THE 10 WORST Neighborhoods In Los Angeles For 2020

We used science and data to determine which Los Angeles neighborhoods are the real pits.

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Editor’s Note: This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out we updated this article for 2020. This is our fifth time ranking the worst neighborhoods to live in Los Angeles.
Worst Neighborhoods In Los Angeles

It’s not all sunshine and movie stars in Los Angeles, the City of Angels has some pretty sketch neighborhoods, too.

Just how bad are these neighborhoods? Well, you’re going to have to take a look below at RoadSnacks’ list of the worst neighborhoods in Los Angeles for 2020 to see where the crime is high and the average income is low. We call this the perfect storm.

But in order to determine Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods, we had to give each neighborhood an actual concrete score: we call this a neighborhood’s overall ‘Snackability’. To get this score, we looked at the latest census data on income levels, unemployment rates, crime, and home prices for 83 Los Angeles neighborhoods with over 1,000 residents. Incidentally, this is our fifth time ranking Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods, so trust us when we say that these are the worst of the worst.

Folks, the kind of places that we are talking about are the kind of places that you’ll want to invest in a security system or a guard dog. And in all honesty, if you find that one of Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods is all that you can afford, you might want to think about renting: save yourself the headache.

And because the glass is always half full here a RoadSnacks, we think that If you do get stuck in one of Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods, it might not be all bad. Heck, you could be front and center to a real life Cops episode in Watts and/or you could get some practice talking yourself out of sticky situations if you live Downtown.

So, want to know what Los Angeles’ neighborhoods you should avoid if you value your life? Keep reading.

Sadly, Los Angeles’ worst neighborhoods have carjackings happening in broad daylight, daily robberies, and plenty of violent crimes. There are currently 12,000 police officers that patrol Tinseltown, but the city houses 4 million residents. Law enforcement is doing their best to clean up the city’s worst neighborhoods, but they can’t be everywhere. As a result, places like Hollywood are starting to see the negative effects.

So, what’s the worst neighborhood in Los Angeles for 2020? The worst neighborhood in Los Angeles would be Fashion District according to the most recent data.

To see how the rest of Los Angeles’ neighborhoods faired, take a look at the list below; and if you don’t see what you’re looking for there, head to the bottom.

For more California reading, check out:

The 10 Worst Neighborhoods In Los Angeles For 2020

Fashion District Los Angeles, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 2,466
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $89,350 (1st worst)
Median Income: $39,866 (14th worst)
More on Fashion District:  Data

The Los Angeles Fashion District is a design, warehouse, and distribution nexus of the clothing, accessories and fabric industry in Downtown Los Angeles. The Fashion District spans 90 blocks and is the hub of the apparel industry on the West Coast of the United States.

Thousands of fast-fashion wholesale vendors line the streets of the Los Angeles Fashion District. Fast-fashion vendors stock the most recent fashion trends straight from the catwalk.

Wholesale District-Skid Row Los Angeles, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 7,245
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $218,186 (6th worst)
Median Income: $29,771 (3rd worst)
More on Wholesale District-Skid Row:  Data

Skid Row is an area of Downtown Los Angeles. As of the 2000 census, the population of the district was 17,740. Skid Row was defined in a decision in Jones v. City of Los Angeles as the area east of Main Street, south of Third Street, west of Alameda Street, and north of Seventh Street. Skid Row contains one of the largest stable populations of homeless people in the United States.

Downtown Los Angeles, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 12,199
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $188,382 (3rd worst)
Median Income: $37,562 (10th worst)
More on Downtown:  Data

Downtown Los Angeles is the central business district of Los Angeles, California, as well as a diverse residential neighborhood of some 58,000 people. A 2013 study found that the district is home to over 500,000 jobs. It is also part of Central Los Angeles.

