Living in a Bad Neighborhood: 26 Signs You Shouldn’t Ignore

Last Updated on February 19, 2024

If you’re surrounded by random garbage, thick graffiti, and groups of idle teenagers, it’s likely that you’re living in a bad neighborhood. But what exactly makes a neighborhood bad? In this post, we’ll identify the top 26 signs that you’re living in a bad neighborhood and provide 3 tips to stay safe in a dangerous community.

If you want to learn about the signs of a bad neighborhood, keep reading.

How to Tell When You Are in a Bad Neighborhood

When considering a new home, it’s important to be aware of signs that indicate a bad neighborhood. Here are 26 additional signs to add to the list:

  1. Random Garbage Everywhere: If there is trash scattered everywhere and it’s not cleaned up for a long time, it’s a red flag.
  2. Thick Graffiti: Excessive graffiti on public and private property is another sign of a bad neighborhood.
  3. Many Dilapidated or Abandoned Houses: Too many dilapidated or abandoned houses are red flags of a bad neighborhood.
  4. Bars on Doors and Windows: If 50% or more house owners install bars on doors and windows to stop break-ins, it’s a clear sign of a bad neighborhood.
  5. Fences Around Houses: People living in bad neighborhoods put up fences around their houses to keep strangers out.
  6. Locks Everywhere: People lock things that we usually don’t put locks on, such as mailboxes and air conditioning units.
  7. Broken Car Window Glass in Parking Lots: Broken car window glass is another clear sign of a bad neighborhood.
  8. High Unemployment Rate: In neighborhoods with high unemployment rates, jobless people may do something bad to your property.
  9. Lots of Homeless People: A neighborhood with lots of homeless people is not an ideal place to live in.
  10. Unattended Kids: Kids always playing or walking around your communities on their own is another sign of a bad neighborhood.
  11. Strange Teenagers: Teenagers in poor neighborhoods tend to gather together and behave strangely.
  12. People Talk Loudly in the Street: If you can hear people talking loudly in the street, especially about their daily personal life, it’s a sign of a bad neighborhood.
  13. Noise Late at Night: Loud music or band practices at midnight are signs of a bad neighborhood.
  14. Irregular Police Presence: If the police only patrol your neighborhood during the day but not at night, it could be a red flag.
  15. High Crime Rate: Neighborhoods with a high crime rate are not ideal places to live.
  16. Gangs: The presence of gangs is another clear sign of a bad neighborhood.
  17. Illegal Activity: Drug dealing, drug use, and prostitution are characteristics of a bad neighborhood.
  18. Pairs of Tennis Shoes Thrown Over Electric Wires: Shoes over electric wires can represent gang hangouts or drug dealing spots.
  19. Most Popular Dog: Pit Bull: Neighborhoods with a high number of pit bulls may have loose breed-specific regulations.
  20. Frequent Yard Sales: Frequent yard sales with useless items can indicate a bad neighborhood.
  21. Not Enough Basic Infrastructure: Poor infrastructure, such as sidewalks and overpasses, or infrastructure in disrepair are signs of a bad neighborhood.
  22. Shot Out Street Lights: Poor neighborhoods may not have well-functioning street lights, which can bring concerns to residents.
  23. Check-Cashing Stores, Pawn Shops, and Payday Loans: A high concentration of these businesses indicates a bad neighborhood.
  24. Bulletproof Glass on Local Stores: Stores using bulletproof glass may indicate a dangerous neighborhood.
  25. Pizza Not Delivered to Your House: If pizza places avoid delivering to your neighborhood, it could be a sign of an unsafe area.
  26. Off-Brand Stores: A lack of major brand stores and presence of off-brand stores like Kennedy Fried Chicken may indicate a bad neighborhood.

Tips to Stay Safe in a Bad Neighborhood

With the 26 signs of a bad neighborhood in mind, here are three tips to stay safe in a bad neighborhood:

1. Install Security Cameras

Installing security cameras is one of the most proactive methods to protect yourself and your property in a bad neighborhood.

According to home security statistics, homes without security systems are up to 300% more likely to be broken into.

Security cameras can capture images and send immediate notifications when they detect motion, allowing you to take timely action.

The recorded images and videos can also serve as evidence to help identify individuals, making it easier for the police to catch thieves.

For example, the Zosi C296 security camera can help solve local theft problems.

C296 - Pan Tilt IP Security Cameras

  • 4K Ultra HD/5MP Super HD
  • Starlight Color Night Vision
  • Pan & Tilt
  • PoE/WiFi Connection
  • Light & Siren Alarm
  • Upgraded AI-Powered Detection
  • 2-Way Audio

2. Stay Alert

Improve your awareness to make better preparations when living in a bad neighborhood.

For instance, pick a direct route from your home to the nearest entrance of your neighborhood.

Avoid going out alone, especially at night. Try to have company whenever possible.

Know where the police are located so that you can find them immediately when you need help.

3. Get to Know Your Neighborhoods

If possible, try to blend in with the local environment and get to know your neighbors. You may find that they are nice people!

Joining a local neighborhood watch can also help you stay aware of what’s going on in your neighborhood. If there is no such organization, you can learn how to start a new local watch with several neighbors.

These tips also apply to people running businesses in a bad neighborhood.