With different parts of the country in different stages of lockdown, the three-tier system has caused some confusion among home buyers and sellers. The new rules were announced while the property market enjoyed, and still does, a strong rebound after a wave of buyer demand was released after lockdown measures were eased in May.
Under the new guidelines, estate agents can remain open and viewings are still allowed across England. However, the strict Health & Safety guidelines & social distancing must be observed on appointments and potential purchasers must provide their proof of funding in advance of any viewings. For more information on Aston Knowles’ current guidelines, please do not hesitate to get in touch with one of our sales team on 0121 362 7878 or firstname.lastname@example.org
While these new measures across the country might make viewing properties more difficult in some instances, Zoopla is under the impression that they are unlikely to negatively affect the high levels of interest from potential buyers.
Richard Donnell, their head of research and insights, argues that lockdown has already caused many people to re-evaluate their home and lifestyles, with a particular focus on space.
The stamp duty holiday, running until the 31st March 2021, is acting as a further incentive for buyers to complete a purchase before its end.
So what do the different tiers actually mean if you’re looking to move?
Tier 1 – medium alert
Property viewings can continue in areas that are currently in tier 1, as long as everyone involved adheres to the Health & Safety measures, including the wearing of a face mask, keeping the touching of surfaces to a minimum, and a maximum of two prospective buyers per appointment. Open house viewings are not allowed and if any member of the household that is viewing or being viewed shows symptoms of Covid-19 or is self-isolating the viewing has to be delayed.
Tier 2 – high alert
On top of following the rules set out for tier 1, areas that fall into tier 2 must also avoid mixing with anyone that is not in their household or support bubble in any indoor setting. In-person property viewings can still take place, bearing in mind the anti-Covid measures are still being observed.
Tier 3 – very high alert
Tier 3 is reserved for areas where the transmission rates of Covid-19 are causing the greatest concern. People living in tier-3 areas are not allowed to meet with anyone outside of their household or support bubble in any indoor or outdoor setting. Although in-person viewings are not explicitly banned in these areas, a lot of agents, sellers, and buyers have decided against visiting properties while these restrictions are in place.
How will local lockdowns affect moving dates and the property market?
It is understandable that these local lockdowns and the ever-changing rules can be a point of concern or confusing when you are in the process of moving. We encourage all parties to be flexible and understanding when it comes to setting exchange and completion dates. The lockdown in March ensured that the property market completed came to a halt. At the time of writing, this luckily isn’t the case. You will find however that estate agents, surveyors, and removal companies will all have their own anti-Covid measures in place to make the moving process as safe and smooth as possible.
We are generally in a much better position than we were back in March. We’ve seen how lockdown affected buyer and tenant priorities in terms of gardens, access to parks, and extra living space. This additional lockdown might renew people’s desires to move. This, in combination with the stamp duty holiday, should mean that demand will remain high.
Whatever your requirements at the moment, the team at Aston Knowles would be delighted to help you. Please do not hesitate to get in touch on 0121 362 7878 or email@example.com if you have any questions.