Selling your home is a time when your mind is thinking about your new home and your new life in a new neighborhood, not your current home and neighborhood, yet this is a time when you need to give additional attention to home security. Unfortunately, when your home is up for sale, you are actually giving potential thieves a green light to come and take a look. Every time you have an open house or a showing, you may end up inadvertently inviting an unscrupulous individual into your home, and you need to know how to protect yourself. Here are some ways you can protect your home and its contents while it’s up for sale.
Lock away the valuables
When you have an open house or a showing, put any particularly valuable items under lock and key. When trying to sell and prepare for a move, it can be a bit of a hassle to put things away, but it is worth it. It only takes a moment for a thief to abscond with your diamond earrings that are in the jewelry box on your dresser. Have a small safe, and place your most valuable items inside during showings. If that’s not possible, place them in an out-of-sight location.
Appointments are a necessity
You may have some interested buyers who will literally knock on your door and ask to see the home, but don’t give in to this request. Give these interested parties your real estate agent’s name and insist that they make an appointment. Anyone who is truly interested in the house will be willing to do so, and those who are just wanting a peak inside to scope out the place will be deterred by this request.
The same rule applies if someone comes to your home claiming to be a buyer’s agent. Even an agent will need to go through your real estate agent and set up an appointment to tour the home. Legitimate agents don’t typically show up at the home unannounced, and will ask your agent to schedule a showing.
Hide the mail
Mail, even seemingly harmless mail, shouldn’t be left out when someone is touring your home. Criminals are quite adept at gathering information to steal your identity from even the most innocent looking pieces of mail. If your mail ends up in the wrong hands, it could cause a tremendous amount of headaches for you.
Lock down your computer
Surprisingly, your computer can be another venue for a potential thief. To ensure that no one swipes sensitive data from your computer while touring your home, shut it down completely before you leave, and add password protection for an added layer of security. Thieves who target homes for sale are looking for a quick snatch-and-grab of information, so they aren’t going to bother with trying to hack a password protected computer.
Take your medications with you
Prescription drug theft is on the rise, and your home could be a victim if you leave your medications in the property during open houses and showings. To protect your medications, take them with you when you leave for a showing. If you can’t take your medications with you, place them somewhere a thief would be less likely to look, such as a clothing drawer in your dresser rather than the medicine cabinet.
Never show your house alone
If you’re working with a real estate agent, you will never have to show your home alone, but if you are trying to sell without an agent, you will want to ensure someone else is with you when you have a showing. Whether it’s a spouse or a family friend, never show your home without someone else at the property with you. Working with an agent ensures this is never an issue, because your agent will know the people coming to tour your home.
Selling your home can be a stressful time, but you don’t want to add to that stress by allowing a thief an open door. Take these security and safety measures, and consider working with an agent to add a measure of security, and you can ensure that your home is as protected as possible.