This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your GP/Physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition.
HELP ONE-HELP ALL. STAY ALERT. STAY SAFE. STAY HEALTHY. STAY HOME.
As a young Australian Veteran, with 15 years of service and 5 deployments to East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq. I would like to bring my life experience as a soldier into the real estate industry, now more so with COVID-19 on how to stay safe.
The following information is for guidance for Real Estate Agents, including Sellers and buyers.
Real estate Viewings COVID-19 information and guidelines:
This information has been sourced from many areas, and experts from around the world and I wish you all well in reading what I have found.
Being prepared and informed. At Bespoke Gold Coast, QLD, we hope this information helps. The following information is for you, your family and loved ones, it is extremely important that for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your GP/Physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition.
A. PROPERTY VIEWINGS
Due to the Covid-19 situation, Bespoke Gold Coast Realty will continue to offer private viewings and we are also happy to do walk through with virtual inspections via, Skype, Zoom, Messenger, WhatsApp etc…
To Qualify for a private inspection, you must:
- 1. Know the area and have driven past the location/property and confirm the location/property, including the style of the home is what you want and is suitable for your family.
- 2. As per current legislation, attend a private viewing with no more than 2 people only. (Please bring your own facemasks, sanitisers and gloves)
- 3. Provide via email written confirmation and evidence that you are a cash buyer or that you have finance approval from your bank or broker.
- 4. Confirm that you have not been in contact with anyone infected with the COVID-19 virus and especially have not travelled overseas in the past 30 days.
- 5. If you are a genuine buyer and do not have finance approval please still call us and we are still happy to put you in contact with banks or a brockerage company who can assist you in obtaining a competitive pre-approval from our number of lenders.
B. FROM REIQ
Understandably, the coronavirus 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 a comprehensive information regarding the coronavirus 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.
FAST FACTS: CORONAVIRUS
What is coronavirus?
COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus with symptoms including fever, cough and shortness of breath. Anyone experiencing emergency signs such as difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or bluish lips or face should immediately seek medical attention.
What is the risk of exposure to 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 2 metres) from others whenever possible.
What preventative measures may be taken to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading coronavirus?
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 2 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 flulike 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.
WANT SPECIFIC, PROFESSION RELATED GUIDANCE? CLICK THE LINKS BELOW:
Click here for FAQs for Property Managers
Click here for FAQs for Sales Agents
Click here for FAQs for Office Staff and Principals
• FAST FACTS: RESTRICTIONS ON GATHERINGS
Australia’s Federal Government has outlawed (fines of up to $55,000 apply) anyone from holding organised, non-essential public gatherings and forced the closure of various businesses and activities. These restrictions include housing auctions and open home inspections. This does not prevent online auctions from taking place, nor does it outlaw private inspections by appointment, two only at a time.
Day-to-day real estate operations may be unaffected, and member agencies are already 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 CORONAVIRUS?
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 coronavirus 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.
FAST FACTS: SELF-ASSESSMENT & REPORTING
If you have a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, seek medical assistance by calling your medical practitioner in advance and follow their advice on how to seek diagnosis and treatment. Please stay alert for revised guidelines on self-assessment and reporting from health professionals as well as from QLD Health.
Do you have any of the following symptoms of COVID-19?
The symptoms of coronavirus are similar to other colds and flus and include:
- Sore throat
- Difficulty breathing
While coronavirus is of high concern, it is important to remember that most people displaying these symptoms are likely suffering with a cold or other respiratory illness – not coronavirus.
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.
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 coronavirus. 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.
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.
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.
