Buying a new home in a pandemic

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Buying a new home  is one of the most stressful things you can do and add in the fact that we are now in a seriously tight lockdown simply adds to the difficulty however the property market remains open despite England being plunged back into a world that seems to be in a frozen state. 

It would seem that the government has allowed the property market to continue most likely in order to  aid  the broader economy rather than  doing estate agents a particular favour especially as there is a huge amount of property transactions currently competing to complete by the end of the stamp duty deadline on March 31st although there are rumours that the tax break might be extended.

Restrictions and guidelines are in place to guide people so they  can continue to move home, and do everything needed to complete that process. This includes viewing homes for sale in person,  with gloves masks and vacant viewings right through to allowing removal firms into homes and in necessary cases allowing people outside of a bubble to help with the move itself. 

Lawyers, valuers and agents  are all still working even if from home but with technology at fingertips there is no reason why anything is delayed , indeed with emails and scanned copies of paperwork the whole process in theory should actually be easier, and there will be few reasons for delays to transactions. 

In order to allow this to continue it is important to follow safety guidelines and only attempt to move if it is essential, due to the sharp rise in Covid cases. Agents play  a huge role in allaying concerns over safe viewings for sellers and buyers reducing the spread of the virus by following all relevant guidance on how to safely conduct viewings.

Virtual viewings are available on many properties for sale and buyers are urged to look at those first before committing to a physical viewing this saves time and the threat of Covid as the virtual walk throughs are able to view at home. You can ‘ wander’ through four or five homes in the time just one actual viewing would take. Of course if the property is of further interest then an actual viewing is encouraged with the correct guidelines.

The safety advice from the Government indicates that those viewing a property for sale should wash and sanitise their hands and avoiding touching surfaces, with viewings only able to involve members of a single household. Some estate agents are requesting gloves and masks when entering a property and this seems to be a very sensible precaution.

 

  • Use virtual viewings of properties where possible
  • Properties should be unoccupied when physical viewings take place
  • Follow government advice on social distancing during a viewing
  • The wearing of masks by all parties during a viewing
  • Practice good hand hygiene and ‘touch free’ viewings
  • Thoroughly clean properties before and after viewings.

In these strange pandemic times the property market continuing is necessary for so many people. However the financial situation with furlough ending , unemployment rising and uncertain futures for so many the situation is likely to be unstable. 

 

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