NeighborhoodScout is a website that creates neighborhood profiles to allow users to easily find and compare data on crime rates, demographics, and real estate trends for different neighborhoods. With a paid subscription, you can also access features like Neighborhood Match and Create Your Ideal Neighborhood, which allows a user to find their ideal neighborhood based on location, keywords, and other criteria they submit.
NeighborhoodScout was designed based on creator Andrew Schiller’s own experiences of moving from town to town for work and school. This service is ideal for those in the market for a new home, particularly if the move will be long distance and they’re unfamiliar with the area. The site is also useful for business owners and investors looking to scout a great location for their next endeavor. Real estate agents can use NeighborhoodScout to find detailed information about prospective neighborhoods for clients. Also, current homeowners looking to keep an eye on crime rates and other neighborhood stats may find NeighborhoodScout useful for a comprehensive look at data that could impact home value and safety.
- Easy to use: NeighborhoodScout has an intuitive user interface that makes it easy to perform searches, access results and locate features within the website.
- Unique features: Features like Neighborhood Match and Create Your Ideal Neighborhood allow users to zero in on neighborhoods all over the country that have the characteristics they value in a community. These features are unmatched by direct competitors like AreaVibes.
- Comprehensive data: While NeighborhoodScout is a useful tool for looking at crime data, it also includes a broad look at other factors — like walkability, proximity to great schools or retirement homes, and employment data — to give users a broad preview of the day-to-day in various neighborhoods.
Neighborhood Scout was named one of our top picks for the best crime maps.
- Expensive: On NeighborhoodScout, most of the information users are looking for is hidden behind a paywall, and subscriptions can be pricey. It is $29.99 to unlock a single neighborhood report, and subscription prices start at $49.99 monthly.
- Oversimplified data: NeighborhoodScout provides a thorough overview of neighborhood data, but it fails to break the data down into specifics or offer a meaningful look at communities beyond averages.
- Customer service: Customer service is a common complaint online, with many reporting that the service is difficult to cancel once you’re subscribed and that NeighborhoodScout is unlikely to offer refunds in the event of accidental charges.
Things to Consider
NeighborhoodScout puts an enormous amount of data at each user’s fingertips, but it’s not free to use. Plus, each user’s situation is unique, and the data provided won’t be meaningful for everyone. NeighborhoodScout users can utilize the site to look at the rates of violent and property crime in specific neighborhoods, as well as compare those rates to other neighborhoods locally or nationally. You can also use NeighborhoodScout to find information about local schools, home prices, and demographics, such as income levels, household type, and lifestyle characteristics.
Know that NeighborhoodScout provides very little information unless you’re willing to pay for a report. As an unpaid user, you can enter an address and get a Google satellite view of the neighborhood, a list of similar neighborhoods in the area, and general information about crime rates in the state. Detailed local crime reports, as well as information on median home prices, schools, and demographics are only available as part of a paid report, which costs $29.99.
Users looking to run multiple reports or make use of other features, like Neighborhood Match and Ideal Neighborhood, will need to purchase a subscription. The basic plan costs $49.99 per month and includes access to 10 searches. For $99.99 per month, you can get 100 searches per month, as well as access to Neighborhood Match and Create Your Ideal Neighborhood. You can increase the number of searches allowed to 200 for $119.99 per month. A small discount is available if users choose to pay for an annual subscription versus month-to-month.
NeighborhoodScout displays aggregated data based on reports from over 18,000 law enforcement agencies, the US Bureau of the Census, the US Department of Justice, the National Center for Education Statistics, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, and other sources. According to the site, it brings “information from these different agencies together in one giant database and then we use our PhD-level expertise to create new, useful profiles and insights about neighborhoods, cities, and towns all across America.” The specifics on how these neighborhood profiles are created are not revealed.
NeighborhoodScout offers comprehensive views of neighborhoods based on publicly available data and statistics, but it lacks input from neighborhood residents themselves. There are no reviews or meaningful insights from those who actually live within the communities it tracks. Additionally, the data is not very specific. A report will give you broad stats, like the total crime index or the rates of violent crime in the city per 1,000 residents, but it does not break those numbers down beyond averages. Users pay for the convenience of seeing a bunch of data broken down into a simplified and easily digestible report, but if you’re looking for specifics, NeighborhoodScout may not provide what you’re looking for.
The Bottom Line
NeighborhoodScout is a great tool for those surveying new neighborhoods or looking to keep an eye on the big picture stats and data that impact safety and livability in their own communities. The easy-to-use design and comprehensive reports give users a convenient look at multiple important factors that determine whether a particular neighborhood meets their standards.
It’s important to note that the majority of NeighborhoodScout’s offerings are not free. Pricey subscriptions mean this site may not be the best option for casual users. Additionally, if you’re looking for detailed data on crime rates and other statistics, you may be disappointed by NeighborhoodScout’s broad reporting and lack of transparency about how it aggregates data to create neighborhood profiles. NeighborhoodScout would likely be most useful in helping current homeowners make decisions about buying and selling, and it’s a good way for those outside of a particular community to get an introduction to the area.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Officer Banta.
Officer Banta is the official SecurityNerd home security and safety expert. A member of the Biloxi Police Department for over 24 years, Officer Banta reviews all articles before lending his stamp of approval. Click here for more information on Officer Banta and the rest of our team.