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Housing Market Opens in Wales – Partially

Housing Market Opens in Wales – Partially

Hannah McCartan
22nd June 2020

Positive news for landlords and vendors as the Welsh Government announces a partial opening of the housing market here in Wales.

Under eased lockdown restrictions, viewings can take place, and tenancies and house sales that have been agreed but not yet completed can go ahead – though restrictions apply.

Many renters, landlords, and investors are excited their plans can now go ahead.

Rules for Viewings

The Welsh Government has provided the following conditions for physical viewings to take place:

  • Viewings can only take place at unoccupied properties
  • Physical/social distancing measures must be followed (including keeping 2m distance)
  • Viewers and agents should practice good hand hygiene. Viewers will also be asked not to touch anything inside.
  • Viewings must not include viewers from different households (so certainly no group or open viewings, and potentially separate viewings where two people are moving in together for the first time)
  • The new guidance maintains that virtual or video viewings should be conducted if and where possible.

No viewings are to take place at all where a property is occupied, even if the occupier leaves/steps outside for the duration of the viewing.

Where physical viewings can take place, they are likely to be time-restricted, and any discussion or negotiation about the property or a possibly tenancy will have to take place outside. Let’s hope it doesn’t rain all Summer!

Jump Starting Buy-to-Let Investment

Vendors can now market properties for sale, though the rules for viewings as above still apply. The guidance for sales specifically states that initial viewings should be carried out virtually.

Estate agents and surveyors are now allowed to visit occupied properties to carry out work involved in valuing and listing, provided they follow physical/social distancing rules. This means mortgages can be taken out, and the buy-to-let market can be jump started back to life!

Professional Cleaning

The Welsh Government are advising that properties should be empty for at least three days prior to someone moving in, or that they should be deep-cleaned.

Landlords, when you are reviewing your resources and budgeting for your properties, it might be wise to account for a thorough, professional deep clean as part of any renovation/tenancy start preparation work.

Providing an immaculately clean property for your tenants not only helps minimise the risk of COVID-19, but has the added bonus of showing your tenants that you care, and expect them to care, too – read more about this in my article here.

For landlords out there thinking about putting their properties on for short let or long let in Swansea, please get in touch – I’m open to having real, honest conversations with you about the merits of each option. I’d love to hear from you.

Source: Welsh Government

Related: Eviction Ban Extended by Further 2 Months / Buy-to-Let Deal of the Month: 9.5% Yield

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