When thinking about the necessary steps needed to be a successful real estate professional, most agents only think about what can bring them new leads and higher sales. Because of this, many overlook one of the most important sides of the job: safety....
When thinking about the necessary steps needed to be a successful real estate professional, most agents only think about what can bring them new leads and higher sales. Because of this, many overlook one of the most important sides of the job: safety.
In this episode of Real Estate Excellence, we’re joined by one of the biggest and most knowledgeable experts in real estate safety, Tracy Hawkins, who shares with us some of the dos and don’ts of how to keep yourself and your clients safe while on the job.
Tracy Hawkins had a successful career in real estate which she left to turn into “The Safety Lady,” a widely regarded real estate safety specialist and founder of the Safety and Security Source. Tracy conducts training and speeches about real estate safety all across the country and has been awarded as one of Kansas City’s most influential women.
Tune in to learn about how to make your real estate business safer from the best of the best.
[00:00 - 07:22] Don't Let Your Guard Down: Real Estate Agents Among Top 10 Highest Risk Occupations
- Real estate agents are in the top 10 highest-risk occupations.
- Gavin de Becker's book "The Gift of Fear" is a must-read for personal safety.
- Don't judge someone by their appearance, as it can be dangerous.
- Listen to and respect your internal voice, whose sole job is to keep you safe.
- Criminals are everywhere, so don't let your guard down in any part of town.
[07:23 - 14:31] Teaching Agents How to Serve Consumers and Make Money While Keeping Them Safe
- Tracy grew up in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and is the product of a Catholic school education
- Tracy speaks nationally about safety and security-related topics
- She created a designation for real estate agents to teach safety courses
- The course includes basics of safety practices, screening, hosting safe open houses, and how to serve the consumer and make more money
- Tracy created a tip sheet for FSBOs with 13 tips on how to stay safe when showing their home
[14:32 - 21:08] Unlocking the Secrets of Home Safety
- Anything of value needs to be out of sight when a house is open for showings
- Agents should focus on the features of the property, not the content
- Have a conversation with homeowners about safety and depersonalizing the house
- Stalking is a big concern in the industry, so personal pictures and schedules should be removed from view
- Safety is an expertise that needs to be valued, not just talked about by anyone
[21:08 - 28:05] Real Estate Agent Survives Attack Thanks to Accessible Weapon and Self-Defense Training
- Tracy Hawkins created 13 safety classes to teach agents safe practices and protect the consumer
- She also wrote a handbook, the only broker manager owner office safety policy handbook in the industry
- Les than 250 brokerages have taken certification training
- The number one safety tool is pepper spray, followed by a firearm
- Tracy tells stories of agents using weapons to protect themselves from assailants
[28:05 - 34:51] Take Safety Classes to Protect Yourself from Real Estate Crime
- Carrying a weapon can be necessary, but you need to be prepared to use it through consistent practice.
- It’s not enough to take a self-defense lesson or two. You need to be practicing consistently to pull it off if the necessity arises.
- make sure it's legal to carry any weapon you choose
- muscle memory with self-defense takes practice
- males don't take safety seriously due to thinking nothing will happen to them, even though real estate crimes affect men more than women
[34:51 - 41:33] Increase Your Safety as a Real Estate Agent with Forewarn: Confirm Identity, Check Criminal Convictions, and More
- Safety in numbers: agents should never show a property alone and can always find an industry partner to co-host open houses
- Forewarn app: industry leader for screening safety; confirms identity, checks social media accounts, and reveals criminal convictions
- Meeting in the office: agents should get a copy of their clients' driver's licenses to increase witness potential and reduce the risk of victimization
[41:33 - 48:24] Protecting Real Estate Agents: Statistics, Tips, and Tools to Stay Safe
- Real estate sales is considered a high-risk, hazardous occupation by the US Department of Labor
- On average, 68 people in the real estate industry are killed on the job each year
- Over 60,000 real estate agents are victimized annually
- Criminals target real estate agents through research and social media
- Real estate agents should take precautions to protect themselves from potential harm
[48:24 - 54:48] Empowering Agents Through Education: What You Need to Know About Social Media Safety
- No such thing as privacy on any social media
- Control the information you share on social media
- Be careful of what you post, and don't post personal information
- Utilize Nextdoor to be a good neighbor and stay informed about local crime
- Don't use Nextdoor to advertise your services, instead contribute positively
- It's more important to know than who you know
[54:48 - 56:11] Connect with the Best of the Best and Take Your Skills to the Next Level - Visit TracyHayesPodcast.com!
- Tracy Hawkins is giving a PDF handout to help people learn the dangers of what they're doing and increase their chances of getting a listing
- She will be speaking at an e-bar camp on January 27th
- Connect with the best of the best and take skills to the next level by visiting tracyhayespodcast.com
"We don't operate from fear, but we operate from empowerment. Knowing how to keep ourselves safe, knowing the safe practices so that we can move forward in our businesses."
"Safety isn't sexy. Agents aren't lining up to take safety classes. Agents are lining up to take social media classes, video classes, legion classes, but no one's lining up to take safety classes." -Tracey Hawkins
“Safety is an expertise. This is something I live and breathe. I know the stories, I know the numbers. You need to have someone who lives and breathes it." -Tracey Hawkins
"Don't let your guard down because you think you're in a good part of town. As long as criminals have cars, there's no such thing as a good part of town. Criminals are everywhere." -Tracey Hawkins
Make sure to follow Tracey Hawkins on social media:
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