Realtor Safety in Light of Missing Arkansas Agent

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

ICE Black Box,

ICE Black Box

Agents, please read this and hang in there long enough to get to the meat of this post.  The neighborhood where I live is in the process of setting up a Neighborhood Watch program in which we will be using an app called ICE Black Box this is different from the ICE app that has been around awhile.  With this app, you can video record events such as dangerous situations, suspicious activity, crime as it's happening or if you feel you are in danger.  The video is then stored on another server so that no can force you to erase the video and even if the phone is damaged, the video has already been stored on

The video is then stored on another server so that no can force you to erase the video and even if the phone is damaged, the video has already been stored on another server.  While i record mode, you can click on the link that says "call 911" and the video is sent to authorities and in addition, you can have that same video automatically sent to people you have set up in your settings on the app. 

I had already been talking with the company, ICE Black Box, about how real estate agents could use this app as part of Realtor® safety, but that inquiry was escalated when I read about Beverly Carter in Arkansas.ICE Black Box, about how real estate agents could use this app as part of Realtor® safety, but that inquiry was escalated when I read about Beverly Carter in Arkansas.

You can check out some news videos of how the ICE Black Box works.news videos of how the ICE Black Box works.

 

I immediately sent a link to the article about the missing Arkansas agent to my ICE Black Box contact, Johnny Gajito and asked how Realtors could best use the ICE Black Box app as a safety precaution and below is what he suggested.  Please share this with your broker and Mr. Gajito suggested getting NAR involved.  I feel that this would be a worthwhile effort if we pushed for NAR's involvement in investigating the wide spread use of ICE Blackbox throughout the real estate community.


Here's an idea,

  1. Have the Brokerage/Realtors create a Neighborhood Watch Portal for either each home/neighborhood they have listing located in. (Same thing goes for one of your Buying Agent showing a home)
  2. When entering into MLS, mention in the notes "This property is currently monitored with a Neighborhood Watch NOW Portal".
    Along in the description also recommend downloading the ICE BlackBox App and to call the Brokerage/Listing Agent prior to showing the property.

    Example: "As a safety process, Realtors showing this property are recommended to download the new Neighborhood Watch NOW Mobile App, ICE BlackBox. 
    Please use this app to document any problems/damages with the property by recording any finding onsite and then "sharing" these incidents with me via email or sms to listing-agents@email.com or "888-mymobile#" 
  3. Also place one of the Neighborhood Watch NOW signs in the front & back window(for predators).Neighborhood Watch NOW signs in the front & back window(for predators).front & back window (for predators).
  4. When a Realtors call have the Listing Agent or someone at the Brokerage login to the Portal for that home/location (if there are multiple listings within the same radius, just use the same one)
  5. Also recommend to any Realtor to use the app as a selfie to record themselves checking-in or opt-out. But at least have the app handy for their safety and documenting details, as mentioned above in the example.

You don't want to scare buyers or agents away by assuming/disclosing that it is a bad neighborhood or otherwise.

This is only a recommendation and a "best practice scenario", change any way you see fit or discuss this amongst your office and come up with ideas to add or change.  

This is only a recommendation and a "best practice scenario", change any way you see fit or discuss this amongst your office and come up with ideas to add or change. 
Introduce it as a "New Safety/Documentation Procedure". 

I would involve your IT Dept., Office-Assistant or a Compliance person in creating/executing this process. IT would create the login for "General-Use", so everyone/anyone from your office may access it and that many can share or use the same login. Once we complete Beta-testing on this Phase 1 implementation, you would be able to create multiple users and still have IT manage it.

For example; ForestHill@KellerWilliamsGardendale.comFairOaks@KellerWilliamsGardendale.com, etc. or maybe a GMail, Yahoo, or Hotmail account and have someone designated. I would suggest 2-3 people, such as a compliance or an Office-Assistant monitor or log into the portal when a Listing Agent is notified or the opposite when an Buying Agent is going out to show a property, even if it's not their own listing or from the same Broker's office.

 

 

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Rainer
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Whitney Watson
First Heritage Mortgage - Henrico, VA

Charita, This sounds like a great app. Maybe a little tricky to use in an emergency situation? I was just considering setting up a self defense class for realtors last week. Never hurts to be more prepared. 

Sep 29, 2014 05:59 AM #1
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

That might be true, but it's better than what many are currently using which is nothing.  Also you may be thinking about being right in the midst of an emergency situation but there are ways that you can use the app prior to that situation, for example you could record a license plate when you drive up to the location.  If you haven't notified anyone where you were going, once you got there, you could record your location and if anything were to happen to you, at least someone would know your last known location.  The videos offer a great deal more info and the company is willing to work with NAR in tweaking it for Realtor safety.  Keep an open mind. The FAQs may shed some light and explain in more detail.

