As of May 15, the rules for providing Real estate services have relaxed slightly in Durham. A subset of the updated order regarding Real Estate activities is highlighted below. There is a link to the full order, as well as, the Statewide order at the end of this article.
Both sales and rental real estate services, to include sales by Builders, present a high traffic use of common surfaces which present a risk of transmission. All Realtors and their clients should use safety precautions when entering both vacant and occupied properties as outlined below.
1) Safety precautions applicable to all activities under this section:
- Anyone entering a home pursuant to this section must wear a mask and gloves and must not touch surfaces inside the home to the greatest extent possible. Lights must be turned on and interior doors opened prior to entry. Hand sanitizer or sanitized wipes must be provided to anyone entering a home before and after entering a home; and
- Anyone entering a home pursuant to this section must assert that to the best of their knowledge, they are not currently ill with a cold or flu; do not have a fever, persistent cough, shortness of breath, or exhibit other COVID-19 symptoms; have not been in contact with a person with COVID-19; and will adhere to and follow all precautions required for entering the property at all times.
2) Activities prior to an offer to purchase or rent being accepted:
- Open houses of any homes for sale are prohibited. In-person showings of homes for sale or rent are permitted under the following conditions:
- The buyer’s agent cannot enter the home with the prospective buyer(s); however, the agent can talk to the buyer during the showing from outside the home using cell phones and a video service;
- Only one person can enter a home at a time for a showing. However, two people can enter at the same time if they have been socially distancing together;
- Showings of all homes must be separated by at least one hour after the previous prospective buyer/tenant has left. If the home is occupied, the residents should leave the property one hour before a scheduled showing and return at least an hour after the showing is completed.
- For non-owner-occupied rental properties, showings are limited to no more than one per day, unless the tenant has expressly agreed to permit more frequent showings in a writing executed on or after May 14, 2020.
- Listing agents may enter vacant or occupied properties to take photographs and videos to facilitate virtual tours. Buyers’ agents may enter vacant properties to take photographs and/or videos. These services may be performed by a professional photography service so long as the safety precautions of this section are met.
3) Post-sale activities (These activities are restricted to the following activities connected with closing sales.)
- Post-offer inspections;
- Onsite preview by prospective buyer where property is under contract sight unseen;
- Final walk throughs; and,
- Title services.
Links to the full text of the Durham Stay-at-home order, as well as, the Governor’s Statewide order can be found here: