How To Buy Or Sell A House During The Covid 19 Pandemic

covid 19

How do you buy or sell a house during the Covid 19 pandemic and still stay safe? The fundamentals of buying and selling remain unchanged but the health risk to buyers and sellers is definitely new. Luckily the increasing use of technology in real estate has proved especially helpful during the pandemic. And there are a number of additional measures you can take to minimize your risk.

For Buyers

Buyers, you can keep doing what you’ve probably been doing for the last few months and avoid direct interaction with people outside your immediate family circle.

  • use zoom so you don’t need to meet in person with your Realtor
  • sign paperwork electronically
  • use virtual tours before deciding on a showing
  • use electronic deposits
  • offer on properties via email

When you do go to look at properties you should protect yourself. This also applies to any visits to a property you’ve just bought.

  • wear a mask
  • keep 6′ away from your Realtor or other service providers
  • don’t touch your face
  • don’t touch things in the house
  • use hand sanitizer when you leave
  • wash your face and hands when you get home

For Sellers

If you are selling you’ll want to limit your exposure to outsiders in the same manner you’ve been doing already.

  • use zoom so you don’t need to meet in person with your Realtor
  • wear a mask if you have to meet face to face
  • keep 6′ away from your Realtor or other service providers
  • sign paperwork electronically
  • use email for all offers instead of in-person
  • leave the property when service providers are present

You should consider any visitors to your home as a potential risk and take steps to keep safe.

  • have Realtors and buyer clients sign a health declaration before showings
  • require visitors to wear masks
  • before showings open windows for ventilation if possible
  • provide hand sanitizer, masks and gloves
  • use signage advising visitors to use sanitizer and not to touch things
  • assume that visitors have touched things
  • wipe down your door knobs and handles after showings
  • don’t hold open houses even when they are legal again

Buyers and sellers following these steps will substantially reduce their risk relative to members of the public who fail to take precautions. The scientific literature indicates that Covid 19 is spread primarily through droplets as opposed to floating around in the air for days on end. Washing surfaces, wearing masks, limiting person to person interaction, providing good ventilation and practicing good hygiene will go a very long way in keeping you healthy if you buy or sell a house during the Covid 19 pandemic.

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