This statewide consistency was greatly needed and levels the playing field across our market. According to Texas REALTORS® :
The statewide order supersedes existing local orders only where those local orders may have previously restricted essential services or where they were more permissive on gatherings.
Even for essential services, telework or online work should be used as much as possible, limiting in-person contact unless absolutely necessary.
Based on this analysis, REALTORS® can show property across the market but should exercise great caution in doing so. While we understand there will be circumstances that require showing activity, you should continue to take extreme caution in any in-person interaction to protect yourself and discourage the spread of COVID-19. Now more than ever, it is critical that you stay in close communication with your broker, and brokers with their legal counsel, on any changes to your contracts, current business practices, and policies.
If you have further questions on the statewide executive order, call the Texas REALTORS® Legal Hotline at 1-800-873-9155.
Real Estate Services Now Essential Statewide
Gov. Greg Abbott has issued an executive order setting a statewide standard of essential services through April 30. The order allows residential and commercial real estate services, property management, and construction to continue, effective immediately.
According to the CDC, COVID-19 is an airborne disease caused by the coronavirus. It spreads through respiratory droplets emitted through an infected person’s cough or sneeze. Coming in contact with infected persons is the main way the disease is spread but it can also be contracted through surfaces or clothing. Stay up to date with these resources, which are all being updated regularly.
Am I Allowed to Conduct Business Under the Shelter-in-Place Orders?
While the three shelter-in-place orders in our market name real estate as essential business, the spirit of these rules is to only provide real estate services that are truly essential. REALTORS® and affiliates engaged in business aimed at closing out current contractual obligations or housing unhoused individuals should complete their work with significant caution and while abiding by social distancing standards. All other real estate business that requires work from outside of the home should be suspended during the duration of the order. These are recommendations made on the basis of the spirit of the rule and not legal interpretations of each order.
I’m an Affiliate (photographer, staging company, etc.). Am I Allowed to Conduct Business Under the Shelter-in-Place Orders?
The shelter-in-place orders do not provide explicit guidance for companies whose services are not immediately essential to real estate transactions. We advise affiliate organizations to 1) contact their management team or attorney on any specific changes to business practices and policies during this time, and 2) contact any agents they are currently working with to determine their broker’s policies at this time.