Here are some tips to stay safe on real estate showings:
1. Carry a digital weapon - a cell phone. Phones can be a life-saver in a bad situation. Stay in communication with someone who knows you are on a showing. If you don't have cell phone service at the property let someone know when to expect you back.
2. ID and pre-qualify prospective clients (buyers, tenants, etc). At a minimum, get a copy of a driver's license. Having basic information on a person is one of the best deterrents to a crime. You may consider using a software like www.turbotenant.com to collect rental application details and a copy of a drivers license in advance.
3. Trust your intuition - if you feel uncomfortable with the client bring a buddy with you. Having more than one person dramatically increases your level of safety.
4. Be smart at the property. Let the client go into rooms first, stay in an open and well lit part of the property. Leave the front door open. Tell the client you are expecting someone else shortly.
5. Know the basics of self-defense. Whether or not you are comfortable with a physical deterrent ( weapon, pepper spray, etc.) you should be comfortable with some basic self defense techniques. Not comfortable with self-defense moves? Take a class at a local gym or community organization to learn some nifty moves.
Landlord-Tenant laws and state laws. Landlord tools and rent prorated calculator.