We have published a couple of posts about homeowners staying safe when showing their homes to strangers, here and here. The sentiment applies equally as much to Realtors and this coincides with Realtor Safety Week, which runs from September 13th to the 19th this year.
Safety An Afterthought?
When one thinks of dangerous occupations, the first thing that usually pops into their minds is “policeman”, “fireman”, “soldier”, or “cab driver”. (Actually, of these four jobs, only cab driver is on the list of 10 most dangerous jobs!) Being a Realtor wouldn’t normally be associated with such high-risk occupations; however, a career in real estate is definitely not without its hazards, and it’s probably a safe bet that most Realtors don’t give job safety the consideration it deserves. The opportunities for misfortune to befall an agent are many: working in high crime neighborhoods; showing houses to strangers alone, after dark, or both; or at open houses when people can walk in off the street unannounced. The first example has happened more than once, here’s just one video report:
What You Can Do
There’s are many things you can do to lessen the chance you will be a victim of violence while doing your job; here a just a few:
- Make sure your cell phone is always charged
- Carry a flashlight in your car, preferably a Maglite that can be used as a weapon.
- Try to bring someone with you when showing houses or holding open houses
- Consider carrying Mace or pepper spray
- Let someone know where you’re going when showing houses
- Trust your instincts
There are many more tips available, and NAR has a good resource available on their web site:
There is also a nice safety brochure put together by Tim Ayres at VictoriaBCRealEstateBlog:
Take the time to read through these resources and put them into practice. Your safety should be foremost in your mind, not just during Realtor Safety week, but all the time. Stay safe!