Times are changing, that's for sure, but one thing hasn't changed: people are still buying and selling real estate! In fact, it's been a hot seller's market for awhile now, which means, you don't want to let the pandemic hold you back from selling if you're interested.
But, we do have to be a little bit more creative with how we host open houses now, for the safety of every visitor and our own real estate teams. That's why we are sharing some of our expert best practices for how we are continuing to host open houses, as well as taking our buyers to tour the homes that they are interested in, while keeping every person as safe as possible.
So, whether you are a home buyer, seller or a real estate agent, these tips should give you some ideas for how you can safely buy, sell or represent clients during this pandemic. Remember, safety first!
1. Set Up a Sanitation Station:
The first step to ensuring a safe open house is to set up a sanitation station right by the front door or right inside. For active open houses, place this right outside the door before people even come inside. Once the open house is over, you can set this station right inside the door to be used during showings.
All you need to set up an organized sanitation station is a small table, sanitizer, shoe coverings if needed, masks for people who forget, wipes, and a tablet for sign-ins.
A tablet is a great way to capture people's information, because you don't need to have a clean and dirty pen area. All you need to do is simply sanitize the tablet in between uses for everyone's safety.
The sanitation station is also a great place to start conversations with potential buyers and sellers! Every person who visits is an opportunity.
2. Wipe Down High Traffic Areas:
Before your open house begins, be sure to wipe down high traffic and high touch areas. Walk through the home and as you turn on lights, wipe down the light switch panels. Also, wipe down areas in the kitchen where people congregate and discuss details.
You may also consider wiping down door handles as your open and close doors to prep the house. After all, you're prepping the home anyway, why not sanitize as you go!
Also, if you're selling, check out our post on the benefits of home staging!
3. Wipe Down Between Visitors:
You may not want to wipe down areas as people are walking the home, as this could be a distraction for them.
But, if you notice guests touching certain areas, take a few minutes between showings to wipe down those areas. Better safe than sorry!
4. Wear a Mask & Offer Masks:
Model mask wearing by making sure you are wearing your own and kindly remind each guest to put theirs on as well.
Having some disposable masks handy for interested visitors who simply forgot is a kind gesture that will keep the showings flowing.
5. Limit The Number of Guests:
Another way to reduce risk for every visitor is to limit the number of guests in the home at any time to just one family or party. This will allow all of you to maintain social distancing while seeing the home.
Of course, this may require scheduling the showings throughout the open house time frame, but still allow for everyone to visit safely.
5. Ask for a Covid Disclosure:
Many realtors are asking visitors to sign a Covid disclosure prior to visiting a home. This just states whether or not they've been sick recently, traveled outside the country or believe they have been exposed to Covid.
These have become standard practice for many companies, so visitors shouldn't balk too much at the request.
We hope these tips inspire you to design creative solutions that will protect every person involved in your open house.
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If you're buying or selling, we'd love to talk with you about how we can best represent you or your property. Give us a call at 916.524.9733 or reach out at enyarthomes.com.