SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Selling your home can be stressful, but one thing you may not think about is safety.
According to the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, homes up for sale can attract more crime, which could put you or your realtor in danger.
In 2014, Arkansas Realtor Beverly Carter was killed when meeting to show someone a home.
Gateway Mortgage and the Greater Springfield of Realtors are concerned about people staying safe while showing homes, so they hosted the GCSO to educate realtors on how they can be safe while working.
“Always tell people when you’re going to be showing a house,” Hobie Higgins, Gateway Mortgage’s Chief Engagement Officer, said. “Go in pairs if you can, check the perimeter of the house before you go in and just different really great tips things that like that. I mean everything from, whether it be carrying mace or doing different things.”
Cpl. James Craigmyle from the GSCO was there to educate realtors on safety on the job and also how to keep clients’ homes safe as well.
“We talked about ways that they can protect themselves,” Craigmyle said. “Just giving them some tips and tools and ideas they can use to protect them at their work and to protect the people they’re working for as well.”
He says the goal is to keep everyone and their valuables safe.
“A lot of these realtors that put houses up for sale, suspects will sometimes come back and burglarize those homes,” said Craigmyle. “So we want to make sure that the homes are protected. We want to make sure that the people that own them are protected and that the realtors are protected as well.”
Craigmyle says the best way to stay safe, whether you’re a realtor or showing your home, is to lock away or take valuables out of your home.
“They want to make sure if they put their house up for sale, that they’re taking those valuables out whenever they’re leaving their home,” Criagmyle said. “Their guns, medicine, or locking them up and protecting them because their homes are more of a target at that time.”
“I think his best tips were things that were very simple,” Higgins said. “Hey, if you’re selling a home or realtors, if you’re showing a home, let’s take all the prescription meds out of there. Let’s not give people a reason to, you know, do something crazy.”
Craigmyle also suggests taking things out of your car, like your insurance card, and keeping them with you to help deter crime.