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There's a 25 Percent Chance Your Realtor is Armed

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From Lani Rosales of real estate industry news publication Agent Genius:

One in four male Realtors are packin’ heat while on the job -- report

Throughout Moby’s 2011 Real Estate Safety Report, it was immediately noticeable and not very surprising that there was a disparity between the attitudes of male Realtors versus female Realtors, and a drastic difference between their behaviors, chosen defense, and the attitudes of their loved ones. Male Realtors worry less about safety, yet are more likely to carry a weapon.

Rosales goes on to say that "although we knew a small portion of real estate professionals would indicate carrying a gun, especially those practicing in the foreclosure or short sale markets," (emphasis mine) she finds it "extremely intriguing that one in four male Realtors indicate they carry a knife or gun while on the job."

Intriguing, perhaps. But not altogether surprising, when one considers how dangerous being a Realtor seems to be these days -- especially those practicing in the foreclosure or short sale markets. (And it's not just men, either. Agent Sheila Shipley began carrying a .38 in her purse after she was attacked while showing a home in 1986.)

According to ABC News, "more than a hundred in the real estate profession... have been killed on the job since the foreclosure mess began in 2008."

"Agents may encounter squatters, angry former homeowners or even encounter abandoned pets that may be aggressive," security expert Tracey Hawkins told reporter Lyneka Little. "These properties are often meth labs, or pot houses, and encroaching upon them is dangerous."

In April, real estate agent Ashley Okland was murdered inside a West Des Moines, Iowa model home. Initially, police "believed [the killer] to be another Realtor." However, more than four months later, the case remains unsolved.

Not altogether unsurprisingly, homes in which violent crimes have been committed can be a tough sell, and "may sell for less than their full-market value, given the psychological effect a past crime can have on a prospective owner," according to Stephen T. Watson of The Buffalo News.

Of finding a buyer for a property where a man stabbed his wife to death in 2004, one upstate New York real estate agent told the News, "It was a challenge. It was just a matter of people's perception of the property."
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