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5 Things You Should Do If You Live in a High-Crime Neighborhood


5 Things You Should Do If You Live in a High-Crime Neighborhood

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Violent crime has been on a downward trend in the United States over the last two decades, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Even with the decline, high-crime neighborhoods remain a problem in the country. If you live in such an area, you likely worry about property and violent crime. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to stay safe.

1. Start a Neighborhood Watch Program 

Neighborhood Watch programs popped up around the United States in the 1970s, and they are still going strong today. In 2008, the United States Justice Department conducted a meta-analysis of 18 research projects. The meta-analysis discovered that, on average, neighborhoods that use watch programs enjoy a 16 percent reduction in crime. High participation rates are crucial for these programs to work. If you can get most of your neighbors to join the program, you have a good chance of reducing crime. 

2. Install a Video Doorbell

Burglars prefer to break into unoccupied homes, so they often ring the doorbell before attempting to enter. Video doorbells allow you to see and speak to the person outside of your home. You can even talk to the person if you aren't home. This will enable you to trick would-be burglars into thinking you're home when you aren't, so they'll go away. Also, because your doorbell records people when they ring the bell, you can provide police with the video if the burglar moves onto the next house on his or her list. Installing a wireless home security system is essential as well.

3. Install Ample Lighting

Criminals typically go for the low hanging fruit. Most don't want a challenge. They prefer to commit crimes while hidden in the shadows. Install plenty of lights around your property, so criminals will avoid your home. If you don't want the lights on all the time, you can install motion sensor lights. Then, if someone steps onto your property, he or she will be covered in light. People who are there for nefarious reasons will get off your property as fast as they can.

4. Blend in and Walk with a Purpose When Outside 

You don't want to stand out or look like you're new to the neighborhood when you're outside. Figure out where you're going and what route you'll use before you leave the house. Then, walk with a purpose as you go to your destination. Never take your phone or any other valuables out during your walk. Also, do your best to blend in. Don't do anything that will make people notice you. When you live in a high-crime neighborhood, standing out can cause you to get robbed or jumped.

5. Take Precautions When You're Out of Town

It would be best if you took special precautions when you travel. Have the post office hold your mail, so it doesn't build up in the mailbox. If you're gone for a long time, make sure someone mows your lawn, so it doesn't look abandoned. Seal your home up tightly and make sure you don't have a key hidden anywhere outside. Criminals are crafty and can easily find hide-a-keys. Finally, don't post about your whereabouts on social media. If you want to update people on your vacation, wait until you get back home. Then, you can share your pictures and funny stories. 

Follow These Tips to Stay Safe in a High-Crime Neighborhood

You can stay safe, even if you live in a high-crime area. Incorporate these tips to protect yourself and your home. From the Neighborhood Watch program to taking precautions when you're away from home, these strategies have proven to work. 

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