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  • Realty Watch

     

    Real estate agents are helping The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office make neighborhoods safer as part of a partnership known as the Realty Watch program. Because real estate agents spend so much time in our neighborhoods, they are ideally situated to notice suspicious criminal activity in or around the homes they visit.

    Safer Neighborhoods

    The Realty Watch program is designed to teach real estate agents crime prevention and proper crime-reporting techniques to get them involved in protecting property, possessions and themselves; therefore, the agents can help make our neighborhoods safer.

    Property Values Rise

    A safer community will increase the overall quality of life in any neighborhood. Reducing vandalism, burglary, criminal mischief, assault and other crimes in any area can make properties more valuable and more marketable.

    Law enforcement agencies cannot be everywhere, all the time. We continually rely on public assistance to help solve crimes. The real estate industry, with its vast manpower resources and its activity in residential neighborhoods, can provide extra eyes and ears to protect our communities.

    Studies have shown that crime prevention is most effective when stakeholders other than law enforcement are actively involved. Most neighborhood crime in Jefferson County is opportunistic and can be effectively reduced through simple crime-prevention techniques.

    How Realty Watch Works

    Sheriff's office instructors train real estate agents how to recognize and report suspicious activity, how to identify evidence of illegal drugs and meth labs and how to avoid dangerous situations.

    Once trained, agents return to work, always keeping an eye for suspicious activity in the neighborhoods where they work. Realty Watch participants will receive sheriff's office emails featuring crime-prevention and personal-safety tips, crime trends and crime notifications.

     

    Who Benefits?

    The Realty Watch program is a win-win situation for everyone.

    Real eastate agents benefit in several ways. First, it is much easier to sell a home, business or property if the area has a low incidence of crime. Second, agents will learn personal-safety tips and gain a better understanding of crime in neighborhoods - information that will help them in the course of their work.

    Homeowners can gain peace of mind knowing that trained eyes are keeping watch on listed homes. Neighbors throughout the community will also benefit. If crime is occurring in and around a listed home, it is likely to be affecting surrounding homes. Realty Watch decals in listed homes' windows and on yard signs will let neighbors know that a Realty Watch agent is selling a home.

    The sheriff's office benefits with added eyes and ears that agents bring to our communities. Having a force of trained observers in our neighborhoods will help us fight crime and make Jefferson County safer.