7 TOOLS TO CHECK NEIGHBORHOOD SAFETY
In order to see if your potential or current neighborhood is safe, start gathering all of your investigative tools. There are many online resources and neighborhood safety maps to measure crime in a particular area. Some have additional features like school and park safety. Below, we’ve highlighted the seven most helpful tools and resources:
AreaVibes is a tool that provides a livability score based on your Zip Code™. The livability score uses an algorithm to weigh amenities, cost of living, crime rates, education, employment, housing, and weather. It’s particularly helpful for safety, but if you’re also interested in housing, education, amenities, and education, it covers that too.
You can compare neighborhood crime trends and safety issues with national crime statistics. The community writes neighborhood reviews and safety concerns so you get a feel for the environment first-hand. You can also get demographic information like male-to-female ratio, languages spoken, and marital status. The other cool thing about AreaVibes is that you can get incident reports for the following:
- Vehicle theft
- Property crime
- Violent crimes
Price: Annual fee for detailed data
NeighborhoodScout focuses on real estate in a particular area. It uses over 600 characteristics to build a neighborhood profile.
Its search engine uses patented methodologies like:
- Crime rates
- Income levels
- Rental areas versus owner-occupied
- Crime risk by crime type
- Crime trends and forecasts
This neighborhood app matches people with the best neighborhoods for them and their families. The user can choose exactly what their dream neighborhood would include by selecting certain lifestyle searches and important keywords that link to their database.
This site shows you up-to-date information on crimes happening in your area via a map. You can find this data by simply entering your address or Zip Code™. The data is collected from more than 1,000 participating local law enforcement agencies.
If a person wants more information on a paticular crime that was reported, they’re able to contact the local law enforcement agency directly for a more detailed explanation.
The reports cover everything from property theft, assaults, and even drug use. Their easy-to-read icons are particularly helpful for a quick glance.
CrimeReports also offers these unique features to help you feel extra safe:
- Crime mobile alerts in your area
- Allows you to submit crime tips
- You can register your home or work security camera
- Share incidents via Twitter, Facebook, or email
Price: Free, except for the sex offender report
This site helps you locate registered sex offenders in your area. You enter an address and they’ll show you a map of where the offenders are located. You can click on squares, see a picture of the predators, their convictions and other helpful information.
Family Watchdog lets you:
- Sign up for alerts for when a registered offender moves to your area
- Browse through their blog for neighborhood safety tips
- Search local schools, parks, or shopping locations
- Filter your search by specific sexual crimes such as sexual battery, rape, and crimes against children
Price: Free, but need an account
NextDoor is the best way to stay informed about what’s going on in your neighborhood. It’s a private social network for your community that allows your neighbors to share safety tips, talk about any suspicious activity, and even find a last-minute babysitter.
Signing up is easy and you can have real-time conversations between you and the people living around you.
NextDoor is great for:
- Knowing if there’s package theft in your area
- Stolen vehicles
- Asking questions about safety
- Reporting concerns or incidents
- Starting a neighborhood watch group
6. ADT GO
Price: Free for those using the ADT service, otherwise there’s a monthly fee
This web and mobile location-based app allows you to view your family members on a map and it sends alerts when they get home from school and work or arrive at an event. ADT Go also has an Automatic Crash Detection Service with emergency response so if one of your family members experiences an accident, it alerts their emergency contacts right away.
Some of the other features of ADT Go include:
- Fast emergency response
- Real-time GPS location data
- 24/7 roadside assistance
- Nearby crime data as far as one year back
- Location sharing for your family
Price: One-time fee and in-app purchase
This map-based app lets you quickly check your surroundings in a specific area. You can search for points of interest or addresses and it provides a heat map with high and low crime rates. If you drop a pin on the map, it notifies you if it’s potentially a dangerous area to step into.
Additional Crime and Place features:
- Set up notifications when entering high crime areas
- Weigh different types of crime in a specific area
- Receive alerts you when you leave your comfort zone