Updated March 23, 2020
On March 23, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee issued a statewide “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order for a period of at least two weeks. As a part of this order, all “non-essential critical infrastructure” businesses have been forced to close, including real estate brokerages. But that doesn’t mean we’re closed for business.
Windermere brokers are being innovative and adapting so they can continue to help their clients move their lives forward. During a time when social distancing is mandated, we stand firm in our culture and belief that connecting people to their dreams is what real estate is all about.
DURING SOCIAL DISTANCING
❱ Real estate brokers may: Provide services to their clients remotely from their house using technology services that
enable remote business, including online forms, electronic signatures, virtual tours and property videos, and mobile
applications to allow brokers to continue to facilitate real estate transactions. We can also just be a friendly ear if you need it.
❱ Real estate brokers may not: Conduct any business outside of their home, including physically showing or previewing properties, conducting in-person listing presentations, taking property photos, staging homes, etc.
First and foremost, talk to your real estate broker. Certain “Financial Services Sector” businesses have been deemed essential, including those needed for processing financing transactions and services, such as mortgage lenders, escrow, and title insurers. Because of this, real estate transactions that are under contract are expected to be able to proceed to closing. In partnership with the Washington REALTORS®, we are working closely with Governor Inslee’s office to continue to have clarity on this process and keep the industry moving forward during the next two weeks and beyond.
We’re all in this together.
Despite the challenges we’re facing, homes will continue to be bought and sold thanks in part to the abundance of technology out there that allows us to stay connected and transact real estate. It’s also thanks to our brokers who are more focused than ever on taking care of their clients and helping them achieve their real estate goals with outstanding professionalism, attention to detail, and an over-commitment to service.
We recognize that the coming weeks are going to be challenging for real estate buyers, sellers, and brokers. But please know the entire Windermere family is here to support you for however long the COVID-19 pandemic lasts, and beyond.
All in, for you.
Published March 13, 2020
As our community adapts to a new normal amid the human impact caused by Coronavirus in our region, we believe in our responsibility to ensure the health and well-being of our customers, brokers, administrative team, vendors and the public.
Our business is a people business, and as such, it poses risks and responsibilities that implore us to step up and do the right thing for all concerned. We know many residents in our region continue to have a need to buy or sell real estate and we want to let you know what we are doing to create a safer experience in that process.
We have encouraged our brokers to follow the guidelines developed by Seattle & King County Public Health and by The National Association of REALTORS® for those who work in the real estate industry. This is especially important in our local region given the extent of our potential exposure to the virus and its implication to so many vulnerable individuals in our region.
We’ve asked anyone on our team who is feeling ill (for any reason), or has been exposed to someone who is sick, not to come into the office or meet with the public and to observe the recommended quarantine timelines before returning to normal activities.
Client Meetings, Property Tours and Open Houses
We’ve limited open houses and encouraged private tours, FaceTime tours, and professionally produced video tours when-ever possible. When we do hold an open house, we follow the below newly established protocol:
- Clean and disinfect touchpoints prior to the open house
- Have sanitizer and ask guests to use it or wash their hands
- Not offer food or drinks
- Limit the number of people in the house at a given time
- Practice social distancing
- Clean and disinfect touchpoints following the open house
We are holding more and more client meetings remotely, utilizing available technology to discuss real estate needs, strategy, and ideas. We are observing social distancing in our interactions (as hard as that is in our profession). When we arrange private showings, we’ll likely ask you to drive separately rather than carpool. Please don’t be offended. It protects you as much as it does us.
We’ve moved office meetings and classes to an online interactive platform and asked our broker team, who interact with many people on a daily basis, to work as remotely as possible (coming into the office for essential tasks only). This has allowed our admin support team to continue their operations so that our brokers and their clients are fully supported during this time.
We are fortunate in our industry; we have the luxury of being able to conduct our business from anywhere on nearly any device. We are utilizing our options to help us work though this time with the intention that our commitment to good stewardship in our community will help us get through this more expediently.
To ensure the safety of visitors to our office, we follow the below protocol:
- Practice the recommended social distancing of 6’ from others
- Perform daily janitorial service cleaning and disinfecting of touchpoints with hospital grade cleaner
- Utilize sanitizer or wipes to clean touch points on computers, equipment and appliances before and after using
- Not offer food or drinks
- Limit the number of people in the office as much as possible
Need to deliver or pick up keys or documents? Simply call 206-232-0446 when you pull up and we’ll gladly run them out to you or retrieve them from you.
Our highest priority is the health and safety of our team, our clients and the public.
We are pro-actively looking for solutions and the sooner we get through this, the better we, our community, and our economy will be. We need to work together to ensure that happens.
We appreciate your concerns and welcome any questions or comments you may have.
We earn the trust and loyalty of our brokers and clients by doing real estate exceptionally well. The leader in our market, we deliver client-focused service in an authentic, collaborative and transparent manner and with the unmatched knowledge and expertise that comes from decades of experience.
© Copyright 2020 Windermere Mercer Island.