If you are just moving into New York City and looking for a good deal along with a safe neighborhood to buy or rent then it can be a daunting decision because the area is vast and it can be confusing to choose the right place to settle down.
In this regard, Manhattan is quite popular because it has a number of cheap and affordable neighborhoods. But here is the thing, cheap does not always mean the best as some places are more prone to violent crimes and burglary or just general unsafety on the road.
This is an important aspect to consider before moving into a place because it can be troublesome, to say the least, to survive in a crime-prone neighborhood.
This is why it is important to conduct thorough research before you actually move in. Crime mapping applications and online services can give you a basic idea about the safe areas to live in Manhattan.
If you have zeroed in on any particular neighborhood that you like then all you have to do is enter the name in the crime mapping application or service and it will give you a list, time, and type of crimes that occurred in that area in the last few years or months.
Usually, the safest places to live in Manhattan or some of the safest Manhattan neighborhoods are the ones where the maximum population is composed of single people, people with young kids, and /or retired people. These neighborhoods are quieter and more suited to a consistently stable lifestyle and also have lower crime rates.
7 Safest Neighborhoods in Manhattan
It is always recommended that you knock on a few doors of prospective neighbors before you move into a place but before that, you need to have a look at the places you may want to settle down in. so, here is a list of the 7 safest neighborhoods in Manhattan:-
Upper West Side
This is one of the first choices that you or anyone might have simply because of how picturesque this neighborhood is. As the name suggests, it is on the west side of Manhattan between Central Park and Riverside Park and therefore enjoys an abundance of public space and greenery.
Often abbreviated as UWS, it is considered not only one of the most sought-after spots for residence in Manhattan but also a hub of sophistication and intellect.
Not to mention that the Upper West Side is also one of the safest neighborhoods in Manhattan and that is precise because of its location. It is close to both Columbia University and Barnard College, which are located just north of west 110 street; and thus houses many students and academics alike.
On top of that, Central Park West boasts some of the most well-known residences of celebrities. Some of the who had residences in this area are John Lennon. Keanu Reeves, Donna Karen, Bono, and Anne Hatheway. And celebrities usually keep tight security around their houses thus upgrading the overall security of the area.
Needless to mention, buying or renting apartments in the Upper West Side is quite expensive but with that expense comes safety and an upscale lifestyle in one of the most elite areas.
Upper East Side
It is a dream for many to be able to live in the quintessential neighborhood of the Upper East Side. Not only that, but it is also one of the safe neighborhoods of Manhattan, probably one of the safest to live a quiet life in.
The overall safety of the area can be accorded to quite the number of affluent families that have made the Upper East Side their home over the years.
To top that aspect, everything about this area smells posh. Beginning from the upscale buildings to the high-end boutiques and the fine-dining restaurants as well as the well-decorated public spaces that have all sorts of imaginable amenities.
This place is perfect for those who want to live a quiet and peaceful life away from the bustle of Midtown. Tribeca, short for Triangle Below Canal Street is undoubtedly one of the most expensive places to live in Manhattan but it also offers a range of amenities, entertainment, and luxury-living.
This is probably why so many A-listing celebrities reside here and you will probably run into one or two of them if you visit one of the numerous coffee shops or dining houses located in this neighborhood.
Tribeca can be said to have a kind of industrial vibe to it as it was originally a manufacturing hub for the larger part of the 19th and 20th Centuries after which it was gradually redeveloped into residential areas as artists started moving in during the 70s and 80s.
Tribeca now boasts many converted spacious industrious lofts, luxury boutiques, and endless fine-dining restaurants.
In essence, you will be spoiled with entertainment once you set foot here but also will be able to preserve your privacy and lead an unbothered life, given the safety and security in the area. In Fact, the crime rate here has been on a steady decline since 1991 with a 50% decline in major crimes since 2001.
This place gets a bad rep because of its name and probably because of its earlier history of crime rate and subsequent portrayal in popular Marvel comics as a hub of crime that needs a superhero savior to absolve it of bad elements. However, that is hardly the truth as of now. It is actually quite a cool place and is often regarded as a peppy and fun neighborhood to live in.
