Safety Measures on Inspection of Properties (2)
Incidents of estate agents being robbed by persons under the pretense of property inspection appear from time to time and the Authority has previously issued a Circular on the subject. The Authority would like to advise practitioners again to take great care of their personal safety while accompanying customers in property inspections. The suggestions below are from the Crime Prevention Bureau of the Police Force and should be followed as much as is practicable:
- A female practitioner should avoid showing a property to male customer(s) alone. In that circumstance, it is advisable to have another staff present;
- Leave the doors and gates of vacant properties open during inspection;
- Do not carry excessive cash, or wear expensive watches or jewellery;
- Keep your colleagues informed of all inspections and the locations of such inspections and maintain close liaison with them. Code words may be used if necessary;
- Check and record Identity Card details of customers who inspect flats;
- Ask customers to leave their contact telephone numbers and verify them before inspection; and
- Where practicable, install closed-circuit television and recording systems in the office.
The Crime Prevention Bureau also suggests that estate agency companies should take the appropriate safety measures for their employees.