I am always on the road for my work. I don’t expect to run into trouble when I go out to check on a property or to set up an open house. Yes, I am a realtor in the flesh. We know the local areas and they are good neighborhoods for the most part. As a result, I don’t carry a gun or knife. I don’t know the least bit about self defense. I cannot even pronounce the names of the various martial arts. I have never met anyone who has a “belt” in one of them. I would be afraid to try a kick, punch, or jab lest it land in the wrong place.
You can imagine my surprise when I arrived at an empty home one night and found a few thieves attempting to steal the copper pipes out of the walls. What audacity! It happens all the time. You might have heard about this and know that copper fetches a good price as a scrap metal. As I stumbled upon the vandals, I had flashes go through my mind about what I could do to chase them off before they did irreparable damage. Fortunately, quick thinking caused me to grab a handy cast-iron pot hanging from a decorative rack within a few inches of where I was standing. I swung the menacing item toward one of the robbers to scare him off. I assumed the other would follow suit. They both ran for the back alley and I wasn’t about to go after them. I did call 911 hoping they would find them lurking close by.
The thieves probably assumed that I had a gun and didn’t want a confrontation over some old pipe. I am now thinking of carrying some other form of non-legal self defense. There won’t always be a heavy pot sitting around anywhere I go. I would look silly brandishing a shovel or a rake, but it could work. I prefer pepper spray, a body alarm, or shouting and yelling to draw attention from helpful neighbors. I never thought of real estate as a risky business, but it borders on perilous. I would suggest that brokers go out at night in pairs. There is safety in numbers, says the old adage.
Never assume you are safe when on the job. The thieves may come after you arrive like a home invasion. They don’t expect to find you in an empty residence and they may be unprepared themselves. A quick douse of pepper spray will make them run, moaning in pain. A burning sensation around the eyes, nose, and mouth will immobilize the strongest of men. But when the spray is not available for some reason, don’t overlook everyday tools as a potential self defense weapon.
Meanwhile, we are lucky to enjoy a profitable career that involves dealing with people and presenting beautiful sites. If you have a big dog, he will make a great companion providing safety and security.