House Grail is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

9 Safest Cities in Delaware (2024 Update)

Milford Delaware

Note: This article’s statistics come from third-party sources and do not represent the opinions of this website.

The last thing that you want to deal with when you move to a new area is crime. And the worst kind of crime is violent crime. That’s why it’s essential that you scope out the potential cities where you want to move to and find the safest places out there.

But with so many cities to choose from, it can be a pain to track down all the different statistics. That’s why we did the grunt work for you and highlighted all the results here. These are the eight safest cities that you can move to in Delaware.

If you want extra protection, we also highlighted a few tips and tricks that you can follow to keep yourself safe while in Delaware.

divider 4

The 9 Safest Cities in Delaware: A Quick Look

1. Ocean View, DE

Population 2,180
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $73,397
Poverty rate 8.2%
Violent crimes in 2019 1

If you’re looking for the safest place to live in Delaware, you don’t need to look any farther than Ocean View. When you look at the type of area that Ocean View is in, it’s no surprise that crime is almost nonexistent.

Ocean View, Delaware, is pretty much a retirement community for wealthy individuals. The average household income is the second-highest on this list, and the poverty rate is the second-lowest.

Crime is often a response to poverty, so if you’re trying to find an area with low crime, simply seek out an area with little poverty. That formula works to perfection with Ocean View. They rarely have a murder, and averaging just one violent crime a year on average is almost unheard of.

If you’re looking for somewhere safe to live with a slower pace of life and you can afford it, it’s tough to find a better location than Ocean View, Delaware.

2. Smyrna, DE

Downtowm Smyrna DE_A
Downtowm Smyrna DE_A (Image Credit: Acroterion, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0)
Population 11,768
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $67,277
Poverty rate 10.0%
Violent crimes in 2019 32

Smyrna is a bit larger than Ocean View, making it a bit more accessible to the average person. Still, it’s definitely an area with a higher cost of living, and you can see that in the average household income that’s just north of $67,000 a year.

The poverty rate is a smidge higher than it is in Ocean View, as is the overall number of violent crimes, even when you break it down per capita. Still, when you compare Smyrna to the state and national averages, it’s one of the safest places that you can live.

Even better, the statistics on Symrna have remained steady year after year, so you don’t have to worry about any drastic spikes in crime coming to the city.

The only real drawback is that Smyrna is a little farther from the ocean compared to a few other towns, but nothing in Delaware is truly far from the water. Smyrna is right off Interstate 13 and route 1, so it’s easy to navigate to anywhere from the state from here.

3. Middletown, DE

Middletown DE
Middletown DE (Image Credit: Acroterion, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0)
Population 23,079
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $90,134
Poverty rate 6.3%
Violent crimes in 2019 48

Middletown, Delaware, is a large city compared to many others in the state, but that doesn’t mean it’s all that big. Still, when you look at the demographics behind Middletown, Delaware, it’s the definition of a town that prices out lower-income residents.

The average household income is just north of $90,000 a year, and the poverty rate of 6.3% is by far the lowest on this list. While both these factors help keep crime at bay and make it a safe area to live in, it also makes it a bit harder to get into if you’re on a tight budget.

Still, with a few different parks and a convenient location right by the ocean that’s nestled between two highways, it’s an excellent choice for both commuters and those looking to retire. If you can afford a place in Middletown, Delaware, it’s hard to find a better and safer place to live.

4. Milton, DE

Milton Delaware
Milton Delaware (Image Credit: Tim Kiser, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 2.5)
Population 3,017
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $40,313
Poverty rate 18.0%
Violent crimes in 2019 4

Milton, Delaware, might be the most accessible ultra-safe city in Delaware. When you look at the average household income and compare it to other cities on this list, you’d expect to see either a higher poverty rate or a higher crime rate, but neither of those things holds true for Milton.

The average household income is the lowest on this list, but so are both the murder rate and the violent crime rate. When you look at the historical crime and income statistics for Milton, the current numbers aren’t anywhere out of the ordinary.

Still, it is a small town, so while you don’t need to make a ton of money to live there, you might struggle to find somewhere to move into or a steady employment opportunity inside the city. That said, it’s an extremely quiet town that’s perfect for settling down if that’s what you’re looking for.

5. Milford, DE

Downtown Milford DE
Downtown Milford DE (Image credit: Smallbones, Wikimedia Commons CC0 1.0)
Population 11,592
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $47,824
Poverty rate 14.1%
Violent crimes in 2019 84

Milford, Delaware is almost a carbon copy of Milton, so it’s no surprise to see them side-by-side on this list. Milton took the crown this year due to the slightly lower violent crime numbers per capita, but it wouldn’t surprise us for the violent crime numbers in Milford to drop a bit further in years to come.

It’s also a city with a low average household income and poverty rate, so it’s extremely accessible even if you don’t have a high-income career.

Milford does see a bit more tourist traffic compared to Milton due to its location at the intersection of Coastal Highway and Interstate 113, but while this brings in more people, it also makes it easier to commute out if you’re looking to work somewhere out of town.

