Study: Safest Cities in Michigan 2016

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You may be surprised at the safest places in Michigan. Check out this list to see if your hometown made the cut.

Safest Cities in Michigan 2016
Safest Cities in Michigan 2016 © CreditDonkey

Whether you’re looking for life along the lake or you’re attracted to the rich history, diversity and pride of place that the state has to offer, Michigan is a great place to live.

Crime Down Overall

According to the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Report, both violent and property crimes have been on the decline over the last few years. There were 133,500 crimes against persons reported in 2014 and around 318,000 offenses involving property.

The 50 cities we’ve singled out as Michigan’s safest feature crime rates that are comparable to national and state averages. Several cities had zero reports of certain crimes in 2014, including murder, rape, aggravated assault, and robbery.

If you make your home in the Wolverine State or you’re planning a move here, you might be surprised at which cities rate the best overall. Our study serves as a helpful guide to the places where residents feel safest.


The size of a city generally corresponds to its overall crime rate, with smaller cities usually being on the safer side. To begin our study, we narrowed the field by excluding cities with a population of less than 10,000 residents.

Next, we analyzed FBI Crime Report data for 2014 to measure both violent and property crime in each city. For violent crimes, we looked at the number of murders, rapes, robberies, and aggravated assaults reported in each city. For property crimes, we considered the number of burglaries, larcenies, motor vehicle thefts, and arsons that were reported.

To come up with the 50 safest cities, we focused on four specific factors:

  • Number of violent crimes per 1,000 residents
  • Number of robberies per 1,000 residents*
  • Number of property crimes per 1,000 residents
  • Number of burglaries per 1,000 residents*

We decided to look at not only the overall crime rate in each state but at two distinct criminal acts: robbery and burglary. *Even though these two are included in the overall figures for violent and property crimes, we believe that they merited a closer look because they tend to occur more frequently. When trying to gauge the overall safety of a neighborhood, the robbery and burglary rates can give you an idea of how soundly you’ll sleep at night.

Based on these four criteria, each city was assigned a CreditDonkey safety score. The 50 cities we chose as the safest in Michigan are ranked according to their score. The lower the city’s score overall, the higher it ranked on our list.

Safest Cities 2016: Rankings

50. Mount Pleasant

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 18.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.6
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.967

The city of Mount Pleasant made it onto our list largely due to its low occurrence of violent crime. This community of 26,000 people saw zero murders reported in 2014 and just four robberies. The fact that crime is so rare can be chalked up in part to the effort put forth by the Mount Pleasant Police Department to keep residents safe. Some of the programs sponsored by the department include vacation security checks, safety seminars for seniors, and youth mentoring.

49. Wixom

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 19.6
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.832

If you’re in search of a city that’s packed with small-town appeal, Wixom is a winner. Despite being within driving distance of Detroit, crime here is rare, particularly violent crime. Among the nearly 14,000 residents, there were no murders or arsons reported in 2014. There were just three robberies and 32 burglaries for the year.

48. Fenton

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 19.3
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.5
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.831

Fenton is another smaller spot making our list, with a population of around 11,500 people. The city attracts a decent number of retirees who want to feel safe at home but don’t want to pay a lot to live there, but it’s also friendly to young professionals and families. Fenton sits less than 20 miles south of Flint, which is convenient for residents who prefer to shop or work in the big city.

47. Ann Arbor

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 18.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.812

Ann Arbor, one of three cities in our rankings to exceed a population of 100,000, is surprisingly safe despite its size. Of the 194 violent crimes reported in 2014, there were no murders and only 24 robberies. The Police Department is committed to protecting the safety of Ann Arbor’s citizens, and the Community Engagement Unit is just one example of local programs that are designed to boost resident involvement in crime prevention.

46. Davison Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.5
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.3
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 5.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.772

Davison Township is about 10 miles east of Flint and it serves as a suburban community to its larger neighbor. Just over 19,000 people hang their hats here and they enjoy an exceptionally low violent crime rate. The city has a relatively high percentage of retirees, and the local Senior Center offers a special program focused on safety education for seniors 62 and older who live alone.

45. Chesterfield Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 18
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.1
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.694

Dubbed “The Gateway to Anchor Bay,” Chesterfield Township lies about 35 miles northeast of Detroit. Aside from the waterfront views, one of the things that its 44,000 residents find so appealing is the sense of safety that goes along with living there. Among other initiatives, the Neighborhood Watch program serves as a link between law enforcement and residents in the effort to fight crime in the area.