A heritage of the city’s founding in 1781, Downtown Los Angeles today is composed of different areas ranging from a fashion district to a skid row, and it is the hub of the city’s Metro rapid transit system. Banks, department stores and movie palaces at one time drew residents and visitors into the area, but the district declined economically and suffered a downturn for decades until its recent renaissance starting in the early 2000s: old buildings are being modified for new uses, and skyscrapers have been built. Downtown Los Angeles is known for its government buildings, parks, theaters and other public places.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 11,961
Rank Last Year: 20 (Up 16)
Median Home Value: $331,433 (20th worst)
Median Income: $39,578 (13th worst)
More on West Adams:  Data

Watts Los Angeles, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 40,795
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $214,404 (5th worst)
Median Income: $29,288 (2nd worst)
More on Watts:  Data

Watts is a neighborhood in southern Los Angeles, California. It is located within the South Los Angeles region, bordering the cities of Lynwood and South Gate, and the unincorporated community of Willowbrook, all in Los Angeles County.

Founded in the late nineteenth century as a ranching community, the arrival of the railroads and the construction of Watts Station saw the rapid development of Watts as an independent city, but in 1926 was consolidated with Los Angeles. By the 1940s, Watts transformed into a primarily working class African American neighborhood, but from the 1960s developed a reputation as a low-income, high-crime area, following the Watts riots and the increasing influence of street gangs. Today Watts is a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood with a significant African American minority, and remains one of the most impoverished and dangerous neighborhoods in Los Angeles despite falling crime rates since the 1990s. Notable civic activities by residents of Watts include the “Toys for Watts” toy drive, the Watts Christmas parade, and the “Watts Summer Games” athletic tournament, as well as a local theatre and a dance company, in an effort to improve the neighborhood.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 7,185
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 5)
Median Home Value: $408,571 (38th worst)
Median Income: $44,386 (18th worst)
More on Central City East:  Data

Southeast Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 187,683
Rank Last Year: 7 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $263,781 (8th worst)
Median Income: $31,927 (5th worst)
More on Southeast Los Angeles:  Data

South Los Angeles, formerly known as South Central, is a region in southern Los Angeles County, California. According to the Los Angeles Times, it comprises 51 square miles, consisting of 25 neighborhoods within the City of Los Angeles and also three unincorporated neighborhoods.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 34,645
Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 7)
Median Home Value: $340,818 (21st worst)
Median Income: $41,074 (16th worst)
More on Hyde Park:  Data

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 248,666
Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 6)
Median Home Value: $308,659 (12th worst)
Median Income: $33,551 (8th worst)
More on South Los Angeles:  Data

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 90,322
Rank Last Year: 28 (Up 18)
Median Home Value: $317,506 (15th worst)
Median Income: $39,247 (12th worst)
More on Hollywood:  Data

How we determined the worst Los Angeles hoods in 2020

To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what places have the least amount of those things. We threw the following criteria into this analysis in order to get the best, most complete results possible. We used this set of criteria for each neighborhood in Los Angeles:

  • High unemployment (Less jobs)
  • Low median income (Less pay)
  • Low population density (No things to do)
  • Low home values (No one’s willing to pay to live here)
  • High crime (Estimated)

Then, we ranked each neighborhood in Los Angeles, California for each of these criteria from worst to best.

Next, we averaged the individual rankings for each criteria into a “Worst Score”.

The neighborhood with the lowest “Worst Score” ranks as the worst neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Read on below to learn more about these terrible places around Los Angeles to live. Or skip to the end to see the list of all 83 neighborhoods ranked from worst to best.

This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased. Hold on to your pants.

The ‘hoods around Los Angeles that are really hoods

Well there you have it — the worst of the neighborhoods in Los Angeles with Fashion District landing at the bottom of the pack.

As we mentioned earlier, the neighborhoods in Los Angeles aren’t all bad. Mar Vista takes the cake as the best place to live in Los Angeles.

We ranked the neighborhoods from worst to best in the chart below.

For more California reading, check out:

Where Are The Worst Neighborhoods To Live In Los Angeles For 2020?

Rank Neighborhood Population Home Value Median Income
1 Fashion District 2,466 $89,350 $39,866
2 Wholesale District-Skid Row 7,245 $218,186 $29,771
3 Downtown 12,199 $188,382 $37,562
4 West Adams 11,961 $331,433 $39,578
5 Watts 40,795 $214,404 $29,288
6 Central City East 7,185 $408,571 $44,386
7 Southeast Los Angeles 187,683 $263,781 $31,927
8 Hyde Park 34,645 $340,818 $41,074
9 South Los Angeles 248,666 $308,659 $33,551
10 Hollywood 90,322 $317,506 $39,247
11 Crenshaw 26,759 $326,642 $53,326
12 South Park 7,021 $209,983 $48,922
13 Pacoima 55,999 $290,939 $49,893
14 Lincoln Heights 2,763 $393,650 $27,434
15 Westlake 125,087 $187,383 $31,797
16 Central City 54,475 $247,881 $32,820
17 Leiment Park 10,458 $460,217 $51,933
18 Sun Valley 32,371 $363,538 $54,645
19 Civic Center-Little Tokyo 3,457 $306,133 $55,760
20 Jefferson Park 8,745 $385,400 $43,632
21 Chinatown 23,676 $371,808 $33,038
22 Harbor Gateway 39,083 $391,780 $48,823
23 Wilmington 61,534 $326,871 $49,496
24 Montecito Heights 33,281 $402,508 $39,004
25 Harbor City 25,861 $342,247 $55,073
26 El Sereno 51,650 $361,841 $47,364
27 North Hollywood 158,322 $405,914 $48,628
28 Mid City 146,100 $435,677 $40,330
29 Boyle Heights 79,029 $315,626 $35,846
30 Van Nuys 127,440 $423,518 $48,885
31 New Downtown 6,396 $282,200 $49,413
32 North Hills 99,507 $322,940 $55,344
33 San Pedro 73,264 $448,065 $63,234
34 Lakeview Terrace 14,460 $310,747 $63,338
35 Valley Village 48,263 $599,057 $66,181
36 Arleta 46,531 $321,512 $60,040
37 Mission Hills 21,104 $360,914 $76,104
38 Canoga Park 86,344 $357,583 $68,663
39 Echo Park 31,774 $578,907 $54,669
40 Tujunga 20,424 $398,793 $59,580
41 Cypress Park 16,101 $506,469 $58,463
42 Sunland 19,165 $399,675 $67,316
43 Panorama City 39,335 $360,041 $66,293
44 Westchester 41,406 $656,248 $99,210
45 Toluca Lake 3,727 $986,825 $88,731
46 Mid Wilshire 187,740 $514,690 $54,852
47 Studio City 48,533 $871,116 $105,301
48 Mount Washington 9,218 $487,589 $66,596
49 Beverly Glen 52,653 $964,402 $116,423
50 Silver Lake 43,338 $608,859 $67,034
51 Glendale 1,744 $948,840 $99,810
52 Hollywood Hills 36,670 $1,101,565 $108,400
53 Sylmar 80,559 $341,340 $63,082
54 Highland Park 23,411 $447,106 $45,910
55 Atwater Village 7,087 $644,383 $70,884
56 Shadow Hills 3,577 $429,300 $74,718
57 Reseda 81,554 $401,545 $56,346
58 Chatsworth 41,309 $488,581 $87,403
59 Eagle Rock 55,648 $515,345 $67,271
60 Granada Hills 43,697 $504,116 $89,035
61 Winnetka 67,623 $426,978 $70,256
62 Los Feliz 32,513 $740,684 $76,677
63 Venice 32,773 $1,098,985 $97,311
64 Glassell Park 34,778 $526,314 $58,054
65 Northridge 108,186 $479,471 $77,841
66 Encino 56,158 $753,844 $98,640
67 Woodland Hills 45,798 $663,193 $97,451
68 Tarzana 20,130 $741,275 $94,739
69 Mid City West 45,784 $751,571 $83,400
70 Pico-Robertson 45,659 $710,696 $65,587
71 West Hills 31,007 $619,850 $109,439
72 Playa Vista 35,789 $655,300 $73,844
73 Playa Del Ray 16,056 $873,850 $104,607
74 Century City 5,574 $1,026,067 $113,367
75 Palms 44,417 $455,157 $63,724
76 Sawtelle 44,552 $781,023 $73,640
77 Brentwood 23,965 $1,628,579 $168,650
78 Pacific Palisades 22,500 $1,719,534 $177,558
79 West Los Angeles 42,797 $1,114,810 $109,618
80 Portar Ranch 22,688 $681,550 $122,141
81 Bel Air 8,746 $1,853,384 $183,950
82 Westwood 55,285 $854,491 $79,643
83 Mar Vista 42,620 $797,290 $78,017

26 thoughts on “THE 10 WORST Neighborhoods In Los Angeles For 2020

  1. I’m going to find the neighbor who put my house up here in El Sereno,I know it’s someone who don’t like us,well guess what we don’t like u

  2. The editor’s disclaimer and infotainment premise are both big jokes. The article? Let’s put it this way: if the article were a person earning its keep, it couldn’t survive in any but the cushiest LA neighborhoods.

  3. Why wasn’t a photo of Banning Blvd. north of L St. posted for Wilmington? Why Broad Ave.? Talk about bias. Roadsnacks? No, roadkill.

  4. I live in Wilmington, California the place you said was “the #1 worst neighborhood
    in Los Angeles, CA”. So you live in Durham NC ? Have you ever actually visited any
    of the neighborhoods in your inaccurate article. Well for one thing I would
    obviously disagree with you on your ranking Wilmington # 1 Worst in Los Angeles. I
    have lived here my whole life and I know the place inside and out.

    Many of the other places you named are in smoggy hot inland parts of LA, whereas
    Wilmington is on the coast and gets great cool weather all summer long. Downtown LA
    and other LA neighborhoods you named can be over 90/100 degrees in the summer at the
    same time Wilmington is in the 70s with a cool daily ocean breeze.

    Wilmington has several Parks including a brand new Wilmington Water Front Park, and
    plans for the LA Harbor Department for a further Harbor Water Front development with
    restaurants, picnic areas, boat rentals, etc.

    We are also within very short driving proximity to many beaches and things to do,
    including but not limited to, Long Beach, CA Beaches, Queen Mary and the world class
    Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific, Shoreline Drive Village, the Long Beach Pike
    Amusement Zone, many restaurants, nightclubs, and Harbor Cruises, etc., which are a
    3 to 4 mile drive away (5 to 10 minutes).

    Wilmington itself is right on on the LA Harbor, and has several Private Yacht and
    Boat Marinas contained within Wilmington.

    Wilmington is also a 15 to 20 minute drive to three world famous beaches. Redondo
    beach, CA, Hermosa Beach, CA and Manhattan Beach CA where people come from all over
    the world to vacation. It is also adjacent to San Pedro, CA which has Cabrillo
    Beach and a number of Harbor locations including the Cabrillo Yacht Marina which
    rivals Marina Del Ray, Port’s ‘O Call all within a few minutes drive.

    Wilmington also is the locale of Los Angles Harbor Community College. Adjacent to
    the college is the Los Angeles County Ken Malloy Regional which Has a hugea nature
    preserve and also contains Machado Lake with covers many acres. Picnic places,
    hiking trails etc are contained within this Huge Park and Lake complex in
    Wilmington. Also the Regional Park is currently under a $150 million renovation
    project which will make it an even better place to go.

    Anyway …. my point is you did a huge disservice to my home town just showing again
    anyone can put anything in on the internet and be absolutely wrong about what they
    are saying.

    I’m sorry to say this Mr. Sparkes, but you are an ignorant libelous so called
    reporter who should check his facts before using certain statistics to be the sole
    judge of his story.

