I know you are extremely busy but PLEASE read the article I'm sharing with you today. This week is Realtor Safety Week, an opportunity for me to remind you to keep safe in your business. We are amidst challenging economic times the result of which is a higher than usual crime rate. Now, more than ever, you must be involved in formulating and executing a safety plan. As real estate agents you deal in a business of working with strangers and touring neighborhoods and homes with which you are alien. What kind of precautions are you taking to make sure you remain safe in your business? Please, please, please read the important safety article below. As well, you can visit Realtor.org where their Field Guide to Realtor Safety will share tips on staying safe in open houses, in your car, and all around your business.
Please stay safe. You are important to me, this business, and your family.
Six Tips For Real Estate Safety
Whether young or old, male or female, every day you put yourself at risk just doing your job. This article isn't meant to frighten but rather to inform. Accidents happen, it is a fact of life. And just as often, things much more dangerous can happen. Here are a few tips to keep you safe, aware and reduce your risk of becoming a victim.
1. Cell phone - The very bread and butter of your real estate business. A cell phone can also be you greatest asset when it comes to an emergency. Having your cell programmed with a few emergency numbers in your speed dial could very well save your life. Which numbers should be in your speed dial? 911 of course - you'd think that would be a no brainer but very few people think to include it in their cell phone. Your office number so if there is a problem you can speak with a live person to get help.
Your emergency contact - police/rescue/EMT's often look for an emergency contact in a persons phone, but having it listed as "Joe" or "Sally" won't tell them anything... Even if it means adding a duplicate entry have an contact in your phone labeled Emergency Contact then list the name, relationship, home, office and mobile phone numbers and an address.
2. Keep your cell phone on your person. It won't do any you good if you fall in the bathroom in the house you're holding open, if the phone is tucked safely into a kitchen cabinet or in your car. Keep it close at hand, on your belt, in a pocket or on a lanyard around your neck.
3. Trust your gut instincts. If you don't feel comfortable escorting a unknown person into the basement of a vacant home. Don't do it. Let him go by himself, simply saying feel free to tour the home, I'll answer questions when you're done - then take a stroll outside - talk to a neighbor, call your office or spouse- let someone know your discomfort and make sure someone knows where your are.
4. Use the buddy system. If you are meeting someone for the first time and you're uncomfortable or have a bad feeling either skip the meeting all together or take someone with you, a friend from the office, your spouse, etc.
5. Don't look like a victim. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Pay attention to what is going on around you. Look people in the eye when you meet them. Carry your keys threaded through your fingers (like brass knuckles). Stand up straight, don't hunch down, or look at the ground when around strangers. Look people in the eye, if you are looking at a person in stead of the ground, it is much more likely that you could give a full description of that person to the police.
6. Use common sense. Stay out of questionable neighborhoods after dark. Keep your gas tank filled. Keep jewelry to a minimum. Don't flash wads of cash around. If you use an MP3 player, make sure the volume is set so you can hear someone coming up behind you. Let someone know where you're going and when you are expected back. Keep your risk taking to investment, don't risk your safety.
Just a few of the ways to keep yourself safe on the job and off. Every year real estate agents fall victim to foul play at the hands of someone looking at houses. Don't become a statistic.