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May be moving to Michigan.

May be moving to Michigan.

Old Sep 26th 2012, 8:03 am
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Default May be moving to Michigan.

Hi, I am Sue from UK currently living in Istanbul with my husband, two children and dog!

We might be moving to Ann Arbor in Michigan next summer, does anyone on here live there or nearby?

Thanks!
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 8:33 am
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

Originally Posted by chilwell View Post
We might be moving to Ann Arbor in Michigan next summer, does anyone on here live there or nearby?
Ann Arbor is a college town - quite nice actually! My wife's family grew up in Detroit - about 45 minutes east. I'm sure someone here knows more about the place than I do... all I've ever done is drive through it on my way from Detroit to Kalamazoo!

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Old Sep 26th 2012, 9:43 am
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

I lived about an hour's drive north of Ann Arbour for 7 years so if you have any general questions about living in MI I can help, but sorry, not much help with specific questions about Ann Arbour.
Try www.city-data.com
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 10:01 am
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

Thanks both of you.
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 10:03 am
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

Originally Posted by lisa67 View Post
I lived about an hour's drive north of Ann Arbour for 7 years so if you have any general questions about living in MI I can help, but sorry, not much help with specific questions about Ann Arbour.
Try www.city-data.com
Well what is life like in Michigan, what did you love, what did you hate? Is it easy to cook meals from scratch there or is everything processed as I've been led to believe? Are there houses? Don't really want to live in an apartment!

Thanks!
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 1:06 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

Originally Posted by chilwell View Post
Well what is life like in Michigan, what did you love, what did you hate? Is it easy to cook meals from scratch there or is everything processed as I've been led to believe? Are there houses? Don't really want to live in an apartment!

Thanks!
I loved living in Michigan, especially in the summer. The summer's are short but hot (85f +) a lot of people where we lived owned boats because of the St. Clair river and Lake Huron and Lake St. Clair.
I used to enjoy a jaunt over in to Canada where British goodies or their equivalent, are more readily available.
Winters are cold and snowy. I must admit that after 7 years I was happy to leave the winters behind but my kids, who grew up there, still miss the snow.

Yes, there are plenty of houses (your comment made me smile) and yes, plenty of grocery stores so you can cook meals from scratch, but eating out a couple of times a week is the norm for most people.
We used to go to Detroit to watch the baseball games, go to Fox theater to see a concert, go to the Detroit institute of the Arts etc. etc. don't let the scary stories put you off. Detroit has some great things to offer and is safe as long as you stay in the touristy downtown bit.
The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village is a favorite place of ours to visit when we go back.

Hope this helps
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 2:21 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

As mentioned AA is a college town. We've been to the town centre quite a bit and feel it is also quite European. Narrow, one way streets, plenty of bars and cafe's. Lots of artsy type things going on. I think there is a market on most Saturdays too. Good restaurants. And Zingerman's - best (expensive) sandwich shop ever. Don't know anything about the suburbs though.

As for Michigan. We love it - for 6 months of the year. Summers here are great. They're warm, only occasionally hot and humid. And rarely do you get hit with REALLY severe stormy weather. Winters are long, cold and snowy. And that is why we're leaving. If you're into winter outdoor pursuits, such as skiing, snowmobiling or hunting, you couldn't do much better than to choose Michigan. On the plus side, the cold does keep the snakes and crazy bugs away. All the lakes and the north part of Michigan are stunning. We'll be sad to leave.

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Old Sep 26th 2012, 4:48 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

I was lucky enough to spend a few years near Detroit and absolutely loved it. As other posters have said there is so much to do, even downtown - Eastern Market has lots of fresh veggies!
AA is a great place - really lively (thanks to the students) with some lovely buildings (university) and great restaurants etc. They have loads of events, including an annual art fair which lasts about a week. They also have a very wide variety of houses from the cookie cutters on subdivisions to the older more individual homes.
Good skiing is only a few hours drive away, and the Fall is as good as anything you'll see in New England.
Liked - everything, Hated - leaving
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Old Sep 26th 2012, 10:28 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

we live in neighboring Ohio but have vacationed in Michican and it has some lovely bits. It seems a very 'outdoorsey/sporty' place - lots of boating, fishing type of stuff.

It grows LOTS of fruits and stuff - cherries its famous for.

It also gets bleeding cold in the winter - with typically LOTS of snow. its not unusual to have a snowcat in the winter in rural areas lol. so bring your thermals!
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Old Sep 27th 2012, 8:33 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

There's been a couple of threads about the town, so might be able to find those threads...but city-data.com is a good spot as mentioned.

The winters though...but horses for courses and all that.
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Old Oct 1st 2012, 8:21 pm
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Default Re: May be moving to Michigan.

I'm near Southfield, about 30 mins away from Ann Arbor. If I could pick a place to live again, I would have opted for AA - seems like there is a nice expat community there. As others have warned you, the winters are shocking. I really struggled the first year, last year wasn't so bad but the cold really just cuts through you. Lots of nice cider mills around the area, lots of opportunities for outdoor pursuits or holidaying by a lake, some nice bars/restaurants. The roads are absolutely terrible though, we have a running joke that we can tell when we've crossed over the border into Ohio because the driving gets smoother.

Food wise, everything is pretty processed if you shop in Walmart/Kroger type places. There is no shortage of fresh veg and fruit in those stores though, and you have Eastern Market down the road as well. Stores like Trader Joes/Whole foods will sell British goods and (can't think of the right way to describe it) more wholesome food, organic/natural.

Plenty of housing and space, if you are coming here on a professional salary I'm sure you'll be able to get a decent house for your money. Depending on what you're used to, the property taxes may be a bit of a shock compared to English council tax. Homeowners Associations can be a bit of a pain, ours measures our grass to make sure it's the required length, that all cars parked on your driveway are up to scratch and not scruffy project cars, won't let you hang washing outside or keep animals outdoors (no dogs in pens or goats on ropes )
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