44. Livonia

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.3
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 18.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.2
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.586

Livonia, a family-friendly city of nearly 95,000 people, is located about 20 miles west of Detroit. The local schools garner good ratings, and there are plenty of diverse neighborhoods to choose from. Residents take home a median income that’s nearly $20,000 higher than the national average and that, paired with affordable housing, adds to its appeal.

43. Woodhaven

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.0
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 18.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.5
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.384

If you head southwest out of Detroit, you’ll eventually end up in Woodhaven, which is part of the Downriver suburban area. The city itself is fairly young, but it has a well-organized police department that’s fully equipped to deal with crime. Fortunately, they’re not called to do so very often. For 2014, Woodhaven reported zero murders, just 2 robberies, and 19 burglaries.

42. Ionia

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 3.0
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 16.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.0
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.292

Ionia is almost smack dab in the middle of Michigan, roughly halfway between Lansing and Grand Rapids. With around 11,400 residents, it’s the largest city in Ionia County. The Department of Public Safety is responsible for keeping locals safe. One of the ways they do that is through community interaction programs like Camp with a Cop, a mentoring program for kids age 8 to 12.

41. East Lansing

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.6
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.4
  • Burglary per 1,000: 3.0
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.185

A college town might be the last place you’d think of settling down if you’re raising children or retiring, but there’s a strong case to be made for calling East Lansing home. Michigan State University attracts the younger crowd, while the proximity to the state capital makes this community a great choice for families, seniors, and young professionals. There’s also a strong emphasis on promoting small businesses, which is a plus if you’ve got the entrepreneurial itch.

40. Grand Blanc Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 15.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 3.1
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.169

Golf enthusiasts will feel right at home in Grand Blanc Township, but that’s not the only reason to consider living there. Housing isn’t a budget-killer and residents take home a healthy median income each year. Besides that, the city has a reputation for safety. There was a single murder reported for 2014 and only four robberies that year.

39. Garden City

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.1
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.7
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 3.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 5.077

Garden City is Livonia’s neighbor to the south, but it ranks higher on our safest cities scale thanks to violent crime and property crime rates that are drastically lower. Local law enforcement emphasizes a community policing approach to keep crime to a minimum and it seems to be working. In 2014, there were zero murders reported and fewer than 20 robberies on the books.

38. Sterling Heights

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.7
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 15.4
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.741

With over 131,000 residents, Sterling Heights is the second-largest city in our rankings and the fourth largest overall in the state. The city has made multiple “Best of” lists, including being named one of the 50 Best Places to Live in America by 24/7 Wall St. Aside from a low crime rate, newcomers flock here because of the reasonably priced homes, top-rated schools, and an unemployment rate that’s well below the national average.

37. Troy

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 16.3
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.9
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.728

Just minutes from Sterling Heights, Troy is another larger city to make our list. It just edged out its neighbor for the number 35 spot, with a slightly better score in the violent crime category. Troy was named one of Money’s Best Places to Live and it was also deemed one of Michigan’s happiest cities by Thrillist. Job opportunities abound and residents take home a generous paycheck, with the median income topping $84,000 annually.

36. Riverview

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.0
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.9
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.691

Another suburb in the Downriver area, Riverview is just a short drive to Detroit. Approximately 12,000 people live there and they do so in relative peace and quiet. The city reported zero murders and 1 robbery for 2014, with 35 burglaries reported over the same period. Nearly a quarter of the city’s residents are 65 or older, but there are many community programs for citizens of all ages.

35. Canton Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.3
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.1
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.609

Canton Township, nestled approximately halfway between Ann Arbor and Detroit, ranks as one of Michigan’s fastest growing communities. Based on the fact that it’s the second largest township in the state and it’s so close to two larger cities, you’d expect the crime rate to be higher here, but that’s not the case. Like Ann Arbor, Canton Township reported no murders in 2014 and half as many robberies as its neighbor.

34. St. Clair Shores

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.3
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.310

If you prefer a lakefront view, St. Clair Shores is a great place put down roots. Just north of the Gross Pointe area and about 20 miles from Detroit, this quiet city of 60,000 people has all the amenities you’re looking for without a high crime rate. The local police department works with citizens through programs like Crime Stoppers and Neighborhood Watch to keep the city’s streets safe.

