October 17, 2009

Medication Abuse

drugsI was looking over the City of Orem’s newsletter today and was surprised at some facts that were quoted. The article was on cleaning out your medicine cabinet.

**It stated that Utah leads the nation in prescription pain medication abuse.

**70% of those who get caught or admit to abusing prescription pain medications say they get them
from friends or   relatives—usually without their knowledge.

**In 2007, unintentional prescription pain medication overdoses were the #1 cause of injury deaths in Utah.
That is more than motor vehicle crashes.

The article suggests that we all go though our medicine cabinets and throw out any medications that are expired or no longer needed.  The City of Orem has installed a Drug Drop Off Box at the Orem Police Dept at 83 E. Center St. to provide us with a safe place to dispose of these drugs.

I see a connection on this problem with Real Estate in that when your home is for sale, you have people that you do not know coming through your home.  I think most agents do a good job of staying with those clients and keeping an eye on them while showing homes, however, I have been in situations where the buyers acted a little…weird.

I was once with buyers in a very nice home and I was lucky to have an agent friend along with me.  The potential buyer brought friends with him and eventually, they all kept trying to split up and wander around the house. I don’t think they counted on me bringing another agent because between the two of us, we did a great job of not letting them out of our sight.   I commented to my agent friend afterward that I had the feeling they were intentionally trying to split up to get out of our sight so they could do something.  He said, “I know! Me too!”

I have heard of people posing as buyers to find opportunities to search medicine cabinets for prescription pain medications. People that are abusing these drugs get desperate and creative to find them.

I think Orem City’s suggestion to get rid of the unnecessary drugs that may still be in our medicine cabinets is a good one.

Filed under: Blogroll,Buying,Community,Real Estate,Selling — Susan @ 10:23 pm

October 1, 2009

New Keybox for Utah County REALTORS®

Insist your agent use this keybox!

Insist your agent use this keybox!

Utah County has changed their Lockbox system recently and even though I’ve written on this subject already, I want to write again to stress the importance of this issue.

Utah County Association of REALTORS® (UCAR) has switched from using Risco to Supra boxes. These boxes are what we agents use to store the key to the home so that other agents can bring their buyers by our listings for showings when the buyers are not home.

This makes it more convenient to get more showings on a home, increasing the likelihood of the home sellling.
(A home will not sell if buyers can’t see it.)

I noticed a trend when we switched our system last time. Many homes that I took buyers to for showings did not have the UCAR approved boxes. Too many agents were choosing to use a cheaper “contractors” box that can be easily purchased at home improvement stores. These boxes can be opened by using a 4 digit number code. Agents that want to show these homes must call and get the code from the agent or sometimes these agents publish the code on the internet so we can get access. Once the code is learned, the home can be entered as often as desired and the listing agent may not know how many times the home has been showed by the same buyer’s agent.

Also, there have been documented cases around the country where the wrong people get access, somehow, to these “contractor” box codes and homes are being robbed and even gutted in some cases. Often, an agent has mulitple listings and uses the same code on all of them. Once one home is violated, several more usually follow.

The new approved Supra boxes store the key securely, can only be accessed by REALTORS® who own a computerized code key, keep a record of who uses the key to gain access to the home, and electronically informs the agent that his/her listing has been entered.

If your agent is not using the approved Supra boxes, you are not getting the necessary information about the number of showings on your home, and your valuables and your home are at risk! You should insist that your agent get a Supra box and use it for your home.  

If you are considering hiring an agent to sell your home, ask him/her if he/she uses the Supra keyboxes.

If they do not, that should be reason enough to consider using a different agent to list your home.