By Duane Egyud, Licensed real estate salesperson with the Queens Home Team at Keller Williams Realty.

As we watch the world and this science fiction movie we are living through, I am paying some attention to the news and the good Dr. Fauci said that we will never go back to the normal that once was. I hear all sorts of timelines for this as well as all sorts of future outcomes and it is concerning. So if we are not able to go back to the normal that once was, what will the new normal look like for the responsible realtor in real estate transactions? Below are a few of my thoughts.

We have already seen the closings change. one person runs the paperwork from one transaction participant to another and then finally the bank. All distancing throughout. I imagine that the attorneys might recommend a Power of Attorney option to speed thing up. The bank will then cut the check to the seller’s attorney and then the attorney will cut the checks to the prospective parties. This will certainly effect those sellers who are buying as well, and who need to sell before they can buy. It possibly could take extra time for them to be able get their money which in turn will cut into the time for them to be able to close on their purchase. So we will likely see lease-backs for the occupying sellers so they can get their check deposited and set up their closing on the property they are purchasing. No more, seller-side closing one day, buyer-side closing the next.

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Listings will change by the way we will go to listing appointments, especially for the elderly, in full PPE. Masks, gloves and shoe covers will be necessary for the in-person appointments as well as the home inspections, and the appraisals. Open houses will have to provide the same for everyone attending and then at the end of the open house, the responsible realtor will go around and wipe down and disinfect the door knobs and surfaces. We already have the COVID Disclosures for buyers and seller’s which is new paperwork and I don’t think the responsible realtor will let that go.

Representing buyers will have changes in that the buyer consultations will likely all become virtual. I have done a few of these in the past and it isn’t too hard with the technology available to us. There will be no more driving your client around unless absolutely necessary and then again having masks and gloves available to share with those buyers and then to be extra safe, disinfecting your car if you are taking another group of people out the next day.

Currently for any listing a realtor would take, everything will have to be done virtually and only if the property is occupied. Vacant properties, with the “stay at home orders”, would not be able to be photographed, or to be able to have a virtual tour done. Occupied homes would be able to have the owners do a virtual tour. The quality will likely suffer a bit but hey, it’s something.

This is a new world we live in. They talk about it every day. About how we will never be the same, how this may come back when the colder weather returns in the fall. As agents who will need to help those who need to buy and sell we will need to be able to do it safely, protecting our clients, our families and ourselves.