After decades of rapid population growth, results of the 2020 Census show that while the state added nearly three million new residents, the 10-year expansion rate was Florida’s lowest since 1980.

Still, Florida has passed New York to become the third-largest state by population, which shows how popular it is for those considering relocating from elsewhere in the country.

Whether you’re considering a move from outside Florida or you live there already but are weighing an in-state move, it’s important to understand the state of property crime in Florida and what your risks are for falling victim. Florida’s property crime stats largely mirror that of the U.S. as a whole.

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At A Glance:

    • With #1 being the best, Florida is ranked #26 for property crime out of 50 states + Washington, D.C.
    • You have a 2.15% chance of being a property crime victim in Florida in the next 12 months.
    • Florida’s property crime rate is 2% higher than the average crime rate in the United States.
    • Medley has the highest property crime rate in Florida (200 incidents per 1,000 people).
  • Medley is a town of fewer than 1,000 in Miami-Dade County. The community is primarily industrial, and its high rate is based on about 170 incidents in 2019.

Florida’s combined property crime rate is just slightly higher than the United States as a whole, though Medley, which has the highest rate in the state, is far more prone to property crime than Florida overall. Medley’s rate is high due largely to the city’s small population, but property crime is more common in many major Florida cities than in the state overall. That includes Miami (37 crimes per 1,000 people), Gainesville (35 per 1,000), and St. Petersburg (32 per 1,000).

Florida’s Most Current Property Crime Rates (2019)

  • Rate of Property Crime
    • Florida average:: 21.46 crimes per 1,000 people
    • National average: 21.1 crimes per 1,000 people

All but two states (Alaska and North Dakota) have seen property crime drop over the past decade, and the 40 percent decline in Florida was the seventh-biggest drop. Additionally, 2019 was the low-water mark for property crime in Florida.

Florida’s Overall Property Crime Trends (2010 – 2019)

    • Average Rate of Property Crime:
      • Florida 10-year average: 28.62 crimes per 1,000 people
      • National 10-year average: 25.61 crimes per 1,000 people
    • -40% Has property crime increased or decreased during this time?
      • Property crime rates in Florida have fallen by nearly 40% over the past 10 years.
    • 2010 Which year had the highest rate of property crime in Florida?:
      • The highest rate of property crime in Florida was 2010 (35.51 crimes per 1,000 people)
    • 2019 Which year had the lowest rate of property crime in Florida?:
      • The lowest rate of property crime in Florida was 2019 (21.46 crimes per 1,000 people)

What incidents fall under the umbrella of property crime? Burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and arson are the four major property crime categories reported by the FBI. In every case, if the incident involves violence or threats of violence, it no longer is a property crime and is classified as a violent crime.

Florida’s Property Crime Category Trends (2010 – 2019)

      • Which type of property crime occurred the most in Florida over the past decade?
        • Larceny occurred more than any other property crime at a rate of 20.75 crimes per 1,000 people.
        • Average property crime rate by category
          • Average burglary rate: 5.89 crimes per 1,000 people
          • Average larceny rate: 20.75 crimes per 1,000 people
          • Average vehicle crime rate: 1.97 crimes per 1,000 people
          • Average arson rate: 0.09 crimes per 1,000 people
        • Note: There were no FBI estimates for arson rates, so we used all available data that was reported by individual cities in Florida.
      • +17% Which types of property crime have increased during this time period?
        • All types of property crime have become less common in Florida over the past decade, but vehicle theft decreased by the lowest rate, 17%.
      • -67% Which types of property crime have decreased during this time period?
        • Burglary rates have dropped by 67%, the biggest decline since 2010.

Preliminary crime data for 2020 shows that property crime is expected to take another dip. For the first half of 2020, the state reported its overall property crime rate fell by nearly 14 percent. This is in stark contrast to an uptick in violent crime, which is expected to show an increase in 2020, and this phenomenon will be repeated in most other states, according to experts.

“What I’m seeing is, not just in Florida but in other states — I have been looking at New York and Pennsylvania, and other places — they are seeing similar surges in violent crime, while there is a correspondent decrease in property crime,” Florida Gulf Coast University professor Pamella Seay told FOX 4.

While the causes of crime are myriad and complex, the truth is that crime is a hyper-local phenomenon. Even communities that are geographically close can have far different rates of crimes, including property crimes. For example, the property crime rate in South Palm Beach (2 crimes per 1,000 people) is a fraction of the rate in Mangonia Beach (87 per 1,000), though both communities are in Palm Beach County.

Top 5: Best Property Crime Rates (based on 2019 data)*:

  • Cross City, Florida (Dixie County)
  • Bonifay, Florida (Holmes County)
  • South Palm Beach, Florida (Palm Beach County)
  • Indian River Shores, Florida (Indian River County)
  • Center Hill, Florida (Sumter County)

Bottom 5: Worst Property Crime Rates (based on 2019 data):

  • Medley, Florida (Miami-Dade County)
  • Mangonia Park, Florida (Palm Beach County)
  • Lake Park, Florida (Palm Beach County)
  • Miami Beach, Florida (Miami-Dade County)
  • Florida City, Florida (Miami-Dade County)

* Excludes cities with zero property crime reported