Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Crime Reports for DC, MD

One of the things that is frustrating to both clients and REALTORS is that we are prohibited from commenting on whether or not a neighborhood is "safe" due to Fair Housing Laws. (See article "What Realty Agents Won't Tell You.") The web, however, fills that void nicely with a variety of tools, and now there's a new one that looks very useful: CrimeReports.com. Just enter the address and the map populates with recent crime data, including police calls and arrests.

As this CNN article states, the site had its inspiration in a local Arlington County resident, and is not without its own controversy around privacy and other matters. Nonetheless, it's a valuable tool for buyers investigating potential neighborhoods.

It doesn't appear to have Virginia data yet (the site has a form where you can request the data from your local police department); DC and Montgomery County, MD are already online.

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