Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate)

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Susan Emo
Sotheby's International Realty Canada - Brokerage - Kingston, ON
Kingston and the 1000 Islands Area

I've shared this before but while on caravan years ago, the alarm was screeching and the listing agent and all the men were gathered at the wall punching in the code trying to stop it.  The funny part was it was a thermostat not the alarm panel.

Apr 12, 2016 09:58 AM
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

I think that sellers who keep their alarms activated have to expect some dopey agent (like me) to set theirs off - even if I have the code and instructions.  It just happens.  

Apr 12, 2016 10:16 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

I have set them off twice, both times when the agent said they would be off and they weren't. No police showed up and of course I let the agents know in case they got calls from the security service. I think the system needs to be off but if seller insists I would prefer the Listing Agent accompany

Apr 12, 2016 09:38 AM
Melissa Jackson REALTOR
Trinity Premier Properties - Azle, TX
Helping You Make The Right Move

Never triggered an alarm during a showing.  I know my day is coming.  Set it off at office my first Saturday I stopped by.  At least I met the local police :-)

Apr 12, 2016 11:52 AM
Kathleen Luiten
Resort and Second-Home Specialist - Princeville, HI
Kauai Luxury Ocean Home Sales

So far I haven't set one off. For vacant home I usually keep the code with the key in a lockbox. If the owners are vacating just prior to the showing I suggest they leave the alarm off. It is easy for agents to set them off.

Apr 12, 2016 06:33 PM
Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

I could not even count how many times! My response after I manage to turn them off. "We now know the system works."

Apr 12, 2016 01:07 PM
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Yes, once. I had my neighbors house listed and they had already moved out of state but their furniture and belongings were still in house. So the alarm was always set. THey had one of these do it yourself alarm kits. I got the alarm turned off, but it still was saying door open, when my buyers arrived with their contractor. He found the problem. Seems one of the alarm stickers at the door came off the door where it connects.  Anyways it was an easy fix. But just wonder if these systems are that effective.


Apr 12, 2016 12:41 PM
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

The funny thing is that I have grown up with alarm keypads. I have never set off an alarm at any of the radio stations I worked for. I never set one off in a real estate office. I never set one off at my home or a friend's. But put me in a LISTING with an alarm, I'M GONNA TRIP IT. I don't know why. The Sheriff sees me coming. LOL!  I hate them for showings, and they should be disabled and then reactivated by the seller remotely. Just about every company has smartphone-remote activated alarms nowadays.

Apr 12, 2016 09:47 AM
Mary Yonkers
Alan Kells School of Real Estate/Howard Hanna Real Estate - Erie, PA
Erie/PA Real Estate Instructor

Never liked them whether my listing or one I was showing.  Do you want us to view your property or NOT

Apr 12, 2016 09:06 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Hi Fred... I've only set one off once when the listing agent didn't know to provide instructions that it needed to be turned off. Turned out the seller left town and forgot to tell her agent the alarm was on. It's been very rare that I've had a client who insisted an alarm be on when people were showing. And only ever had one problem--again when sellers who never put their alarm on, left town for the weekend, put it on and forgot to tell me that it was on and what the code was.

Apr 12, 2016 08:41 PM
Eric Kodner
Madeline Island Realty - La Pointe, WI
CRS, Madeline Island Realty, LaPointe, WI 54850 -

I set off an alarm a few months ago. The seller forgot how to disarm the system.

Apr 12, 2016 05:13 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Well just be prepared to sell this fine home to the boys in blue when they get there to check on what you are doing Fred.

Apr 12, 2016 04:27 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Seller forgot to leave it off.   It went off, and I waited for the police...outside.  I called and tol the dispatcher what happend and where I  would be.  When the officer arrived, I gave him my card, my DL and showed hin the keys.

Apr 12, 2016 01:37 PM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I have set them off in the past.  All my current clients with alarms can turn them off from their phones.  I call, make the appointment, then I text half hour prior and confirm they have turned it off.  So far so good with that working great.

Apr 12, 2016 01:29 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

I tell them that I am notorious for setting them off and if there is any way that they can leave it off it would make it easier to show and agents like me won't have anxiety.

Apr 12, 2016 01:21 PM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

I understand that in certain areas an alarm may be necessary, but when you have to run into a house looking for the alarm to turn it off in hopes that you don't get a visit from the men in blue, it can be stressful.  I personally have been stuck in a situation 2 times where I got the visit and had to explain myself away ... it's embarrassing and I'll never forget the time at my own office when I set off the alarm and when the police came he picked up a business card off the front desk (and thinking it was my card I said, "oh I know it doesn't look like me -- I've used the same picture for 8 years ... and on and on I went."  Then the policeman said, so your name is Roger Scott?  OMG!  Talk about humiliation.  He picked up one of agents cards - not mine!  Duh!  Who need alarms anyway!  That one cost me $75 -- you can only mess up a certain number of times before the alarm company charges you.  Lesson learned!

Apr 12, 2016 12:33 PM
Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

I did set one off once, the showing instructions had the arm and disarm codes reversed - it was embarrassing, but everyone got a laugh when it was discovered what happened.