C. OUR HEALTH AND WELLNESS MISSION
With the following information this will help you navigate health, prevention of COVID-19 and planning tips that you, your family and loved ones can be prepared to combat, prevent and minimise the effects of spreading infectious diseases like the coronavirus (Covid-19). At Bespoke Gold Coast we are proud to provide a high level of information to all our Clients, customer service and commitment for preparedness for all our clients, their families and friends, this is our priority and Mission. Now, more than ever, we need to be more conscious of staying alert, staying safe and staying healthy, staying Home, Help One-Help All. Our goal is to keep you updated and informed by providing you with the latest information about the COVID-19 and to offer practical steps to take to keep you, your family, your friends and your communities alert, safe and healthy while minimising and stopping fear and panic
D. EXPERIENCE AND PROFESSIONALISM
With 15 years of Army experience, at Bespoke Gold Coast we have compiled this information, tools and survival tips to help you to prepare and live in a heightened world and make it a liveable and lovable place. We understand the importance of educating you on the most effective ways to plan and take care of yourself and loved ones. At Bespoke Gold Coast we strive to provide you insights on how to navigate the world we live in and how food storage and health plays a vital role to help in times of emergencies and disasters.
A. STAY ALERT
With information that can help you navigate health, prevention and planning tips you, your family and loved ones can stay alert to combat, prevent and minimise the effects of spreading COVID-19.
B. PRACTICE GOOD HYGIENE AND HEALTH HABITS
- Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser (with at least 60% to 95% alcohol).
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with an elbow sleeve or tissue.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth, as you can pick up the virus that way.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects like doorknobs and countertops. Evidence suggests that disinfectants with 62% to 71% ethanol, 0.5% hydrogen peroxide or 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (bleach) can "efficiently" inactivate coronaviruses within a minute, though it's not yet known how the new coronavirus reacts to these products.
- Get the flu shot if you haven't already! Although the seasonal flu vaccine cannot protect you from COVID-19 directly, you may be more likely to develop severe pneumonia if you contract both diseases simultaneously. By avoiding the flu, you may also avoid making a trip to the doctor in the middle of a COVID-19 epidemic, when health care workers may be overwhelmed with other patients.
C. BE PREPARED TO STAY HOME
- Talk with your employer about what the company's work-from-home and sick leave policy might be in the event of an outbreak.
- Schools may be closed in your area during an outbreak. Ask your child's school, local school board or health department about how much advance notice there might be preceding a closure. Plan for how you will handle child care if schools and day care centres are closed.
- Keep up with local announcements to find out about those cancellations.
- If you or someone in your household regularly takes prescription drugs, it may be wise to ask your health care and insurance providers about procuring an emergency supply.
- Make a plan for how to care for those at greater risk of serious illness and hospitalisation, such as those over 65 years old and those with pre-existing health conditions. Also have a backup plan for who will care for your dependents if you get sick, personally.
D. COVID-19 AND YOUR PETS
You can help yourself and your loved ones stay healthy by washing your hands often, especially during these key times when you are likely to get and spread germs:
- Before, a private home viewing, and after you leave (Please bring your own sanitiser, facemasks and gloves as a precaution).
- Before and after preparing food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
- After handling pet food or pet treats
- After touching garbage
Follow Five Steps to Wash Your Hands the Right Way
Washing your hands is easy, and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout an entire community—from your home and workplace to childcare facilities and hospitals.
Follow these five steps every time.
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them
F. SANITISERS CAN QUICKLY REDUCE THE NUMBER OF GERMS ON HANDS IN MANY SITUATIONS.
Now, more than ever, we need to be more conscious of staying alert, staying safe and staying healthy. Our goal is to keep you updated and informed by providing you with the latest information about the coronavirus and to offer practical steps to take to keep you, your family, your friends and your communities alert, safe and healthy while minimising fear and panic.
SELF HELP INFORMATION
At this time, there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 or that they might be a source of infection in the Australia. However if there are inspections at private inspections please ensure all pets are restrained.
