Letting agencies can operate, viewings and house moves can take place during lockdown

    4 November 2020

    Activities in connection with the purchase, sale, letting or rental of a residential property have been made exceptions to the "stay at home" guidance under lockdown legislation.

    This situation is rapidly changing and this article will continue to be updated throughout. For the latest guidelines, please refer to gov.uk.

    Letting agencies can continue to operate and viewings and house moves can take place during the second national lockdown, which begins on 5 November and will continue until at least 2 December. Under the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020, activities in connection with the purchase, sale, letting or rental of a residential property have been made exceptions to the "stay at home" guidance.

    These activities include:

    • visiting estate or letting agents, developer sales offices, or show homes
    • viewing residential properties to look for a property to buy or to rent
    • preparing a residential property to move in
    • moving house
    • visiting a residential property to undertake any activities required for the rental or sale of that property.

    Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick had previously confirmed on Twitter that “the housing market will remain open during this period”. He noted that everyone “must follow the Covid-19 safety guidance."

    Agencies can continue to use the furlough scheme, which was set to end in November, and has now been extended until the end of the national lockdown. Jenrick also confirmed that mortgage payment holidays will be extended.

    A snap poll by Goodlord on the day before the new lockdown was announced found that 74% of lettings professionals felt either "very" or "somewhat" prepared for a national lockdown. Only 13% of respondents said that they felt either "very" or "somewhat" unprepared.

    This article is intended as a guide only. For more information, see gov.uk.

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