Here at the Movoto Real Estate Blog, we’ve analyzed crime data in cities and towns across the country. Today, we’re setting our sights a little smaller (in a good way) by focusing on one of the most important parts of Ohio: small towns, and, in particular their safety. We created an analysis to look at the safety of over 100 small towns in Ohio. Once we crunched the numbers, we found the winner to be none other than Waterville. Here are the 10 safest small towns in Ohio: 1. City of Waterville
2. City of Madeira
3. City of Seven Hills
4. City of Kirtland
5. City of Powell
6. City of Broadview Heights
7. City of Munroe Falls
8. City of Streetsboro
9. City of Brecksville
10. City of Loveland
If you keep reading, we’ll explain the methodology behind this list, and just why each of these 10 places is so safe.

Our Methodology

We started this list with a visit to the 2010 U.S. Census. We gathered up all of the places in Ohio with populations of 5,000 to 20,000 residents. Then, we used the 2012 FBI Uniform Crime Report to research each place according to the following:
  • Murder
  • Rape
  • Robbery
  • Assault
  • Burglary
  • Theft
  • Vehicle theft
We divided these crimes into four different categories:
  • Murders
  • Violent crimes
  • Property crimes
  • Total crimes
After omitting any place that didn’t report crime data that year, we were left with a whopping 115 small towns to look at. We then calculated each place’s number of crimes per capita in order to fairly compare our small towns to our simply tiny towns. Next, we ranked each place with a score from one to 115 in each of our categories, with one being the best possible score. We weighted murders, violent crimes, and property crimes so that they each comprised 30 percent of the overall score, whereas the total number of crimes comprised 10 percent. The final step: we averaged all of these weighted scores into one overall Big Deal Score, where the place with the lowest score was our safest place. If you’d like to see if your hometown made our top 50, you can head down to the bottom of the post. Otherwise, we’ll take a look at our 10 safest small towns, starting with our winner, Waterville.

1. Waterville

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user Doug Kerr
Waterville has all of the convenience of being just next to larger cities like Toledo and Maumee, without all of the drawbacks—namely, the crime. Also, with just more than 5,000 residents, it really does have that small town feel. In 2012, Waterville had the fewest violent crimes per person in the state. Matter of fact, they had zero violent crimes that year, a feat only accomplished by a select few other places in the state (not to mention the country). It also had a very low number of property crimes per person—the fourth lowest in the state. With these low numbers, residents had just a 1 in 204 chance of being the victim of a crime.

2. Madeira

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Wikimedia user Darwinius
You know how we said a select few other cities also saw zero violent crimes in 2012? It turned out Madeira was one of those cities. With no murders, rapes, assaults, or robberies, Madeira had no violent crimes to report in 2012. The only crimes it did have were property crimes—of which it only had 0.00494 per person. To put that into perspective, Moraine had 0.1144 property crimes per person.

3. Seven Hills

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Wikimedia user Oxguy3
This place is just so charming, so family friendly, and so very safe. In 2012, Seven Hills residents had one of the lowest chances of being the victim of a crime, just 1 in 300. This was mainly due to its impressively low number of crimes per capita overall—the second lowest in our analysis. It had the third lowest number of property crimes per person, the sixth lowest number of violent crimes, and, of course, no murders.

4. Kirtland

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Wikimedia user Northcoastreader
This little town is one of the safest places in the state—especially when it comes to a lack of violence. In 2012, Kirtland had a grand total of exactly zero violent crimes per person. It did, however, have some property crimes, most of which were merely thefts, but even so, the 10th lowest number of property crimes out of 115 places is not too shabby.

5. Powell

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user Karlis Dambrans
This certainly isn’t the first of Powell’s many awards and accolades—put simply, this city is just a lovely little place to live and raise a family. Of course this is due to a number of factors (adorable houses included), but the low crime rate is first and foremost. In 2012, for example, Powell had the 11th lowest number of property crimes per capita, and like a few others on our list, had zero violent crimes for the entire year. This is a far cry from some of the other small towns we looked at, like Whitehall which ranked the worst in this category (clearly, it didn’t make the top 50 below).

6. Broadview Heights

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user Brian & Jaclyn Drum
Out of all the places in Ohio, much less in the country, this was one of the very lowest total number of crimes we’ve ever seen: just 0.001 per person. That’s just 0.0008 property crimes and 0.00021 violent crimes total. To see how low, just look at Norwood, a small city with a similarly-sized population (just under 20K). Here, there were 0.07 crimes per person. In fact, the total number of crimes in Broadview Heights was so very low, residents had just a 1 in 962 chance of being the victim of a crime.

7. Munroe Falls

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user Derek Arnold
From Guise Park to its beautiful homes, Munroe Falls is the quintessential Ohio small town—especially when it comes to safety. In 2012, this small city had the 13th lowest number of property crimes, most of which were thefts, followed by burglaries (there were no vehicle thefts). Where it really impressed, though, was in its complete lack of violent crime. Along with just four other places (all in our top 10), Munroe Falls had no violent crimes in 2012.

8. Streetsboro

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user George Bannister
This Portage County city ranked well in our analysis mostly for its impressively low number of property crimes, and therefore, overall crimes. In 2012, it had the sixth lowest number of property crimes per person, making its total number of crimes the sixth lowest in the state as well. What about violent crimes, you ask? It had the 23rd lowest number of violent crimes per person, which isn’t as good as, say, Munroe Falls above, but compared to Brooklyn, Norwood, or Cambridge (which did not make the top 50 below), 23 is looking pretty good.

9. Brecksville

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Flickr user Doug Kerr
This suburb of Cleveland is not just the more beautiful choice of the two, but the clear winner when it comes to safety. (No offense, Cleveland.) In Brecksville residents had just a 1 in 154 chance of being the victim of a crime. This was mostly due to its low number of property crimes per capita—the ninth lowest in the state—and therefore, one of the lowest numbers of total crimes.

10. Loveland

Safest Small Towns in Ohio
Source: Wikimedia user Minh Nguyen
Bringing our list to a close is Loveland, which is certainly the most peaceful-sounding town. Loveland ranked well for its low number of crimes overall (19th in this category), but particularly for its low number of violent crimes. In 2012, it had the 10th lowest number of violent crimes—none of which were murders or robberies. It also had a low number of property crimes per capita, ranking 20th in this category. Overall, residents had a 1 in 94 chance of being the victim of a crime in 2012.

OH, How Safe These Small Towns Are

If these places are sounding pretty good to you right about now, just get in touch. We’ll help you find your new Ohio home, or at least a really awesome waterslide. Safest Small Towns in Ohio