DP5389 Crime, Location and the Housing Market

Author(s): Yves Zenou
Publication Date: November 2005
Keyword(s): commuting cost, housing market, localized crime
JEL(s): J15, K42, R14
Programme Areas: Public Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=5389

We highlight the role of commuting cost, location and housing market in crime decision. By assuming that all crimes are committed in the central business district and that criminals create both positive and negative externalities to each other, we find that high wages or large levels of police resources are a natural way to reduce crime. We also find that bigger cities experience higher levels of crime because of the fiercer competition in the housing market. Finally, we show that reducing commuting costs can also reduce crime because the resulting decrease in housing prices is lower for workers than for criminals.