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Level 3 Property FAQ's

23 Jun 2020

With Level 3 in full swing as of the 1st of June, the real estate industry is back in business. Mike Greeff, CEO of Greeff Christie's Real Estate says that this is a welcomed relief for both agents and clients alike and that reopening the industry means that agents can go back to doing what they love and that is meeting all property-related needs for both buyers and sellers.

Initial indications that the real estate sector would only be able to operate at level 2 had the industry deeply concerned, says Carl Coetzee, CEO of BetterBond. He furthers by saying that

Not only does property contribute significantly to GDP, but it also employs close to 100,000 people, both directly and indirectly. Reopening the property sector is a necessary step to restart the economy and protect the livelihood of thousands

Although Level 3 means that we are somewhat back to -normal-,there are still stringent protocols in place to ensure the safety of both agents and their clients.

Below are a few FAQ's that will shed some light on the industry and how different things will be now that Level 3 is in place. Throughout lockdown, real estate experts have diligently worked to keep you informed and abreast of any developments and will continue to do so forward.

Q: What can we expect from real estate agents going forward?

A: Real estate agents are back at work and doing what they love! Fortunately, agents were able to work throughout lockdown with the resources they had at hand, says Greeff, but being allowed back at their offices, allows them the opportunity to do their job to the best of their abilities and in turn, provide you with the service you deserve.

Agents will be able to do physical valuations, should the potential seller request it but needs to adhere to the safety measures put in place i.e. wearing a mask at all times, and practicing social distancing. Online valuations are also available, should you opt for this instead.

Q: Are physical viewings permitted?

A: One-on-one viewings are permitted, provided the sellers are open to it. Stringent hygiene protocols will be put in place and social distancing will be practiced to ensure the safety of the client and the agent. Virtual walk-throughs are still available and are encouraged whenever possible.

Q: Should you consider buying a home in this climate?

A: Absolutely! There has never been a better time to purchase a home than right now. Interest rates are the lowest they have ever been, along with the prime lending rate being at 7.25%, says Tim Greeff, Sales Director at Greeff Christie's International Real Estate.

If you are in the position to purchase a home, it is strongly advised that you reach out to a bond originator and find out what your affordability is. "The opening of the property sector is particularly good news for buyers and investors, as the prevailing market conditions are geared to favour residential property buyers says "Coetzee.

Q: Can tenants move under level 3?

A: With the curfew being lifted along with certain travel bans, moving is permitted. However, should you be moving to or from an area that is considered a COVID-19 - hotpot-, you will have to be in possession of an affidavit, as stipulated by the government. This affidavit needs to be signed by a police officer or judge an attorney's signature will not suffice.

Q: How does the future of property look?

A: Greeff says that many South Africans have needed to take a salary cut and as a result, their affordability for a home loan might have been affected. However, with the uptick in positives within the real estate industry i.e. low interest rates and reduction in transfer fees, banks and independent lenders are now processing home loan applications as they have the ability to verify employment due to the economy opening up.

This is an unprecedented time, and no one knows what the future holds, but this is a start and things seem to be heading in the right direction. The best and most proactive thing we can do is try to predict all the possible outcomes and arm ourselves with tools needed. As real estate professionals, we are ready to take full advantage of the market and we encourage buyers and sellers to do the same.

This is our new normal, says Greeff, and we have to find ways to adapt, innovate and thrive under these conditions.

Article published courtesy of Private Property

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