Real Estates are facing strict new rules.
Real Estates are facing strict new rules.

Agents ‘best advice’ for homeowners thinking of selling

PEOPLE working in the property market are having to get creative on how they can continue the buying, selling and renting of homes with strict new government enforcements to flatten the COVID-19 curve.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison last night named onsite auctions and house inspections among the list of activities that would be banned from midnight tonight.

LJ Hooker Byron Bay agent Liam Annesley said his team has been prepping for the past week: “We already put approaches in place asking people the right questions around the virus whether they’ve been travelling, social distancing,” he said.

“You can do video auctions you can do over the phone (and) … online auctions.”

He said any meetings and inspections were being carried out on a one-on-one basis and LJ Hooker Byron Bay were following protocols such as social distancing and keeping hands clean.

“If any (parties) answer yes to any of the questions in regards to the virus, flu or travel it’s immediately no, there is no inspection.”

Mr Annesley said the phones were steadily ringing about property owners wanting to lease out their homes previously used as short term holiday letting, but this trend had already began when the bushfires started and holiday rentals were affected.

“They were already down roughly 15 per cent occupancy across the board.

“Then in the Byron Shire we had a flood not long after that. That was a very short but it had an impact on a lot of properties that were also holiday letting at that peak time.

“A lot of the (STA) providers are trying to get permanent tenants in a property for a short period of time. I think a lot of them will be coming around to the fact that they may have to currently let their property for 12 months to be able to get through this period of uncertainty.”

Mr Annesley also gave his “best advice” to homeowners thinking of selling.

“People selling their property are asking, ‘What’s the silver bullet at the moment?’.

“There is none. But what you are looking at is just creating a situation for yourself that you’ve got at least a choice if you want to sell or not.

“That is talking to the banks about what can they can do to help you defer a mortgage.

“If you have to forward plan to sell your property, look at doing it now – speak to somebody, speak to a professional or a real estate agent and speak to a broker about, ‘What do we have to do in the next six months to make sure that we’ve got the strongest position to sell our home?”.

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