Coronavirus Pandemic: Property Managers are Considered Essential Services
As the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the lives of millions, landlords and property managers are stuck in a constant struggle to keep up with local, municipal, state and federal changes in regulation. We understand that as a landlord, you can feel overwhelmed with trying to follow the recent Coronavirus guidelines put in place and additionally worrying about your own bills and the welfare of you and your family.
In regards to the Coronavirus lock down and the shut down of non-essential businesses, this blog post was written to give you some tips on how landlords can go about your rental property business during these uncertain times since property management remains an essential service.
“Workers supporting the operations of commercial buildings that are critical to safety, security, and the continuance of essential activities, such as on-site property managers, building engineers, security staff, fire safety directors, janitorial personnel, and service technicians (e.g., mechanical, HVAC, plumbers, electricians, and elevator)”
The previous paragraph was taken from the Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers PDF on the Official Website of the Department of Homeland Security, under the “Commercial Facilities” section.
In California, under the Governor’s order, Residential Real Estate Services are also considered essential during the Coronavirus pandemic lockdown. Landlord and property management activities fall under this order. Please keep in mind that there may be additional restrictions to what is considered essential business activities under local, city or municipal orders. We recommend looking up your local city government website to verify any additional ordinance.
Remember: The most restrictive order is the one you should follow.
What Property Management Services Can I Perform?
Since these activities are considered essential, you are legally allowed to go about your daily activities which includes in-person interaction. It is very important to remember, although property management services are considered essential on federal and state level, some local ordinances may ban them altogether.
With that said, we don’t recommend you go on doing what you did before the Coronavirus pandemic began. You can still carry out the same activities with extra safety measures for you, your tenant and other maintenance personnel involved. Here is a list of recommendations.
Recommendations for Landlords and Property Managers
- You should provide hand sanitizer and face masks in high traffic areas.
- You should only schedule to make “essential” repairs. These repairs include any that constitute as habitability issues such as plumbing, electrical, sanitation, heating and general safety.
- Wear a mask and gloves (even if your local government does not require it) when having any person to person interactions.
- Try to implement “virtual tours” for the remainder of the pandemic.
- Only enter a rental unit after letting the tenant know of the dangers of having others enter the property. Acknowledging that none of the parties involved (tenant, maintenance crew or you) have, to the best of their knowledge, a COVID-19 related sickness to minimize any risk.
- No more than 2 people should be inside a rental unit at once. This includes move in/out inspections, maintenance issues or showing a potential tenant the rental unit. The others should wait outside.
- It’s a good idea to provide additional janitorial services to common areas.
- Post any local government recommendations in multiple languages in common areas to educate your tenants and personnel.
The most important thing to remember as property managers during these crazy times the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic has created is to stay safe. Your overall safety and that of your loved ones should be above everything else. Fast Evict Law Group is always here to assist landlords and property managers with any questions they may have. You can call us at 1-800-686-8686 or email us at intake@admin
At Fast Eviction Service, help on any of the issues discussed in this article is simply a click or phone call away. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office at (800) 686-8686 to discuss your questions for a free evaluation of your case.
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