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In the past few years, there has been a rise in violence against real estate agents. With the help of these tips, you can become aware of and prepared for the potential risks of the job and help protect yourself from harm.
1. Meet clients ahead of time. Invite new clients to meet you at your office or in a public place before taking them on a showing. Getting to know them in a safe environment can help you assess whether you feel safe around them.
2. Leave yourself an escape route. If you’re meeting a new client at a showing and you arrive first, park on the street instead of in the driveway so you can’t be blocked in. And keep your car key in your hand instead of a pocket or purse, so it’s ready if you need it in a hurry.
3. Personal safety? There’s an app for that. A number of different personal safety apps are available for iOS and Android that can track your location and instantly alert authorities and colleagues if you’re in danger. And remember to keep your phone out and unlocked during showings, just in case. Some of the most popular apps include:
- bSafe – A free app available for iPhones and Android. It offers some advanced features that don’t cost you extra.
- Watch Over Me – Cost varies by subscription. Available for iPhones and Android. The app watches over you via GPS throughout your journey. Shaking your phone triggers an immediate emergency alert.
- Kitestring – Is a free web-based service, not an app, that makes sure you’re okay by sending you a text. Kitestring works even if you if your phone’s battery dies, plus there’s nothing to download.
4. Tell colleagues where you’re going. Before you head out to a showing, make sure someone in your office knows where you are going, when you’ll be back, and whom to contact if there’s an emergency.