Study: West Michigan sweeps top 10 healthiest housing markets in Michigan

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SmartAsset recently released its seventh annual study on the healthiest housing markets in Michigan, and all top 10 submarkets are located in West Michigan.

The study determined market health by measuring the average number of years residents spend in homes, home values, the ease of selling a home and the costs associated with homeownership in each location.

The top 10 healthiest housing markets in Michigan

RankCityAverage years living in homeAverage homes with negative equityHomes decreasing in valueAverage days on marketHome costs as percentage of incomeHealthiest markets index
1Jenison14.54.5%12.6%53.717.4%97.71
2Walker10.63.7%12.6%53.716.4%94.80
3Grandville12.64.4%12.6%53.717.4%94.42
4Northview13.14.8%12.6%53.718.1%92.28
5Grand Haven124.7%12.6%53.718.2%90.56
6Hudsonville11.74.1%12.6%53.718.2%90.55
7Byron Center10.63.8%12.6%53.717.7%90.37
8Wyoming10.65.6%12.6%53.718.1%87.54
9Holland10.66.8%12.6%53.718%87.16
10Kentwood9.14.4%12.6%53.718.6%84.21

Methodology

To find the healthiest housing markets in the country, SmartAsset considered four factors: stability, affordability, fluidity and risk of loss.

Stability was measured with two key indicators: the number of years people remain in their homes and the percentage of homeowners with negative equity.

To measure risk, SmartAsset used the percentage of homes that decreased in value. To determine housing market fluidity, the group looked at data on the average time a for-sale home in each area spent on the market — the longer homes take to sell, the less fluid the market.

Finally, SmartAsset calculated affordability by determining the monthly cost of owning a home as a percentage of household income in each city.

Affordability accounted for 40% of the Healthiest Markets Index, while each of the other three factors accounted for 20%. When data on the above four factors was unavailable for certain cities, SmartAsset excluded said cities from its final rankings.

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