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Old 02-14-2017, 06:38 AM
 
3,152 posts, read 7,175,589 times
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My wife's employer has us on the short list for three different cities and a decision will probably be made this week. If chosen we need to pull the trigger and move within 4-5 weeks. If offered the position in Michigan her new office will be on 12 Mile near Halstead Road. The only downside is that we are flying blind and will need to find a rental house online pretty much sight unseen.

What are decent neighborhoods with rental prices in the $1000-$1500 range? We don't have kids living with us anymore, so schools are not important. Would like to find a house with no more than a 20 minute commute.

Both of us like to hike and do outdoors activities, so I found a few houses up near Sylvan Lake and Keego Harbor that might fit the bill. What would a commute from that part of town be like?

I've lived in various parts of the country where in addition to federal and state income tax they had local income taxes plus other various local taxes for schools even if you were not a homeowner. Are there any hidden taxes or local township taxes in Michigan?

I grew up in the general area, so know all about the weather, culture, etc..., but it's been 25 years since I've been in Michigan. Anything else that I need to know about this part of the metro area?
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Old 02-14-2017, 06:52 AM
 
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Nope - congrats on the gig. Your best bet is Farmington Hill etc - do a craigslist search for homes for rent. Livonia is also another good option. Novi has a slightly more upscale housing stock so may be hard to find something in that price point.

Pontiac is the only city in Oakland County with an income tax - so as long as you don't move there - and rent in Oakland County - you won't have to pay property taxes - so you're only taxes will be federal and state.

Everything within a 20 minute drive is a nice area - so just get drunk with her and throw darts at a map =)
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Old 02-14-2017, 07:14 AM
 
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How bad are commutes in Detroit? Currently living in Phoenix and spoiled because both of us live within 5-10 minutes of work. But if we lived in the suburbs we would be looking at a 45 minute commute to drive 15-20 miles.

Belleislerunner - I usually whip myself into shape to run a few trail running races a year, please tell me that there are places to go trail running. Our hope is that we grab the promotion, hang out for a few years and transfer back to Arizona to work, then retire in ten years. But in the meantime I do need places to trail run and hike to keep my sanity.
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Old 02-14-2017, 08:06 AM
 
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A lot has changed and continued to sprawl out in that area in the past 25 years. 25 years ago Novi was just starting to get built-up, now is completely built-out.

Looking for rentals, less than 20 minutes from 12 & Halsted, I'd concentrate your focus on Farmington Hills, Novi, and West Bloomfield.

Rentals tend to go very quickly in the area. A lot of rent-by-owners under $1500 go on Craigslist versus listing with a realtor or property management company.

Depending on the size of the house, it may be challenging to find a something desirable for $1000-$1500. You may have to look closer to $1800-2000 in places like Farmington Hills, Novi, West Bloomfield.

Sylvan Lake / Keego Harbor is pushing 20 minutes, while nice near some of the lakes, tends to be a bit heavy on the blue collar side.

Most of the larger parks, Metro Parks, State Rec areas, and rail-trails aren't far away from these areas, you're about 20 minutes from a whole slew of options on that side of town.
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Old 02-14-2017, 08:23 AM
 
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We don't need much. Currently living in a 900 SF house in an historic district in Phoenix. So as long as we have two bedrooms and a fenced back yard for our dogs we can be pretty flexible. Both of us grew up in blue collar neighborhoods in Chicago, Detroit and Toledo so not a deal breaker if we have to live in one again for 6 months until we find the house we want to buy or rent long term.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:28 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grmi66 View Post
How bad are commutes in Detroit? Currently living in Phoenix and spoiled because both of us live within 5-10 minutes of work. But if we lived in the suburbs we would be looking at a 45 minute commute to drive 15-20 miles.