A. SOCIAL DISTANCING
We have been advised to have a heightened sense of the decisions we make in public and at home in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The CDC recommendations are to keep six to ten feet away (1.8metres to 3 metres) from other people. Bottom line, our common sense and our desire to help defeat the spread of this virus has to take centre stage in all of our decisions. It is now the responsibility for everybody in the country to be proactive and think about how we can create environments that minimise close contact and interaction. Staying at home in isolation is probably the best way to keep apart from each other. That may be easier said than done, but here are some thoughts to help focus on changes in behaviour that will help slow the spread of the virus.
- Keep active in the confines of your home. Complete that long overdue task for the house. If working from home set up appropriate space and guidelines for a successful work at home atmosphere.
- Schedule get-togethers, dates, family visits and game nights but do so VIRTUALLY. Facetime, Facebook live, messenger, Skype, WhatsApp and also Zoom gatherings and any other video chat tools all create a great way to keep engaged with friends and loved ones.
- Stay indoors as much as possible, avoid situations where there are crowds and get your food and groceries delivered. If you can, minimise your trips out for medicine or to the grocery store.
- If needing to go out, observe the six-foot rule - around 2metres , bring your own hand sanitiser and use it all the time, don’t shake hands and try not to use paper money.
- Continue to observe good hygiene in terms of sneezing, coughing and handwashing. You can’t wash your hands enough these days.
- Read a good book. Or for that matter, read several good books. Take advantage of the time to catch up on reading for both enjoyment and learning.
- Parents go online with your kids. There are some great learning resources out there that are fun for both you and your children.
- Sign up for an online course. It’s a great time to learn and focus on those subjects, hobbies and/or languages you’ve always wanted to learn.
- Exercise at home. Watch YouTube videos for sessions you can do at home. Keeping fit physically is needed to maintain your sanity.
- Get ready to do a lot of television watching. Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, Prime Video and others are appreciative of the chance for your viewership.
At this time it’s all about decreasing the frequency of physical interactions we have. Stopping the spread of this virus requires focus and diligence. It will continue to spread but we can make a difference by being cognizant and alert to the changing of our ways so we can minimise the overall impact across the country.
B. TIPS ON WORKING FROM HOME
If you have to work from home be prepared.
Given our current circumstances with a spreading virus and the increasing trend for companies temporarily shifting workers to their homes to prevent the spread, our workforce is moving towards varying periods of remote work if not potentially longer impact durations. With that said, the following are some observations and tips that can make your remote experience productive while maintaining your household’s sanity.
Define your home mindset - It’s important to make sure you have the right mindset and that you’ve set up the right environment to be successful as a remote employee. Husbands, wives, significant others, kids and even pets are all on their existing lives schedules. Being at home will impact both their schedules as well as yours. Working from home does not mean you are available to parent, train, oversee or otherwise give your attention to other things. While there may be more flexibility built into your day, it’s critical to schedule as appropriate for any extra care that dependents may need so you can maintain a professional workspace.
Create your office space - You’ll need to be able to create a dedicated area in your home to set apart the tone of ‘this is my office”. This can be an office, guest room, bedroom, nook in the kitchen, or any space that will enable you to focus, sit comfortably, and host a permanent computer set up. This will be your office space and you’ll need to highlight the importance of this space. Key tips for building your home office space would be to have good lighting and comfortable seating. You’ll be spending a lot of time in this spot so it’s important to make sure you’re comfortable.
Overcommunicate - Communication is key in any environment and even more so when working from home, so it’s safe to say that a critical component for success in this role is over-communication. Get proactive about both the formal and informal ways you interact with your supervisors, co-workers, internal and external customers, and across your company. Since you’re no longer a few desks down from your co-workers or your manager, it’s your job to schedule check-in meetings with them on a weekly basis to connect on your goals, upcoming projects, daily tasks and both achievements and obstacles encountered.
Don’t be timid - Make sure to advocate for yourself and clearly state the progress you’ve made in the past week, which goals you’ve surpassed and which projects you’ve led. When you’re not in the office, it can be difficult for your manager and co-workers to keep your work top-of-mind, so don’t be afraid to bring important issues up on your own.