33. Huron Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 11.4
  • Burglary per 1,000: 3.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.125

Huron Township (not to be confused with Huron Charter Township) is a quaint little town located along the shores of the Huron River. It has a decidedly outdoorsy feel, and nature lovers will appreciate the miles of bike trails and the kayaking action along the river. If you’re wondering which neighborhoods are the safest, you can use the police department’s crime-mapping tool to see when and where crimes are occurring.

32. Novi

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 14.5
  • Burglary per 1,000: 0.9
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.092

Novi rubs elbows with several of the other cities on our list, including Wixom and Farmington Hills. It’s convenient to both Ann Arbor and Detroit, which is great for commuters. The population is growing at nearly double the national average, with families and professionals attracted to the good schools, low unemployment, and safe neighborhoods. There were 47 violent crimes reported in 2014, but only 7 of those were robberies. The burglary rate was also much lower compared to similar-sized cities.

Novi attributes their success to:

Our emphasis on community policing and our DDACS, or Data Driven Analysis of Crime and Traffic Safety, which helps analyze traffic and crime patterns in an effort to reduce both. We focus officers in the areas where things are happening with the data we collect. We have officers assigned to sections of the city and they attend the Homeowners Association (HOA) meetings. We are in the schools. Residents trust our officers.

We are always looking at our highest crash intersection and making either traffic control or road improvements. Our Department Of Public Works (DPS) has worked hard with the police department to clear intersections and we have seen a drop in crashes.
Pete Auger, City Manager of Novi

Novi and its surrounding communities benefit from high home values and some of the best commercial real estate in the Detroit area. The result is a strong property tax base and financial resources to support an excellent public safety department, school system, and community recreation facilities.
Sam Morgan

31. Waterford Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.1
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.3
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.2
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 4.089

Roughly 40 miles northwest of Detroit, Waterford Township is a charter township of over 73,000 residents. There’s plenty of historic charm to be found there, along with all the modern conveniences you’d expect in a city this size. Crime-wise, Waterford Township rates well, with 84 violent crimes reported in 2014 and fewer than 1,000 property crimes.

Did you know, Waterford has many programs in place to fight crime?

  • Community Policing

  • Policing Partnerships: multi-housing program, businesses, neighborhood associations, schools, department of corrections, NET and DEA task force and youth coalition.

  • Policing Technologies: in-car laptop computer and video, crime mapping, pawn transactions, target enforcements, task forces, social media, and community safety monitoring.

  • Gary Wall, Township Supervisor, Waterford

30. Thomas Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.1
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 13.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.5
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.926

Moving away from the Detroit area, we head up the road to Thomas Township, which sits adjacent to Saginaw. With fewer than 12,000 residents, it’s one of the smaller cities in our rankings, which translates to a safer environment for the people who live here. There was not a single murder or robbery reported in 2014 and burglary was also rare, with 17 incidents reported.

Credit has to be given to our Police Department. They provide 24/7/365 coverage with limited officers. Our officers have at least 14 years of service in our community other than our two recent hires to add to the total. Consequently, they really do know the people of our community and likewise, the residents know them well enough to be willing to contact them with important information. We encourage our officers to be involved with our local schools, businesses and community organizations. This has created a solid level of trust with residents and business owners.

Outside of our department, the residents of our community play an active role in identifying potential criminal situations, as well as not being hesitant to work with our Police Department to solve any number of situations.
Russ Taylor, Township Manager, Thomas Township

29. Farmington Hills

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 12
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.921

The city of Farmington Hills is a standout among the larger places in our study, with fewer than 100 violent crimes reported among the city’s more than 81,000 residents. The police department takes its job seriously and community policing efforts are very much in evidence. That’s just one of the things that make it a first-rate place to live, work, and play.

Did you know:

The Police Department will expand community outreach initiatives and drug prevention programs.

Emergency preparedness exercises and scenario based police training exercises are planned to help us provide the best possible services during unexpected disasters and emergencies.

The department has highly qualified, well trained and dedicated police officers who embrace community policing. Such positive community connections generate outstanding community support for all of our programs which results in residents embracing crime prevention practices and acting as additional eyes and ears in the community.

