Is The Housing Market Out Of Lock-Down?
Posted on 15th May 2020
COVID-19 has affected us all, in some way or another, however, for the housing market, 13th May 2020 saw some good news, in what has been a dreadful time for many. See how our Preston solicitors have been coping, here.
Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick, has confirmed that the workings of the property market may recommence. He confirmed that this is the opportunity we all need to ‘restart and renew’, our Preston solicitors discuss what this means for you, and your property conveyance…
We are now permitted to go ahead with the big move, which is music to the ears of both our solicitors in Preston, and our valued clients. The moving process may proceed, provided that it is safe to do so, and government guidance on safety in these circumstances may be followed. You can view the guidance, here, and, if you have any queries in this regard, please feel free to consult our team. We have your best interests at the forefront, at all times, and so will be able to advise you of the best course of action, specific to your conveyance.
The announcement of Mr Jenrick confirmed a number of updates, that affect us in the world of conveyancing, inclusive of the following:
- The re-opening of estate agent offices – With estate agents being open, more and more properties can be marketed to allow you to find that dream home. This also assists those conveyancing transactions that are in progress, and nearing completion, to allow the smooth handover of keys upon Completion, without issue.
- Property viewings may re-commence – If you are searching for a new property then, no doubt, you will wish to view the same before making an offer. This helps you get to grips with the property, work out where your favourite photo frame will take life and, importantly, get to know the property. The Housing Secretary has suggested that, in the first instance, property viewings should take place virtually (read our property team’s blog on virtual viewing here), where possible. If, however, this is not feasible, then property viewings can still take place, on the basis that government advice is followed. Specific guidance has been issued in respect of physical property viewings, which includes the following:
(a) That viewings should take place by appointment only, in order that the necessary precautionary measures may take place beforehand.
(b) Speculative viewings, where the prospective viewer is not serious about purchasing the property, should be discouraged. Evidently, this is to avoid the need for physical contact and interaction with others, where is unnecessary.
(c) All parties involved in the viewing, inclusive of the seller, purchaser, estate agent and any other relevant party, are to strictly adhere to social distancing guidelines.
(d) All internal doors should be left open, where possible. This is so that there is less of a need for physical touching of door handles or other such opening mechanisms, that may promote the spread of infection.
(e) The vendor, or indeed current occupier, of the property should vacate for the duration of the viewing. This may be as part of their daily permitted exercise, or simply vacating to an open space in the garden in order to observe social distancing.
(f) Upon entering, and leaving the property, all attendant upon the viewing should wash their hands. In addition, following the viewing, all surfaces should be cleaned in order to avoid any potential contamination.
- The re-opening of show homes – For those searching for a new build property, show homes may also re-open their doors but should, of course, be following the advice referred to above. Show homes are a perfect way for prospective buyers to visualise themselves in a new property and, with the re-opening of show homes, our Preston solicitors expect new build purchases to soar.
- Removal companies may re-commence work – Removal companies can be vital to the buying and selling process, to aid those who may require assistance in moving their items.
There are, of course, exceptions to the above and matters should be assessed on a case by case basis, in line with the safety of all involved. For those who are self-isolating, the advice is to continue to do so. Whilst we are reaching more positive times, there is still some uncertainty as to how matters will improve over the coming months.
The news has, however, been taken incredibly by the majority in the property world, with David Cox, Chief Executive of ARLA Propertymark, commenting that:
“It’s great news for consumers and the industry that the housing market is being opened up and people can let, rent, buy and sell properties again”.
In addition, Rightmove has seen significant increases in activity and those requiring their services, with over 2000 that have already been added to their listings. Additionally, the enquiries raised with them, by estate agents, has seen a soar in approximately 70%.
As you can see, those that have been eagerly anticipating the lifting of lockdown on the conveyancing process, are now putting their long- awaited plans into action.
So, if you have plans to buy or sell a property, now is the perfect time. Get in touch with our Preston solicitor today, for a fixed-fee quote with no hidden extras! Submit your property enquiry, to our local solicitors, online, where we will be delighted to assist you.
If you are a key worker, why not take advantage of our current offer on fixed-fee services; ask our team for more information, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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