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ALTON - Being a realtor can be more dangerous than you might think. September is Realtor Safety Month, and Lisa Webb with Third Street Realty gave some helpful safety tips for realtors on the most recent “Third On Third” segment on Our Daily Show! on Riverbender.com
“Realtor Safety Month is bringing awareness to local and national real estate agents on how to prepare when they’re going out to show a house, how to prepare themselves when they’re doing an open house, how to protect themselves when they go out and do their job,” Webb said.
Webb had some advice for her fellow realtors on how to stay safe. First, she said you can avoid getting trapped at a house you’re showing by planning ahead where or how you park your car.
“[When] you’re a real estate agent and you’re showing a house, you’re not going to park in the driveway,” Webb said. “Why? Because if you get there first … somebody who you’re showing the house comes after, they will park behind you. So if they’re not a legitimate buyer and you get in the house, you’re stuck and you can’t leave with your car.”
Webb said if realtors can’t park on the road, they should at least back their cars into driveways to make for a quicker and easier exit.
On foot, she said once realtors have unlocked a house they’re showing someone, they should always let that person enter the house first - allowing them to enter after you could leave you open to being pushed into the house and blocked inside. For vacant properties, she said realtors should always arrive first and walk all the way around the outside of the house, checking the doors and windows for any unusual activity before they step inside.
Concealed carry is also popular among both male and female real estate agents, Webb said, though she encouraged all considering carrying to obtain the proper licenses and permits necessary. While some carry firearms, others choose to carry tasers or pepper spray. Men and women both carry weapons because both are at risk of potential danger, she said.
“It doesn't just happen to females, it does happen to men as well,” Webb said, recalling the unsolved 2016 murder of a realtor named David. “He was showing a house to somebody … and he was murdered - he was shot to death in the house.”
She also noted that violent incidents don’t always take place “in areas that are less than desirable - this is your backyard, this is my backyard.”
Webb said she wasn’t as focused on her own safety when she was first getting started as a realtor, and said many young realtors just starting out may not think about it either - but it’s always important, whether a rookie realtor or a seasoned veteran agent, to be aware of your surroundings and stay safe.
For additional safety tips and more from Lisa Webb, watch the full “Third On Third” segment from Sept. 21 at the top of this story or on Riverbender.com/video. To learn more about Third Street Realty, visit their website at thirdstrealty.com.
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