Apr 12, 2016 12:31 PM
Sybil Campbell
Fernandina Beach, FL
Referral Agent Amelia Island Florida

I have had alarm an alarm system go off but was able to put the code in before the siren started.

Apr 12, 2016 11:32 AM
Joyce Marsh
Joyce Marsh Real Estate LLC - Daytona Beach, FL
Joyce Marsh Real Estate LLC - Coast & Luxury

I haven't set off but am concerned that they are set when leaving. Many systems are very temperamental. 

Apr 12, 2016 10:45 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Yes and I hate it when it happens; police the whole circus. The alarm was all the way in the back of the house, 30 seconds to disarm it and I got was a 10,000 sqft house. It was funny actually. I feel they should be off, my clients leave them off for showing hours. 

Apr 12, 2016 10:25 AM
Susan Laxson CRS
Premiere Plus Realty - Naples, FL
Realtor in Naples & Marco Island, FL

Only once when the agent gave me the wrong code to turn it off. Now I double check every time I show a home that has one activated.

Apr 12, 2016 10:05 AM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

Yes. The plice came I showed them I am the listing agent. The sellers had their agenda did not even understand what Supra was for.


Apr 12, 2016 09:43 AM
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Broker
Elizabeth Anne Weintraub, Broker - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I tell sellers it is better to turn off the alarm because agents can and will set them off. It comes down to how much they want to pay for each bogus alarm bill.

Apr 15, 2016 04:08 AM
Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES
Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch! - Spring Hill, FL
Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living

I think many agents would approach alarm systems with reservations and apprehension.  Even with the correct code, there are still concerns about where the panel is located, will there be enough time to get to it, the few seconds it takes to get familiar with the keyboard before turning it off while the alarm is beeping at you and that's all even without setting it off. 

Apr 14, 2016 11:41 PM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

If at all possible I ask my sellers to leave it off during the showings.  I have set one off, they gave me wrong codes.   Police showed up - said --- just another REALTOR.....

Apr 13, 2016 11:53 PM
Suzanne Rumsey
Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate - Newark, DE
Rumsey Home Team (Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)

Normally alarms are not a problem as long as there are clear instructions on how to disarm/re-arm and where it is located.  I had a showing one time in the evening during a major thunderstorm.  The buyer had three young children who were hungry and getting fussy.  We did not expect an alarm since there was nothing in the agent instructions for the listing.  I opened door and the very loud alarm went off as well as strobe lights.  The children who were already terrified by the storm where even more terrified and started crying.  I called the agent who of course did not answer the phone.  Their office was also closed.  The buyer decided she was done looking for the evening and left.  I locked up the house and waited for the police.  It was a fun evening!

Apr 13, 2016 01:02 AM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Nope, never had a pleasure:) I was just lucky. Most of security owners have their feeds on their cell phones, so should not be that difficult to fix any issue. 

Apr 12, 2016 04:16 PM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I hate them. Many years ago I set one off and the police came 

Apr 12, 2016 02:57 PM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


No, lucky I guess/  A

Apr 12, 2016 01:06 PM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

It's not really a big issue out my way. Thank goodness. 

Apr 12, 2016 11:12 AM
Jeffrey Jones
AZ Home Seekers - San Tan Valley, AZ
AZ Home Seekers,

we keep the alarm code on the keyring in the lockbox so the code isn't published. never had any real problems.


Apr 12, 2016 10:14 AM
Becca Rasmussen
HomeSmart Cherry Creek - Highlands Ranch, CO

Not me, not yet. Of course, no showings yet. It's only a matter of time I'm sure. Taking note of the different ways to handle it when it happens. :P

From a client perspective, I'd rather leave the alarm off for showings than to have umpteem strangers knowing how to disarm my alarm. If I were concerned about the security of my things during the spaces of time between when I vacate/return and when the showing party arrives/leaves I'd probably do a "listing agent must accompany" policy and let that one person deal with the alarm system.


Apr 17, 2016 09:47 PM
Monica Hill
RE/Max Associates - Wilmington, DE
the REALTOR to help you discover Delaware

I was set up to set one off. The house that had formerly been a FSBO converted to a listed property. I requested a showing and it was the owner who called me back to confirm. (Not normal in my area, as we generally use appointment centers, but you never know!) I hesitated and he assured me it was good, I was fine to use the electronic lockbox and go on in. We weren't in the foyer long at all when it sounded like a hundred howling dogs. Nice! Turns out, the gentleman who returned my call was no longer allowed near the house by his ex. I felt like he must have been right down the block, laughing. 

Apr 15, 2016 07:45 AM
Robert May
Robert W May - Lethbridge Real Estate - Lethbridge, AB
Real estate consulting

for sure have set off a couple when a listing agent or seller has failed to disarm them, its always an experience.

Apr 14, 2016 03:44 PM
Larry Johnston
Broker, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate and Elkhart County Subdivisions, LLC - Elkhart, IN
Broker,Friends & Neighbors Real Estate, Elkhart,IN

Yes, just recently.  I called the Listing agent.  I got the code shortly thereafter.

