The latest COVID-19 guidance for people looking to move
Updated 05th January 2021
The latest national lockdown will commence from 05th January 2021, the government has advised Estate Agents can continue to remain open under the new strict social distancing guidelines. The national lockdown guidance states:
"You can still move home. People outside your household or support bubble should not help with moving house unless absolutely necessary. Estate and letting agents and removals firms can continue to work. If you are looking to move, you can go to property viewings. Follow the national guidance on moving home safely, which includes advice on social distancing, letting fresh air in, and wearing a face covering."
This is reassuring news for home movers who were in the process of moving prior to the new restrictions being announced. Anyone looking to move should think carefully and consider if it would be possible or make sense to move once the restrictions have been eased.
So, here is what you need to know about the current guidelines home movers need to follow.
In line with government’s advice, those who are shielding or otherwise clinically vulnerable should ensure they are aware of the medical advice, including on staying at home and avoiding unnecessary contacts over this period, if at all possible.
Can I get a Valuation of my home?
Yes, The Property Hive are able to provide market appraisals for homeowners. In circumstances where our colleagues are visiting your home, it is important that a safe distance of at last 2 meters is maintained at all times. Where possible, other residents should remain outside of the property during the visit to reduce the number of individuals inside. Representatives will be wearing protective equipment including face coverings and gloves. They will not touch any surfaces, so you will need to keep doors open so that they do not need to touch anything. All surfaces should be cleaned by the homeowner following the visit. There are also lots we can do with the aid of technology and where necessary can access and see your property remotely allowing us to provide an accurate valuation of your home. For more information, please give us a buzz on 01302 247754 or book you free valuation here.
Is it possible to start Marketing my property for sale or let?
Yes, The Property Hive have a range of digital marketing options available to us that willshowcase your property to a wide audience. Our professional photographer is able to visit your home to take pictures and compile an interactive virtual 3D online viewing feature which will allow people to view your property online remotely anytime and from anywhere without the need for a physical visit.
An invaluable asset to homeowners during times like this. When visiting your property our representatives will need to keep a safe distance of two meters and will be wearing protective equipment including face coverings and gloves to keep you and themselves safe. They will not touch any surfaces, so you will need to present the property and stage it appropriately and keep doors open so that they do not need to touch anything. Where possible, all residents should remain outside of the property during the visit to reduce the number of individuals inside and all surfaces should be cleaned by the homeowner following the visit.
With so many still in lock-down with time on their hands, many people are spending their days surfing the internet in search of their next home so now is a great time to capitalise on this and gain some great exposure. If you are wanting to list your property for sale, please give us a buzz on 01302 247754.
Can people View properties?
Yes, in the first instance people should make use of The Property Hive’s interactive 3D online viewing feature which enables buyers to view a home remotely and see a three-dimensional model of the property, then zoom in, walk around and interact with the property just like they are actually there. You can also take measurements, see floor plans, pictures and more. This has allowed buyers to purchase remotely without leaving their sofa.
We are only able to arrange for physical viewings for those who are in a position to proceed with a purchase and cannot wait until the current restrictions are eased. The government has set out strict guidelines for people viewing homes as follows. If any member of either the household being viewed or the household undertaking a viewing is showing symptoms of coronavirus or is self-isolating, then a physical viewing should be delayed. All viewings should take place by appointment and only involve members of a single household. The number of people viewing a property should be restricted to two and no children should accompany parents on a viewing. Viewing appointments should be restricted to 15 minutes.
We encourage people to do their property searching online wherever possible. Initial viewings should be done virtually wherever this is possible and physical viewings should only be conducted where buyers are seriously considering making an offer on a property.
To support this, agents may ask home occupiers to conduct virtual viewings. This will help reduce the number of properties people need to visit before finding their future home.
Viewings should be conducted by appointment only and no open house viewings should take place.
If your property is being viewed, you should open all the internal doors prior to the viewing, and allow access to handwashing facilities and ideally separate towels/paper towels.
As most people choose to do, we encourage that you vacate your property whilst viewings are taking place in order to minimise your contact with those not in your household.
When viewing a property, all parties should wash their hands and avoid touching surfaces where possible. Agents will ask you to restrict the number of people who accompany you on a viewing so that social distancing can be practised, and only those in your immediate household should be there.
We expect agents to accompany clients on a viewing but follow social distancing rules wherever possible. Where viewings are unaccompanied, agents should make sure viewers and homeowners understand how they should conduct themselves.
Once the viewing has taken place, the homeowner should ensure surfaces, such as door handles, are cleaned with standard household cleaning products and towels disposed of safely or washed as appropriate.
Can I make an Offer?
Yes, our team of Home Move consultants are continuing to work as normal during this period and have been busy assisting buyers and sellers to agree on sales as normal. Much of what needs to be done can continue remotely, so just give us a buzz and we will be happy help you secure your dream home.
Can I still arrange the Finances I need?
Yes, the majority of mortgage lenders are still operating and providing a wide selection of products and have made adjustments for those receiving a furloughed salary. For anyone looking to secure a mortgage, we are able to put them in touch with local financial advisors who can help to find the best mortgage deals.
Are solicitors still able to complete the legal Conveyancing?
Yes, most legal firms in the area have continued to operate, albeit with reduced numbers of staff. Following the government's announcement and the removal of restrictions surrounding moving, legal practices will now start to return their operations to full capacity and get people on their way.
Are Surveyors & Tradesmen allowed in my home?
Yes, the government has removed the restrictions on professionals involved in the home moving process and published guidelines to keep them and homeowners safe. They will be expected to adhere to strict social distancing measures, keeping their distance and wearing protective equipment where required.
Is it possible to move right now?
Yes, removal firms are able to operate, although they may need to adjust usual procedures in order to ensure moves happen as safely as possible, the government guidelines state the following:
We encourage you to contact removal firms as early as possible in advance of your move.
You and your household should also try and do as much of the packing yourself as possible. However, where this is not possible, you should speak to your removal firms in advance.
We ask that, where possible, you clean your belongings, with standard domestic cleaning products before they are handled by others, including removal firms.
Whilst the removers are in your home, you should ensure any internal doors are open and seek to minimise your contact with the crew, maintaining a distance of at least 2 metres where possible.
All parties should wash their hands and avoid touching surfaces where possible to reduce the risk of transmitting the coronavirus.
You should not provide refreshments but you should ensure they have access to handwashing facilities, using separate towels or paper towels if possible, which should be washed or disposed of safely afterwards.
Can I still collect Keys for my property?
Yes, it is possible to arrange for keys to be collected and social distancing precautions have been put in place to ensure all parties are protected. In some instances,a secure key box can be used. All keys will be cleaned prior to collection.
If you have any questions during this time, why not give The Property Hive a buzz on 01302 247754, we’re here to help and we can make it happen.
More information regarding the government guidelines can be found here.