    1. I think this “study” is BS, too. If I were going to reply about Wilmington, it would be very close to what your wrote.

    2. I dislike that individuals want to label a whole community.. Have you even been to any of these areas? My family has lived in Wilmington for over 60 years. In the same house with the same neighbors. Families who have lived, worked, and raised generations, side by side. Who love and respect there city and thoes in it. Just because there are a few bad “apples” don’t make an entire city bad. If that was the case then every city in the USA would be bad.

  5. Does anyone with their feelings hurt realize that this article is based off statistics!? The guy did is homework; if you dispute what he is saying based off opinion, that’s ok- but ask the guy for his sources because I can put money on it that he has sources! come on people read statistics. Its all averaged out from the population even if certain groups(cities) are bigger they average out.

    Thank you for the article.

    I have a cousin that lives on 106 & Vermont.

  6. Pacoima bad I don’t think so, I grew up there 20 years plus. And still would love to live there for the fact that that neighborhood is tight with family and friends. So the next you through city names into a list that you have an opinion maybe keep them to yourself thanks no really thanks.

  7. The list is absolutely spot on. The entire part of the city of Los Angeles that lies between south of the 10 and east of the 405 is in absolute shambles, a wasteland, worse than conditions in a third world country. There is absolutely no reason for a civilized human to be in this part of town unless he’s driving through trying to get to friendly territory in the South Bay. For example, the 90062 zip code has a shocking 35% of the population living below the poverty line. 40% of the population doesn’t have a high school education. A civilized person would feel awkward having poorly educated, rude, loud, buffoonish idiots as his neighbors. There are no jobs, no shopping, no entertainment, no amenities out there. Failed schools. There’s nothing to do there other than stop by at the liquor store. Crime, drugs, hookers, homeless, trash, graffiti everywhere.

    In central LA, I would steer clear of Westlake aka MacArthur Park. Alvarado/6th – you’d swear you were in a slum somewhere in El Salvador. Koreatown north of Wilshire is quite awful.

    The ghetto disease has spread to chunks of the 818 since the 1980s. Sylmar, San Fernando, Panorama City, Sun Valley, parts of North Hollywood, Canoga Park are sketchy and sleazy and should be avoided.

    East of the LA river – Boyle Heights, El Sereno, Lincoln Heights are no-go zones. Unfriendly territory for civilized people.

    Basically almost the whole city of LA is a big fat disaster. The LAUSD and LAPD are national embarrassments. Traffic will take a toll on your mental health. Trash, graffiti, drugs, homeless everywhere. Perhaps half the residents do not have citizenship, legal residence, work permit or any kind of visa. Broken English will pollute your ear drums. I would strongly recommend anyone having to be in LA County to seek out a separate municipality: Burbank, Calabasas, Santa Monica, Glendale, South Pasadena, Torrance – the local governments there actually know to provide services, the schools are not churning out gang-bangers and baby mamas, traffic is tolerable, and the streets are clean.

    1. You truly are the scum of the earth. Thank god I can be rest assured I’ll never have the chance of bumping into you in my slumland of a neighborhood.

      1. What Tom says is nothing but the truth. Don’t believe him if you don’t want to but DO look with your eyes at areas like Boyle Heights. I presently live here and am doing my best to GET OUT. It’s got cracked sidewalks, filth all over the streets. The city officials obviously don’t care. It used to be a clean family town with the pretty Hollenbeck Park near the freeways. It’s now an unkept park. Last week a woman was gang-raped at the park. When I first moved here 2 years ago, one of my fellow tenants was shot and killed across the street. If only there were fines for not keeping up your homes and businesses, the way they do in Glendale. Glendale is beautifully kept…So is Beverly Hills. Cleanliness is King.

