We all know the pandemic really isn’t over yet. Scientists and medical professionals tell us it could come back in surges or simply stick around for a while.
But as much of the country tries to return to some semblance of normal, agents are starting to think about the best way to show their new or existing listings, paying close consideration to keep all parties safe and healthy.
Whether you’re working with the potential buyers for your listing or whether they are someone else’s clients, you should have some guidelines in place that can be shared with them before, during, and after the showings. These will need to be okayed by and shared with your sellers, too, as well as all agents that wish to show the house.
Before in-person showings
- Inquire as to whether the sellers or buyers have had Covid-19 or are currently exhibiting any symptoms. DON’T let anyone into the home if they are feeling sick and don’t allow anyone in to view the home if someone in the house is sick or thinks they might be.
- Make sure the potential buyers are genuinely interested in the property. That means they’ve narrowed down their search and have selected this house as one of just a few they are considering. You can make sure this happens by providing a virtual tour and good photos of the property that they can view beforehand. You might even consider asking for proof of prequalification before you allow the home to be shown.
- Be sure you are familiar with local laws that might restrict the number of people at a showing.
- Discuss all precautions to be taken with your seller. This includes ways to prepare for visitors that will eliminate exposure to the virus such as opening cabinets, turning on lights, opening shades or blinds, and anything else that will limit touching.
- If a property is vacant, you may need to be responsible for preparing it for showings by turning on lights, opening doors, etc.
- Wear masks as a courtesy to your clients and request that they wear them as well.
- Keep hand sanitizers and wipes near entrances/exits to the home and in other spots as well. Be sure to replenish them or ask the seller to do so when they run out.
- Do not allow anyone to use the bathrooms in the home.
- Do not share things like pen and paper or other personal property during the showing.
- Social distance from your clients or anyone in the home and do not shake hands.
- Avoid leaving listing sheets at the property. Instead, please send them to the potential buyer electronically.
- Take it upon yourself to wipe down any surfaces that may have been touched or let the seller do it if they prefer. This includes any keys or lockboxes.
- If you must speak with buyers for any length of time, do it outside in a physically distanced scenario.
- When you return to your vehicle, sanitize your hands once again. You can never be too careful!
- Keep a detailed log of all visitors to each property. If there is a case of Covid-19 at the home or amongst any potential buyers who toured the house, you’ll need to contact everyone who may have been affected.
Remember, your health and safety, and that of everyone involved is paramount. If you are uncomfortable with anything pertaining to the buyers or sellers, insist that they follow your rules and refuse to show the home if they do not comply.