crime as a factor in buying real estate

2 Replies

Hi Everyone, I am looking for peoples experience in buying when considering the crime in an area and how much crime is too much. Personally, I've lived a majority of my life in California (Palms in LA, Richmond CA when it was bad, Oakland, Berkeley, San Jose) and there is always crime everywhere, theres consistently aggresive homeless people, car break ins, burglaries, muggings, etc, even in areas that are "nicer"

a good example would be : the high rise I currently work in in San Jose. Outside on the street and in the underground parking garage we have a huge crime problem, its a daily occurence to have to the police onsite to arrest someone, to have maintenance reapir/clean up vandalism, and to have homeless camping/urinating/defecating/in the corners. Despite this, the top 21 floors are luxury condos ranging in price from 550000 for a studio to over 2 mil for a penthouse, personally I wouldn't want to pay 2 mil only to see someone peeing on my front door. 

I've looked at crime stats in a number of potential markets but have come to realize that I don't really know what I'm looking for in terms of appropriate levels. What do other people look for in terms of appropriate crime levels?

@Andrew Brewer Don’t confuse San Jose with the rest of the world :) What you put up with me to avoid a 90 minute BART commute doesn’t replicate in a lot of the US. But look at the places where that doesn’t happen (Atherton, Woodside, etc.) and see how it changes the home prices. How far will $2M get you there? That said, crime heatmaps are nice but it’s so much simpler to drive the neighborhood. See what’s going on at 2 pm and 2 am. That should tell you most of what you need to know. And one of the things that can happen is bad areas just keep trending down. Geographic challenges (like, well, an ocean) limit development and help force gentrification. You’re less likely to have that force happen if you can grow in 360 degrees instead of 180.

2 mil?  I wouldn't pay $0.02.  There's a better life.

I look at www.greatschools.com and visit the property during the day and on a Saturday night.

Real estate investing is supposed to make life better.

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