    2. …what a leap to correlate bad behavior with a poor education. I was raised in NYC, a wealthier and more educated population than LA overall and I can say I never experienced the kind of low class behavior I’ve experienced in supposed best place to live, Century City. As a woman of color, I’ve lived in Century City for the past 7 years and people don’t clean up after their dogs, leave their beer bottles in the grass, are unfriendly, have no sense of community and cross the street when they see me walking my menacing 15 lb cockapoo. (That last part was sarcasm); there’s nothing classy or high minded about people who behave that way. I’m one of the youngest people in my neighborhood and one of the few people who don’t need someone to share the rent with and yet, the first thing my neighbors routinely ask me (if they address me at all) is what do I do for a living because they want to know how we live in the same neighborhood. There are a lot of racist and ignorant comments here underscoring the fact that money doesn’t buy you class or good sense. PS- I’m no one’s baby mama or kept woman and though I don’t fall into the poor category, poor people tend to work more for less pay and pay more in taxes so they don’t get to see their kids either and they don’t have some creative/knowledgeable Accountant to save them money…that’s for you, you know who you are.

  8. LOL! Only the scum of the earth would ever say LA is a nice place to live. They all jumped the fence at TJ and cant afford to buy shoes to “jump back” to their mexsiken toilets! Illegal subhumans from the south and their illegal shit bred rats make this the worst city on west coast by far! GO TRUMP!!!!

  9. I see some places ranked higher on the safety end than really should be. Please remember this is only a rough guide which uses paperwork, bar graphs, pie charts, with a fair amount of PC mixed into it all. For example, Venice Beach is OK if you stay on your high dollar hotel property. Don’t go barefoot lest you gouge your foot with a used syringe. (no needle exchange in county). Busted alcohol bottles, plenty of “street theater”. If you’re young and adventurous and looking for some goods, this is the area for you. Just watch yourself. Santa Monica is nice, but they’re taking the bad with the good. Daytime in SM is best. Downtown is expensive if you wish to do something upscale or do the Staples Center. The hotelery ranges from terrible to the finest. I may as well tell you the rougher parts of LA are the residential areas in which low income “people of color” live. Don’t be attempting to buy any drugs from anyone on the street, pot is legal in state stores, no pick ups as they can go bad. Just use your head, don’t get drunk and you should be fine.

  10. When you copy whole articles from Wikipedia, it would be nice to add somewhere so that people don’t think some of the article was original…

  11. Let’s do this with these criteria:

    1. heat/humidity index
    2. number of days with below freezing temperature
    3. racial grrymandering taken to court
    4. racialky rigged elections
    5. redneck index
    6. bugs
    7. body fat index
    8. creationism
    9. climate çhange denial
    10. homophobia
    11. evangelical/pentecostal/southern baptist index
    12. vinegary barbecue
    13. good old boy sexist index
    14. resistance to progress index
    15. erc etc etc

    Where would you rank, North Carolina? Sorry, you make Wilmington, CA (not NC with its hurricane index) sound pretty good. You lose.

  12. LOL, you did a lot of research. Um, “Number 1- the Fashion District”, you have a photo of The Broad Museum. That’s in a whole different part of DTLA. But, you’re an intern that doesn’t live in LA, right?

  13. Wow what rank is Compton and Marina Del Rey where you see a lot of homeless people and crack heads walking around everywhere we recently moved from Manhattan Kansas to playa vista in L.A. and it is very safe you see lots of fur kids and security and cops and I never seen a crackhead or homeless person in playa vista

  14. According to this list, the Hollywood Hills (home values over $1 Million) is a worse neighborhood than Sylmar (home values in the $300K)? Are you kidding me? Valley Village is home to many very wealthy actors and people in the biz that could live anywhere they choose. San Pedro has million dollar homes on the cliffs overlooking the ocean and Catalina Island. And Panorama City (don’t go there) is listed as better than all of those places? This list has so many mistakes. But yes…Bel Air is nice.

  15. The bumbling moron that wrote has the median home price in Palms, California as $440K. You can’t get a house in Palms for under $1.5 million. That should tell you all you need to know about this fact-less pile of rubbish.

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