Free lock-boxes protect home sellers’ prescription meds

Opioid Crisis

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The local real estate market is the latest front in the war against opioid addiction. People selling their homes now have access to free lock-boxes to store their prescription medications. The goal is to prevent would-be thieves from stealing meds during open houses.

Local realtors are surprised by the strength of the housing market, in the midst of the pandemic.

“It’s been very busy, very active spring. I didn’t predict that, but actually that has been the case,” Cindy Petri with Keller Williams Realty said.

With so many homes changing hands, Keller Williams Realty wants to make sure prescription meds in those homes don’t fall in the wrong hands. The Sioux Falls real estate company is teaming up with Prairie View Prevention to provide free lock boxes to store meds for families listing their homes.

“It looks like a take-out Styrofoam box, but it’s not, it’s a hard plastic, there is a lock on the front of it, you set the PIN yourself and then you can screw it on the front and only you have the combination,” Petri said.

The urge to abuse prescription medications can be overwhelming during the pandemic.

“It’s not that we shouldn’t take our prescriptions, we just need to be safe and cautious with them,” Darcy Jensen with Prairie View Prevention said.

To that end, drop boxes like these provide a safe and simple way for homeowners to secure their medications when strangers come through the front door.

“If you get a call and your realtor says we’re coming to show your house, instead of scrambling to get your medications because maybe it’s going to be for a couple of hours that you need to be out of your home, you simply grab the box and you go out the door,” Jensen said.

Combating opioid addiction sometimes requires thinking inside the box.

Jensen says one Sioux Falls-area family had vital chemo pain medications stolen during an open house.

While the drop-boxes are free for people selling their homes, you can call Keller Williams or Prairie View Prevention if you’re interested getting one of your own.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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