Hell’s Kitchen may not have airtight security like Tribeca or SoHo but there is no denying the fact that it is one of the safe parts of Manhattan to live in. Because of its abundance of theaters and its proximity to Broadway, many aspiring actors live here as many properties are up for rent in the area.
Up until the 1980s, Hell’s Kitchen was considered a dangerous place to live in but now the crime rates have dropped drastically and the residents now have simpler concerns such as less availability of public space and too much noise from too many bars, especially along Ninth Avenue.
In short, Hell’s Kitchen is safe, affordable and a place to have lots of fun without blowing tons of money. But you might want to look out for the traffic, especially on Hell’s Kitchen avenue which has quite a reputation for pedestrian and vehicle collision accidents.
SoHo, short for South of Houston Street, has long been considered one of the most desirable neighborhoods in New York City as a whole. It is a place that is often romanticized for its picturesque beauty and iconic architecture such as cobblestoned streets, industrial buildings, and cast-iron architecture.
These are nothing but remnants of the earlier identity of the place being a full-fledged industrial manufacturing center.
This neighborhood is not exactly what you would call noisy but there is always a bustle of people around owing to quite a number of art galleries, luxury boutiques, and trendy restaurants in the area. This is a place for people who love to live lives aloud with sounds and smells from multiple cultures.
Often dubbed as “Manhattan’s Shopping mall”, this place also boasts a rich nightlife and quiet moments are few and far between especially in the areas where the bars and restaurants congregate.
It is also considered one of the safe areas of Manhattan as far as crimes are concerned as mostly at all times of the day the place is teeming with people, so there are few chances of getting mugged in an empty street or alleyway.
Residents of this area will often tell you how soulful and welcoming Washington Heights is. This is located in the Upper Manhattan region and can be accessed from midtown by a few minutes’ worth of ride on the A train. It is quite affordable and the architecture mostly consists of pre-war buildings and flats.
Due to the residence of a large population of Dominican and Latin American people, the culture on the streets of this area is quite unique as this neighborhood is one of those very few places where you will still see local grocery stores operated by actual owners. Chain stores have not yet made their way into Washington Heights.
The best part about this area is the affordability of course followed by the safety and security. You will get more space here for less money and there are a bunch of apartments that you can get for $2000 or less.
In regards to its crime rates as well it boasts a respectable position as one of the top 5 safest neighborhoods in Manhattan if we are considering major crimes.
A clampdown on crime, gangs, and corrupted law enforcement led to this change in the neighborhood and the place that once recorded a steep rise in major crimes is now a place where people can walk peacefully in the dead of the night.
Located on the East side, and nestled between the East River and midtown Manhattan, Murray Hills is widely regarded as one of the most quaint and safe neighborhoods to live in Manhattan.
This is a place where antiquity meets modernity and forms a unique blend as is clearly visible from the architecture which was mercantile, to begin with, but has since been renovated and redeveloped into more upscale living areas, which has also led to steep reduction in crime rates over the years.
Here you will find high-rise condos and well-decorated penthouses that house some of Manhattan’s most elite, but will also spot affordable studio apartments for the struggling entrepreneur and such. There is a range of bars and clubs along third avenue which attracts a younger crowd keeping its nightlife rich and vibrant.
With rapid redevelopment in the 1980s, crime rate dropped a staggering 80.7% percent between 1990 and 2018. Very few violent crimes occur here and in the year 2018, not a single violent crime was reported.
The same thing has been preserved in the present post-pandemic era, as law enforcement is similarly strict about clamping down on crime- petty or violent.
With a bit of research about crime rates and such, there is no reason for you not to find an apartment in the vast area of Manhattan.
But yes, as mentioned, you should do some research because as you may have noticed, the safest areas are also the ones that have steep prices. So if you are going to pay good money, you might as well run thorough research on the area and more importantly the locals.