Staying Safe When Lone Working as an Estate Agent-Top 5 Tips
Staying safe when lone working as an estate agent is crucial. Not least because of the well-documented history of potential dangers in the industry. Let’s have a look at what some of those hazards are and then some ways you can help reduce or manage them.
What Are the Hazards of Lone Working as an Estate Agent?
There are a variety of hazards that could befall a person working as an estate agent, here are some of the main ones.
Working as an estate agent involves a lot of travel. Travelling by car can make you vulnerable to car accidents due to the frequency of travel and tiredness. Estate agents usually work in their own local areas but occasionally, long-distance travel may be required and travelling long distances over a short period can mean you are more likely to lose concentration and get into a traffic accident.
Lack of local knowledge
Every town and city has a hotspot for violence or an area with a ‘not so nice’ reputation. Not being familiar with local areas can leave you vulnerable to attack or robbery. Luckily, seasoned estate agents will have great knowledge of certain areas and how careful they need to be when visiting certain properties.
This is the biggest danger of being an estate agent. Meeting strangers is always dangerous. Just look what happened to the estate agent, Suzy Lamplugh when she went to meet Mr Kipper. As part of being an estate agent, you regularly yourself in isolation with complete strangers and the danger of this should never be underestimated.
Illness or Accident
Estate agents will often be alone in properties they are selling, and this means that if they fell ill, or had an accident that they might not be discovered for some time. A number of accidents could befall an estate agent, falling down stairs, for example. Or you could suddenly put your back out or pass out.
Top 5 Tips for Staying Safe as an Estate Agent
1) Rest if you need to
Driving whilst tired can make you more likely to lose concentration and make a mistake or become involved in an accident.
Pulling over at a service station and having a 15-minute break can give you the boost you need and refresh you enough for the drive home. You can even have a short power nap in your car if you feel the need and are parked safely.
2) Complete your diary
Make sure your colleagues know where you are going, with whom, for what and what time you expect it to finish. All that information will help them find you if the unthinkable should happen and you don’t report back or get home.
3) Wear your lone worker device
If you have a lone worker device you should be using it. It can save your life. If you fall to the floor, the man down function could mean help is on the way in minutes. You can also easily and discreetly ask for assistance or have someone listening in if you feel uncomfortable or threatened. They can quickly send for the police, ambulance, fire brigade, or any of the other emergency services.
If you go missing or do not know your location and need help, you can be located by the GPS signals being sent from the device or app.
4) Background info
Oftentimes, estate agents will have a bit of background information on clients, if you don’t have any information, ensure that you get basic details from your clients, such as full name, address and telephone number.
5) Listen to your instincts
We cannot emphasise this enough. Your instinct, or gut, is designed to keep you alive. It is your primal indicator that something isn’t right or safe and is way more intelligent than your conscious self. We drown it out these days with reasoning and bartering but it can save your life if you listen to it. If a situation doesn’t feel right, then make an excuse and leave.
Some handy excuses for your back pocket are needing the toilet, left something in the car, your mobile is ringing (just pretend), or even you feel unwell.