Updated on March 25, 2020
Information from C.A.R. on electronic closings, relief for REALTORS® as independent contractors, online notary services, and real estate as an essential service.
Key information on the executive order issued by the governor on March 19 to stay at home unless absolutely necessary. Members must abide by the governor’s order and any stricter orders that may have been enforced by your local government. C.A.R. is working on several fronts with the government to get clarity and find ways on how California REALTORS® can continue their businesses in a safe manner and assist clients virtually and/or with other specific conditions during this unusual environment.
C.A.R.'s Guidance on Governor's Stay-at-Home Order
REALTORS® should cease doing all face-to-face marketing or sales activities, including showings, listing appointments, open houses and property inspections. Clients and other consumers are also subject to these orders and should not be visiting properties or conducting other business in person. Note: As the coronavirus situation and associated real estate-related activities continue to rapidly shift, C.A.R. is working diligently with the governor’s office to have real estate classified as an essential service. We are committed to keeping you updated on these vital activities. Continue to visit car.org/coronavirus for the most up-to-date information.
In light of Governor’s Order of 3-19-20, in many instances, these conditions will prompt listing agents, in accordance with seller’s wishes, to change the MLS listing status to something like hold or withdraw — but if the listing agreement is still in effect, one would not select cancelled. Listing agents also have the option to maintain the listing in an active status, (or coming soon/delayed showing if such status is offered and appropriate under local MLS rules) albeit with an understanding of the limitation imposed on all face-to-face activity. Agents will have to be mindful of the implications of each status selection within their local MLS rules.
The recent events surround the spread of the COVID-19 strain of the coronavirus have led to any questions about the continued enforceability of real estate contracts under the circumstances. Rather than risk an uncertain outcome in court or arbitration over such disputes, Buyers and Sellers may elect to address the unanswered issues contractually. This form allows parties to agree on a way forward for existing contracts and address potential issues in contracts that have not yet been formed.
Key information about paid leave, remote work and other policies affecting employers.
In response to the current COVID-19 epidemic, many firms are cancelling previously planned events in order to promote social distancing and to avoid spreading the contagionBrokerages may have entered into contracts related to these events, and now they need to cancel these contracts. Can a party cancel a contract without liability in the event of a viral epidemic? The answer to this question lies in the contract itself — and specifically in the section of the contract known as “Force Majeure.”
U.S. Small Business Association (SBA) Disaster Loan Assistance
The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to California small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced today. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s designated representative, Director Mark S. Ghilarducci of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services on March 13, 2020.
Information on Zoom Meetings:
If you need help with hosting a virtual office meeting, we have some capabilities and are starting a pilot program to provide you with hosting a virtual office meeting for up to 500 guests. Please email email@example.com express your interest in our help.