If You're Buying or Selling Property, Check Out These COVID Safety Tips

COVId-19 might have slowed down some parts of the economy, but in many places, the housing market is booming. Right now might be a great time to sell or buy a new property, but a lot of the traditional real estate methods can be a little risky right now. If you are planning on buying or selling a property, how can you make sure you stay safe? Before you start any real estate transaction, you need to know these tips for reducing COVID spread.

Encourage Remote Work

One of the most effective ways of reducing contact is simply by working remotely. However, this can be challenging when people insist on meeting in person because they feel it is more professional. Try to avoid worrying about how it looks to have an empty office or text your agent instead of meeting them in person. Instead, make it clear from the start of your transaction that you will be working remotely. This sets the tone for later meetings, making it easier to stick to video calls and texts instead of in-person meetings. To make remote work easier, it is a good idea for real estate agents to invest in a program that allows them and their clients to sign electronically.

Use a Sanitizer on Frequently Touched Surfaces

Though COVID-19 particles mostly spread through the air, they can linger on hard surfaces and spread through hand-to-mouth contact. Therefore, it is important to go around and sanitize frequently touched surfaces regularly. In a real estate office, try to sanitize copiers, shared computer mouses, door handles, coffee pots, vending machines, and other similar items at least twice a day. Depending on your coworkers, you can leave a bottle of disinfectant nearby, along with a sign requesting they sanitize after each use. When showing homes, it is important to sanitize after each showing. Make sure to sanitize doorknobs, cabinet handles, light switches, and other commonly touched items. Of course in many places, readymade alcohol based sanitizers are sold out. You can easily make your own with chlorine bleach and water. Just dilute a tablespoon of bleach into a quart of water and put it in a spray bottle for easy application.

Take Advantage of 3D Tour Technology

Most buyers feel they need to see a home in person before they make their decision. However, you can cut back on the amount of houses you need to see with 3D tours. This equipment makes it easy to create a 3D model of a home that buyers can "walk" through on their computer or phone. The benefit of a 3D tour is that it lets you get a feel for how spaces fit together and it lets you see every nook and cranny of each room. This makes it easy to narrow down a buyer's list of interested homes to just a few they need to see in person.

Do COVID Screenings Before Any Interaction

To keep everyone as safe as possible, consider doing a quick screening for COVID symptoms before meeting up in person with anyone. Start by considering whether you are exhibiting any of the classic COVID-19 symptoms, such as:
  • Cough

  • Difficulty breathing

  • Fatigue

  • Aching muscles

  • Headaches

  • Loss of smell or taste

  • Runny nose or congestion

Then move on to using a thermometer to measure your temperature. If you have a fever or are displaying any other COVID symptoms, it is a good idea to avoid meeting others in person. Instead, contact your doctor about doing a COVID-19 test as soon as possible.

Invest in Personal Protective Equipment

If you do unknowingly have COVID, the right equipment can help you avoid spreading it to others. Personal protective equipment may also reduce your chances of contracting something yourself. Several studies have shown that areas that enact mask mandates have greatly reduced numbers of infections and deaths. Even if you live in an area without a mask requirement, it is still a good idea to wear one for any real estate showings or meetings. In addition to masks, some real estate agents are also wearing disposable gloves or face shields. This can provide an extra layer of protection when handling housing transactions.

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