This partnership has resulted in all time historic low levels of crime in the Cities forty two year history.
Charles Nebus, Chief of Police, City of Farmington Hills

Farmington Hills has exceptional public safety officers, city staff and residents.

We have great leadership throughout the community and have an exceptional first responder staff.

What makes Farmington Hills so wonderful is the care and pride everyone has for this city. I have been exposed to many residents who have played a role in saving a life and have seen others "pay it forward".
Dan Irvin, Executive Director, Greater Farmington Area Chamber of Commerce

28. Midland

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.911

Midland is no stranger to accolades. Forbes once ranked it as one of the Best Small Cities to Raise a Family in the nation. The city’s reputation for safety is a big part of that, and both violent and property crimes are infrequent. The robbery and burglary tallies for 2014 came to 8 and 57 incidents, respectively.

27. Brownstown Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 11.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 2.6
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.835

Brownstown Township is a little different from some of the other cities we’ve covered so far. Located in the Downriver area south of Detroit, the township is divided up into three distinct segments, one of which sits on Lake Erie. Despite having to cover a lot of ground, the local police department does a good job of keeping a lid on crime. There were zero murders and 7 robberies reported for all of 2014.

26. Grosse Pointe Woods

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.3
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.5
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.827

The city of Grosse Pointe Woods is just one of several communities that make up the larger Grosse Pointe area. Although it’s on the smaller side, it still packs a big punch in terms of livability. That’s due in part to the low crime rate. Homes are slightly more expensive, but residents make more in terms of median income.

25. Trenton

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 2.0
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 11.4
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.817

Trenton is on the western bank of the Detroit River, just a stone’s throw across the water from Grosse Ile. About 20% of the city’s population is over age 65, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, and making sure seniors stay safe is a priority for local law enforcement. The Trenton police also take special care to educate residents about how to avoid specific property crimes, including burglary.

24. Grand Rapids

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 7.1
  • Robbery per 1,000: 2.2
  • Property crime 1,000: N/A
  • Burglary per 1,000: 5.8
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.792

With over 193,000 residents, Grand Rapids is the largest city in our rankings and the second largest in the state. That being said, you might be surprised to see that it ranked in the top 25, but it’s actually quite safe when you compare the crime rate to the population size. Some of the other factors that draw new residents here include a multitude of job opportunities, well-maintained neighborhoods, and scenic views of the Grand River.

23. Marquette

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.3
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.3
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.740

Visitors come to Marquette to fish Lake Superior and soak up the sun at McCarty’s Cove, while residents enjoy the city’s serene nature year-round. It’s received numerous awards over the years, including being recognized as one of CNN/Money’s Best Places to Retire and one of the nation’s best small cities. You’ll have no trouble feeling safer here whether you’re at home or out and about, considering how rare crimes like robbery, burglary, and murder are there.

22. Northville Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.3
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.628

Northville Township is surrounded by several of the other cities in our rankings, including Livonia, Novi, Farmington Hills, and Canton. Like its counterparts, this community scores well when it comes to crime. Community liaison officers routinely interact with the local community to ensure that the city’s streets are safe. If you ever get worried about property crime, the police department will come out and perform a security survey of your home to pinpoint potential trouble spots.

21. White Lake Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.539

Close to 31,000 people live in White Lake Township, which is about 15 miles west of Pontiac. As far as crime goes, there’s not a lot of it. There were 20 violent crimes reported for all of 2014, along with 375 property crimes. Altogether, there were fewer than 45 robberies and burglaries combined. To encourage citizen involvement, the police department sponsors several outreach programs, including White Lake Police Youth Academy and Coffee with a Cop.

Did you know:

The bond between public safety personnel and the citizens they protect is at its highest level in recent history.

The trust created by that relationship has allowed the public safety professionals to work toward collaboratively toward creating a safer White Lake. With the infusion of public involvement into the public safety formula it creates eyes on every corner to hail public safety professional before quality of life issues are beyond repair. It is our belief that if we keep our citizens interests first before our own and base our decisions on that, we have built a solid base.

The White Lake Township Police Department has many community based projects that are ongoing and increase safety such as: Citizens Academy, open house, PACT program, prescription drug drop-off, vacant home check, police youth academy, school resource officer/dare officer. Further, the police department is about to unveil their senior welfare contact program. This program will engage the township senior population to have contact with the officers of the department as a sort of liaison to services, sounding board for problems, or just human contact if needed.

