3 Best Universities and Areas to Study and Live in Metro Detroit, MI


3 Best Universities and Areas to Study and Live in Metro Detroit, MI

 A student graduating from university along with his fellow seniors
Photo by Charles DeLoye on Unsplash


Parents, the time will come when your children must fly from the nest and start their own lives. And for college-bound students, that time is now. Here’s a helpful guide to the 3 best universities and areas to Study and Live in Metro Detroit.

But, as glamorous as it may sound, this chapter doesn’t come without daunting decisions. It’s one thing to choose which program to take, but it’s a whole other ballgame to choose which university to attend and live in. Moreover, the Metro Detroit area is teeming with multiple campuses and neighborhoods to choose from—leaving most people at a loss with how to find their ideal university.

To help you evaluate and identify the best schools and areas to study and live in Metro Detroit, we’ve listed the top three universities and colleges in the area based on their educational standard, quality of life in the neighborhood, housing options available, and some other key contributing factors.

Find out which university (and area) is the best fit for those looking to enter their university years below.

Top 3 Universities in Metro Detroit

Niche provides us with a picture of where the best colleges are around Metro Detroit, covering the tri-county area of Oakland, Macomb, and Wayne. It also gave a score for each school based on academic standing, the process of admissions, student life, and other similar factors:

Source: Niche


Given these, we’ll be covering the top three universities: the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor), the University of Michigan (Dearborn), and Wayne State University in the City of Detroit. Let’s get into the details.

Top-Rated School: University of Michigan (Ann Arbor)

Address: 503 Thompson Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Website: University of Michigan (umich.edu)

The University of Michigan (Ann Arbor), also called UMich, is a highly-rated public university in Ann Arbor, Metro Detroit. This massive Public Ivy institution that spans 3,207 acres of land is the oldest university in the state, founded way back in 1817. Regardless of its age, the university ranks #23 in the 2022 edition of the Best Colleges in National Universities, and will likely uphold its quality for decades to come.

Source: ThoughtCo.


The university uses a trimester-based academic calendar and offers upwards of 260 degrees for undergraduates. Students can then choose a specific track they’d like to pursue—where Information Science, Economics, and Business are some of the popular options. There’s also Sports Management and Kinesiology and Physical Therapy which UMich has won Niche awards for:

Source: Niche


To study in this university, in-state tuition and fees cost $15,948 while out-of-state tuition is closer to $52,266. There are also additional costs like room and board (approx. $12,034) and books and supplies (approx. $1,045). Other factors you might want to consider are listed in the chart below:


Source: Niche


Note that freshmen are guaranteed housing from the university, but they aren’t required to live inside the campus. Instead, they can opt to rent some place nearby, where the rest of Ann Arbor provides many beautiful rental homes for them to use as their own. The University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) is also only 45 mins away from the City of Detroit, which makes it easy to travel between the two places.

While the student population here is high at more than 30,000, admissions for University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) is very competitive with an acceptance rate of only 23%. But once you get in, 93% of its students will graduate and go on to earn a whopping starting salary of $49,800.

Second Rated School: University of Michigan (Dearborn)

Address: 4901 Evergreen road, Dearborn, MI 48128

Website: University of Michigan-Dearborn (umdearborn.edu)

The University of Michigan (Dearborn), also called UM Dearborn, is a mid-sized public institution founded back in 1959 on the outskirts of the city. The university was built on land that was donated by Ford Motor Co., which explains why the historic landmark Henry Ford Estate is situated within the school’s campus.

Aside from the interesting fact, UM Dearborn ranks #4 in Top Public Universities in Michigan, making it an attractive university route for Detroit locals.

Source: Cappex


The university uses a semester-based academic calendar and offers more than 60 fields of study for students to choose from, like Mechanical Engineering, Psychology, and Electrical Engineering. There are also 30 fields for master’s degrees, including the popular choices of business and public administration. 

UM Dearborn students can also expand their knowledge of different cultures by visiting the university’s specialized institutes: Center for Arab American Studies and the Armenian Research Center.

Here are some awards that Niche has given the University of Michigan (Dearborn):

To study in this university, in-state tuition and fees cost $13,552 while out-of-state tuition is a bit pricier at $27,520. There are also additional costs like room and board (approx. $9,048) and books and supplies (approx. $1,300). Other factors you might want to consider are listed in the chart below:

Source: Niche


Students of UM Dearborn can either live in The Union (the housing option that’s located near the campus) or off-campus in one of the local neighborhoods. Dearborn is also a great place to rent a property, so students can have a home-away-from-home dwelling place to settle in after classes everyday. The university is also closer to the City of Detroit than its Ann Arbor counterpart—just a quick 18 mins away.

Admissions here isn’t as competitive as with the university in Ann Arbor. In fact, the acceptance rate in UM Dearborn is 62%, which means your chances of getting into university is 3x greater in Dearborn than in Ann Arbor, based on simple math. More than half (55%) of the students here graduate and enter the workforce with a starting salary of $37,600.

Third Rated School: Wayne State University

Address: 656 West Kirby Street, Detroit, MI 48202

Website: Wayne State University (www.wayne.edu/)

Last one the list is Wayne State University—the third largest institution of higher learning in Michigan. This 200-acre university is a premier, urban research institution right smack in the middle of the City of Detroit, offering students unparalleled access to explore different cultures, be involved in lesser-known communities, and set their sights on corporate career opportunities.

Moreover, Wayne State University has one of the most diverse student bodies in Michigan, where there are nearly 27,000 students from every US state and almost 80 countries. If you’re looking for an inclusive university, Wayne State University is the one for you.

Source: CrainsDetroit


Wayne State University uses a semester-based academic calendar and offers more than 300 programs across 13 of its colleges. Graduate students can major in areas like business, law, and medicine—where the university ranks highly in its health programs of pharmacy, anesthesia, and midwifery. 

Moreover, students will have many opportunities to conduct their own research, as Wayne State University works in partnership with Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. These schools are collaborating for the benefit of their students and Michigan’s overall economy.

Let’s also not forget the business incubator called TechTown and the first graduate-level repertory theater Hilberry Theater on campus, which provides great help for entrepreneurial and artistic students. 

Source: Niche


To study in this university, in-state tuition and fees cost $13,922 while out-of-state tuition is around $29,754. There are also additional costs like room and board (approx. $11,390) and books and supplies (approx. $1,268). Other factors you might want to consider are listed in the chart below:

Source: Niche


Wayne State University has a wide range of dormitories and residences. It offers different halls, floor plans, and apartments—all at multiple student-friendly price points. All one would have to do is to sign up for a personalized tour to visit the spaces with a student guide. Alternatively, students can simply rent a home or unit outside of campus, since the Detroit market is known for affordable housing options.

Admissions here are the least competitive among the three choices listed in this article. The acceptance rate for Wayne State University is only 73%, which means everybody has a pretty good chance to get into this university—as long as they meet the minimum requirements. Once graduated, the median salary of Wayne State University graduates go on to earn around $50,300.

Study and Live in Metro Detroit: The Future Begins Here.

There are more than a handful of selections when looking for a good university to study and live in Metro Detroit. But if you ask us, the three we’ve mentioned above are guaranteed to give you or your child a solid, foundational education for the years to come.

These universities are also in family-friendly neighborhoods, where it’s easy to find beautiful homes or apartment units to live in—perfectly complimenting a new life of independence. (If you’re a rental property investor like most of the clients we work with, you’ll definitely want to consider investing in Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and the City of Detroit for the exact same reasons as well.)

Get in touch with our team of property managers today to know more about the real estate market in Metro Detroit. We can help you purchase, rent, or invest in your dream home.


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