I’m often asked by clients, after they see all the tech gadgets I use, what piece of electronic technology I feel is the most valuable. Most think it is the cell phone. Yes, that’s very important because without it, how could my husband call to find out what is for dinner?
But in all honestly, with information readily available to anyone who wants it, I find the biggest weapon I possess is a paper shredder. That’s right, not a computer, Blackberry, or laptop, but a plain old paper shredder…and one that turns it into confetti.
Identity theft is a real concern. Everyday I receive at least one solicitation from a credit card company or other firm that wants me to sign up with their service. I have excellent credit and I want to keep it. As soon as we get the mail, we make a recycle pile and a shred pile. If it has even my name on it, it goes in the shredder.
But I also take it one step further. I treat my clients personal information the same as my own. Once a client’s transaction is closed, I transfer everything over to a CD. Then I do the most important thing and shred all their documents. I know many agents don’t realize that they could be affecting their clients security by throwing important real estate documents in the trash. I would hate to be the cause of a trusted friends identity being stolen.
So remember, if in doubt, shred it! And don’t forget to request your real estate agent to do the same. It only takes a few minutes to eliminate the possibility of a dumpster diver finding it, but is keeps a lifetime of yourself secret from prying eyes.