Tips for Protecting People Against the Coronavirus During an Open House
Amid the Coronavirus epidemic across the globe, now is a good time to go over some of the best ways to protect people from illness. In some areas, residential real estate has seen a slight slow down, in others we have actually seen increased activity. The commercial real estate market looks a little more bleak. Luxury condos and luxury single family properties have been doing extremely well as people are hunkering down.
Even without the recent outbreak, flu season and the common cold give us all reason to follow some important hygiene and illness spreading tips. We talk about the most common things homeowners, flippers, and property agents can do to protect everyone during high-risk periods in this post.
Wipe down common surfaces with disinfectants
Business Insider tells readers that one of the best ways to reduce germs and minimize the transfer of bacteria is with regular cleaning. Wiping down door handles, door facings, windows, counters, light switches, garage doors, toilet handles, sinks, and other common surfaces people touch during an open house is critical to disinfect the property. Everything from the front gate to the attic pull cord should be on the list. Remember to wipe down cabinet pulls, refrigerator doors, and kitchen counters and islands.
Writing a note of every spot to cover ahead of cleaning will ensure no one forgets the necessary items before guests visit. By disinfecting all these surfaces, the people who visit will stay healthier, and so will the person showing the house. Cleaning the space after the guests leave will ensure everyone else who works in the house following the showing will remain safer too.
Put hand sanitizer and alcohol wipes near entrances
Experts cannot say enough about how important it is to provide gel sanitizer for guests and workers as hand hygiene is extreemly important. People need a sanitizer with a 60 percent or higher concentration of alcohol for the solution to be effective at killing germs. Anyone who enters the property should use the alcohol gel upon entering and leaving for the best results.
Extend open house hours to encourage smaller groups
To provide ample time for people to see the property, it might be a good idea to schedule personal trips through the house or lengthen showing hours. While the long hours gives more time for workers to experience exposure to illnesses, it will allow the agent or homeowner to spread out visitors.
For example, if a large group of people shows up at the same time, the shower can ask people to go in a few at a time to help people keep distance between each other. The rest of the group can talk in the yard if the weather is nice. A standby station in the garage or porch might be another idea.
Greet guests with hands behind the back to discourage handshakes
While we typically thrust our hands forward to greet others, now is not the time to continue this practice. Everyone will be understanding if homeowners are leery of shaking hands. One way to avoid accidental touching is by putting hands out of sight by placing them in pockets or behind the back. A person can still be professional and inviting without touching guests.
Place several boxes of tissues throughout the house
Encouraging people to cover their coughs and sneezes is still excellent practice. If people have a steady supply of tissues handy, then they are likely to follow these hygiene tips. Using boxes with bright colors and placing the tissues on work surfaces, entry tables, and near lights will keep them visible. A big box in each bathroom is always a great recommendation.
Bonus tip: Do not be afraid to ask someone visibly ill to leave quickly
If someone shows up to the open house sick, then they should be courteous and leave. If they do not want to exit quickly, then it may be wise to have a stash of masks on hand. Open house personnel can offer a mask or ask the person to come back when the public is not visiting. The most important thing is to make sure to address the person.
If the property agent sees someone coughing, sneezing, or experiencing virus symptoms like trouble breathing, then saying something is better than possibly exposing the entire group to a dangerous illness.
Be careful when hiring local contractors to prepare your home for sale. Make sure to ask any contractor performing any job what is their process for dealing with Coronavirus.
National Public Radio tells listeners to prepare for the Coronavirus instead of waiting for it to happen. Since the spread of this illness is so much faster than the flu, following good hygiene practices and preparing for open house guests is the best way to keep everyone safe when work must continue. Another important tip is to remind people to avoid touching their faces while at work or during the open house. The virus will get into the body faster through any opening like the eyes, nose, and mouth with physical contact.