Realtor Association Observes Fifth Annual Safety Week
Would you welcome a complete stranger into your home or get into a car alone with someone you had just met? Real estate professionals do it every day, and sometimes, not surprisingly, bad things happen. In a recent survey of workplace violence prevention, the U.S. Department of Labor said 2.5 percent of real estate businesses reported an incident of workplace violence in 2005. According to the National Association of Realtors®, which represents 1.3 million members, it's not common but real estate professionals across the country have been assaulted, robbed, even killed in the course of doing their jobs.
Every job that requires interaction with the public involves some risk, notes NAR, but emphasizing safety awareness and strategies helps to minimize that risk. For the fifth year now, one of the association's strategies has been to observe an annual Realtor® Safety Week, which we are currently right in the middle of. As part of the observance, NAR distributed an education and awareness kit to all of its more than 1,400 local and state associations, as well as the top 500 brokerages across the country. The kit includes a video, support materials for safety presentations, and a wallet-size card of safety tips, such as:
- Keep a charged cell phone with you at all times.
- Meet potential clients for the first time in your office.
- Never advertise a home as "vacant."
- Don't put your home phone number on your business card.
- Always take your own car for showings.
"Given their dedication to helping families achieve teir dreams of home ownership, Realtors® believe that their profession's rewards far outweigh the risks," said NAR President Pat V. Combs. "NAR's ongoing commitment to Realtor® safety education and awareness helps our embers minimize those risks and, in the process, protect their customers and clients, as well. It's one more way Realtors® add value to the real estate transaction."
For this year's Realtor® Safety Week, for the first time NAR is offering a 3D online safety course through Realtor® University. The course, available to brokers at a savings for their entire office, provides personal, professional, and client safety information that NAR says is critical for all members. For more information about Safety Week and other safety initiatives, visit www.REALTOR.org/Safety.