Propertymark has created a 27-point list in line with the Delay stage of the Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, to support agents to reduce the opportunities for transmission.
The checklist includes:
- Keep clear records of any and all conversations that may affect service throughout the period of disruption.
- Communicate with your clients to ensure that they know that your business continues to operate, explain that you are taking measures to protect the health and safety of all parties.
- Ensure you are maintaining compliance with Consumer Protection Regulations by providing reasonable information about prior residents in relation to the infection and appropriate cleaning measures to take.
- Be aware of the vulnerable clients within your portfolio, offer extra assistance and check on them where possible.
- Offer 360-degree viewings, or if you do not have the infrastructure in place, offer to show properties via video call or recorded film.
- Make reasonable, regular checks before you allow landlords or vendors to carry out or host viewings. Ask if they have returned from an impacted area, have a high temperature or a recent dry cough or have had any contact with anyone with symptoms. If they have, they should not conduct the viewing. Keep clear records of all conversations.
Alongside this, Propertymark said it is in dialogue with officials at MHCLG, the Treasury, the Home Office and the Department of Health to press for the suspension of compliance requirements which involve mandatory face to face contact.
Mark Hayward, chief executive, NAEA Propertymark and David Cox, chief executive, ARLA Propertymark, said: “Propertymark has issued a COVID-19 checklist, in line with the Government’s recommendations, to help keep agencies operating during these unprecedented times.
“It’s vital that agents continue to uphold the highest standards and follow best practice for their clients when undertaking valuations, viewings, inspections, maintenance and cleaning. Agents should remain transparent with their clients and maintain their compliance with the Consumer Protection Regulations.”
They added: “It’s important to be sensible, reasonable and think of what others might need during this period – particularly those who are more vulnerable. Government is predicting that COVID-19 will impact us for months so agencies need to plan for the long term and think carefully about business continuity.”