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REALTOR Safety Alert For Vacant Listings

Be alert and keep you - and your clients - safe

Published Monday, February 25, 2019
by MAR
 
 
 

REALTORS® in the Novato area advised to be mindful when securing vacant homes.

 
Throughout the last year, the Marin County Sheriff's Office and Novato Police Department have received complaints of trespassers forcing entry or finding an open door and entering vacant listings.

During some of the incidents items inside have been damaged or stolen and other times the trespassers moved into the vacant home and used it as their own. If vacant listing have alarm systems, please use them to deter trespassers. Otherwise, please lock all doors and windows and check the property regularly. Additionally, if you can leave lights on timers inside the home and or a vehicle in the driveway this may be helpful in deterring possible trespassers.

If suspicious vehicles or persons are located contact your local police department or sheriff's office immediately.

This warning from the sheriff's department is a good time to review your current safety plan and implement best practices to keep REALTORS®, clients and homes safe. Some recommendations are below, and more can be found online at https://www.nar.realtor/safety


 
Tips To Increase Safety:
  • Work on a safety plan with your brokerage. As a best practice, a REALTOR® should let an office manager or fellow sales agent know when, and where, they are going on a listing presentation or when showing houses. Many brokerages are also rolling out a 'distress code' - an agreed upon text message or spoken phrase to let a colleague know to that they are in danger, an to get help.
  • Establish clear lines of communication with your clients to let them know when you are showing the house and what you are doing to help ensure that their property stays secure.

  • Ensure that all prescription drugs are securely stored or removed from the property during showings, open houses, or while the house is vacant. The Safe Homes Coalition has easy-to-use resources that you can share with your clients.

    NAR also has a list of 56 helpful REALTOR® safety tips on their website. For more information, please contact MAR at 415-507-1000.

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