You may have heard some of the stories about agents being kidnapped and killed while showing homes or stories about people breaking in after an open house or showing…
This post isn’t meant to scare you, just to make you aware of the ways to protect yourself and your since making sure that you prepare your home both before and after open houses and showings.
While you’re trying to get your home sold, your safety needs to be your TOP priority.
There is no offer price worth your life.
Verify agents during showings
Before you let an agent in the house, make sure you ask for a card from them… That way you can verify their agent status and if something goes wrong, you know who to reach out to.
Don’t let looky-loo’s in.
On the opposite side, eliminate drop-bys and potential “just lookers” by asking people to come at a scheduled appointment time.
This gives you the advantage of having someone else available, being in the right mindset to show your home and of course, ensure that the house is in good order to be shown!
Plus, you don’t want a stranger who might have sinister intentions into your house.
By having them contact your agent to set up a showing, you have contact information for them and will likely weed out those who wish to cause you harm.
Leave the house when showing
Sometimes sellers want to stay in the house because it’s easier or because they want to know what’s going on.
Among the many reasons that you should NOT be in the house, part of it is about safety… and this especially applies for For Sale By Owners.
Firstly, buyers need to see themselves living in your house in order to commit to making an offer… and if you’re still in the house, they see it as your house, not theirs.
Secondly, if someone with poor intentions comes into the house, they might have access to your house BUT by not being there, you can protect yourself.
Put away prescription drugs and valuables
Obviously, you’re going to want to hide your valuables in places most people won’t look.
… and while open houses are incredible ways to increase exposure and get your home sold faster, you just want to take a few extra steps to protect your home.
Often times, traffic at open houses is sporadic where no one will be in the house and all of a sudden five different groups come at the same time.
So even if your agent is watching them, it only takes a few seconds for a thief to get away with your stuff.
I know what you’re thinking… prescription drugs?
Being that South Florida has one of the highest prescription drug addiction rates in the country, open houses are often a target of addicts.
Don’t leave them in a nightstand, kitchen cabinet or medicine cabinet… Put them somewhere that someone can’t easily access.
Check locks and windows after showings and open houses
This is SUPER important…
Your agent will likely do this as well, but you want to go around and double check ALL windows and doors.
There have been cases of someone coming through an open house or showing and leaving a window or door unlocked so they can come back.
It takes two minutes to do, but could be the difference between sleeping peacefully and having someone break in.
Don’t get boxed in
Be careful not to box yourself into a corner, both literally in the home or verbally when talking to potential buyers.
Be careful when speaking to potential buyers who may try to extract verbal agreements from you that you are not ready to answer, so always direct questions back to your agent.
Remember, there is nothing more important than your safety and that of your family.
If you want to learn more about how to sell your home for top dollar, quickly and stress free, I’ve got a whole guide for you right here: