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September Checklist: Four Tasks Every Real Estate Agent Should Complete

September 02 2015

SeptemberAgentChecklistIn honor of the National Association of REALTORS® Safety Month, we are dedicating the September checklist to emergency preparedness and safety guidelines. Follow along with each week's tasks, and by the end of the month you'll be prepared for any difficult situations that might arise.

Week of September 5: Get the right gear

Being safe on the job means being prepared for possible dangers, and for that you need the right gear. Some basic safety items to have on hand are a flashlight, a small first aid kit, and a power bank portable charger for your cell phone. In addition to the aforementioned supplies, you might want to consider a can of pepper spray to help defend yourself from potential attackers. Little ViperLittle Viper offers a less-conspicuous mace bracelet, for those of us who might accidentally forget the mace in the car.

In addition to mace, the tech industry has been developing a variety of new wearable deviceswearable devices dedicated to safety and prevention. Items like keychains and jewelry have been updated with GPS tracking, the ability to emit emergency signals, and they can even text your location to friends and family members.

Week of September 12: Know the brokerage policy

Are you familiar with your office's safety policy? Even if you think you are, it never hurts to refresh yourself. Many real estate offices require new clients to come into the office to meet their agent for the first time, instead of meeting them alone at a property. If your brokerage does not enforce this rule, consider making it a personal requirement. It's also a great idea to check clients' IDs and take note of their license plate numbers.

And always let someone, be it a family member or a coworker, know when you're going to a showing, what property it is, and when you expect to be done.

Week of September 19: Develop a brevity code

A brevity code is a pre-set code word or phrase that you can say out loud on the phone or via text without arousing suspicion. The phrase will alert your coworkers or family members that you have safety concerns and to notify the authorities of your distress. Brevity codes are best when kept simple. Something as plain as "Did you pick up dog food today?" can make a great brevity code phrase – especially if you don't own a dog. Work with your family and coworkers to develop a code that all of you can remember and adhere to.

Week of September 26: Promote safety culture

Work safety can and should be a regular part of your brokerage's culture. It's easy to forget about your personal safety when you're juggling clients on a busy day, which is why it's good to have the whole brokerage involved in various safety protocols. If you sense that a coworker is preoccupied and forgot to notify someone what property she's showing, text her and check in.

Consider signing up for self defense classes with fellow agents, or partnering up to show homes in pairs. The more you bolster the spirit of safety in your office, the more people will be protected.

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