Important Safety Tips for Home Sellers
No matter how long you have been living in your home, selling your property is always an emotional time. You may be looking forward to taking on the next step, but also be emotional thinking about the memories you have made in this house.
However, one thing home sellers should always be aware of is that putting their home on the market may also lead to some security risks and safety tips you need to know. Although the vast majority of house hunters are perfectly honest, some may take advantage of being witnesses of your intimacy. Fortunately, it is easy to protect yourself thanks to these simple but essential safety tips for home sellers.
1. Work with a real estate agent.
Real estate agents are aware of the safety concerns sellers will need to deal with and can make recommendations so you can put all the chances on your side to be as safe as possible. Besides, a real estate can take care of all the communications and appointments with potential buyers, which will not only save you time but will also avoid any unnecessary exposure.
2. Lock your valuables
This one seems like common sense: you don’t want to leave any precious heirloom or jewelry out in the open during an appointment. However, valuable objects are not the only thing you may want to keep under locks as a home seller.
Make sure to put away all your paperwork, such as personal bills, calendars, invitations, and other mail pieces. Identity theft is unfortunately rampant, and you don’t want to give easy access to potentially damaging information. For the same reason, it is strongly recommended that you protect your electronic devices with a password or lock them out altogether.
Another thing to put away before any visit or open house is any prescription drugs you may have in the house. The safest place for any valuable item is a secure safe. If you do not have one, you may want to consider taking everything with you before you leave the house.
3. Only allow visits by appointment.
Some house hunters may be lured by the “For Sale” sign in your front yard. However, you should never let a stranger into your home without being prepared for it. If someone knocks on your door asking to be shown the property, politely ask them to call their agent or yours to make an appointment at a later time so you can keep track of their identity.
Although open houses are a popular and sometimes effective way to sell a property, they can also be a safety issue since the real estate agent will not be able to watch all the visitors at the same time. You may want to pass on the open house if you have any security concerns.
4. Depersonalize your space
Any real estate agent will recommend making your space as neutral as possible before putting your property on the market. However, removing family pictures and other keepsakes does more than allowing house hunters to picture themselves living in your house: it also keeps valuable information away from the wrong hands.
5. Invest in some home security cameras
Home security cameras are affordable, and, in addition, you can take them with you when you move. If you have valuables that are difficult to remove or if you are concerned about your safety, you may want to purchase a few to put in strategic places around your house.
6. Always check doors and windows after a visit.
The first thing you should do after an open house or a visit is to check not only if everything is in the same place, but also if any doors or windows were left open. Your real estate agent should be doing a run through before leaving, but you can never be too careful.