Steven Sharpe: Realtor Safety A Focus All Year Long

  • Thursday, September 21, 2023
  • Steven Sharpe, president, Greater Chattanooga Realtors

As I’ve mentioned over the past few weeks, September is Realtor Safety Month. At this point each year, realtors look at their safety protocols to help them remain vigilant against all types of threats throughout the year. But why is it important to focus specifically on realtor safety? It’s because the very nature of our business puts realtors at increased risk.

For example, realtors often work independently and meet with clients whom they may be meeting for the first time. Realtors show homes, host open houses and often work during evenings and weekends, when potential buyers are available. A dodgy cell signal or an isolated property can make a realtor even more vulnerable.

But how prevalent are safety concerns for realtors? To get the bigger picture, each year the National Association of Realtors conducts a safety survey, and they just released the results in their 2023 Realtors and Member Safety Residential Report. Here are some highlights:

• The typical respondent meets prospective clients whom they’ve never met before, either at their office or in a neutral location 65 percent of the time. This step helps the realtor understand what a client is looking for and not to meet for the first time at a potentially empty property.

• 71 percent of realtors said that they have personal safety protocols in place that they follow with every client. This routine is more likely among females (73 percent) than among males (59 percent). This area is clearly one for improvement, since attacks can happen to men and women.

 • 42 percent of realtors said that they have participated in a self-defense class. At Greater Chattanooga Realtors, we offer complimentary Realtor Safety classes all throughout the year to help prepare our members for potential threats.

• 47 percent of men and 58 percent of women carry a self-defense weapon or tool.

• Among those realtors who participated in a safety course, 66 percent said they feel more prepared for unknown situations after taking the course.
 
Knowing that preparedness and safety don’t just magically happen is essential. Realtors need to be proactive in ensuring their safety and the safety of their clients. Realtors might be more at risk for safety concerns, but that doesn’t mean we must be unprepared. Realtor safety, and the safety of our clients and their information remains front of mind the entire year. That’s Who We R.

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