February 2, 2011
crime maps website could hit house prices in Burnham-On-Sea
A new police website which provides crime maps showing the
streets where crimes have occurred could hit property prices in
some parts of Burnham-On-Sea, it has been claimed this week.
The controversial site, www.police.uk,
went online for the first time on Monday and provides the number
of crimes in every street across the UK, along with general descriptions
of the crimes committed.
According to the site, the most crimes were committed in Burnham's
Adam Street, where 11 incidents occurred. Five were related to
anti-social behaviour, three were violent crimes and a further
three were unspecified incidents.
Close in Highbridge was the second-worst street, where ten incidents
were recorded. Church Street in Highbridge saw eight incidents,
while Burnham's Churchill Close and Pier Street both notched up
of the website say that it may lead to house prices falls in some
David Dalby, a director at the Royal Institution of Chartered
Surveyors, said: "RICS welcomes any improved consumer information
which allows homebuyers to make more informed decisions. However,
taken out of context these crime statistics could have an effect
on house prices."
"It's also worth remembering that information about local
levels of crime is already available through environmental searches
commissioned by conveyancers as part of the buying process, but
only forms one of a huge number of factors taken into account
by consumers when deciding where to live."
A 2004 study by the London School of Economics and Political
Science (LSE) found that more crime in a neighbourhood can mean
lower house prices.
According to the research, it is relatively minor anti-social
but highly visible crimes, like graffiti and vandalism, that have
the largest negative effects on house prices, because they are
seen as signs of deeper problems of neighbourhood social disorder.
Nigel Lewis from Findaproperty.com added: "On the face of
it, online crime maps are a brilliant idea akin to the neighbourhood
watch schemes launched during the 1980s, but they are also dangerous
for the housing market."
"In the same way school catchment areas have skewed property
markets around the UK and created 20% uplifts around good schools,
so these maps could drive down prices in crime-stricken streets
Another critic of the website says the concerns may lead to residents
reporting fewer crimes for fear of affecting property prices in
What's your view? Is the new Police.uk website a useful facility
for Burnham residents or are you concerned about the knock-on
issues? Contact us here