Sep 29, 2014 06:14 AM #2
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Jerry Newman
Brown Realty, 210-789-4216,www.JeremiahNewman.com - San Antonio, TX
Texas REALTOR, San Antonio Military Relocation

Charita Cadenhead This is a great idea to aid all agents with safety. This should be a Featured Post.

Sep 29, 2014 07:00 AM #3
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)
It really is Jerry and I hope this does get featured. Like Whitney, we were a little skeptical at first about its practicality, but once we were educated, we really began to get excited. We never think that what happened to Beverly Carter could happen to us, but it can.
Sep 29, 2014 07:52 AM #4
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Susan Haughton
Long and Foster REALTORS (703) 470-4545 - Alexandria, VA
Susan & Mindy Team...Honesty. Integrity. Results.

This is definitely something to look into and consider.  Thanks for posting this and opening the dialogue!

Sep 29, 2014 09:00 AM #9
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

You are welcome Susan.  Real estate agents are always on the cutting edge when it comes to implementing new technology.  It would be really great if AR agents pioneered widespread use of this app.

Sep 29, 2014 09:33 AM #10
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Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

Ms. Charita:  It doesn't surprise me one bit that you are taking action in this regard .. and trying to help others stay safe and aware.  Seems like these horrible stories are happening more and more often if EVERY neighborhood.  None of us can be too aware.  Thanks for sharing this info.  Hopefully this missing woman is found soon ...

Gene

Sep 29, 2014 11:15 AM #11
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

Thanks Gene.  Even if no one ever researches or uses it, I feel good about passing along the information as a  small measure to offer a solution to a problem that taunts the real estate business.

Sep 29, 2014 09:10 PM #12
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Jon Kolsky
Kolsky Realty & Management - Long Beach, CA
Licensed California Real Estate Broker

Charita Cadenhead ~ thanks for sharing "I love the app! We have to do whatever it takes to keep safe and using technology to do is a perfect idea...

Oct 16, 2014 04:05 AM #13
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

Thanks Jon Kolsky.  Check this gadget out.  This is really cool and can go undetected because it's a wearable safety device.

Oct 16, 2014 04:10 AM #14
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Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

That does sound like a great app to have. Hopefully it is affordable.

Nov 03, 2014 10:19 AM #15
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Mack Galphin
Realtor Safety Moves into the Future
 
There have been almost 200 Realtors murdered, and many times that assaulted since 2008 and the real estate industry, as a whole, has failed to develop an effective safety protocol during this deadly time period. Every time this life and death issue comes to the forefront the Realtor community is again led to failed measures like weapons and fighting techniques for protection. I know of no incidents on record where an everyday female Realtor has stopped a criminal attack by using force. These attackers are hardened criminals who render their victims helpless with the initial strike. Julie Roberts, a Florida Realtor recently testified about the attack she endured. With the first blow the criminal knocked her across the room and completely out of her shoes. This is typical in this type of attack. These obsolete techniques are simply not the solution, and most Realtors realize this.
 
So how do we stop these criminals and the harm they are inflicting on Realtors? There are 2 parts to this answer:
Part 1- By utilizing new, proactive technology that stops these attacks BEFORE they occur.
Part 2- By having in place a superior Emergency Response Plan that protects Realtors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
 
The link below is an informational video to new, Skype based technology that has just been released for Realtor protection. This is the first elite, crime prevention protocol ever developed for the Realtor community. Also, the Emergency Response Plan in this system is state-of-the-art and far superior to any response plan that is currently being used. 
 
This system is substantially safer than any system being used by Realtors today. It is much more convenient for clients and Realtors than “out of the way” safety trips to the office and the other procedures that have been implemented of late. Clients will also have far less of an issue with using this system than handing over their driver’s license to be copied. We must remember, driver’s license fraud is a major problem in today’s society.
 
Right now is the time for the Realtor community to take advantage of intelligence and modern technology and stop these attacks before they happen. In today’s digital society our gains come from the use of advanced technology and this situation is no different. This is just another example of new technology that has never been seen before, that’s what makes it so great; embrace the new and utilize it. This technology is the real method of defeating these criminals, and it absolutely works.
 
On this website is a link titled Partner with Police that shows how a small team of 3 Realtors can immediately implement this protocol in any community or city. Establish REAL safety in your community by being a leader in implementing this protocol and providing Realtors and their clients with the level of protection and convenience that they deserve. If you have any questions about this protocol or Realtor safety in general, feel free to call.
 
Mack Galphin
Cyber Violence Specialist
803-479-2241
Nov 12, 2014 12:33 PM #16
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Connie Harvey
Pilkerton Realtors - Brentwood, TN
Realtor - Nashville TN Real Estate

Hi Charita! I just stopped by to wish you a happy Birthday! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

Dec 27, 2014 06:40 AM #17
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Charita Cadenhead
Keller Williams Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

Thanks Connie for the birthday greeting. I appreciate it.

Dec 27, 2014 08:26 AM #18
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