Burglary Probability Calculator

Did you know that you’re 3X more likely to be burglarized than a police officer is to be killed in the line of duty?

Occupational Hazard Rates

According to the NCVS, 32/1000 households were burglarized on average from 2004-2007. Answer the questions below to see how you can reduce your risk.

Find out how to prevent burglary

Source: FBI data & Bureau of Justice Statistics

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First, though I certainly studied statistics in engineering school and work with probabilities every day, I am no statistician. As such, I really on the in-depth knowledge of others with statistical training and application. Second, it is hard to find comprehensive data that can be applied across various geographic regions, countries and states with varying laws, and varying economic factors. So, I would caution against drawing too specific a conclusion from the data presented. It is meant to teach you how to prevent burglary by serving as a guide for securing your existing home and selecting a home that will reduce your chance of burglary. With that said, here are the sources that I used to come up with the calculator.


FBI data, Bureau of Justice Statistics, and Knowing Your Odds: Home Burglary and the Odds Ratio by Hakim, Rengert, and Shachamurove (2000)


The FBI data is reported by jurisdiction and, as such, is already segregated by community. So, be sure you select the size of your community rather than the entire metro area you may live in. The one issue that I had with the paper by Hakim et al. is that the reduction in crime due to an alarm system was stated as 12% when I had seen quotes of previous research by Hakim suggesting that the reduction was 300%. That may be explained by the fact that this analysis was done in Greenwhich, Ct., which is a very wealth suburb. The presence of more alarm systems in the city and the higher value of potential targets likely attracts a more sophisticated type of burglar. As a compromise, I used a reduction of 50% for the existence of a home security system. Aside from that, I took the remainder of the changes in probability as they were from the paper.
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