Nobody wants to get hurt on the job, and no real estate agent likes to think that a routine showing of a home is going to be dangerous. Unfortunately, safety issues must be a concern for real estate agents, especially since many agents show up to work at a job site alone.
The good news is that there are some steps you can take to minimize risk on the job and keep yourself safe. Here are a few tips to help you stay safe on the job.
Gather Contact Information Early
Meeting new clients at the office is always preferable. This allows you to meet them in person before you go on location, but it also gives you the ability to collect data. Collect the clients’ names and phone numbers at this time. You can also collect state ID cards to make copies.
When you meet at the site of a home or property, gather license plate numbers upon arrival. At an open house, ask clients to sign in with their names and phone numbers.
Park with Care
When you park your car, make sure that you always park under a light when you will be showing up or departing after dark. It is also best to avoid parking in a driveway, as it is quite easy to find yourself blocked in and unable to leave should a bad situation arise.
Be Mindful of Your Positioning in the Home
Real estate agents are advised to allow clients to walk ahead of them into the home and into rooms. Additionally, be wary of stepping into enclosed spaces like closets and pantries. You should always have easy access to an exit in the event that something goes wrong.
Be Wary of Vacant Homes
Homes that have been vacant for a period of time may attract squatters or even residents who never left, not to mention potential damage or wildlife lurking inside. You must take great care when entering vacant homes. If possible, bring somebody else with you to check out the scene.
Begin inspecting the exterior of the home, looking for signs of forced entry or frequent use. If you do see signs of entry or even a squatter, get into a safe spot and call the police. Never enter a home that appears to be occupied.
Additionally, do not advertise these homes as vacant when you list them. Doing so could actually attract people who are looking for a place to squat.
How Can Real Estate Continuing Education Help?
Empowerment through knowledge is one way to stay safe on the job. Safety courses help you stay in tune with your expectations on the job in addition to how you can stay out of harm’s way. Even the most experienced real estate agents can grow complacent over time and may need a reminder about safety on the job.
PDH offers continuing education linked to real estate agent safety. Contact us for more information about taking courses that help you stay up-to-date on safety in the real estate industry.