The state of Kansas added about 100,000 residents between the 2010 and 2020 Census reports, which represents an increase of just three percent. That’s one of the lower growth rates reported in the 2020 Census data and the slowest in Kansas since 1970.
Still, with housing markets heating up across the country, many people may be considering making a move to Kansas, while others who live there already may be looking for a change of pace.
Ensuring you can protect your investment is important, which is why many people may be interested in learning more about property crime in Kansas.
At A Glance:
- With #1 being the best, Kansas is ranked #30 for property crime out of 50 states + Washington, D.C.
- You have a 2.31% chance of being a property crime victim in Kansas in the next 12 months.
- Kansas’ property crime rate is 10% higher than the average crime rate in the United States.
- Wichita has the highest property crime rate in Kansas (53.21 incidents per 1,000 people).
- Wichita is the largest city in the state of Kansas, which means its relatively high property crime rate is not a result of small population size. In many states, the community with the highest property crime rate is one where few people reside, but that’s not the case for Wichita.
Property Crime in Kansas occurs at a rate of 23.1 per 1,000 people, which is two points higher than the overall U.S. rate. While Iowa also has a higher combined property crime rate than neighboring Nebraska, its rate is lower than Colorado, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Missouri.
Kansas’ Most Current Property Crime Rates (2019)
- Rate of Property Crime
- Kansas average:: 23.1 crimes per 1,000 people
- National average: 21.1 crimes per 1,000 people
The 23.1 crimes per 1,000 people Kansas recorded in 2019 was its lowest property crime rate since 2010, which means property crime in the state has declined 26 percent. That puts Kansas in good but crowded company, as all but two states also saw property crime rates decline. Alaska and North Dakota were the only two whose property crime rates went up.
Kansas’ Overall Property Crime Trends (2010 – 2019)
- Average Rate of Property Crime:
- Kansas 10-year average: 28.35 crimes per 1,000 people
- National 10-year average: 25.61 crimes per 1,000 people
- -26% Has property crime increased or decreased during this time?
- There was a 26% decrease in property crime in Kansas from 2010 as compared to 2019.
- 2012 Which year had the highest rate of property crime in Kansas?:
- The highest rate of property crime in Kansas was 2012 (31.56 crimes per 1,000 people)
- 2019 Which year had the lowest rate of property crime in Kansas?:
- The lowest rate of property crime in Kansas was 2019 (23.1 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.
Kansas’ Property Crime Category Trends (2010 – 2019)
- Which type of property crime occurred the most in Kansas over the past decade?
- Larceny occurred more than any other property crime at a rate of 20.5 crimes per 1,000 people.
- Average property crime rate by category
- Average burglary rate: 5.4 crimes per 1,000 people
- Average larceny rate: 20.5 crimes per 1,000 people
- Average vehicle crime rate: 2.4 crimes per 1,000 people
- Average arson rate: 0.2 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 Kansas.
- +19% Which types of property crime have increased during this time period?
- Vehicle theft was the only type of property crime that has become more common in Kansas over the past decade, rising 19%.
- -49% Which types of property crime have decreased during this time period?
- Burglary fell by the fastest rate (49%), while arson dropped by about 30%.
What do low property crime rates indicate about Kansas? While it’s important to note that correlation does not equal causation, researchers have connected high property crime rates to three primary factors — poverty, unemployment, and urbanization.
So, what do those factors look like in Kansas? About 11.4 percent of Kansas residents are in poverty, which is lower than the U.S. rate of 12.3 percent, while only 74.2 percent of people in Kansas live in urban areas. This is far lower than the U.S. urbanization rate of 81 percent, though it represents an increase of about 12 percent since the 1970s. Finally, Kansas’ unemployment rate for April 2021 was just 3.1 percent, tied for seventh lowest and far lower than the U.S. rate of about six percent.
Among communities reporting at least one property crime incident in 2019, the rate in Perry was the lowest. The tiny Jefferson County town with a population lower than 1,000 had only one incident in 2019, while there were only seven property crimes reported between the five cities with the lowest rates.
However, statistical quirks can’t be blamed in most cases of Kansas cities with high property crime rates. In addition to Wichita having the highest rate, Topeka, the state capital home to more than 126,000 people, had the second-highest property crime rate in Kansas.
Top 5: Best Property Crime Rates (based on 2019 data)*:
- Perry, Kansas (Jefferson County)
- Macksville, Kansas (Stafford County)
- Kanopolis, Kansas (Ellsworth County)
- Mayetta, Kansas (Jackson County)
- McLouth, Kansas (Jefferson County)
Bottom 5: Worst Property Crime Rates (based on 2019 data):
- Wichita, Kansas (Sedgwick County)
- Topeka, Kansas (Shawnee County)
- Independence, Kansas (Montgomery County)
- Merriam, Kansas (Johnson County)
- Hiawatha, Kansas (Brown County)
* Excludes cities with zero property crime reported