The White Lake Township Fire Department takes a holistic approach to keeping the community safe through public fire education, fire prevention inspections, quick fire attack, as well as prompt emergency medical response. Our Fire Department operates with integrity, teamwork, professionalism, and a high level of dedication to serve the community. Nothing is taken for granted, as we work hard every day to maintain apparatus, train personnel, and strive to provide the best outcomes possible to our customers due to our emergency response efforts.
Greg Baroni, Supervisor, White Lake Township

20. East Grand Rapids

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.3
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 12.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.516

It’s easy to see why East Grand Rapids was voted one of Family Circle’s Best Towns for Families in 2015. There are the nature trails to explore along Reeds Lake, the charming Gaslight Village area, and the highly-rated schools. If you can’t afford one of the mansions along the lakefront, there are still plenty of affordable homes to choose from and you can relax knowing the neighborhoods are safe.

19. Plymouth Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.7
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 10.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.355

Another city that’s been recognized by Money magazine as one of the best places to live is the township of Plymouth. The city lies just south of Northville Township and west of Livonia. In 2014, Plymouth Township reported 20 violent crimes in all, two of which were robberies. There were just under 300 property crimes, which included 45 burglaries.

The Plymouth Township, along with the City of Plymouth, have a great sense of community and pride. When you have that sense of commitment to the community, I often find you have an exceptionally safe community. Our boarding communities are also safe communities that contribute to our quality of life.
Wes Graff, President, Plymouth Community Chamber of Commerce

18. Lincoln Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 10.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.239

Lincoln Township lies along the shore of Lake Michigan, which means it sees a steady flow of tourist traffic, especially during the warmer summer months. Despite the temporary swell in population, the city doesn’t see a spike in its crime rates. Overall, 2014 saw a mere 9 violent crimes and 156 property crimes. Those are pretty good odds if you’re looking for a safe place to live.

Lincoln Township is a largely residential community of middle class families who are often employed in the surrounding area such as Whirlpool, the DC Cook Nuclear plant and numerous other smaller employers.

The residents of this community are very involved in the support of the local school districts, Lakeshore and St. Joseph as is evident by school sports facilities which have been built by largely donations and fund raising activities of athletic support groups.

With that said the community also shows its support of emergency services including law enforcement. We have had large margin voter approval on our two separate police millage renewals for several election cycles.

Our community is safe because our citizens support and respect our efforts to provide professional law enforcement--most of the eleven full time officers have lived in our area and their children educated in the local school system(s). We have very little Officer turn over as this is a great place to work and live.
Daniel Sullivan, Chief of Police, Lincoln Charter Township Police

17. Royal Oak

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.3
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 10.0
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.170

The city of Royal Oak is one of Detroit’s larger suburbs, with close to 60,000 residents. It’s also one of the area’s safest locales, especially when it comes to violent crime. Royal Oak has a lot to offer young professionals who work in the nearby Motor City in terms of nightlife and entertainment. The local school system and the moderately priced homes also make it a hit with families.

16. Shelby Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 9.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.158

Shelby Township is one of the Detroit area’s fastest-growing suburbs, with a population approaching 77,000 people. If you love spending time in the great outdoors, you won’t be disappointed. There are more than 1,200 acres of public park land, and the Clinton River winds its way through part of the city. Residents can hike, bike, and stroll in surroundings that are both picturesque and safe.

15. Green Oak Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 10.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 3.085

Located less than 20 miles north of Ann Arbor, Green Oak Township is a thriving smaller city of roughly 18,000 residents. The population is a mix of folks both young and old who appreciate the safety of this close-knit community. In all, Green Oak saw zero robberies and 26 burglaries in 2014, which can definitely add to your sense of security if you’re concerned about avoiding high-crime areas.

14. Birmingham

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 10.0
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.997

The downtown shopping district is one of the highlights of living in Birmingham, attracting plenty of people from neighboring cities, including Detroit. Fortunately, both visitors and residents alike have no trouble feeling safe here. The Birmingham Police Department keeps a close eye on things, and a concerted effort is made to involve the community in policing efforts.

13. Farmington

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.3
  • Property crime 1,000: 9.1
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.2
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.877

Farmington sits just south of Farmington Hills, but with less than 11,000 residents, it’s only a fraction of the size. That works in its favor, however, when it comes to the crime rate. Overall, it has one of the lowest violent crime rates in our rankings and it also does pretty well in the property crime department, with only 13 burglaries reported in 2014.

