21 April 2020

What COVID-19 Alert Level 3 means for real estate

Almost four weeks ago, we joined the rest of the country in COVID-19 Alert Level 4, closing the doors to our Lugtons offices and suspending all open homes for the duration of the lockdown period.  

As a nation, we are making great progress in our fight against COVID-19. We want to take this opportunity to  keep you informed on the progressive movements we will be taking, as we look to transition from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3 at 11.59 pm, on Monday 27 April. 

Let’s level with you 

With the announcement only made at the beginning of the weekwe’re doing our best to determine what this means for us and our clients.  

At this point, it is still unclear what activities can be carried out under different alert levels. What we do know, is that REINZ is working closely with the Industry Leaders’ Group to gain further insight and guidance to ensure we all have a clear understanding of what Alert Level 3 means for Lugtons, and the real estate industry as a whole.  

Claire Lugton, Director of Lugtons Real Estate, believes this is paramount for the company to move out of the Lockdown and ensure the buoyancy of the industry.  

“Here at Lugtons, we all want to do our bit to stay safe from COVID-19. Helping our team and vendors get through this time is our top priority,” she says.

Government-provided real estate recommendations 

At the time of publishing, 21 April 2020, the COVID-19 Government information for businesses website recommends the following steppingstones for real estate to take effect at Level 3.  

  • A real estate agent can open, but people should work from home if they can. 
  • The agent can enter people’s homes, but not have customers in the office. 
  • Open homes cannot take place in person, but they can happen remotely. One-on-one viewings and pre-settlement inspections may be possible. Further guidance to come. 
  • People can move homes at Alert Level 3. This includes rental moves. They can travel between regions, including using domestic air services for the purposes of moving house. All freight can be moved around the country at Alert Level 3 and moving companies can operate as long as they do so safely. 
  • Where possible, the physical interactions involved in house sale, purchase and settlement should be done remotely where possible at Alert Level 3. It may be possible to do a final pre-settlement inspection in person or have a real estate agent come into the home, as long as all physical distancing and public health measures are taken. 

“We want to do our part to help ensure the safety of our community, and our team, while we move through these alert levels,” says Claire. 

When the time comes for the country to move from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3, safety will be our number one priority, implementing new systems for physical distancing, hand sanitisation and cleaning. We’re already looking at how we can follow the Government’s best practice guidelines. 

Keep up to date 

Communication is key. To keep informed on what is happening here at Lugtons, make sure you follow our Facebook Page.  

We plan to reopen our offices as soon as it is safe to do so and we’re looking forward to helping you buy, sell, and invest in your future properties.  

We’re all in this together, and with our team of 5 million, we’ll all get through. #bekind #stayinside #besafenz 

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