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States with the Most and Fewest Break-Ins

Did you know your risk for burglary might largely depend on your state? Our team looked nationwide at 2017 FBI burglary statistics to figure out which states present the most and least risk for break-ins per 100,000 residents. Below we offer our rankings and a few interesting discoveries that we made in our data.

States with the Most and Fewest Break Ins

Top 10 states with the fewest break-ins

RankState
1New York
2New Hampshire
3Virginia
4Connecticut
5Massachusetts
6Maine
7Pennsylvania
8District of Columbia
9New Jersey
10Wyoming
Rank
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
State
New York
New Hampshire
Virginia
Connecticut
Massachusetts
Maine
Pennsylvania
District of Columbia
New Jersey
Wyoming

Top 10 states with the most break-ins

RankState
1New Mexico
2Mississippi
3Louisiana
4Oklahoma
5Arkansas
6Nevada
7Alabama
8North Carolina
9South Carolina
10Washington
Rank
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
State
New Mexico
Mississippi
Louisiana
Oklahoma
Arkansas
Nevada
Alabama
North Carolina
South Carolina
Washington

Key findings

New York has the fewest break-ins per capita

New York topped our list of states with the fewest break-ins per 100,000 residents. That could have to do with the bulk of New York’s population living in urban settings with a lot of high rises and apartment buildings––which are much less conducive to break-ins than houses on larger pieces of property.

The East Coast is safer from break-ins

Nine of the top 10 states with the fewest break-ins come from the East Coast. We’re not exactly sure why these states have fewer break-ins, but it could have to do with higher population densities, and more apartment building and high rises that make burglary more difficult. And it’s just as interesting to see that Wyoming sneaked its way into the top 10 states for fewest break-ins.

The South sees the highest rates of break-ins

There’s a strong correlation between the southern states and higher rates of break-ins per capita. Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama all rank in the top 10 states for burglaries. The higher rate of break-ins could have to do with a lower population density than you’ll find in most of the East Coast states where break-in rates were so low.

Safety tips to prevent break-ins

Even if you live in a state with a higher frequency of break-ins, you can take steps to reduce your chance of becoming a burglary victim. Some steps are more obvious, like locking your windows and doors or leaving a light on when you leave the house, but others might not seem obvious as a way to help prevent future break-ins.

Lock your doors and windows

You’re probably already doing this one, but if not, make sure to lock your doors and windows when you’re not home. Burglars look for easy and discreet ways into the house. They’re far less likely to break a window if it’s locked.

Get to know your neighbors

There’s a lot of benefit to getting to know your neighbors, but one of the biggest advantages is being able to keep an eye on each other’s property and belongings. If you’re going out of town for a while, let your neighbors know. They’ll be more inclined to keep watch for anything out of the ordinary.

Store valuables inside

Don’t leave valuables like bikes strewn about your yard or driveway. They make your property much more attractive to a burglar looking for a quick score. If you don’t have a garage or a shed to store those outdoor belongings, try organizing them neatly out of sight and covering them with a tarp.

Invest in a home security system

The best way to prevent break-ins is to buy a home security system. Any potential intruder will think twice when they see security cameras, doorbell cameras, and security system yard signs on your property. Even if you spend less on a basic security system, you’re far more likely to deter someone looking for an easy break-in.

Methodology

Our team looked at data from every state to determine which had the most and fewest reported burglaries per capita. We used the most recent break-in and burglary data provided by the FBI to organize the top ten states with the fewest and most break-ins per 100,000 inhabitants. The data shows which states you’re most likely to experience a break-in, regardless of population.

Sources:

  1. FBI, 2017 Crime in The United States

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