10 Worst Neighborhoods in Cincinnati You Must Know

You know that Cincinnati is home to a thriving arts scene, an eclectic culinary community, and the beloved Reds baseball team.

But what you may not know is that Cincinnati also has some of the poorest neighborhoods in the nation, areas where crime runs rampant, schools are underfunded, and residents suffer high rates of unemployment and underemployment.

As someone who loves our city, you may wonder if it’s really worth visiting if these places are so awful.

What if you were planning to move to Cincinnati? Which neighborhood would you choose? How can we as citizens help improve these low-income areas?

The List of Worst Neighborhoods in Cincinnati

1) Avondale

Avondale is one of the worst neighborhoods in Cincinnati. It has a poverty rate of over 34% which is the highest of all five neighborhoods on this list, and it has an unemployment rate that’s higher than 20%. It’s also a crime-ridden neighborhood with a high number of homicides and property crimes.

The average price for homes here is about $35,000. Over 50% of people who live here are African American or Hispanic.

There are few grocery stores and other amenities in the area, which makes it difficult to find fresh food.

In addition, there aren’t many opportunities for work within a reasonable distance from where most residents live. Some areas have no sidewalks, which can make walking very dangerous.

Crime rates are also high in some parts of the neighborhood, so be careful not to walk too far into dark areas at night.

2) Northside

Northside is one of the worst neighborhoods in Cincinnati that you need to know. It’s home to high rates of poverty, crime, and unemployment.

The Northside area has a below-average police presence, which only adds fuel to the fire for most people living there.

On top of all that, you can find drug activity and gun violence at an all-time high here. If you’re looking for trouble, then this would be the perfect place to start!

If you’re thinking about moving to or visiting Cincinnati any time soon, then it would be best if you stayed clear of this part of town.

3) Mount Auburn

Mount Auburn is a neighborhood on the west side of Cincinnati. It is located near the intersection of US-50 and Interstate 71.

Mount Auburn has been called one of the worst neighborhoods in Cincinnati, as it has high rates of crime, poverty, and unemployment.

Mount Auburn’s population density is more than three times that of surrounding areas, and its residents are predominantly lower-income African Americans.

The area had an average annual income below $12,000 per year. Residents of Mount Auburn have stated that they have little hope for change for their community due to a lack of employment opportunities, a tight housing market, and other issues.

4) Walnut Hills

Walnut Hills is one of the worst neighborhoods in Cincinnati. It’s notorious for high crime rates and drug trafficking, which are a big part of the reason Walnut Hills has the highest poverty rate.

If you’re looking for a safe place to live, Walnut Hills is not it. Crime rates are extremely high here, with 11 out of every 1,000 people being assaulted annually. Violent crimes make up 80% of the criminal activity here.

Drug trafficking also takes place at an alarming rate; 90% of the crimes that occur in Walnut Hills have drugs involved in some way or another.

The only thing going for this neighborhood is its proximity to downtown Cincinnati, but there are plenty of other more well-to-do areas closer, like Roselawn: At first glance, Roselawn might seem like a decent area because it does have lower levels of crime than other neighborhoods on this list.

But when you take into account the quality of living here, Roselawn ranks among the top five worst neighborhoods in Cincinnati.

5) Evanston

Evanston is a neighborhood that is mostly home to public housing and has the most violent crime rate of any neighborhood.

However, it is close to downtown and the University of Cincinnati, so you can find some great deals on homes there.

Most people who live in Evanston are black or Hispanic, with a median age of 26.2 years old.

The average home price is $82,500 which is higher than the city average. But don’t let this fool you! Many abandoned houses still exist throughout the community.

It’s also one of the only neighborhoods with an elevated crime rate. However, many residents living here find themselves taking care of family members at an early age because both parents may be working multiple jobs in order to afford living here.

It is also one of the few neighborhoods where residents have access to recreation centers and parks without having to travel very far outside their area.

6. Mt. Washington

The well-to-do Mt. Washington neighborhood has long been a haven for some of Cincinnati’s wealthiest residents.

But even with such affluent neighbors, it’s surprising how often crime spills over into areas just north of Ault Park, one of Mt. Washington’s most recognizable landmarks.

If you find yourself visiting Mt. Washington after dark, be sure to stick to major thoroughfares and avoid all alleys and backstreets as much as possible.

7. Walnut Hills

Walnut Hills is located on Cincinnati’s east side and is best known for being home to many college students.

This neighborhood used to be one of Cincinnati’s most dangerous places, but due to recent efforts, it has become much safer.

There are still some reports of theft and violence in parts of Walnut Hills, so it may not be a good place for people who don’t know their way around town.

8. East Westwood

There isn’t much going on in East Westwood, making it a prime target for criminals. Areas of East Westwood are often filled with teenagers, which is fine as long as they aren’t doing anything illegal.

Cars have been broken into at alarming rates here, so consider leaving your valuables at home when exploring these streets.

This neighborhood also has a high rate of thefts and assaults, as well as an average ratio of residents to criminals.

9. Oakley

Located on the eastern side of Cincinnati, Oakley is a small community with a big reputation.

Rife with poverty and crime, Oakley certainly has its share of lowlifes.

The neighborhood’s seemingly endless maze of dead-end streets can make it nearly impossible to get out once you’re inside—hence why it has earned its reputation as one of Cincinnati’s worst neighborhoods to avoid at night.


Sedamsville, is a West side neighborhood that has seen a lot of positive changes in recent years.

New businesses have opened and crime rates are down, but there’s still some work to be done.

SEDAMSVILLE is still considered one of Cincinnati’s most dangerous neighborhoods, so steer clear of it after dark.

What is the poorest neighborhood in Cincinnati?

The poorest neighborhood in Cincinnati is Avondale. The median income for the area is $16,764. The unemployment rate is more than 12%.

The poverty level is more than 30%. It’s also home to some of the city’s most violent crimes and worst schools.

It’s one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in America with a high crime rate and weak schools. If you’re looking for a place that needs help, this might be it! For example, 27% of children live below the poverty line and have parents who are unemployed or have low-wage jobs.

What is the safest part of Cincinnati?

One of the safest neighborhoods in Cincinnati is Mount Washington. Mount Washington has a low crime rate and an excellent public school system.

Downtown is also one of the safer places because most crimes happen on the outskirts of town.

Most robberies happen late at night, so it’s best to be mindful of that as well.

It’s good to know where these dangerous areas are so you can avoid them if you can’t take precautions for your safety such as carrying pepper spray or not walking alone at night.


It’s no secret that the city of Cincinnati has more than its fair share of crime and poverty. But what neighborhoods are the absolute worst?

Well, if you are still one of those asking this question then you are to go back to this article as all has been explained above.

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