Moving to a new neighborhood comes with several challenges. Topping the list of priorities for many homeowners is the question of safety. Even if you’ve been living in your community for several years, safety could be compromised with the arrival of a few shady neighbors.
The statistical evidence is certainly alarming. According to a Gallup study, 78% of Americans are reporting a rising crime rate. From burglaries, vandalism, drug trafficking, and gun violence to even physical assault and murder, there seems to be no end to the media stories reporting crime from all across the country. So, whether you’re living on your own or with your family, worrying about safety comes hardly a surprise. This is why, for many people, the safety of their communities has become a growing concern.
So, is your neighborhood safe? Here are 5 tools that can help you find out.
1. Family Watchdog
Family Watchdog collates sex offender details from each state into a single online database. So, if you want to check whether any registered sex offenders are living or working around your neighborhood, this would be your best solution. All locations are plotted on a map, which you can browse by state or city. And each mapped address provides the offender’s name, age, a physical description, and details of the type of offense committed.
This is a must-have resource for anyone concerned about protecting their loved ones from sexual predators. The registry is updated regularly and includes violent and drug offenders, too. You can even search known offenders and keep a tab on their whereabouts when they move. Family Watchdog also offers email alerts to notify you when a registered sex offender moves in within five miles of your home or workplace. And all these services are available completely free.
Nuwber is a popular people search site with millions of profiles of US citizens. Whether you’re feeling suspicious about a new neighbor or want to run a background check on the new babysitter you’ve hired, this is an excellent tool to have at hand.
The site retrieves information from publicly available sources and builds profiles to provide accurate and reliable data about individuals. So, it’s a great place to verify details you already know or even to reverse search a person based on their name, address, or phone number.
And similar to search engines, Nuwber allows you to remain completely anonymous. But unlike Google, it summarizes all relevant data on a single screen. This can save you from the time-consuming hassles of sifting through a ton of web pages. And most of its basic information is available for free, while you can access more in-depth reports with a small payment.
Want a snapshot view of your community’s safety rankings? AreaVibes can help you with that. This free tool provides livability scores based on seven essential criteria, including crime. The scores are calculated based on data statistics to provide reliable livability metrics. And they even display ratings from local residents. This could be useful to get a first-hand account of the pros and cons of living in a particular neighborhood.
AreaVibes’ crime score covers both violent and property crimes. These include murder, rape, robbery, burglary, as well as vehicle theft. Besides the crime score, it also provides more in-depth insights on how your local crime rates fare against other cities and the national average. There’s even a crime heat map that allows you to find the safest areas in your city. And their ratings on the cost of living, housing, schools, and employment could be extra helpful to homeowners in search of a new property.
Overall, AreaVibes is a highly versatile tool to find that perfect neighborhood for your family. Even if you have no plans to relocate, it’ll help you keep track of your community’s safety records. Any unusual spikes could be a sign that it’s time to move.
Earlier known as CrimeReport, CityProtect works with law enforcement agencies to plot crimes taking place around communities on a single map. This allows even ordinary citizens to find out what’s happening around their neighborhoods. These incident maps provide an incredible level of transparency to help you safeguard yourself against an imminent threat.
You can simply type in your address and pull out a plotted map of locations where crime has taken place. The list of crimes is comprehensive and includes assault, sexual offenses, homicides, kidnappings, robberies, and a host of other offenses. You can also filter by month, week, date range, or even by the type of crime.
CityProtect even welcomes you to play an active role in crime prevention within your community. For instance, you can provide a tip to your local agency or register your security cameras to help with investigations.
There is nothing better than community support to tackle neighborhood safety. And that’s exactly what Nextdoor aims to help you achieve. It’s a social networking app designed for neighbors to share information, rally support, and take action. You can simply enter your address to find and join your local community on Nextdoor.
It’s an excellent app to stay in the know of what’s happening near you. Community members can share information about any nearby thefts, suspicious activities they’ve noticed around the neighborhood, or any other general concerns. You can enjoy real-time news, receive urgent crime alerts, set up private crime prevention groups, and organize crime watch meetings. It’s the perfect digital environment for you to create a safe, respectful, trusted, and supportive community together with your neighbors.
Remember, even the safest communities aren’t immune to crime. So, even if you’re living in a low-risk neighborhood, getting to know your neighbors will not go to waste. Stay alert, practice caution, and work together with the community to ensure the safety of your loved ones.