COVID-19 and Real Estate

COVID-19 and the South Florida Real Estate Market

It’s impossible to find words to describe what we’re all facing right now. Lives and livelihoods are filled with uncertainty.  The lucky ones are able to work from home, while millions find themselves out of work.  Schools are closed, and normal personal interactions are no longer considered safe.  Like you, we are evaluating what this all means, both in the short and long term.  Especially during these intense times, we remain committed to supporting our customers, family, friends and associates. To that extent, we want to keep you up-to-date on how real estate is being affected here in Broward and Palm Beach County.

Just yesterday we received an important memo from the Realtor Association. Here are a few highlights.

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“Broward County has enacted a new more restrictive Emergency Order (Emergency Order 20-03) to go into effect today. Although the emergency order creates new restrictions for residences and businesses, there is now clarification on how the Order specifically applies to real estate.”

“After extensive efforts by our Government Affairs Team for clarification of the prior Order, Real Estate has now been deemed to be an “Essential Business” as long as services are provided remotely.”

What the new Order means to our Members (REALTORS):

1. Are brokerages in Broward County allowed to remain open? Answer: Yes, brokerages are allowed to remain open and continue to conduct real estate business. However, interaction between real estate agents and the public must occur virtually, electronically or by phone.  In Broward county, real estate agents are not allowed to physically meet with clients or customers.

2. Are agents allowed to list homes? Answer: Yes. Agents are allowed to work with sellers and list homes, although agents and sellers are not allowed to be physically present with one another. Agents are required to work with sellers virtually, electronically or by phone. They can physically view the home provided members of the public (including seller) are not present.

3. Are agents allowed to conduct Showings? Answer: No, in-person showings are not permitted.  Our MLS rules do NOT require that showings be permitted for properties listed in the MLS; however, if showings occur, agents are prohibited from meeting clients on-site and physically touring the residence together. Showings must occur without any other parties being present.

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According to all indications, Palm Beach County is not far behind from implementing the same requirements.

At the time I am writing this, showings are way down for all real estate firms here in South Florida.  Only homes that represent true value to potential buyers are seeing some activity.  Understandably, vacant homes are doing better than occupied homes. Most Sellers are also making sure they are out of the house if and when a showing appointment takes place.  Here at Assist-2-Sell we remain in full operation and available for your calls and emails.  We are still listing homes, but on a virtual basis only.  Hopefully this will all pass soon. Things will eventually get better, and we believe real estate will be one of the major forces behind the economic recovery.

Please let us know if we can assist in any manner, and we wish you good health. Stay safe.

Sincerely,

Tom Carroll, P.A., REALTOR, CRS, ABR,
Co-Owner Assist-2-Sell, Sell and Buy Realty, llc.

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