Belleislerunner - I usually whip myself into shape to run a few trail running races a year, please tell me that there are places to go trail running. Our hope is that we grab the promotion, hang out for a few years and transfer back to Arizona to work, then retire in ten years. But in the meantime I do need places to trail run and hike to keep my sanity.
The heavy traffic flows are heading east in the morning and west in the afternoon.

If you live west of FH, you'll have a more difficult time getting to work. Novi wouldn't be a big deal since 12 and Halsted would be all surface streets from anywhere in Novi. But if you were coming from South Lyon, Brighton or Howell it would be more congested and much slower.

I think Farmington Hills/Farmington/Livonia would be your best bet in your price range.
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:54 AM
 
1,851 posts, read 2,292,617 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grmi66 View Post
How bad are commutes in Detroit? Currently living in Phoenix and spoiled because both of us live within 5-10 minutes of work. But if we lived in the suburbs we would be looking at a 45 minute commute to drive 15-20 miles.

Belleislerunner - I usually whip myself into shape to run a few trail running races a year, please tell me that there are places to go trail running. Our hope is that we grab the promotion, hang out for a few years and transfer back to Arizona to work, then retire in ten years. But in the meantime I do need places to trail run and hike to keep my sanity.
The exurban areas have more of the trails, but there are some significant recreation areas/trails in and around Farmington Hills, see below:

Heritage Park, Farmington Hills - 211-acre park are 4.5 miles of trails for hiking and nature study
Farmington Hills, MI - Heritage Park


West Bloomfield Rail Trail - 7 Miles long, scenic
https://www.traillink.com/trail/west-bloomfield-trail/


Proud Lake State Recreation Area, Commerce Twp - 4,700 acre nature preserve, 20 miles of hiking trails
Michigan Recreation Search Site Details Page


Maybury State Park, Northville - 944 acres, woods, hilly
http://www.michigandnr.com/Publicati...aybury_map.pdf


Lakeshore Park/Pavilion Shores Park, Novi
https://www.cityofnovi.org/City-Serv...****-Park.aspx


Dodge Park #4, more for walking along the boardwalk along Cass Lake
http://www.michigandnr.com/publicati...odge_4_map.pdf
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Old 02-14-2017, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Ann Arbor MI
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Just in a generic sense I think if there is a bit of a separation between where you work and where you play (hiking, boating, biking,etc) its a better bet to live closer to work. My reasoning is you work 5-6 days a week and you don't always play that much. So if you shorten your 5+/- day a week drive to work and lengthen your 2+/- day a week drive to play you gain more of your life not commuting.
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Old 02-14-2017, 03:11 PM
 
Location: Farmington Hills, MI
70 posts, read 113,378 times
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I would also recommend in additon to Farmington Hills/Livonia/West Bloomfield, look at Walled Lake, Wolverine Lake, and the surrounding Commerce Township. Some more affordable rentals might be in those areas without sacrificing safety and still be relatively close to 12/Halsted. Also, Walled Lake, Wolverine Lake, and Commerce put you closer to the larger parks in the western metro area like Kensington, Proud Lake.
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Old 02-15-2017, 05:41 AM
 
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I live in Detroit and commute to Southfield/Farmington Hills for work. It's only 20-30 minute reverse commute and never hit the brakes - I'd take that over stop and go traffic any day. I just shoot up and down the Lodge Freeway (M10).

As for running - I'm partial to Detroit's Riverwalk - you can run from Joe Louis Arena all the way to Belle Isle along the river with lighted/camera boardwalks. Belle Isle is also a pretty fun fun - 6 miles around - designed by Olmstead - of the NY Central Park, Piedmont Park in ATL and Vanderbilt Olmsteads. Lakeshore Drive in Grosse Pointe from Cadieux (6 Mile) up to Vernier (8 Mile) is another nice run with nothing but lake on one side.

A little more rural - both Kensington Metropark off 275 by Novi and Stoney Creek MetroPark in Shelby Twp have really nice running/biking/rollerblade trails surrounded by water.
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