Here is the most recent update from GRAR and UNYREIS Leadership on the status of business at this time. As you know, the situation can change rapidly throughout the day. Your leadership is in constant communications as we assess the changes and how they impact you and your ability to practice real estate.
Per Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order effective Sunday, March 22
, all agents are required to work at home along with everyone else. Brokerage offices are required to be closed and 100% of staff should work remotely. As of right now, we are not considered an essential business.
You can continue to do your business, including taking listings, provided you perform these activities from your home. You are not allowed to go to a new listing to take photos or videos, nor is a photographer who does work for hire. If you are taking new listings, you may need to work with the seller to obtain photos or videos. This applies even if the home is vacant. The Executive Order is that people need to stay home and has nothing to do with the occupancy status of the property you may be listing or showing.
It is important to note that while you are working from home, you are not allowed to be making cold calls to people with whom you do not have a prior business relationship. Per NYSAR’s March 22 email, “brokerages and their associated licensees are prohibited from making unsolicited telephone calls to consumers during the current State of Emergency until at least September 7, 2020
Realtors, home inspectors,
(removed per update above)
, photographers, sign installers, and others in our industry are ordered to stay home, unless they’ve gotten notice from the governor’s office stating they are an essential business. This includes all types of companies, including sole proprietorships and independent contractors. NYSAR is working with the state to try to get closings deemed essential, but we have not heard any updates on that today. We will continue to work with NYSAR and NYS on this and will keep you posted on any changes.
There have been questions about whether a seller could let a buyer into their home and go into the car while they view the house. This should be avoided for both health and safety reasons, as well as legal and risk management reasons.
Attorneys are considered essential and many lenders are able to perform closings virtually, so please contact the attorneys and lender involved in your transactions to see if you can move forward. The Executive Order to stay home prohibits final walk-throughs at this time, so you may need to find alternative solutions.