What Washington State’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” Order Means for Real Estate
COVID-19 Update From Windermere Professional Partners - March 25, 2020
⚠️ There have been quite a few updates on these topics since we posted this blog, read the latest info HERE!
On March 25, Governor Inslee issued a statewide "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order that will initially last for two weeks. This order requires the closure of all "non-essential critical infrastructure businesses," and workers that are considered non-essential can continue to work remotely from home only.
Here is a list of what real estate brokers are allowed and not allowed to do while the order is in place:
Real estate brokers MAY:
- Provide services to their clients remotely from their house.
- Use technology services that enable remote business, including online forms, electronic signatures, virtual tours, videos, and similar tools.
- Showings and appraisals only allowed with a limit of 2 people in the home at a time (including REALTOR), and all activities must meet CDC social distancing standards.
Real estate brokers MAY NOT:
- Conduct any open houses, any in person meetings including physically showing or previewing properties, inspections, appraisals, conducting in-person listing presentations, must be limited to a maximum of two persons, (including REALTOR). No professional photos or staging homes. All activities must meet CDC social distancing standards.
- Any person who violates the Governor's order not only puts himself/herself and his/her family at great personal risk, but also puts their clients at risk, which is something we take very seriously.
- Real estate brokers can also be fined if they violate these orders.
Real estate brokerage services are not on the list of essential services, but a few exceptions have been made (noted above). Real estate firms must close their offices to comply with the order. Certain workers in the "Financial Services Sector" have been deemed essential workers, and this includes workers who are needed to process and maintain systems for processing financing transactions and services and insurance companies including mortgage lenders, escrow and title insurers.
Real estate transactions that are under contract may be able to proceed to closing (because the Financial Services Sector is considered essential, it is likely that lenders, title, and escrow will continue to operate). Of course, there may be delays, and our real estate brokers are ready to help guide all of our clients through this turbulent market.
We strongly recommend talking with your Windermere Professional Partners broker about the latest news—they will be able to guide you through this time.
Our firm is in constant communication with the local Multiple Listing Service and Washington Real estate brokers, who are in direct communication with the Governor's office, to understand more specifics regarding the order to constantly re-evaluate how to best guide our clients during this crisis.
Please check back regularly for updates about the services that our REALTORS® provide and other services related to real estate.
For questions and concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of our offices: windermerepc.com/contact