Hide personal information
Tell your sellers: DON’T leave personal information like mail or bills out in the open where anyone can see it, and be sure to lock down their computer and lock up their laptop and any other expensive, easy-to-pocket electronics (like iPods or tablets) before showings.
Have an office distress code
Create a voice distress code such as a secret word or phrase that is not commonly used but can be worked into any conversation for cases where you feel that you are in danger. Use this if the person you are with can overhear the conversation, but you don’t want to alarm them. For example: “Hi, this is Jennifer. I’m with Mr. Henderson at the Elm Street listing. Could you email me the RED FILE?”
Have your excuse ready
Part of being prepared to deal with a threatening situation is having an “out.” Prepare a scenario in advance so that you can leave or you can encourage someone who makes you uncomfortable to leave. Examples: Your cell phone went off and you have to call your office, you left some important information in your car, or another salesperson with buyers is on the way.
Check out potential dangers before you step out of the car
- Is there any questionable activity in the area?
- Are you parked in a well-lit, visible location?
- Can you be blocked in the driveway by another vehicle?
You are not alone
If you encounter an individual while working late or alone in your office, indicate to that person that you are not alone. Say something like, “Let me check with my supervisor to see whether she’s able to see you now”.
Originally published by the National Association of REALTORS®. Adapted and reprinted with permission.