For many, September marks the end of summer, the beginning of school, the start of football season and so much more, but for us at OMCAR, it’s all about safety awareness and making sure we provide our members with the information they need to keep you and your clients as safe as possible.
Below are five important safety topics and facts that you should be aware of as they relate to both you and your clients.
1. Try to show properties during daylight hours.
This may seem obvious, but you should always try your best to schedule showings during the daytime. Showing a property at dusk or after dark is not advisable as there’s less visibility for both you and anybody that may come to your rescue should anything go wrong. If you must show a property after dark, advise an associate or friend first, and turn on all lights in the house as you walk through.
2. Check everywhere before leaving an open house.
When showing an open house, never assume that everybody has left the property until you’ve gone through all the rooms and inspected them yourself. It’s best to do this while you’re not alone, so keep track of when people are heading out and make sure to lock up when the last person leaves.
3. Follow the CITO (Come Into the Office) Rule.
Never meet a customer for the first time at a listing. Introduce prospects to others in the office and let them know where you’re going before you accompany anyone to a listing. Also, do your due diligence and look up all prospects on social media, Google and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (fdle.state.fl.us). You can never be too safe.
4. Know how your phone’s S.O.S. system works.
Did you know that most smartphones have an S.O.S. feature that, when activated, will automatically contact emergency services and even contacts you specify? On iPhones for example, this feature can be activated by pressing and holding the side button and one of the volume buttons until the Emergency SOS slider appears. Don’t overlook this feature as it could potentially save precious time should you need help – when you or a client are in danger, every second counts.
5. Trust your gut.
One of the most important things to remember in real estate or in life: trust your gut. If you ever have a bad feeling or a situation doesn’t feel right, it’s usually because it isn’t. Learn to recognize how your body detects threats and don’t ever be afraid to act on your instincts. If your gut is telling you something is off when you’re staffing an open house, find a friendly couple and ask them to stay a few extra minutes until you feel safe or can recruit another agent to join you (there’s safety in numbers!), call a friend (or even the authorities) or just reschedule a showing. You can never be too safe.
Bonus: Did you know?
· Most attacks take place Thursday or Friday afternoons.
· Roughly 70% of attack victims are women.
· Most attacks don’t take place inside major metropolitan areas.
· About half of attacks involved guns.
Statistics based off recent report by Agent Genius and Realtor safety expert Andrew Wooten.
For more information on safety and how to protect you and your clients, check out the many resources available at FloridaRealtors.org or https://www.nar.realtor/safety. As always, stay safe out there!
– Your friends at OMCAR