Real estate agents are often asked to give tours of properties to individuals, and that can put them in unsafe situations. Now, some agents are taking their safety into their own hands.
According to a recent study, 25 percent of male real estate agents and 44 percent of female agents have experienced a situation that has made them fear for their safety.
“It does not matter anymore,” real estate broker Sonia Figueroa said. “It could be a great neighborhood or a bad neighborhood. Anything can happen.”
Several things did happen to Figueroa this year, including getting attacked by a pitbull and showing a client a vacant property while a possible drug deal happened in another room.
Unfortunately for Figueroa, she was also robbed, with an assailant taking her purse and her cell phone while she was on the job.
That robbery was the straw that broke the camel’s back for Figueroa, who got a gun and her concealed carry permit after the theft.
“I am ready to use it at any given time if I need to do it,” she said. “I’ve taken lessons. I go to the range twice a week.”
Not all real estate agents are willing to go that far. Figueroa’s business partner Rosa Linda says that a gun is not for her, but she does carry mace whenever she goes out in the field.
Both women say that their message to other agents is simple: be aware of your surroundings, and don’t become a victim.