Safety Guidance for REALTORS®
A big portion of a REALTORS®’ job includes meeting new prospective buyers and sellers, developing relationships, and showing new acquaintances properties. While interactions between REALTORS® and clients are often straightforward, making sure you take necessary precautions to ensure your safety while on the job should never be overlooked. September kicks off the National Association of REALTORS® safety month, and we have compiled some important safety guidance for REALTORS® to keep you safe while working.
The NAR launched the REALTOR® safety program nearly a decade ago, to educate REALTORS® about potential risks on the job, while also giving them the tools to help deter these situations. ‘Knowledge, Awareness & Empowerment’ are the three core components of the NAR’s safety program. Through this program, the NAR has made the following resources available to REALTORS®:
- Webinars and videos on REALTOR® safety
- Shareable content, including social media posts with relevant information for Real Estate Brokerages to easily share with their own REALTORS®
- Safety materials including forms, protocols, and best practices for REALTORS to have access to and distribute to fellow colleagues.
- NAR’s annual REALTOR® Safety Survey and Report.
In the latest safety report, the NAR gathered information from NAR members across the country, and received feedback from the survey. While nearly 75% of REALTORS® felt safe and had not encountered any situations that made them feel otherwise unsafe, here were some of the bigger findings:
If REALTORS® encountered a situation where they felt unsafe, the most common instances were:
- At an open house
- During a showing
- While meeting a new client for the first time in a secluded property
- After receiving a threatening or inappropriate email, text message, phone call or voicemail.
Of the respondents, REALTORS® who encountered any of these situations, the majority of them who felt uncomfortable were female REALTORS® who worked in more urban areas.
One of the other issues REALTORS® should take note of, is the theft of prescription drugs from houses. 48% of respondents reported that they had experienced the theft of prescription drugs during an open house (32%) and during a house showing (16%). In order to help prevent this from happening, REALTORS® should recommend to their clients that if they have any prescription drugs in the house, to either take them with them, or lock them in a safe or place where people would be unable to access their medications.
While 72% of REALTORS® reported they have personal safety measures in place with their clients, it is important to make sure you are able to do as much as you can to ensure all your colleagues have the necessary training, education and resources available to ensure they keep themselves safe while on the job. 38% of respondents said that Safety Training was part of new member orientation. 79% of REALTORS® felt they were more prepared in ensuring their safety after taking the course. This is a great resource and should be encouraged by Real Estate Firms, that all their member’s should take the safety course so that they can gain the necessary knowledge needed to keep safe.
From the these findings, the biggest takeaways were:
- When meeting new clients for the first time, meet in a neutral location before meeting at a private or secluded property.
- Female REALTORS® were more likely to take safety courses versus male REALTORS®
- In addition to utilizing the NAR’s safety resources, the other common safety precautions taken were self defense classes, more awareness and having pepper spray.
For more information regarding the NAR’s safety program and even more resources and safety guidance for REALTORS®, visit their safety page.