Real Estate Tip of the Week: Precautions for Open Houses
With spring officially in the air, it’s safe to say that open houses will be in full swing these next couple of months!
If you and your client are planning on presenting an open house, it’s important that you also explain safety concerns before they have strangers enter their home. It’s not only for their safety, but for yours too.
When you’re walking through the home with your client, look for these items and prep for not only a successful open house, but a safe one too.
Definitely remind clients that you can’t be responsible for thefts! Remind them to stow away valuables – this could be anything from documents that include personal information to electronics, jewelry, etc.
When you’re taking photos of the home to list, make sure these valuables are not shown.
Something most people wouldn’t consider hiding or moving – prescription drugs. Nearly half of 164 real estate professionals surveyed at the Greater San Diego Association of REALTORS® Expo reported knowledge of prescription drug theft taking place during open houses.
Instruct your client to remove or lock up any prescriptions they have within the home.
Suggest your client remove any family photos from their home. While removing photos for an open houses also serves as a way for potential buyers to envision their own family within the home, this can also serve as a double purpose. Unfortunately, because we don’t know who will be walking through the open house, it’s important to not show who is currently living in the home.
Weapons and Lighting
If your client has any weapons – knifes, guns, etc., have them remove them from the home. Even something that might not be considered a weapon, i.e., a fireplace poker, should be moved.
Tell your clients to leave lights on prior to showings, regardless of the time. This way, agents don’t have to walk into a dark home. You, as an agent, should also leave lights on for your client’s return.
While these are only a brief list of examples to keep things safe and running smoothly, it’s always important to go over everything with your client and make sure their needs are met as well. And of course – lock doors!