KCRAR COVID-19 Guidelines

KCRAR offers the following guidance in consultation with the various city, county and state governments issuing COVID-19 Ordinances throughout our service territory. We also urge all members to consult with their managing brokers and attorneys as they navigate this evolving emergency.

KCRAR’s top priority is the safety of members, our staff and the community at large. KCRAR also remains committed to driving REALTOR® business success and economic development of our communities. We believe that the ability to close on real estate property during this pandemic is essential. With the technology available today, we are confident REALTORS® can and will seek to provide essential real estate services. It is recommended that as much of this business as possible be done without in-person contact by utilizing available technologies.

Interaction with Clients:

Showings:

Virtual showings are encouraged. If virtual showings are not an option, the following guidelines should be followed:

  • Maintain six feet of distance between non-related people
  • Wear protective face mask indoors or where social distancing is not possible
  • Use of hand sanitizer encouraged upon entering and exiting the listing
  • Drive separately to showings; do not carpool
  • Limit the number of people inside the house to decision makers
  • Buyer agents wipe down all doorknobs, light switches etc. with a disinfectant wipe
  • Please be respectful of showing times, and when your scheduled appointment lapses, vacate the property, especially when the next agent and their party is waiting

Final Walk Through:

  • Virtual final walk throughs are encouraged.
  • If this is not possible, limiting the number of people in the home to decision makers during the walk through is advised.
  • Buyer agents wipe down all doorknobs, light switches etc. with a disinfectant wipe

Open Houses:

Live Stream Open Houses are highly recommended. These can be held at any time or day, from the property or from your home office sharing video and other presentation types of the property. These are extremely flexible. Please check out the information sources below for further information.

If, however, Live Stream Open Houses are not an option for the seller or buyer, traditional in-person open houses are allowed in Heartland MLS. A summary of minimum guidelines when holding an in-person open house are below.

  • Maintain six feet of distance between non-related people
  • Wear protective facemask indoors or where social distancing is not possible
  • Use of hand sanitizer encouraged upon entering and exiting the listing
  • Use booties to cover shoes
  • Turn on all lights and open closet/cabinet doors to keep touching to a minimum
  • Wipe doorknobs, light switches with disinfectant wipe often if touching of those is necessary
  • Limit the number of people inside the house to no more than 10 at a time.
  • Set up a staging area outside of the property and maintain six feet of separation between parties arriving for the open house.
  • Maintain a signup sheet with contact information for 30 days.
  • No overlapping groups of people should be in the house at the same time.
  • Please be respectful of showing times, and when your scheduled appointment lapses, vacate the property, especially when the next agent and their party is waiting.
  • An optional Hold Harmless Agreement is available on KCRAR.com, dotloop and FormRUs for use by listing brokerages/agents to alert sellers of the risk when others are entering their occupied home during the pandemic.  A buyer’s agent and/or their brokerage firm may want to use the form to alert prospective buyers of the risk of entering an occupied home at this time.  The form is not intended for both parties to sign; if representing the seller, only the seller(s) would sign.  If representing the buyer, only the buyer(s) sign. This universal form can be used as an addendum for delays resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Interaction with Professional Service Providers:

Property Inspections:

  • Home inspector be let in the property by the listing or buyer’s agent
  • Attendance at inspections should be limited to the inspector, buyer(s), buyer’s agent
  • Maintain 6 feet of distance between non-related people
  • Wear protective face mask indoors or where social distancing is not possible
  • Use of hand sanitizer encouraged upon entering and exiting the listing
  • Wipe doorknobs, light switches and surfaces with disinfectant wipe often if touching of those is necessary
  • Consultation after the inspection should be done by phone or online or outside the property to maintain social distancing

Property Appraisals:

  • It is recommended that when possible, the home appraiser enter the property individually
  • Appraiser wear protective face mask indoors
  • Consultation with the appraiser can be done outside the property, by phone or online

Property Closings:

  • Most title companies have implemented guidelines for closings, including limiting attendance at those appointments to only the buyer and closing representative. Please contact the title company for updates on their policies.

Marketing Properties:

Please follow the suggested guidelines below to ensure your business is conducted in a responsible, compassionate manner with the health and safety of yourself and your clients at heart.

Virtual Tours:

We encourage the use of an unbranded recorded showing of the property, provided by the seller or listing agent, that can be directly shared between the listing agent and the buyer’s agent. This encourages a one-on-one “virtual” interaction between the listing side and buying side. The buyer’s agent should preview the video before sharing with their potential buyer(s). If a recorded showing cannot be made, we encourage the use of the 99 photo maximum per listing feature in Matrix to capture all areas inside and outside of a property as well as the ability to fully describe each photo in the photo upload section of listing input. When using the recommended recorded showing option here are guidelines on what is and is not allowed.

What is required and allowed:

  • The video must be unbranded.
  • A comment should be included at the beginning of the showing agent information section in MLS stating, “Please contact listing agent for recorded showing of the property.”
  • A link to the recorded video, if available, is allowed in the Showing Agent Information field only.

What is not allowed:

  • The recorded virtual showing should not be marketed publicly through the MLS.
  • The virtual tour field is not allowed to be used to link to the recorded showing video.
  • The virtual tour field is included in IDX and syndication data feeds and the recorded video showing is not meant for all public view, but instead for the interaction between listing side and buying side of a potential transaction.
  • The link is not allowed in public remarks or additional remarks fields.
  • The recorded virtual showing should not be released directly to another buyer under an agency agreement with another REALTOR®. It should go to their REALTOR® directly.

Direct Marketing:

Examples of Acceptable Marketing/Communication:

  • Active client communications that are transaction related
  • Relationship marketing and communications such as Kansas City community information, positive news/uplifting messages, tips on getting your home ready for future “post pandemic” marketing, house maintenance topics, etc.
  • Solicited questions from your circle of influence or active clients
  • One-on-one communication with your circle of influence
  • Virtual Open Houses or Virtual Broker Opens/Tours
  • Advertising current listings

Examples of Unacceptable Marketing/Communication:

  • Images of gloves, masks or cleansers, as these are in short supply and are polarizing images
  • Real estate related memes/jokes in regard COVID-19, being quarantined, etc.
  • Proclamations that you are essential
  • Rule of thumb: market the property; not yourself

Visit the CDC’s website and the Kansas and Missouri Department of Health websites for the latest updates about the virus. Additional information about the impact of Coronavirus on the real estate industry can be found on the National Association of REALTORS’® website. KCRAR and HMLS are encouraged by everyone doing their parts in the real estate arena to help slow the spread of this illness. The fewer of who contract COVID-19, the more it can help reduce the risk to our more vulnerable populations.

Heartland MLS Policies and Procedures:

New emergency change to active status policy: To eliminate the need for in-person showings and support that only essential in-person showings occur, Heartland MLS is temporarily allowing listings to stay in Active status without requiring that they are available for in-person showings.

  • If sellers do not want to keep their property active during this Stay at Home period, you have two options for statuses available. Both options will not count Days on Market and will allow you to make your listing Active at any time before the Expiration Date of the listing agreement: Temporary Off Market for up to 4 weeks or Withdrawn statuses. Additionally, these listings will not show on IDX and other syndication websites while in these two statuses.
  • Property management and repair work, which generally involves maintaining sanitary and safety conditions is permissible.
  • Physical office location operations should follow the mandate of the reopening orders within that jurisdiction. It is recommended that those that do remain open limit on-site staff to only those necessary for essential daily operation and prohibit public visitors.