Security Tips for FSBO's
One of the things a seller doesn't often think about, when deciding to sell their own home, is security; the security of themselves, their family and their property.
The following is a list of precautions to take before allowing strangers into your home:
• For your own safety, never set an appointment with anyone to see your home unless they have given you their name and number and you have called back to verify that number. An easy way to do this is to say. "Let me check with my husband/wife for the best time and I will call you back." Use this method even if you are not married.
• If the caller says he/she is a real estate agent, call his/her office to verify the information. You can also often check out a Real Estate Company website and find a picture of the agent. When he or she comes to the house, get a business card. For instance:
I may call you asking to preview your home. I will give you
My company name
My cell number
You should ask for my office number; I will give it to you. (You could verify it by
looking it up in the yellow pages, assuming you have the same yellow pages we are listed in).
You should ask if I/we have a website. I would give you:
My website address
My office website address where you could then click on "Associates" and find my picture and a link to my website.
• Leave the name and phone number of the person requesting to view your home either with someone, such as a neighbor, or in a location that is out of sight but known by someone else.
• Never let a caller or looker know your schedule. Don't ever tell them when you won't be at home, when your spouse won't be home, when you pick up the kids, when you work, when you will be on vacation, etc.
• Never provide a caller with information about your home's security such as deadlock bolts, security systems, and so forth.
• Always have a back-up plan when you allow strangers into your home, especially if you have children. Have a neighbor look out for you until the lookers have gone.
• Never let a stranger into your home without seeing some identification. Keep a log of everyone who has looked at your house. Get their name, telephone number, address, car description, tag number, and any additional information that could be helpful in the event of a future burglary. All of these people would be suspects.
• If you make a flyer to advertise your home, don't include any information that might breech security.
• Remove from sight all valuables, including guns, jewelry, silverware, and collections.
• Remove any prescription drugs from your bathroom and put them somewhere else.
• Never leave strangers alone, and watch their every move while they're in your home.
• Never allow yourself to get cornered. Always have an opening to an exit. Do not turn your back on people you let into your house. Let the lookers enter rooms first. Maintain a distance between yourself and the lookers.
• Try to always have someone else with you when you show your home. There is strength in numbers.
• Instruct children not to give out information over the phone. Just have them ask for a name and call back number.
• If you are using a push button or dial lock box, only give out the code to a Realtor® or real estate agent that you have verified the identity of. Better yet, don't give the code to anyone you do not know.
Every one showing a home, man or woman, young or older, should take care and remember these security tips. While not epidemic, there are enough cases of fraudulent buyers that are really only cases of con artists looking to find some valuables they might steal, or worse.