It’s great news that the country has moved to Alert Level 3 and that real estate agents can increase their scope of work with vendors and purchasers – however there are important guidelines that you must understand and follow from the Real Estate Authority (REA).
Here is just a few areas that these guidelines cover – please also go to the REA website for full details:
- Risk Management Plan – your business must have a formal plan to manage Covid-related risks. Read more.
- Licensees must comply with specified health requirements at level 3. For example:
- maintain 2-metre physical distancing
- not visit a property if the occupants are unwell, are self-isolating, or have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the last 14 days
- minimise your time at a property
- Virtual appraisals are still the preferred option (however you should conduct a physical appraisal at level 2). Plus every party must know that you have not physically inspected the property.
- All discussions regarding the agency agreement must be done remotely and all contracts signed electronically.
- Photographers, videographers and homestagers must comply with the relevant health requirements and it is recommended that you wait outside or in one room in the house while they work
- You cannot visit a property as a group i.e. no caravans allowed
- If a prospective buyer cannot view a property online private viewings are allowed but only under certain conditions – please read the full guidelines so you understand all the requirements. Here are a few key points to note:
- There should be no more than two private viewings per day – allow time to clean all surfaces between viewings.
- Prospective buyers cannot travel between regions for a private viewing.
- There should be no more than two people (who must be from the same extended bubble) plus the licensee at the viewing and physical distancing should be maintained.
- The vendor and property occupants (including tenants) must agree to the private viewing and must not be at the property during the viewing.
- Prospective buyers must pre-register for the private viewing. They must supply full contact details for possible COVID-19 contract tracing.
- Auctions can only take place by phone or online bidding
- Pre-settlement inspection can take place as long as all conditions detailed for private viewings are also followed.
- House movers can work at alert level 3, so buyers and sellers can move house if they follow government guidelines.
Full details on the level 3 REA guidelines can be found here.
You can also find information for consumers about buying and selling property during alert level 3 on settled.govt.nz. We suggest you share these with your vendors and purchasers to ensure they also operate within government guidelines.
Stay safe and we wish you well!