12. Rochester

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.9
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 8.6
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.6
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.681

Rochester’s historic downtown is a hotspot for locals and out-of-towners. There are more than 350 shops, restaurants, and businesses to explore. There’s also plenty of green space for stretching your legs if you get tired of hitting the stores. Whatever you do in your spare time, you can feel at ease where your safety is concerned.

11. Berkley

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.5
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 8.9
  • Burglary per 1,000: 0.8
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.578

The city of Berkley rates second in the state for livability according to AreaVibes, and it’s not just because of the low crime levels. Housing is a bargain and residents are earning incomes that are well above the national median. The local school system comes highly recommended, and there’s an abundance of things to see and do around the city.

10. New Baltimore

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 8.2
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.4
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.552

New Baltimore is a resort town along Michigan’s Anchor Bay. For the 12,000 or so people who live there, it’s an idyllic place to call home. Both violent and property crime are a rarity, something the New Baltimore police department takes great pride in.

9. Bloomfield Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.4
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 7.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.6
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.499

Bloomfield Township is one of the more expensive places to live in Michigan, with the median home value set at just over $338,000. Fortunately, residents are earning a median income that approaches $110,000 annually. Even though it costs a little more to live there, it’s a trade-off for how safe you’ll feel at home, at work, or when you’re out on the town.

One of the things that make us one of the safest municipalities is the quality of our staff and officers as well as the follow up on every occurrence – large or small.
Leo Savoie, Bloomfield Township Supervisor

Bloomfield Township is a remarkably safe community, but that didn’t happen by accident. The Township has worked hard to remind residents that crime can occur anywhere, and they have to be vigilant too. Our police department is first rate and has a thorough understanding of the community and any potential risk it faces. They know the residents and can tell immediately if something just doesn’t look right. And they – along with the firefighters – don’t just do their job. They take extra care to ensure that nothing suspicious is happening. The township is amazingly responsive to residents’ concerns, and not just in emergency situations. Customer service is highly stressed here.

If people have a question about any issue, they can call or email and expect an answer in short order.

We also use our resources, such as the cable TV station, the weekly eNewsletter and quarterly mailed community newsletter, to stress safety issues and alert residents of any potential threats. We have a lot of seniors in this community, and they are especially vulnerable to scams, such as IRS ripoffs, disreputable contractors and the host of other email, phone call and letter scams. We routinely make people aware of them and how to deal with them.
Greg Kowalski, Director of Community Relations, Bloomfield

8. West Bloomfield Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.8
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 7.8
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.461

Nearby West Bloomfield Township has roughly 20,000 more residents than Bloomfield, which may be explained by the fact that housing isn’t quite as pricey. As the largest city to make our top 10, it boasts some impressively low numbers in terms of crime. There were 50 violent crimes in 2014, including 5 robberies. Property crimes occurred more often but there were still less than 85 burglaries for the year.

7. Beverly Hills

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 8.2
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.0
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.383

The village of Beverly Hills isn’t quite as swanky as the California city with the same name, but the 10,500 people who live here don’t seem to mind. As a suburb of Detroit, it’s a good choice for commuters who work in the big city as well as families and retirees who prefer the small-town life. Crime is practically a non-issue, with just 2 violent crimes and 86 property crimes reported for 2014.

6. Clawson

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.1
  • Property crime 1,000: 7.2
  • Burglary per 1,000: 0.7
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 2.148

Clawson describes itself as a “Little City with a Big Heart” and that’s certainly clear to the people who live there. They’ve got several choices for dining and shopping. And if you ever want to start a business of your own, entrepreneurship is highly encouraged. Whether you’re raising a family or whiling away your golden years, Clawson offers a safe and welcoming environment.

It gets better:

We are finishing a camera system in 2016 for our recently upgraded city park. We expect that will help secure our park and make it safer.

We have an excellent tight-knit community where neighbors look out for one another. Our Police Department does an excellent job patrolling and keeping our Clawson safe.
Mark Pollock, Clawson City Manager

5. Milford

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.2
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 5.5
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 1.761

The village of Milford is nothing if not family-friendly and exceptionally safe to boot. There were 4 violent crimes total reported in 2014, all of which were categorized as aggravated assault. Ninety-one property crimes were also reported, with 21 of them listed as burglaries. Those relatively low numbers are good reasons to consider calling Milford home sweet home.

