Crime-Free Housing Program
In 2008, the Village of Niles Board of Trustees passed a Crime Free Housing ordinance. The program was first developed in Mesa, Arizona in 1992 to assist tenants, owners, and managers of rental properties in keeping drugs and other criminal activity away from their rental properties. Since its inception, the program has been implemented in:
- 2,000 cities in 44 states
- 5 Canadian provinces
- Puerto Rico
The ordinance requires rental properties to be licensed. In order to qualify for licensing, the owner or representative must comply with three phases of the program:
- Phase one - consists of an four - hour training program for property owners or their agents. The program, which is taught by police, fire, and community development personnel, includes crime prevention tactics and explains the requirement to implement a crime-free lease addendum for tenants.
- Phase two - involves assessing the physical security and the general appearance of the rental property to help deter criminal activity.
- Phase three - is a safety social, sponsored by the Niles Police Department, for the residents of the rental property. The social may include guest speakers to address specific topics related to the property. The social provides an opportunity for renters to get to know fellow residents and helps foster a sense of community among tenants.
- A stable, more satisfied tenant base
- Increased demand for rental units
- Lower maintenance and repair costs
- Increased property values
- Improved personal safety for tenants, owners, and managers
- Peace of mind that comes when spending more time on routine management and less time on crisis control
- Fewer requests for police service