September is REALTOR® Safety Month, a month that celebrates education and knowledge as the key to prevention. Below, are a few tips that can help you stay safe. While common sense in nature, all are good safety practices when visiting new places or meeting new people.
In The Office
- Polish your Image – Carefully consider what personal information you post on social network sites. The internet is a public place; be wary of giving out too much information.
- Use a Buddy System – Nervous about a showing? Bring another REALTOR along. Use a whiteboard system in the office to keep track of everyone’s whereabouts at all times, in case of emergency.
- Create an Emergency Word – Create a code word or phrase in the office to indicate danger. This way, you can inform a co-worker you are in danger over the phone, without drawing attention. Example: “Hi, Amanda! Do you have the listing for the Wilfred’s property?”
On the Road
- Assess the Situation – When you arrive for a showing, take a few seconds to check for dangers. Is the parking area and property well-lit? Are there places where people could hide? Are any of the windows open or broken?
- Prepare Yourself – Lock anything of value in your trunk before you arrive to show a property. But keep your cell phone with you for emergencies.
- Park on the Street – This will stop your car from getting blocked in, either accidentally or on purpose. If an emergency develops, it is easier to escape without having to back down a driveway.
Before you leave for your appointment, double check:
- Do I know exactly where I am going?
- Have I let someone know where I am going, when I am leaving, and when I will be back?
- Am I dressed conservatively and professionally?
- Have I locked my purse, jewelry, expensive items, and spare cash in the trunk of my car?
- Is my cell phone charged, with emergency numbers pre-programmed in?
- Have I established an emergency word or phrase with my office co-workers?
Remember, if there is an emergency, you can always dial 9-1-1.
If you are interested in additional information about REALTOR safety, go to the REALTOR.org safety website.