A neighborhood’s safety—or lack thereof—isn’t simply a matter of statistics. There are steps you and your neighbors can take to create a safer environment and discourage crime in your surrounding streets. So get proactive and start adopting some of the following habits:
Get to know your neighbors. In today’s society, unfortunately, we tend to keep to ourselves more and more. But keeping the communication flowing between you and your neighbors is an important step toward a safer community.
Spend more time outside. Would-be criminals are deterred by a highly active neighborhood. So spend time gardening and hanging out in your yard, walking the dog, taking bike rides and encouraging the kids to play together outside.
Be discreet at night. Draw the curtains and blinds at night, and dim the lights so that the contents of your home aren’t on full display for potential criminals.
Maintain your yard. A well-kept yard and manicured lawn are also deterrents to criminals, so invest time in basic lawn maintenance, such as mowing the grass, weeding and trimming bushes. Encourage your neighbors to follow suit.
Have a well-lit street. If you feel your street should have street lamps and it doesn’t, petition your local municipality. Otherwise, make sure you have sufficient outdoor lighting on your home, and join forces with your neighbors to leave house lights on overnight to keep your street shining.
Get to know your local police. Developing a relationship with local law enforcement is an important step to creating a safer neighborhood. Express to them any specific safety concerns you may have about your neighborhood, and ask them to ride through on patrol each night. The police can even help you organize a neighborhood watch program if you’re interested.
These simple steps will not only give you peace of mind, but will help put safety into your own hands.