Maryland REALTORS® COVID-19 Updates
Updated July 21, 2020
On June 10, Governor Hogan furthered eased the March 30 "Stay-at-Home" order under the phased "Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery." Given the improvement in Maryland’s positivity rate for COVID-19 and the retraction of the order prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people, the previous guidance on real estate practice has been changed to replace the 3-person limitation on real estate showings with guidance recommending the use of face masks, physical distancing and compliance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.
The Governor's Orders, which incorporate federal guidance classifying residential and commercial real estate services as "essential," emphasize the overriding importance of reducing community transmission of the virus while strategically activating the "Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery." The real estate brokerage industry shares the Governor's priorities. Our paramount concern remains the public's safety and the prevention of the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The following guidelines outline procedures that will allow us to continue doing business in a way that is mindful of the unique risks we are all facing. It is our responsibility to follow these guidelines to protect our clients and ourselves.
Accordingly, real estate licensees will limit personal interactions, including open houses, to the greatest extent possible, engage in-person only when necessary, and follow these strict protocols:
- Except for open houses, in-person activities should be by appointment only.
- Every reasonable effort should be made to limit the number of people who will be at the property at any one time.
- All persons present must strictly follow physical distancing guidelines established by the CDC by remaining at least six feet apart at all times.
- All persons present must follow the CDC's recommendation to wear cloth face coverings in public settings, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
Real estate licensees who strictly follow the above protocols are permitted to engage in the following in-person activities related to the purchase and sale of homes:
- Conduct listing presentations, take property photos, and create virtual tours for new listings
- Facilitate the signing of contract documents
- Preview and show listings by appointment only
- Facilitate photography / videography, inspections, appraisals, buyer "walk-throughs," and key delivery
Although remote activity is recommended, if a seller requests an open house, it is not prohibited by law. Open house activities should follow the in-person guidelines above and CDC guidelines on social distancing and wearing cloth face coverings.
Other real estate brokerage services will be limited to services we can provide remotely. There are risks associated with leaving the safety of your home and viewing homes for sale, and having prospective buyers enter the seller's home. Buyers and sellers must be attentive to and abide by the mandates and guidelines from public health officials and work with their real estate agent to make informed decisions about listing, selling, and purchasing real property. REALTORS® will exercise their best judgment under the circumstances to provide advice regarding all aspects of the current real estate market.
As always, consult with your broker to ensure your practices are consistent with company policy.
Updated information about COVID-19 is available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and from the Maryland Department of Health's COVID-19 Information Portal. If you have specific questions about health concerns related to COVID-19, you should consult with a health professional.
Maryland REALTORS® will continue to provide updates on the Maryland REALTORS® website and through social media as we get new information.
Please also see at PGCAR.com: