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Topic FSBOs Rarely Discuss.....SAFETY

Posted 02-02-2024 at 10:03 AM by Sunshine Rules

There's a topic few people care to bring up when they tell others to "go it alone," FSBO your home. SAFETY.

When a homeowner puts their property on the market without the assistance of a real estate agent, there are no barriers between them and the public -- a public that includes people wanting to take advantage of that lack of barriers. The homeowner is letting complete strangers into their home with little or no verified information about those strangers.

Most agents are trained to spot the difference between a serious buyer and someone who may be casing a property. Agents can also advise on what valuables the seller should remove or lock up for photos and during showings, make sure the homeowners personal photos have been packed away, have the owner & family out of the property for all showings.

Most agents use electronic lockboxes, a lockbox that goes on the home that only other real estate agents have access to. Every time that lockbox is open, the real estate agent is notified of who is showing, their office name, phone number & other contact information. The listing agent can even put a special code on the lockbox that requires an agent to have a secondary code to open the lockbox for added security.

The agent provides a layer of security between the home seller and the public.

Many in the public are not aware that attacks against real estate agents during the course of doing business are increasing every year. I found a report that said 48 real estate agents were killed while conducting real estate business in 2017. According to the National Association of REALTORSĀ® 2018 Member Safety Report, 33 percent of its members said they feared for their personal safety or the safety of their personal data at some point in the year. For women, the number fearing their safety was 41 percent.

And it's not just violence against female real estate agents taking place. Attacks against male agents has also increased, crimes such as armed robbery, assault, even rape.

For what it's worth, here are some safety tips / suggestions for FSBO home owners:
1) Never tell prospective buyers you can't show at this or that time because you'll be at work or won't be home. You are inviting people to rob your home, telling them exactly when to come.
2) Never be home alone for showings to prospective buyers. Always have an extra person there.
3) Never show your home to strangers without having them send you their pre-approval for a loan first (Proof of Funds for cash buyers), along with a copy of their drivers license or other appropriate photo ID.
4) Pack your jewelry and valuables away, out of sight. If you have an expensive or collector car in your garage, think about putting a car cover on it as well.
5) When showing your home, NEVER turn your back on the prospective buyer(s), always let them lead the way into rooms. Carry your cell phone on you at all times during showings. And before each showing, let others know who is coming to see your home and when -- tell them you'll check back with them immediately after the showing.
6) if you don't already have a home alarm system, now is a good time to invest in one.

As the saying goes, "better safe than sorry."
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