LONE WORKING IN Estate agency

Nearly one in three estate agents have been the victim of abuse whilst on viewings.

female estate agent surveying a house

Agency staff say they don’t always feel safe when out on their own

A recent survey carried out across 1,000 UK estate agents found that over half had no safety procedures in place for staff that carry out viewings or valuations on their own.

The findings of the survey, conducted over a two year period include:

  • 30% of the Estate Agents questioned had been the victims of verbal abuse
  • Almost a quarter felt their safety was being compromised
  • 53% didn’t have a lone worker policy
  • 16% had been intimidated
  • More than one in ten had been threatened while conducting viewings
Suzy Lamplugh

Suzy Lamplugh

In 1986 Suzy Lamplugh, a 25 year old estate agent, disappeared after she went to meet an unknown client. She has been presumed murdered and was legally declared dead in 1993.

To date her body has not been found. Her parents, Paul and Diana Lamplugh, believed that Suzy, like most people at that time – and even now – was simply unaware of the possible dangers that individuals can face in society.

Paul and Diana founded the Suzy Lamplugh Trust to highlight the risks people face and to offer advice, action and support to minimise those risks.

Find out more about the Suzy Lamplugh Trust
female estate agent showing 2 men around a property

Safety tips for female estate agents

Women are often more at risk than men when it comes to workplace safety concerns. This risk is magnified by working alone: as estate agents frequently do while showing prospective buyers and renters around empty properties.

People often think that it’s not going to happen to them, or it wouldn’t happen in the area they work, but the truth is that it can happen to anyone at any time. Therefore, it’s essential for female estate agents to be as best prepared as possible:

  1. Trust your instincts – if something feels wrong, it probably is.
  2. Share your schedule – let somebody know where you are at all times and who you’ll be meeting.
  3. Trail behind – always let potential clients lead when walking through a property.
  4. Create a safety plan – implement practices to protect your personal safety (e.g. have a distress code).
  5. Take a self-defence class – don’t wait for an incident to happen to prioritise learning how to protect yourself.
Worker's face

Our lone workers are at a degree of risk each time they show a prospective buyer around our new properties as they are out of sight of the rest of the team – and as many of our staff are female the risks are obvious.

David Smith, Persimmon Homes

Get in touch

If you have employees showing people around homes by themselves, our lone worker safety service could offer them a sense of protection they don’t currently have. To learn more, please get in touch.


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