Is your area crawling with criminals? New index tells you

  • A new index shows the local concentration of registered criminal offenders, which usually reflects only registered sex offenders, but may also include other types of offenders.
  • RealtyTrac, which has created the index, plans to integrate it into Home Disclosure and Homefacts.com.
  • ZIP codes with high concentrations of offenders tend to have low home values and high foreclosure rates, though the connection between offender density and home appreciation rates is more nuanced, RealtyTrac found.

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You might expect people researching properties and neighborhoods to be most interested in learning about local home values, schools, foreclosures or environmental hazards. But folks tend to focus most on another type of information, at least when it’s available: the identities and locations of local sex offenders.