Protect your valuables if you’re planning an open house – Irvine Real Estate – Irvine Homes for Sale

by Robert Mack on March 7, 2011

in Latest News, Sellers

The day for the open house finally has arrived.

Strangers will be opening closets, checking the basement and taking in all the home has to offer.

They may not be looking to buy.

Sometimes open houses attract thieves and burglars, people looking for fine jewelry, prescription painkillers or a loose laptop.

“People are not going to steal anything that’s big” during an open house, said Lake and Co. Real Estate Broker Vince Decker. “So don’t make it easy for them.”

Jewelry, prescriptions and other portable valuables should be removed, carefully hidden or locked away.

“No one’s going to go on a treasure hunt for your stuff,” Decker said.

Unfortunately people with bad intentions may case an open house, said Snohomish County Crime Prevention Deputy Will Ter-Veen.

He recommends taking valuables, even large electronics, to a friend’s home, away from the prying eyes of would-be thieves.

“I would get rid of them,” he said. “It doesn’t put a sign on the house, ‘I’m a 56-inch TV and I’m waiting for you to take me tonight.'”

Criminals may tour a home taking an inventory of electronics, computers, safes and other signs of valuables. Then they’ll return at night to burglarize the home and grab the goods.

Good security and alert neighbors help spoil most thefts, experts said.

An ounce of prevention, by way of the professionals selling the home, helps too.

Be sure to talk to your broker or agent about their plan for the safety of your belongings and home.

People hosting the open house should greet each visitor and introduce themselves. The short interaction could shake loose people with ill intentions.

The National Association of Realtors recommends agents host open houses in pairs, if possible. If that’s not an option, then agents should check in with an office or friend hourly.

It’s best to follow prospective buyers around a home, while staying alert and keeping an exit plan in mind.

Neighbors are good allies for agents, brokers and homeowners. Make sure the neighbors know the agent or broker. Ask the neighbors to keep an eye open for suspicious activity. Urge them to dial 911 if something seems amiss.

“I don’t want to scare anyone,” Decker said. “Problems are very rare.”

Still, it’s best to be prepared, he said.

“Why tempt fate?”

Tips for a safe open house

•Remove valuables from your home including jewelry, prescription medicines and electronics.

Clean out drawers and medicine cabinets to prevent people from going on a treasure hunt.

Introduce your Realtor to neighbors, and ask neighbors to watch for suspicious activity.

Talk to your broker or agent about safeguarding your home.

Install working security systems.

Ask the local police or sheriff’s deputies to patrol the area.

Think about the safety of pets during an open house. Post signs near doors to remind people not to allow pets outside.

This is so unfortunate, but true! If you’re planning an open house, plan to keep your valuables safe as well!

Posted on Irvine Orange County Real Estate Market News

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Post by Robert Mack

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Vancouver Real Estate March 8, 2011 at 6:08 am

Yes! Make sure to put away all your valuables. You just never know about open houses and especially if you have a busy open house, it might be a good idea to get your Realtor and their assistant to help monitor the open house to make sure everyone that comes through is a prospective buyer and not there to do something else!

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