WalletHub.com, a credit reporting website based in Miami, Fla. has ranked Michigan 30th on its list of Best States to Live In. For its economy, the state ranked 47th.
The site compared the 50 states across five categories: Affordability, Economy, Education and Health, Quality of Life, and Safety.
The Great Lakes State’s 30th ranking came with an overall score of 50.87. In the four categories, Michigan ranked 15th in Affordability, 47th in Economy, 37th in Education and Health, 14th in Quality of Life, and 14th in Safety.
Michigan’s best showing was its fourth place in the nation in homeownership rate.
Massachusetts was the top-rated state with 62.65 total points, followed by New Jersey, New York, Idaho, and Virginia. Mississippi was ranked 50th with a score of 39.77. Alaska, Louisiana, Arkansas, and New Mexico rounded out the bottom five.
Michigan’s Midwest neighbor Illinois was ranked 15th. Indiana filled in the 32nd slot and Ohio placed 33rd.
The point of the exercise, according to WalletHub, is to illuminate what state and local governments can do to improve living conditions in their jurisdictions.
“I find it hard to think about these at the scale of state,” says Kit Krankel McCullough, a lecturer at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, on WalletHub. “Most people choose metropolitan regions, not states, in which to live. So, the best thing state policymakers can do is enable good planning at the metropolitan regional scale. This is difficult to do as metro areas span the city and even state borders.
“Specifically, states can help plan regional transportation systems to link housing to jobs, and pass state-wide legislation to encourage the development of more housing. Increasingly people are choosing to locate where housing is more affordable and leaving states with constrained supply and high housing costs.”
Douglas Kelbaugh, professor emeritus of architecture and urban planning at U-M, says his top five indicators in evaluating the best state to live in are: cost of living, access to jobs and services, comfortable/manageable climate, schools, and culture.
To see the full List of the Best States to Live In, visit here.