bottom 1/3 of the Lower Peninsula is largely farmland and small towns outside of the relatively few major metro areas for the geographical size of the state? That the top 2/3 of the Lower Peninsula and essentially the entire Upper Peninsula is a wooded semi-wilderness in most places? That people come from near and far to partake of outdoors activities such as hunting, fishing, and snowmobiling in Michigan, and that Michigan has a huge tourism industry based especially on being so "outdoorsy"?

If Michigan has one feature that stands out above all others it is that it is known for being so outdoorsy. I've heard it referred to as a "sportman's paradise", among other things.

You should visit our state sometime. It's really very lovely (and very "outdoorsy") here!
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