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Estate Agents in Spain to Start Property Viewings from May 11
04 May 2020 @ 21:49

ESTATE agents in Spain can start viewings again from May 11 – and some have already started making appointments.

In the meantime, they will be able to reopen their offices to the public from this coming Monday, May 4, subject to prior appointment.

The country's 120,000-plus estate agencies have been in contact with clients by telephone and via the Internet only for the last two months, and will now, finally, be able to start showing potential buyers around properties for sale, in person.

From May 11, estate agency staff will be permitted to make visits, take photographs, and liaise with sellers, but will initially be restricted to the province where they are based.

Rules apply, including maintaining social distancing – at least a metre – and with all staff and customers to be equipped with 'anti-pandemic kits': gloves, masks, hand sanitiser, and disposable gauze 'socks' over their shoes, such as those used by intensive care visitors or given out at airport security for those taking their footwear off.

According to the ministry of transport, mobility and urban agenda, 'provided the required precautions are taken, visits to offices and buildings can be arranged', but that individual sellers or renters cannot do so as yet – only estate agencies.

The National Federation of Estate Agencies (FAI) says it expects the industry's return to business as usual will be 'gradual' and take around a week, in line with similar dates proposed for the reopening of high-street trade in general.

Small shops can reopen on May 11, which includes estate agencies, but shopping centres and very large premises cannot do so until May 26 – likewise estate agencies that fall into the 'large premises' category, as yet to be properly defined – since major retail complexes and other, similar-sized businesses carry a greater risk of big crowds building up.

Finer details remain up in the air at the moment, but industry leaders have been pressuring the government to provide flexibility by location – as an example, the proposed restriction of only viewing properties within the same province as the buyer's current residence, or the estate agency office, could mean that in popular tourism hotspots on the coast, a person based close to a province border may be able to view a potential home 150 kilometres away but not one five kilometres away, points out Eva González-Nebreda, spokeswoman for the FIABCI international estate agency federation.

A sensible initial solution could be allowing travel within the same province, or to adjacent districts or comarcas for those based close to the edge.

Many member establishments have already been bulk-buying 'anti-pandemic kits' in anticipation of being able to restart normal trade before summer.



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