While selling your home isn’t an unsafe practice, it’s a good idea to ensure its security while potential buyers come and go while it’s for sale. Below, we discuss a few safety/security tips that will not only help secure your home but also make it more attractive to potential buyers, too.
Put Your Valuables Away
Before you begin showing your home, make sure to put all your valuables away. The adage, “Out of sight, out of mind,” holds true here because if potential buyers can’t see it, they won’t be tempted to take it.
Most people that come into your home during a showing are honestly looking for a new home. However, would-be criminals also like to frequent open houses to see what they can make off with, and there’s the occasional child who might put your things in their pocket. Jewelry and small electronics are the most popular items stolen during home showings, but nothing of value is exempt.
Keep Close Track of the People Who Come and Go
Every time someone comes to your house for a showing, ask them to sign in with their name, phone number, and address so you can keep track of everyone who tours your home. This way, you’ll have a place to start if any of your belongings go missing.
Enlist the Help of a Reputable Real Estate Agent
Rather than trying to sell your home yourself and having to deal with potential buyers yourself, enlist the help of a reputable agent. A good real estate agent will list your home with the MLS (Multiple Listing Service), and she will work with other reputable agents who bring only screened buyers through your home. This way, you know the people touring your home are there to buy and not to steal your things.
Forgo the Open House
Open houses serve one purpose: to invite the public at large to view your home in the hopes a buyer will be among them. Unfortunately, along with real buyers, other less-than-honest people also come to open houses, mostly to steal or to case it for a future break-in.
Since open houses result in less than 6 percent of home sales, you’re better off not having an open house and instead, letting your agent schedule private showings with screened homebuyers.
Install Security Cameras
Installing security cameras before your home goes on the market is a great idea as it allows you to keep track of everyone coming and going and it increases your home’s value. Just be sure to let everyone know they are being filmed when they enter, so there are no privacy concerns later. Also, when people know they’re being watched, they tend to keep their hands to themselves.
Remove All Personal Information
Family photos, that note on the fridge, and calendars with events penciled in are all pieces of personal information someone might use maliciously after being in your home. It’s better to be safe than sorry so get rid of any personal information, so your home is a blank slate.