Apr 13, 2016 12:30 PM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

I do remember entering a house I thought was empty and it was and an alarm went off. I didn't have an appointment so the agent was furious. I did call her from the house and apologized profusely and I never did it again. I ended of selling the house so never be too angry with an idiot, you may make a sale.

Apr 13, 2016 12:05 PM
Diana Zaccaro Broker Associate
Tropical Beachside brokered by eXp - Cocoa Beach, FL
"The Accidental Blogger" Cocoa Beach, Florida

I haven't had this yet but I'm thinking if I ever have to show with an alarm, my first stop would be the police station to warn them of a potential false alarm.


Apr 13, 2016 10:07 AM
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster Real Estate - Gainesville, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Yes.  I have set them off.  Had to call the security company since I couldn't get a hold of the agent or the owner.  

My advice to sellers who want to leave them active is to leave a fob in the lockbox with a one click disarm on it.

Apr 13, 2016 07:53 AM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

Yeah, I've set one or two off over the years.  If a seller wants the alarm on, that's their choice.  I put a big note on the lock box that the alarm is on and to contact me for access.  I also have it in the MLS.

Apr 13, 2016 06:05 AM
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Yes, we have set them of and merely called the listing agent to alert them. Fortunately, none were monitored.

Apr 13, 2016 04:50 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

Fred, I set one off once because the seller forgot to turn it off.  I do suggest and recommend sellers turn them off during the day while they are at work while the property is listed. 

Apr 13, 2016 01:21 AM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

Alarms are always tricky. I never set one off, but have seen others do it and they couldn't turn it off (when listing agents were asked to be present to show, probably due to alarm), had to call the owners that were away. Also have had listing agents provide bad instructions as to how to input codes, had to figure it out on my own. I would prefer to have alarms deactivated for showings.

Apr 13, 2016 12:38 AM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Bungled the password, tripped alarm, tried to correct it, which is the behavior of a burglar who panics and then stood my ground explaining if I was a thief, why would I be talking to you over the phone as the police are on route. Sorry, we will not cancel the alarm was their final position. Yes to alarms but only if needed

Apr 12, 2016 11:59 PM
Richard Bazinet /MBA, CRS, ABR
West USA Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Phoenix Scottsdale. Sellers, Buyers & Relocations

Ha, ha, yep, I think we all went through this at some point. Twice in my career. By accident, of course. Once, where 6 police cars arrived on the scene where I had to demonstrate my credentials. Once where the police drove by looking for the house as I stood in the driveway and flagged them over myself  and indicated I was the one responsible.

Every agent needs to learn the basics of most alarm systems. And make sure you get the code right!

Apr 12, 2016 11:58 PM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Fred Griffin I've never set one off. Sellers should keep them turned off during showing hours.

Apr 12, 2016 11:47 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

The alarms should be turned off for scheduled showings.

Apr 12, 2016 11:13 PM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

I have not - but got a chuckle from the response by Susan Emo !!

Apr 12, 2016 11:07 PM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

I always insisted that they disarm the system or I was not taking the listing....they did...

Apr 12, 2016 10:55 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Stuff happens and so do alarms.  Yes, I have set them off.   Some were suppose to be "off".  I have either called the listing agent, the seller or the alarm company.  

Once after closing a short sale where I was representing the buyer, I met a termite company for fumigation of the property where I was met with a blaring alarm and eventually the Pasadena Police Department.   The alarm company eventually gave instructions to deactivate.   The previous owner had an outstanding balance on his account.  

When I have a listing with an alarm -- there is a discussion how to handle the system while the home is on the market.   It's a case-by-case situation and like many things in real estate - not one size fits all.  

Apr 12, 2016 10:44 PM
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of the Manchester NH's area Leading Agents

This is a question i always ask BEFORE i start showing a new listing. Most often it is optimum for the seller to add a code for me that i choose and remember. All showings become assisted and i have to turn on and off the alarm

Apr 12, 2016 10:07 PM
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

No locked doors, alarms to trigger in small rural areas.

Apr 12, 2016 09:57 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

I set it off at my office once as I had a settlement and we had lots of snow so no one else had come in as yet. I never go in first any more.. 

Apr 12, 2016 09:41 PM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Once showed a house in a rural area. The listing agent said there was no alarm. Damn thing went off and the Sheriff drove by and did not stop. Long story short, NO sale!

Apr 12, 2016 09:20 PM
Mike & Cindy Jones
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Network Realty - Jacksonville, FL
Real Estate - (904) 874-0422 - Jacksonville, Fl

I've set off many alarms. I've also walked in on naked people, let dogs loose and showed houses with people still asleep in them. Makes this business fun

Apr 12, 2016 09:17 PM
Mimi Foster
Falcon Property Company - Colorado Springs, CO
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

I tell them NO

Apr 12, 2016 01:25 PM
Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041
ReMax Realtec Group - Palm Harbor, FL
Making FLORIDA Real Estate EZ

As a Listing Agent enabled alarms is never a problem.

I am a FULL SERVICE agent as opposed to a FULL FEE agent.

Apr 12, 2016 10:14 PM