Choosing a place to live is arguably the most important decision you will ever make. In addition to being convenient for your lifestyle, you have to make sure the neighborhood is safe and relatively free of drug activity. While there is no such thing as a safe bet for avoiding a drug infested neighborhood, there are lots of signs and cues to look for when choosing at home.
Location, Location, Location
Generally speaking, neighborhoods located near emergency services and affluent areas have relatively few problems with drug related crime. Neighborhoods that have strong community watch programs are also less prone to drug crime.
Another clue that you have found a safe neighborhood is that it is filled with clean, orderly, and well-maintained homes. This is usually an indicator of homeowners to take pride in their neighborhood and their home – something that heavy drug users rarely care about.
Look at businesses, walls, parks, schools, street corners, curbs, and utility boxes around the neighborhood. If they are tagged with multiple graffiti tags, this is a sign of gang presence. Other obvious signs include; bars on the windows, boisterous partying at all hours the night, excessive traffic, and lots of idle young men hanging around.
Thanks to the Internet, it is easy to look up a variety of crime statistics on any neighborhood in the country. When researching the crimes, pay attention to drug arrests, assaults, thefts, homicides, and rapes. If there are more than a couple of crimes over a couple years, there may be high drug use in the neighborhood. If crimes have increased in the last few months, this area is likely degrading quickly.
The trouble with drug use is that it will invite other forms of crime to the neighborhood. The biggest problems come from hard street drugs such as methamphetamine, heroin, and crank. Users and dealers of these drugs are often addicted, desperate for money, and care little about the world around them. Excessive drug use in the neighborhood gives addicts an excuse to be in your neighborhood, near your home. Some people do not want to live near a treatment center feeling that it will attract the wrong people. You can check locations of treatment centers in a major directory like http://www.drugrehabcomparison.com/dir/
Pay attention to the cues, and research the area before you decide to move in. Remember there is no safe bet, and drug use is everywhere. The key point is to avoid it being a powerful presence that poses a risk to you and your family!