If you’re considering moving to a new place or just want to assess the safety of your neighborhood, local crime stats can be helpful for your decision making. How do you find accurate stats for where you live? It doesn’t hurt to call your local police department to inquire about local crime, but you can also start with some internet resources. Here are some of the best ways to get a sense of the frequency of crimes in your area.
FBI Unified Crime Report
For accurate stats, start at the FBI Unified Crime Reports. It takes a couple of years for this information to become available, so just be aware of that. Unless something drastic has happened in the area, the crime statistics will still be helpful to know, but if you’re looking for something more up to date, a different source might be better for you. At the very least, this is a good place to start for major, reported violent and property crimes.
Area Vibes “Livability Score”
Area Vibes gives towns a score for “livability.” The wide range of the map allows you to see how your area compares to others nearby. Clicking on an individual area breaks down the score into amenities, cost of living, crime, education, employment, housing, weather and reviews. The Crime Report portion of the site will give you some stats and compare them to your state and national averages per 100k people, and appears to use the FBI Unified Crime Report as a source for stats, but it presents the info in a very easy to understand visual platform.
Family Watchdog isn’t crime stats, per say, but it helps you find out how many sex offenders live in a particular area. This doesn’t necessarily indicate crime levels in an area, but it is an aspect of safety to consider about an area.
Pay attention to the local newspaper in your area, especially the police/crime logs. Depending on your area, you might be able to find this info for free online. If not, paying for a subscription is a good idea especially if safety is a great concern for you in your neighborhood or a community where you are going to live. Staying up to date on local news will give you a very important sense of a neighborhood in terms of crime, but also culture. Local sources like this will likely give you the most accurate and specific info especially if you live in a smaller city, town.
Knowledge is power. Using these sources for criminal stats will not only help you to stay informed about the criminal activity in your neighborhood, but also help to keep you and your family as safe as possible. You can also Help Prevent Crime with Guardian.