REIQ coronavirus fast facts
UPDATE 14/04/2021: UPDATE ON RESTRICTIONS
From 6 am AEST Thursday 15 April 2021, the restrictions put in place in response to the recent COVID-19 outbreak will be eased across the state.
Key Points from 6 am Thursday 15 April 2021:
- Face mask wearing is only mandatory in specific settings
- You will no longer be required to carry a mask at all times, but it is still recommended to wear a mask in any indoor or outdoor space where physical distancing is not possible
- Gatherings at private residences (homes and accommodation) are limited to 100 people in total
- There is no limit to the number of people that can gather in outdoor public spaces
- Businesses are able to operate with one person per 2 square metres
UPDATE 01/04/2021: UPDATE ON RESTRICTIONS
From 12 noon 1 April 2021, the Greater Brisbane lockdown will be lifted but some restrictions will remain in place for all of Queensland until Thursday 15 April 2021.
Key points from 12 noon 1 April 2021:
- You must carry a face mask at all times – at all indoor public spaces and outdoors when you cannot socially distance
- 30 people can gather at a home
More important steps to follow:
- Stay home if you are sick and encourage your staff to do the same
- Check in to all venues you visit and ensure to maintain contact tracing practices
- Maintain social distancing by keeping 1.5 metres away from others
- Wash your hands often
- Get tested if you have symptoms, no matter how mild
The REIQ has also updated its posters that can be displayed at real estate activities:
- Personal information collection entry poster
- Open homes and auctions poster
- Stop sign poster for potentially ill individuals
IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER – The information below was released prior to the lockdown announced on March 29 2021.
Understandably, the COVID-19 crisis is creating extreme uncertainty for REIQ members and the wider real estate profession, affecting how business should be done and unsettling individual staff. The REIQ remains focused on the health and safety of its members, staff and local communities across Queensland and are monitoring and responding to the situation as it evolves daily.
In this article, you will find comprehensive information regarding COVID-19 to assist real estate professionals in the management of what is understandably a very unpredictable situation at this time, as well as address many of the questions you may have.
WANT SPECIFIC, PROFESSION RELATED GUIDANCE? CLICK THE LINKS BELOW:
FAST FACTS: COVID-19
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus with symptoms including fever, cough and shortness of breath. Everyone who gets COVID-19 will experience it a little differently and symptoms will vary depending on each case. If you have a sudden onset of any COVID-19 symptoms, you should contact your local doctor or call 13HEALTH (13 43 25 84)
More information regarding COVID-19 can be found here.
What do I do if I develop symptoms?
If you develop symptoms within 14 days of arriving back in Australia or within 14 days of last contact with a confirmed case, you should arrange to see your doctor for urgent assessment.
Symptoms reported in identified cases of COVID-19 include but may not be limited to:
- Sore throat
- Shortness of breath
- Runny nose
- Vomiting or nausea
- Loss of smell and/or taste
- Muscle or joint pain
- Loss of appetite
You should telephone the surgery or hospital before you arrive and tell them your travel history or that you have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19. You must remain isolated either in your home or a health care setting until public health authorities inform you it is safe for you to return to your usual activities.
What is the risk of exposure to the coronavirus?
Older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions such as heart or lung disease or diabetes may be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness. QLD Health urges monitoring your health and practice social distancing. Social distancing means staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings and maintaining distance (at least 1.5 metres) from others whenever possible.
What preventative measures may be taken to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19?
QLD Health recommends individuals take the following measures to protect themselves and others:
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water aren’t available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser;
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands;
- Practice respiratory hygiene, covering your mouth and nose with a bent elbow or a tissue when you cough or sneeze, disposing of the tissue immediately;
- Practice social distancing by staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings and maintaining distance (at least 1.5 metres) from others whenever possible;
- Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick;
- Stay home if you have a fever, cough, shortness of breath or any other cold or flu-like symptoms;
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and,
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
FAST FACTS: RESTRICTIONS ON GATHERINGS
A: Effective from 8 March 2021, Queensland’s Chief Health Officer has maintained the rules surrounding open house inspections pursuant to Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction (No. 16), which can be viewed here. The restrictions still limit real estate-related activities inside a residential property to a maximum of 50 participants. Indoor gatherings may have no more than one person per 2 square metres. All social distancing and hygiene requirements remain in effect. Agents must keep up-to-date with the current Queensland Government’s Restrictions on Businesses, Activities and Undertakings Direction as these requirements are subject to change at any time.
The REIQ has developed a poster to be displayed outside open homes and auctions, which can be found here. Finally, the REIQ has developed a Stop Sign poster which advises potentially ill people to not enter the property. It can be accessed here.
Social distancing and good hygiene practices are still mandatory, and contact information must be kept about all guests and staff for contact tracing purposes for 56 days. This information includes name, address and mobile phone number. The REIQ has developed an Information Collection Notice and Information Collection Form to assist in this process.
Day-to-day real estate operations may be unaffected and member agencies are taking proactive steps to ensure activities conducted both in and out of their offices are safe for people to attend. QLD Health advises that you remind attendees (including staff) not to attend if they are feeling unwell or were overseas in the past 14 days, among other measures (for more information, see QLD Health’s FAQs here).
FAST FACTS: WHO’S AT HIGH HEALTH RISK FOR CONTRACTING COVID-19?
Those most at risk of serious infection include:
- People with compromised immune systems (such as people who have cancer);
- Elderly people;
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (as they have higher rates of chronic illness);
- People with chronic medical conditions;
- People in group residential settings; or
- People in detention facilities.
FAST FACTS: PROMOTING HYGIENE
Personal hygiene is an important protection against COVID-19 and all respiratory illnesses – this includes washing hands regularly. REIQ members may wish to consider including the promotion of hygiene protocols as part of their sales and marketing collateral for all upcoming meetings and private inspections. It is critical to communicate openly with both clients and customers about the status of your operations, what protective measures you’ve implemented and how they (as customers) will be protected when they visit your agency or a private inspection hosted by you. Promotions may also help incentivise clients and customers who may be reluctant to reconsider attending. In addition, you may wish to consider placing posters in your office for your staff as hygiene reminders in the workplace.
It is best practice to offer all attendees of an open home, routine inspections or visitors to your office hand sanitiser
For further support and advice relating to your individual circumstances, REIQ members can contact our Property Management Support Service or our Agency Advice Service via phone on 1300 697 347. Not a member? Join online here.
The REIQ recommends members to only consider the advice provided by government agencies and official health experts when considering and implementing any COVID-related workplace health and safety policies. In this toolkit, we will share best practice hygiene tips and answer frequently asked questions about COVID-19. The information in this guide is of a general nature only and is not a substitute for advice provided by a government agency or from a qualified medical professional and/or legal practitioner. Any references to third party products and services do not represent an endorsement of any kind from the REIQ and we recommend that you conduct your own inquiries to confirm their suitability to you and your compliance requirements. The information contained in this guide is based on advice from health authorities relevant at the time of writing and we recommend that agencies continue to monitor advice from Government on a regular basis given the fast evolving nature of this issue.