Pinckney Michigan Pros and Cons | Living in Pinckney Michigan – MiHomesByAndrew

Pinckney Michigan Pros and Cons | Living in Pinckney Michigan

So you’re thinking about making the move to Pinckney, Michigan? Or maybe you’re wondering what this city is all about and why you should consider making the move there? All your curiosities will be touched on in this pros and cons blog, right now.

Before I jump into the pros and cons list, For those of you that had no idea a city in Michigan by the name of Pinckney existed, to be 100% transparent, this city is hell. Kidding, that just so happens to be an unincorporated community just over 3 miles away from Pinckney. Hell, Michigan, go check it out if you don’t believe me.

Pinckney isn’t fire and pitchforks, it’s this itty bitty village that was incorporated in 1883 and is about 1.67 square miles in size, with a population of just over 2,400 people. Just to put into perspective how small that population is, imagine piling into the Detroit Opera House and having 300 empty seats. Pinckney is located in Livingston County roughly 10-12 miles from Brighton and Howell, and is roughly 22 miles from Ann Arbor.


Transitioning into the pros to living in Pinckney Michigan, we have number one, the community. This is no secret of course, because with small towns, there tends to be a greater sense of community. Just these few reviews of Pinckney Michigan from current and former residents describe how great the community actually is. It’s very easy when living in the Metro Detroit area (more so closer to the bigger cities) that you just feel like a dime a dozen, but in small communities like Pinckney, you have the opportunity to be well known and be apart of something, and I truly believe that there’s a big appeal in that. actually rated Pinckney Michigan to be the 10th best place to live in Livingston county, and the community is definitely a huge factor to that ranking, as it’s based on factors such as affordability, the local housing market, neighborhood diversity, area public schools, walkability, and more. 


Moving along to pro #2, the chain of lakes. So just like anywhere in Michigan, the township, city, and county geography can get extremely confusing and the term “village” in reference to a lot of the areas in Michigan, is a relatively loose term based on region. I say this because when you look up Pinckney on a map it’s this little region with not a whole lot going on, but the Pinckney address spreads out farther than just that and on top of that there’s intersecting regions for Putnam, Hamburg and Dexter Twp, along with the nearby cities of Dexter, Whitmore Lake, and Hell Michigan. Pinckney and the surrounding areas have been blessed with what is called the Huron River Chain of Lakes, which consists of Portage, Little Portage, Baseline, Zukey, Strawberry, Whitewood, Gallagher, Ore, and Tamarack (tama-rick) Lake. All these lakes were so conveniently tied together by the Huron river that 18th century French fur traders traveled from Lake Erie to the larger lakes for trade. All these lakes have something unique and amazing to offer as they range in size, shape, features and so much more that thousands and thousands of waterfront homeowners can attest to. You could get a home anywhere from the low 300’s to well over one million dollars along the chain of lakes, it would just be a matter of preference and what you can afford of course.


Jumping on over to pro #3, we have the cost of living. Pinckney’s cost of living isn’t by any means the cheapest in the state or anything like that, but I wanted to shed a little perspective on it in a positive way. As you can see from this graph provided by that displays the cost of living not only in Pinckney, but the state of Michigan as a whole along with the nation as well. Pinckney’s overall cost of living comes in at 111.4, and from what you can see that’s really pushing that overall up is housing and transportation.

The average sale price in Pinckney is just over $273,000 which is a 12.7% increase from a year ago, and looking at the other nearby cities, it’s safe to say Pinckney is on the lower end of the spectrum. Pinckney is one of the few areas in Livingston county where you can get a fully remodeled 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom home for under $270,000. Whereas, in places like Brighton, you’d be lucky to get something with that same criteria for $350,000. Brighton is the focal point to Livingston County, it’s the most desirable and appealing city to live in the area, and a lot of people will move to cities and villages like Pinckney to get something more affordable with the ability to experience the city of Brighton with a less than painful commute. 

The next graph I want to talk about before I move onto the cons pertains to the amount of homes for sale. As you can see from the graph, Pinckney is pretty consistent when it comes to homes for sale. Keep in mind this is the 1.67 square mile Village of Pinckney, so of course the number is going to be relatively low, but it’s safe to say that if there was a pressing issue or hatred toward the area, there would be some more homes for sale to say the least.


Moving onto what you came here for, the cons of living in Pinckney Michigan. Starting off with number one, the location. I know I was just hyping the area up saying it’s so nice and close to Brighton, Ann Arbor and Howell, but there’s a little more to a location than its proximity to 3 other cities. As you can see from this aerial view of Pinckney, the one major highway that runs through is M36, which runs east to west until it hits M-52 on the west or US-23 on the east. The problem is, Pinckney is pretty centrally located on M-36, so it could take over 20 minutes or so just to get to another intersecting highway or Interstate, which can definitely add some time to your daily commute. Pinckney tends to be a little more rural so of course there’s an expectation there when it comes to a longer commute, but it’s something to keep in mind, as I can honestly say, some of the biggest complaints from homeowners (even some I have helped) have to do with their lengthy commutes. 


Expanding more on this point, brings us to number 2, Not so much to do. Along M-36 is everything you could ever need when living in the area, but with small towns, you tend to lack variety. I know there’s at least a few people out there who can relate to this. It’s like a city having one gas station, a few restaurants, maybe a McDonalds, a church and possibly one form of entertainment. This isn’t a direct depiction of Pinckney by any means, but sometimes it never hurts to have a little variety, and a few reviews from Current residents have even said they go to other nearby cities for stuff to do especially at night, since the night life is lacking. Of course, I can imagine a high school football game could get the town pretty rowdy on Friday nights. 

The city might put on their annual St. Patrick’s Day or Memorial Day parades, have one of the best 180-acre paintball and airsoft fields at Hell Survivors Paintball & Airsoft Playfield, and have great nature and recreational options at Mike Leviner Lakelands Trail State Park and Pinckney recreation, but aside from that, current and former residents complain this small town doesn’t have a whole lot to do outside of that, unless you’re fortunate enough to own a waterfront home on one of the lakes on the chain of lakes.


Last but not least, we have con #3, the opportunity. As you can see, all these cons have all come down to the town being rural, and with that comes a lack of opportunity, where you’ll have a longer commute, and not have the city amenities a lot of other cities have, but one of the few things you can take advantage of is privacy and seclusion in a rural smalltown like Pinckney. So be sure to keep that in mind if that’s of importance. As you can see from this snippet about working in Pinckney, they earned a rating of a B+ and has a median household income of over $77,000. This reviewer says it a little harshly that job opportunities are lacking and if you’re someone with dreams and ambitions you shouldn’t live there. I’d have to respectfully disagree, not so much with the lack of job opportunity mention, but the not living there aspect. In Michigan, you’ll come to find out that the majority of people don’t even work in the city they live in.

My whole family for example, which consists of 6 people not including me, live in a different city than they work in. I know this may come as a shock to a lot of the out of staters out there, but if you see how small our cities are, compared to a lot of all the metro areas around the country, you’d understand the truth behind this. There’s nothing wrong with this of course, it’s just something to consider when you come across another comment like that, when most times it has nothing to do with your job or career.

For those of you in other small towns across the country, How does Pinckney compare to yours? Throw your thoughts in the comments below.


Andrew McManamon is a licensed Real Estate Professional in the great state of Michigan. His philosophy to put people first has paved the way to his extraordinary real estate career. Born and raised in Brighton, MI, Andrew acquired a bachelors degree in business management and marketing from Cleary University in Howell, MI. The combination of his experience and education allows him to take a strategic approach towards every transaction and help his clients make more informed and confident decisions.

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