Realtors Most Risky Everyday Situations v2.0
Here’s version 2 of the common tasks to realtors. Learn the risks and precautions you can take to stay safe.
As a real estate professional, you just might not realize it but you put yourself at risk every day. Meeting new clients, showing properties, holding open houses, letting strangers get into your car, and even your marketing may be jeopardizing your personal safety. These everyday tasks seem harmless, but these situations can expose you to danger.
4. Open houses
You’re inviting the public to a property, which is an invitation to anyone, from thieves to those who might want to harm you.
Promote security in your advertisements. When you advertise the open house, note that identification will be required at the front door and video surveillance will be in use
Pair up. When would-be assailants see two people at the front door, they’ll be less likely to go in.
Introduce yourself to neighbors. Let them know you’ll be showing the house so others know that you are there.
Watch for patterns. At an open house, note any patterns in arrivals, particularly near the end of the open house. There’s this common scam where thieves come near the end of the open house, working as a team. They have “buyers” distract the agent as others steal valuables in the home.
Stow away valuables. Never leave your purse, laptop, or wallet unattended in plain view. Keep them in your car. However, always keep your cell phone on you so you can call for help if you need to.
5. Flashy personal marketing
Marketing materials that contain photos of yourself may attract the attention of criminals.
Avoid provocative photos in your marketing. Low-cut blouses, full-body photos, and looking over your shoulder in a sexy pose can send the wrong message to criminals.
Be cautious of what you wear. Only wear shoes that you can run in. Avoid short skirts, low-cut tops, and expensive jewelry.
Protect your personal information. Use your cell phone number and office address in your marketing so it can’t be tracked back to your home address. Never use your home address or home phone number. Also, don’t reveal to your client personal information about your children, where you live, and who you live with.
6. Transporting strangers in your car
You’re showing houses to potential buyers and chauffeuring them in your car from house to house. Most people don’t pick up hitchhikers, yet real estate professionals put strangers in their car all of the time and don’t think anything of it. There’s a risk of being robbed, your car being stolen, and you victimized and thrown to the side of the road.
Drive separately. Have the client follow you from listing to listing. If you absolutely have to take one car, then you should drive.
Watch where you park. Make sure your car won’t be blocked in and that you park in a place where you’ll be able to get out quickly.
Security is all about layers of protection. Open house signage, notation in ads, using the buddy system, everything that you do is an extra layer of security. The more you do, the more secure you’ll be. Do nothing and the more vulnerable you’ll be.