The Lewis Teams Guidance To Home Buyers & Sellers On Real Estate Transactions August 2020.
The Lewis Teams #1 priority throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has been doing our best to protect the health and safety of our clients and the communities we serve. REALTORS® were one of a select few professions granted essential service status to deliver services to support essential real estate transactions. This was a strong indicator of the trust that the provincial government placed in REALTORS® - but it was NOT business as usual. We were asked to postpone any non-essential transactions until after the crisis, conduct services remotely and to utilize technological alternatives such as virtual showings and electronic signing of documents.
As we received the third stage of the Government’s Framework for Reopening the Province, buyers and sellers are looking to their REALTORS® for advice, insight, guidance and the best safety practices for buying or selling a home at this time, plus current information on the use of electronic tools.
The following is how The Lewis Team safely and effectively conducts business with our clients. Firstly by using common sense and good judgement and by minimizing direct close unprotected contact. We also utilize digital tools to the greatest extent possible including 3D property scans, virtual tours or live tours using Facebook and Zoom, and we make all our feature brochures, listing sheets and other documents digital.
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT; All local and municipal health officials’ instructions are followed especially physical distancing and the use of personal protective equipment. We have a supply of masks, gloves, disposable shoe covers, a no touch thermometer and hand sanitizer for ourselves and our clients.
IF YOU ARE THE HOMEOWNER: When listing your home, we’ll ask you questions and you will be asked to confirm in writing about your present state of health i.e., do you or any of your family have a medical condition or immune deficiency, or are you a senior? If all checks out, we’ll proceed with listing your home digitally or in person if you would prefer. We will forgo the handshake to avoid physical contact and stay at least two metres apart at all times. To limit the amount of time we spend inside your home, long conversations may be better outside in the garden.
It’s standard operating procedure for a selling homeowner to present a clean and tidy house, but right now it’s even more important that the home is cleaned and disinfected before and after each showing. Include door handles, light switches, counters, cabinet knobs and other high-touch surfaces. Please turn on lights & open inside doors as door knobs and light switches are two of the most commonly touched surfaces in any home. Consider the ventilation maybe by opening some windows. If you are expecting multiple showings on the same day, please scheduled them with enough time in between to facilitate a thorough disinfecting of the home and to minimize inter-personal contact it is better if you are not present.
IF YOU ARE A HOME BUYER: We’ll ask you questions and you will be asked to confirm in writing about your present state of health i.e., do you or any of your family have a medical condition or immune deficiency or are you a senior before deciding whether to proceed further? If you decide that an in-person showing on any property you have an interest in is necessary, we’ll confirm an appointment then meet ONLY with the parties that would be on any Offer to Purchase and NOT with any children or extended family members.
We will meet you at the property and please leave your belongings in your car. We will forgo the usual handshake to avoid physical contact and stay at least two metres apart to maintain social distancing. We ask that you please follow the provincial guidance and wear masks and gloves. If you don’t have your own, we will provide them and we’ll all use hand sanitizer before entering and after leaving. Please keep the viewing as short as possible to minimize risk. If the property is in an apartment building with an elevator, we may need to limit the number of people in the elevator. Please do not use the bathroom during the showing, and avoid touching surfaces and other items in the home during the showing including furniture, appliances, cupboards etc.
We truly understand that this protocol is hard and often inconvenient, and we sincerely thank you for following the guidelines for keeping each of us safer. This virus can be highly infectious, for some there is less risk but for others it could be the difference between life or death as it seems to want to damage our lungs - so please let’s continue to be diligent. We trust this guide is helpful, should you have any questions or concerns, please call or email us, we are always ready to help.
Disclaimer. The information contained here is not meant to be relied upon as legal or medical advice from The Lewis Team or others. You are encouraged to seek other independent advice specific to this subject as the quickly changing regulatory environment is often revised and may not be current or accurate by the time this is read.