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Colorado Real Estate Brokers: Protect Yourself (And Your Clients) From COVID-19 Risk

Colorado Real Estate Brokers: Protect Yourself (And Your Clients) From COVID-19 Risk

Colorado Real Estate Brokers: Protect Yourself (And Your Clients) From COVID-19 Risk

Effective March 26, 2020, the Governor of Colorado issued a Stay-at-Home Order effective through at least April 26, 2020 and perhaps beyond, due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus. The Order requires all individuals to stay at home whenever possible, except for exempt ‘Critical Businesses.’ At least some aspects of real estate brokerage services fall into the following Critical Business definition: “professional services, such as legal, title companies, or accounting services, real estate appraisals and transactions.” Keep in mind your local government might implement an order that is more restrictive than the state-wide order.

On April 9, 2020, the Colorado Division of Real Estate issued guidance for practicing real estate during a pandemic. The Division’s guidance specifies that “[e]lements that are fundamental to the real estate transaction are deemed essential to support market activity.” Such critical elements include appraisals, closings, inspections, and final walkthroughs. The guidance distinguishes critical real estate transaction elements from the non-critical ones by offering that “showing a property or conducting an open house in-person during the COVID-19 pandemic shall be avoided…”

At this time, our firm recommends adherence to the Colorado Division of Real Estate guidance. As brokers and property managers navigate their businesses in compliance with the Order and Division of Real Estate guidance, they should consider obtaining waivers and releases to protect themselves, their businesses, and their clients.

I’ve seen several COVID-19 risk reduction tools circulating in the marketplace. For instance, some online MLS listings now include COVID-19-related warnings. Other for-sale residences have COVID-19 notices posted on the front door. Several brokers are collecting ‘COVID-19 symptom-free’ certifications from clients and customers. While all of those options are better than ‘business as usual,’ a fully-executed simple disclosure and release is the benchmark when it comes to protecting broker, business, and clients.

Real Estate Broker Risk Reduction

Our firm has developed a COVID-19 Disclosure and Release Agreement document set for real estate brokers that covers the following scenarios:

  1. Disclosure to and release from seller clients intended to protect broker and brokerage firm.
  2. Disclosure to and release from buyer clients intended to protect broker and brokerage firm.
  3. Disclosure to and release from seller customers and related parties intended to protect broker, brokerage firm, and your buyers.
  4. Disclosure to and release from buyer customers and related parties intended to protect broker, brokerage firm, and your sellers.

Property Manager Risk Reduction

Our firm has also developed a COVID-19 Disclosure and Release Agreement document set for property managers that covers the following scenarios:

  1. Disclosure and release from the property owner for the benefit of the property manager.
  2. Disclosure and release from current and prospective tenants and related parties to protect the property manager and the property owner.

Additional Protections

Our firm has also developed COVID-19 clauses and products related to Listing Contracts, the Contract to Buy and Sell, and Colorado’s Statewide Stay-at-Home Order. If you are interested in one or more of these clauses or products please send me an inquiry with a brief description of your needs.

It goes without saying that this is an uncertain time that is rapidly developing on a daily basis. If you do purchase a COVID-19-related product, please contact me intermittently to ensure your version is up-to-date.

The post Colorado Real Estate Brokers: Protect Yourself (And Your Clients) From COVID-19 Risk appeared first on Colorado Attorneys.

This content was originally published here.

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