Cold and flu season is here, and with that and the ongoing pandemic, it’s more important than ever to stay safe when shopping for a new home. At Long & Foster, the health and wellbeing of our clients is our top priority, and that’s why, we recommend several best practices to help keep our home buyers feeling comfortable, safe, and protected.
FIRST THINGS FIRST
- Sit back and relax. Minimize unnecessary in-person touring by leveraging video conference, email, and phone calls to narrow down home searches with photos and virtual tours.
- Communication is key. Inform your agent if you’ve had any symptoms of Covid-19 (or been exposed to anyone with symptoms) within the last 14 days, or if you’ve been diagnosed with Covid-19, so we can arrange to shop-from-home until you’re in the clear.
- Road trip planning. Taking separate vehicles will simplify the tour process, but if carpool is needed, make sure to mask up and hand sanitize beforehand.
- Star players only. Limit participants on any home tours as much as possible.
- Prep the kids. If bringing children, talk to them beforehand about these rules, and make sure they stay by your side during tours.
- Potty protocol. Folks are extra-sensitive about their bathrooms now, so using the facilities before you leave your own home could save you discomfort later.
- Sit tight. Wait in your car if you arrive at the house first, and your agent will call when they arrive so you can gear up and go in together.
- Gear up. Make sure your mask is covering your nose and mouth before entering the home.
The drill: Mask on in the car, booties on at the door (or shoes off), then gloves and/or sanitizer.
- Go with the flow. Some homeowners or their agents may ask visitors to take extra precautions, like taking temperatures at the door. We’ll check with the listing agent to try to get a lay of the land before we arrive.
- No hugging. Or handshaking or high-fiving. Maintain at least 6’ from others at all times.
- Hands-free touring. Avoid touching any surfaces, including light switches and door handles. This goes for vacant homes as well. If you’d like to see inside something, just ask your agent.
- Take the talk outside. To keep tour times tight, post-tour discussions should continue outside the property or on a call or video conference later.
- Gearing back down. Once outside, you can remove your booties, then gloves. Keep your mask on until you’re in your own car or dropped off at your home. As a last step, give your hands one more good dose of sanitizer or wash them again.
- Follow up. If buyers have symptoms or are diagnosed with Covid-19 within 14 days following a tour, please let your agents know. They’ll need to notify anyone who may have been exposed.
Note: This checklist has been repackaged from Leading Real Estate Companies of the World (LeadingRE), of which Long & Foster is a founding member.