4. South Lyon

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.9
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 5.5
  • Burglary per 1,000: 0.3
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 1.688

South Lyon is about 20 miles north of Ann Arbor and it pairs a rich history with a forward-looking approach. It doesn’t take much to feel safe and sound there, especially considering how infrequent crime is. In 2014, there wasn’t a single robbery reported, and the number of burglaries came to 4, which is the lowest overall in our rankings.

3. Flushing Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 1.6
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.2
  • Property crime 1,000: 3.7
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.2
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 1.671

Flushing Township almost completely surrounds the city of Flushing, and it’s just a hop, skip, and a jump up the road from Flint. A lack of major highways cutting through the city has meant that it’s kept a small-town feel, but you won’t hear the locals complaining. There may be less hustle and bustle, but there’s also less crime, which makes it an excellent choice if your focus is on safety.

Flushing is a tight knit community. Every one know everyone else. If something isn't right one person will call another to check things out. In that way if something non safe was happening soon someone would contact the authorities.
Susan Little, Executive Director, Flushing Area Chamber of Commerce

2. Hamburg Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.5
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 4.5
  • Burglary per 1,000: 1.1
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 1.499

The township of Hamburg lies just between Oneida Lake to the north and Zukey Lake to the south. Five miles of the Lakelands Trail stretches through the city, so you’ve got plenty of room to ramble or ride your bike. If you’re looking for something different, you can try the Merrill Field Disc Golf course or Winkelhaus Park for safe outdoor fun.

1. Grosse Ile Township

  • Violent crime per 1,000: 0.1
  • Robbery per 1,000: 0.0
  • Property crime 1,000: 4.0
  • Burglary per 1,000: 0.5
  • CreditDonkey safety score: 1.158

The middle of the Detroit River might seem like an odd place to establish a city, but that’s where you’ll find Grosse Ile Township. With 10,150 residents, it’s the smallest city to make our list as well as the safest. For 2014, there was 1 violent crime reported (an aggravated assault) and 41 property crimes, including 5 burglaries. If you like living on the water, Grosse Ile is the hands-down choice where safety is concerned.


Just because a particular city didn’t make the list doesn’t mean it’s not a safe place to live. Not every city reports crime information to the FBI, which may account for its absence on our list.

Even if you’ve chosen a safe place to live, you can feel even safer by installing a home security system or invest a few bucks in some inexpensive methods for deterring would-be burglars. Some effort and a small investment can be well worth sleeping well at night.

The Top 50 Safest Cities in Michigan

RankCityPopulationTotal # of Violent Crimes1Total # of Property Crimes2Violent Crime Per 1,000Robbery Per 1,000Property Crime Per 1,000Burglary Per 1,000
1Grosse Ile Township10,1501410.
2Hamburg Township21,67610970.
3Flushing Township10,32417381.
4South Lyon11,69811640.
7Beverly Hills10,4932860.
8West Bloomfield Township66,222505140.
9Bloomfield Township42,112173300.
10New Baltimore12,24471010.
15Green Oak Township18,151151830.
16Shelby Township76,556957601.
17Royal Oak59,377755941.
18Lincoln Township14,51091560.
19Plymouth Township26,973202950.
20East Grand Rapids11,30631370.
21White Lake Township30,940203750.
22Northville Township28,801233550.
24Grand Rapids193,38513817.12.25.8
26Grosse Pointe Woods15,807221911.40.312.11.5
27Brownstown Township30,577443401.
29Farmington Hills81,682959771.
30Thomas Township11,718131541.
31Waterford Township73,308849301.10.312.72.2
33Huron Township15,637251791.
34St. Clair Shores60,1571117641.80.312.72.4
35Canton Township89,07311813271.
38Sterling Heights131,60422220261.
39Garden City27,035583812.10.714.13.4
40Grand Blanc Township36,613595791.
41East Lansing48,5551356982.80.614.43.0
45Chesterfield Township44,2111077972.
46Davison Township19,057472842.50.314.95.4
47Ann Arbor117,76819422001.
50Mount Pleasant26,227634912.

1Violent crime includes murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.
2Property crime includes burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.

Rebecca Lake is a journalist at CreditDonkey, a home security comparison and reviews website. Write to Rebecca Lake at

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