Livingston County is richest in Michigan (or is it?)

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Before the Great Recession huffed and puffed and blew Livingston County’s housing market to bits, the community for years wore proudly the mantle of fastest-growing in the state.

It’s not difficult to understand why.

If you drew a 40-mile circle from Livingston County’s center, you’d find the Detroit, Ann Arbor, Lansing and Flint areas a tolerable commute away, making it a paradise for residents with high-paying jobs in other counties. Livingston County also lies within the University Research Corridor of the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Wayne State University, and It’s the hub of the markets of Detroit, Lansing, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor and Flint.

Now, it seems, Livingston County’s growth — coupled with the spoils of its location — is nabbing it another crown: richest county in the state, according to 24/7 Wall St.

With the median household income of $72,359 reported by 24/7 Wall St. — which is nearly 50 percent higher than the state’s — Livingston County also has an amazing home ownership rate of 85 percent, one of the highest in the nation.

And yet it remains a smaller, more-rural community of just under 185,000 residents.

For those of you interested in seeing how Livingston County stacks up with its neighbors, here are the latest population and median income statistics for them from the U.S. Census Bureau:

Genesee, pop: 415,376, median income: $42,089

Ingham, pop: 282,234, median income: $45,321

Oakland, pop: 1.232 million, median income: $65,594

Washtenaw, pop: 354,240, median income: $59,055

Wayne, 1.775 million, median income: $41,184

It seems neighboring Oakland County is taking exception to Livingston County surpassing it as the state’s wealthiest. According to the report below from WDIV, Oakland County prefers wealth be determined on per capita income, rather than median household income. If it were figured that way, Oakland County is the winner with a per capita income of $36,458 to Livingston’s $32,129.

I don’t much care whether Livingston County ranks first, fifth or 25th for per capita or median household income. I live here for lots of other reasons, the kind on which you just can’t put a price.

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About Maria Stuart 71 Articles

Journalist Maria Stuart lives in Howell. She worked at The Livingston County Press/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus as reporter, editor and managing editor from 1990-2009. She is often spotted holding court at Uptown Coffeehouse.