The property sector as a whole has been one of the highlights of the COVID-19 story so far. After a shutdown of the industry in the first lockdown, the Government gave the go ahead for estate agents and lettings agents in Walsall to continue to work, meaning that people could still move.
The slight easing of restrictions coupled with the Stamp Duty Holiday gave our industry – and the economy – a real boost and according to the Office for National Statistics, UK average house prices “increased by 7.6% over the year to November 2020”, the highest growth rate since 2016.
We and other agents across the country have reported increased demand, and a strong appetite from both buyers and sellers to get moving.
And keep moving you can, but there are definite rules to be followed.
So, what can take place?
- Buyers and tenants can move home
- Removals companies can be used
- Estate and lettings agents are able to operate
- Viewings can take place
- You can sell your home
- What needs to happen?
- Viewings can happen, but social distancing is required
- Existing tenants or homeowners should leave the property for the viewing to take place
- People should carry their own hand sanitiser and not touch surfaces (look with your eyes)
- Appointments need to be arranged
- No “Open House” viewings events are permitted
- Face coverings need to be worn when visiting a house or an office
- Properties should be cleaned afterwards
- It is advisable to have windows open
The Government is happy for the property sector to keep moving, as it is helping the economy locally and nationally.
But ministers are also stressing the need to follow the guidelines and be flexible. Many people are working from home so processes may take longer.
In our agency we have started walkthrough virtual tours as soon as the pandemic started and we encourage people to watch the video before any actual visits, so please do ask us for more information on these. We also ask prospective tenant’s/ buyers making enquiries, to complete a pre-tenancy application form to ensure people are serious about their enquiry thereby, limiting the number of unnecessary viewings thus reducing traffic.
When moving, people should do so within their household or bubble. While friends and family may volunteer to help out, it’s best that you keep yourself to yourself.
If you have been notified to self-isolate or have contracted COVID, then you must communicate this to your legal team and us as your agent. The government says that if you are legally obliged to move by a certain date, you must notify your conveyancer and ask for the move to be delayed. Once more, flexibility is key.
If you want to know more about the do’s and the don’ts, even if it is just a simple question, drop me a quick email or feel free to call the office.
Don’t take well-meaning advice off unreliable social media posts or from friends – ask the experts instead.
Phone: 01922 311016
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