The Coronavirus outbreak is changing the way real estate agents all around the world conduct open houses. Given the current circumstances, many home sellers and agents are rightfully nervous when it comes to gathering people in one place. Concerns over the spread of the COVID-19 have largely impacted the real estate industry, leaving brokers and agents with tons of questions, especially when it comes to showing properties and holding open houses.
Some agents claim that the handshakes that used to be common at such meetings are already out and are replaced by the trendy fist bump, elbow bump or friendly wave. Most real estate agents and agencies believe that doing business the way they did before the outbreak of the pandemic is no longer a good idea. Instead, most professionals believe that open houses should be limited to very small group showings.
In these cases, it’s highly recommended that the traffic is controlled so that there is only a certain number of people inside the house at a given time. Furthermore, it’s important that before every client visit, there is a pre-established set of rules that prospective buyers, and anyone else who shows up at the open house, should follow.
Safety Precautions to Take When Holding an Open House
According to the guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), you should ensure that there are not more than 10 people touring the home at any given time. Ensuring that guests maintain social distancing of six or more feet is also important, along with requiring potential buyers to use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or wash their hands right after entering the house. Removing their footwear or covering it with booties is also important. Make sure the prospective buyers are in perfect health and that they haven’t had contact with an infected person recently. Opening windows to allow for air to circulate is also a good idea.
Should You Hire Disinfecting Services?
Hiring the services of a commercial cleaning company is a great way to keep yourself and your potential buyers safe, all while focusing on showing the beauty and features of the house instead of wiping the surfaces yourself. The best way to guarantee the safety of potential clients and everyone visiting the home, is to have an electrostatic disinfection with a fogging machine. You can learn more about this type of service here.
As a matter of fact, all sellers are different – some love to clean and prep their home before an open home staging, while others absolutely loathe it. Then there are those who are so busy that they rarely get a chance to take a look at their to-do list when it comes to cleaning the home. This is a reason more to hire professional cleaners to take care of the staged home and properly disinfect it.
A gleaming home is more inviting and it makes it easier to spot all of its great features. It also makes prospective buyers feel more comfortable about their purchase, giving you peace of mind knowing that everything is as it should be.
Here are some of the best practices to use when disinfecting your open house.
Clean Around the House
Disinfecting and thoroughly cleaning high-touch surfaces in an open house regularly is an important precaution to lower the risk of spreading bacteria. The disinfecting service that you hire for your open house showing should be experienced in the job and have all the proper pieces of equipment to get the job done right.
The cleaning products’ instructions for safe and effective use should be closely followed, such as wearing gloves when using the product as well as ensuring there is proper ventilation. Some national authorities even have lists of products that they recommend to be used in the fight against the COVID-19 virus.
Disinfect High-Touch Surfaces
Although every home is different, there are certain common high-touch surfaces that must be disinfected. These include chairs, tables, door handles, handrails, bathroom and kitchen surfaces, toilets, taps, light switches, remote controls, and similar. Disinfect them properly and regularly to curb the spreading of any germs and bacteria.
What to Use to Clean and Disinfect an Open House?
The commercial disinfecting company that you hire for your open house should use specialized and top-of-the-line cleaning solutions that will rejuvenate your property and make it look its best. They should use products specially made for finishes like stainless steel, granite and hardwood flooring. That way, they can help protect and extend the life of the house’s appliances and fixtures, all while disinfecting them and ensuring they’re sparky clean.
Using cleaning products that meet EPA’s (Environmental Protection Agency) criteria for use against COVID-19 is important. These can be commonly used on hard/non-porous surfaces such as wood, tile, vinyl, laminates, linoleum and stone. The company should also be equipped with highly effective cleaners of soft/porous surfaces, such as carpets, rugs and upholstery. These should be suitable to be used in combination with the proper cleaning equipment, for example, steam cleaning machines or electrostatic foggers. Here is San Diego, you can always rely on the expertise of SD Janitor.
How to Properly Disinfect?
It’s very important not to wipe certain cleaning solutions off as soon as you’ve applied them to the surface. Many disinfectant products, such as sprays and wipes, need to stay wet on a surface for a couple of minutes in order to be fully effective. Make sure that the disinfecting company you’re working with uses the products as recommended so that they avoid damaging sensitive items. If you choose to go with an electrostatic fogging application, there is no need to wipe off the product afterwards. This is also the most proper method of disinfection!
Bottom line is, the number one recommended improvement for new listings is cleanliness! Make sure your property is properly disinfected, it’s safe to be in and looks its best. A detailed top-to-bottom cleaning and disinfecting is your best bet when it comes to leaving a good first impression on prospective buyers and getting a good return-on-investment!
Check out SD Janitor’s Real Estate Cleaning Solutions and Logistics here in San Diego. You have one chance to make a first impression. Get your real-estate listing ready to sell. We offer pre-listing solutions, cleaning and disinfection for open houses, showings, closing day as well as move-in and touch-up cleaning services.
Alex Capozzolo is the owner of the Brotherly Love Real Estate blog and a content writer for the real estate industry | We buy houses in Philadelphia, PA. Our focus is on helping people through one of the most important investment decisions of their lifetime by seamlessly providing fast, honest and professional real estate services.