© 2024 WEMU
Serving Ypsilanti, Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County, MI
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Latest report shows Washtenaw County has healthy economic outlook, despite problems with housing market

Ann Arbor housing project under construction
Josh Hakala
Ann Arbor housing project under construction

The latest economic forecast for Washtenaw County shows optimism regarding continued growth, but housing costs continue to be a major problem.

According to the latest report by the University of Michigan’s Research Seminar in Quantitative Economics, Washtenaw has a decidedly healthy outlook. However, real wages, which considers inflation, have not been keeping pace and aren’t expected to do so.

Director Gabriel Ehrlich says one major reason is the county’s high cost of housing. He says the area isn’t building enough homes.

“That surprises people because when you drive around, you see new houses being built. You go to downtown Ann Arbor; you see big apartment buildings coming up. But if you look at the building permits data, we’re still running substantially behind where we were in terms of permitting new houses in the 1990s and early 2000s.”

Ehrlich also says there has been an increase in entrepreneurial activity with an increase in self-employment from 16.5% in 2000 to 29% in 2020.

Non-commercial, fact based reporting is made possible by your financial support. Make your donation to WEMU today to keep your community NPR station thriving.

Like 89.1 WEMU on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org

News Reporter and Host Kevin Meerschaert was a student reporter at WEMU in the early 90s. After another 30 years in the public radio business and stops in Indiana, Maryland, Florida, and New Mexico, Kevin is back to where it all began.
Related Content