When selling your home “For Sale By Owner,” safety should be a primary concern. After all, you are allowing complete strangers into your home with no guarantees as to who they are. Realtors have many processes in place for their own safety, such as talking to a new buyers lender to verify they are actually a buyer or give their office a schedule of the homes they are planning to show. Even with their safety processes attacks on Realtors are on the rise nation wide. Below are several safety tips to protect you and your family.
1. Schedule appointments – Always schedule your appointments in advance. Do not allow walk up showings, at any hour. Get a perspective buyers name and number and call them back to set an appointment, this also allows you to verify that the phone number is legit.
2. Share your Contact List – Make sure to let someone know about your showings and keep a list of your showings at a different location. Neighbors or relatives are always good options for this.
3. Pair up – Do not be home alone during a showing, always have a spouse or friend at a scheduled showing. Remember there is greater safety in numbers.
4. Options for the Kids – If you have children, it could be a good idea to have options for them to be gone during showings. If the worst happens, your kids will be safely away and an attacker can’t use your kids against you.
5. Suns Out – Whenever possible, schedule showings during daylight hours when the sun is out. Make sure the blinds and curtains are open, an attacker might think twice if he thinks the neighbors can see in.
6. Bring Up the Rear – Let the prospective buyer lead the way, do not turn your back on any potential buyer. By keeping the potential buyer in sight, it is easier to see if a potential buyer turns into an attacker.
7. Plan ahead – Park your car in the street in front of your house, so it is not blocked in, and can be used for a quick escape. Also, you are familiar with your house, so always be mindful about the best escape rout out of your home. A good plan can be the difference between tragedy and safely getting away.
8. Alarming – Carry an alarm device for a home security system or your car panic alarm, so that neighbors can be notified in an emergence. If those are not available carry your cell phone.
9. Vehicles – Take note of the potential buyers vehicle and when possible copy down license plate numbers. If you can take a picture with your cell phone, do so, and send it to someone.
10. Don’t be too Public – With identity theft at an all time high, be mindful not to provide too much information in your adds or to potential buyers. Keep all bills, bank statements, and any other personal information out of sight. Also take down the wall calendar with your schedule on it, that is an easy way for someone to know when you will be gone from your home.
11. Keep Valuables out of Sight – This might seem obvious, but is often overlooked. Its not just cash and jewelry but also meds, computers, and electronics.
The safety of you and your family need to be your top priority. By following a few safety procedures you can greatly cut down on the risks associated with selling your home on your own.