6. Elsmere, DE

Population 5,963
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $61,275
Poverty rate 15.5%
Violent crimes in 2019 11

If you’re simply looking for a location with no murders and almost no violent crime, Elsmere, Delaware, is extremely hard to top. The murder rate is almost always zero, and when you look at the per capita violent crime, it’s among the lowest in the state.

However, with an average household income north of $61,000, it has a higher cost of living, and with a poverty rate of 15.5%, most people in the city are meeting it. Still, there were just 11 violent crimes in all of 2019.

It’s not a large town, but those are still extremely small per capita numbers. Elsmere is right off an inlet of the Delaware Bay in northern Delaware, and if you’re still working, it’s just outside the city of Philadelphia.

This gives you plenty of commuting opportunities to a higher-paying job, all while enjoying the peaceful and quiet small-town life.

7. Millsboro, DE

Population 4,524
Murder rate 0 per 100,000
Average Household income $49,737
Poverty rate 22.4%
Violent crimes in 2019 27

With a minuscule population, Millsboro, Delaware, is a safe, small town in Delaware. The average household income in the city is just under $50,000, but the poverty rate that’s north of 22% reeks of income inequality.

Still, with almost no violent crime, it’s a safe place to live. Millsboro is also right off an inlet to the ocean and Interstate 113, so if you need to travel for work or enjoy life right off the water, it’s a phenomenal place for you.

Like many of the locations on this list, it’s also a historically safe town, so you don’t have to worry about an uptick in crime coming to town any time soon.

8. Newark, DE

newark delaware
Image Credit: Pixabay
Population 33,957
Murder rate 3 per 100,000
Average Household income $58,434
Poverty rate 23.6%
Violent crimes in 2019 85

Not to be confused with its New Jersey Newark counterpart (which is far more dangerous), Newark, Delaware is an extremely safe place to move to. Whether you want to raise a family or simply want a safe place to live, Newark, Delaware, is an outstanding choice.

Compared to some other cities on this list, it has a lower median household income, which means it’s a bit easier for you to move into. The poverty rate is close to 24%.

While it’s not necessarily a good sign that a significant portion of the population is in poverty, it does mean you should be able to find a place to live in this safe city if that’s what you want.

Both the violent crime and murder numbers for Newark, Delaware, are extremely low, and you hardly ever need to worry about where or when you head out somewhere. It’s an extremely safe city and easily earns a spot on this list.

9. Dover, DE

Population 38,361
Murder rate 9 per 100,000
Average Household income $47,669
Poverty rate 24.4%
Violent crimes in 2019 334

Rounding out this list of the safest cities in Delaware is Dover. A murder rate of 9 per 100,000 in a city of just 38,000 translates to roughly one murder per year. However, the number of violent crimes is high, and Dover leads the way when you break it down per capita.

Still, when you look at the average household income in the area and the overall poverty rate, if you don’t have a ton of money and still want a safe place to call home, Dover is an option that’s in reach even if you don’t make a ton of money.

Add in the fact that it’s right by the ocean, and it’s not a bad place to call home — all while feeling far safer than most other places in the country.

divider 4

How to Stay Safe in Delaware

Just because you’re in a safe area doesn’t mean you don’t need to do anything else to protect yourself. Here, we highlighted four steps that you should take to keep yourself safe no matter where you are in Delaware.

Main street Newark DE
Main street Newark DE (Image Credit: Smallbones, Wikimedia Commons CC0 1.0)

1. Trust Your Gut

It’s the most important tip that you can follow, but unfortunately, it’s often one of the most overlooked. If your gut is telling you that something isn’t right, just believe it, and get out of that situation any way that you can.

2. Hide Valuables

Most crime is a crime of opportunity. Keep valuables out of sight in your vehicle, and don’t walk around with them in plain sight. If a criminal doesn’t see anything of value to take from you, chances are that they’ll just move on to the next target.

3. Map Out Your Route

If you know where you’re going and when you’re going to be there, the chance of something happening to you is low. The reason for this is that you can map out safe routes and ensure that you’re only in public areas where there’s plenty of visibility.

It’s when you’re somewhere you don’t know that crime can strike when you least expect it.

4. Stay in Well-Lit/Populated Areas

Criminals don’t want to be caught, and if there’s a ton of people around, the chances of them getting away with a crime is low. Stick around larger groups of people, and ensure that you’re in a well-lit area so everyone can see you.

If you can only be out during daylight hours, that’s a plus, but otherwise, even at night, a well-lit area with plenty of people should keep you as safe.

See Also:

divider 4


Delaware is one of the safest states in the country, and any of the cities on this list is a great place to go where you don’t need to worry about a ton of crime. The cities might be a bit small, but Delaware is all about that small-town life.

You’re not going to find the metropolises that are in other states, so if you’re thinking of moving to Delaware, you might need to slow your life down a bit, but that also means there are plenty of safe cities for you to live in!

Featured Image Credit:  Milford Delaware (Image Credit: Tim Kiser, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 2.5)


Related posts

OUR categories

Project ideas

Hand & power tools