Keys to REALTOR® Safety: Knowledge, Awareness and Empowerment.
To kick off REALTOR® Safety Week, September 13-19, here are some important safety tips for agents and brokers:
- Use common sense at all times and follow your personal instincts.
- Walk confidently.
- Carry a whistle, mace or shriek alarm.
- Always meet first-time clients in your office.
- Park in well-lit areas.
- Use the buddy system when showing a property, especially vacant property.
- Be smart when advertising open houses. Do not list your home phone number.
- Leave word with someone at the office of where and with whom your appointments will be.
- Never carry a key ring/case with your name or address on it. If your keys are ever lost or stolen, this information could be used to burglarize your home or car.
- When using the phone, stay alert, keep the call short and simple. The less attentive you are to your surroundings, the more thieves view you as a target.
- Place wallets, purses or any other valuables on the side of your car seat, never on the seat next to you. Do not set yourself up for a “smash and grab” or car jacking.
- Keep your car well-maintained to avoid breaking down in remote areas.
- When receiving an inquiry by phone at your office or at home, get the name and number of the person calling and ask if you can call that person back in a few minutes. (Confirm the inquiry.)
- By making a couple of phone calls or checking the city directory or phone book, you may feel more comfortable about meeting a prospect.
Explain to buyers that the above is necessary for your protection as well as the seller. If you feel uncomfortable, let your instincts rule—reschedule or cancel the appointment.
Although these safety tips may not be enough to stop someone who is determined to do harm, they may deter someone. For these and other tips check the IAR Web site at www.illinoisrealtor.org.