Even though Virginia has gotten back to some sense of normalcy lately, we’re all continuing to do our best to social distance and take precautions to not further the spread of COVID-19.  During a pandemic, people still need and want to move, so real estate transactions have still been taking place through it all and our industry is always looking for new ways to accommodate both the needs of the transaction and, of course, the safety of everyone.

Many traditional real estate activities can be performed virtually. For example, buyers can minimize the number of homes they physically visit by pre-screening them ahead of time through virtual tours. However, there are a few vital pieces of the transaction that require in-person visits, like home inspections and appraisals.

Both of these professionals need access to the property to properly perform their duties, and it leaves some potential home sellers and buyers wondering if it’s even possible to conclude a real estate transaction right now. While everyone should cautiously move forward according to their personal sense of comfort, there are a few things you can do to protect yourself, your family, and the professionals while they are in your home.

Before setting the appointments, think through the parts of your home the inspector or appraiser will need to access and think through the process. Contact the home inspector and appraiser and work out a plan together to keep everyone safe:
• Communicate with them about off-limit areas, and what parts of the home they can
access.
• Have a notepad in which they can communicate what parts of the home they came in
contact with, and offer hand sanitizer and wipes for them to use before and after
touching parts of the home.
• Finally, leave the home during the appointments, and clean properly once you return
home.

If you are trying to buy or sell a home during this challenging time, it might take a little extra effort. However, working with your real estate team to come up with a plan will ensure a smooth transaction amid the pandemic.