The Government Agrees With Me - Realtors Are Essential

By
Real Estate Agent with Falcon Property Company

CO Springs Realtors Working to Keep Clients Safe During COVID-19

We are still doing business, but it's not "business as usual." While many states ignored the plight of people who need to move, Colorado has acknowledged that Realtors are essential. Realtors are taking extreme precautions to keep you safe while still working hard for you. We are represented by an organization (Colorado Association of Realtors [CAR]) that is taking swift action.

Governor Polis deemed real estate an essential service and a critical business vital to the economy. We are working diligently to take care of one another. We are adjusting whenever executing any part of our business during these ever-changing times. CAR is proactively trying to prevent foreclosures when people find themselves unable to make their mortgage payment. They are also seeking an emergency rental assistance fund to protect not only the tenant, but also owners who may not be able to make the scheduled mortgage payment without the rental income.

Colorado is under a Stay at Home Order, currently in effect from March 26 through April 11, 2020. Part of our responsibility is to protect you - our clients, the public, and those with whom we work. That includes buyers, sellers, lenders, inspectors, appraisers, title company employees, etc., while we sift through the deluge of ever-changing information to keep you safe.

New Business Practices Being Enacted

These old practices are becoming more common:

  • Listings are being marketed through virtual tours
  • Many of us are doing "virtual showings" for our Clients who want more information
  • Open Houses are being held "virtually"
  • Drive to showings separately
  • All paperwork being done electronically

New innovations we're using to keep you safe:

  • Telework as much as possible (FaceTime, FB Messenger, Zoom, etc.)
  • Limit in-person contact
  • Personal tour only if the Buyer has seen video and is serious about the property
  • After seeing an online tour, some Realtors are even requiring an offer prior to being allowed to enter an occupied home
  • Whether or not occupied, Realtors are leaving booties and hand sanitizers at listed properties
  • No shaking hands or hugging anyone
  • Sellers are being asked to wipe down surfaces, leave all doors open, and all lights on (so no one needs to touch)
  • Don't touch anything but handrails
  • If someone needs to touch, let the Realtor do it
  • Provide gloves (if you have them)
  • Many of us are carrying Clorox wipes to disinfect lockboxes, light switches, and door knobs (if necessary)
  • Wipe down the steering wheel after each showing
  • Realtors and Clients are to adhere to prescribed social distancing norms (six feet apart)
  • Don't hesitate to ask if people are/have recently been sick
  • Working with vendors (inspectors, appraisers, cleaners, title company, etc.) to reduce exposure
  • Earnest money now being delivered through mobile apps similar to mobile bank deposits
  • Title companies doing "drive up closings" - including bringing your own pen
  • CAR (along with the Colorado Bar Association) has produced a COVID-19 Addendum to the Contract to protect Buyers and Sellers if deals don't close because of COVID-19 circumstances outside our control
  • CAR is seeking Secretary of State authorization requesting an Executive Order to process real estate closings with remote notaries (current requirements are "personal appearance")

Woman hands using wash hand sanitizer gel dispenser, against Novel coronavirus or Corona Virus Disease (Covid-19) at public Indoor. Antiseptic, Hygiene and Healthcare concept

Today's Reality

As of Monday, only 3% of Sellers had pulled their homes from the market. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) predicts home sales will be down 10% compared to what they should be during this usually-busy time period.

I had a closing yesterday where I didn't meet one person involved in the transaction. The out-of-state Seller had a vacant property. I didn't meet the Buyer or the Buyer's Agent. I didn't meet the Closer, nor anyone else involved. It was a smooth and pleasant transaction that closed ahead of time at full asking price. Now, more than ever, Realtors are essential. It can be done and we are doing it.

It is important we rebound as quickly as possible, but information and situations are changing daily. I will keep you updated with what's going on in the Colorado Springs real estate market. In the meantime, ask questions you might have in the comments below.

Elbow bump. (Although that's not a good idea right now either.)

Originally published as The Government Agrees With Me - Realtors Are Essential by Mimi Foster

 

Comments (6)

Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

I was required to take a class to make me aware of how to stay safe and keep my clients safe during inspections.  It gave me 5 CEU hours, but not too much new information.  Fortunately I have been busy every day (because I'm a great vendor!) and if that certification helps people to feel better I'm for it.

But say, he says, are you sure you want the gubment to agree with you?

Ronald Reagan said the scariest words in the English language are:  "I'm from the gubment and I'm here to help..."

Prolly true!

Stay young, you Spring Chicken, you.

Mar 27, 2020 05:18 PM
Mimi Foster

Hello, my favorite sweet ol' man. Impressive that you got 5 hours for that. And I agree - I'd rather the govs not know anything about me, right? But in this instance, it was a blessing. I can keep working. 


So funny that you said that. I read that quote to one of my girls this morning. Hugs to you and yours. Stay well.

Mar 27, 2020 07:41 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, Mimi... my county declared us an non-essential earlier this week. Now the Governor has declared us essential and we believe state proclamations supersede county proclamations... now just waiting on our company attorneys to opine on what exactly it will mean for us to act as an essential service in NC.

Mar 28, 2020 06:29 AM
Mimi Foster

These are confusing times, Nina. I would certainly think that state trumps county, so I wish you luck. We're still going strong - so far. I have two vacant listings coming up this week. It will be interesting to see what happens to them. Best of luck!

Mar 28, 2020 07:04 AM
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Well, it's so confusing. We have inspectors saying they are still essential for safety reasons. It remains to be seen how this will shake out as everyone is interpreting our essential versus non-essential differently. Glad you're able to keep on working Mimi. :) 

Mar 28, 2020 08:58 AM
Mimi Foster

Every day brings new challenges. Our Legal Hotline puts out new videos daily trying to clarify what was said the day before or introduce new forms, laws, rules, etc. Unusual times, to be sure. Hugs to you both.

Mar 28, 2020 11:31 AM
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Mimi Foster had to come back and tell you our Governor issued a new ordered and deemed us as essential. ( Thanks to our Washington REALTORS Association) Like you, back in business, just not business as usual.   It will be interesting to see how buyers and sellers react.  D 

Mar 28, 2020 02:18 PM
Mimi Foster

That's great news! We got word today that we got our Executive Order to be able to do Virtual Notaries for our closings. I've done it a few times for people overseas, and I'm pretty excited about it.

Mar 28, 2020 07:08 PM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

Realtors have a way of improvising, adapting and overcoming obstacles that confront, Mimi.  We will get through this time!

Mar 29, 2020 01:06 AM
Mimi Foster

Thanks so much, Myrl. We will not only get thru it, we will be better on the other side of it.

Mar 29, 2020 08:44 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

CONGRATULATIONS Mimi, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Club group!  

Mar 29, 2020 01:08 AM