How safe do you feel in your career as a Realtor®?
Every September, we emphasize safety even more in the real estate profession for Realtor® Safety Month, but it’s something you need to consider year-round. Especially because a staggering 1 in 3 Realtors® in the Mid-Atlantic region reported they felt unsafe while on business last year, according to a new Bright MLS survey. This matched the sentiments found nationally in NAR’s Realtor Safety Report, in which 33% of Realtors® surveyed felt their personal safety or personal information was compromised.
What can you do to protect yourself?
Realtors® in the survey overwhelmingly said that being aware of your surrounding is the top way to improve safety while at work. Other tactics that Realtors® reported using include telling a friend their plans, knowing the client, taking a friend and having a safe space. A smaller percentage of Realtors® said they use a safety app on their phone, while 2% carry a defense weapon. Keeping personal information private and not rushing are other ploys that Realtors® swear by to protect themselves.
“Protecting your own safety as a Realtor® should always be your top priority,” said PAR President Bill McFalls Jr. “Stay vigilant, don’t become lax with security measures and always trust your gut.”
Nearly half of Realtors® in the Mid-Atlantic region said they feel the overall safety of Realtors® has declined over the years. If your brokerage doesn’t have a safety plan in place, it’s time to enact one. More than one-quarter of respondents nationally said their firm doesn’t have one, while 29% said they were not aware if theirs did or not. Where to begin? The most common option is to create a program for client information, both for keeping it safe and discarding it when no longer needed. Making new clients meet at the office or at a public, neutral place is another good rule to have in place. NAR provides a variety of safety resources, including webinars, videos, articles and more.