Technology Check - In our tech-oriented world of work (as well as social media!) we all recognise the importance of Wi-Fi and connectivity but there's more to a successful setup than an internet connection. Along with having the ability to take video calls without losing connection, you should review with your IT teams on what tools and tech you'll need to do your job well. From a wireless keyboard or mouse, to additional screens for your laptop, or a pair of noise-cancelling headphones so that you can take your work anywhere regardless of background noise levels, additional tools will certainly help facilitate the home office environment and increase your productivity.
Be creative - When you work from home, you need to find new ways to build community and rapport within the team as you may not walk past someone’s desk or run into them in the kitchen or at lunch. Those connections are still important so find a way to do these virtually. Ping someone a funny thought, an article, or just to check in on how they’re doing. Or simply pick up the phone and call them. You’d be surprised how great it is to hear a voice rather than send a text!
Last but certainly not least:
Separation of work and home - Working from home means work is always there! That’s even more reason to be sure to continue whatever protocol you follow in the morning from going out for a run, to taking a shower, to getting dressed for work or just grabbing a cup of coffee to start your day. And though you may receive emails and chat notifications at any hour (especially if you’re working in a different time zone than your co-workers), it’s important to develop a habit of setting a time when you officially “leave the office” at the end of your work day. Work is work but you need to separate work and home, at least mentally if not physically.
These times can be challenging but keeping a positive mindset in all that we encounter can provide success in living our lives, enjoying our lives and maintaining sanity in the midst of it all.
C. TOP 3 FAMILY PREPAREDNESS ITEMS
Preparing your family for the unknown can seem scary, but is easier than most think. Whether you are going through financial trouble or COVID-19 is spreading, food storage and emergency preparation is always a good idea! Check out our Top 3 favourite items for family and emergency preparedness kits!
Water Supply Kit 💧
- The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends storing 1 gallon (4litres) per day for each person (and each pet). It is recommended that a two week supply is accessible for the family at all times.
- A great way to store water that is cost effective is to use plastic bottles that are usually used for juices and soda.
Food Storage Kit 🍲😋
- Food Storage is not all pasta and powdered milk.
- In general, long term food storage items consist of:
- Wheat (white or red)
- White rice
- Rolled oats
- Pasta (macaroni or spaghetti)
- Legumes (black, pinto or white beans)
- Non fat dry milk
- Potato flakes
- Dried apple slices
- In addition to the long-term storage items, short term items you can add could include:
First Aid Kit 🚑 “Make your own COVID-19 First Aid Kit/s”, this is the opportunity to educate your kids and to promote basic First Aid and health & hygiene tips. First Aid kit prices starting from $5:50 from Super Cheap Auto, then the price goes up from there;
- Peanut Butter
- Granola/Sports Bars
- Canned Meats
- It's important to have a well-stocked first aid kit so you can handle problems that may arise. A basic first aid kit for family preparedness consists of:
- Gloves of all sizes, medium and Large are the best to have
- Antiseptic Foam or handwash, (you can make your own)
- Travel Leak Proof Bottles 100ml, for sanitiser refills
- Handwash, Soap and water is just as good as anything else
- Handwipes, Kleenex Wipes
- Triangular Bandages
- Safety Pins
- Sterile Gloves
- Sticky Tape
- Pain killers (child and adult Tylenol, Ibuprofen etc.)
- Distilled Water
- Alcohol- wipes
- Alcohol-free cleansing wipes
A. COVID-19 HEALTH KITS: MAKE YOUR OWN IS THE BEST GUIDANCE I CAN GIVE,
1. First Aid Kits from: Super Cheap Auto, $5:50 “Quickit” (Good for kids)
2. First Aid Kits from: Chempro, $9.95 (Good for Kids)
3. First Aid Kits with zip locks: Super Cheap Auto, $25,50 (Better Value for the home or car)
The following are added extras to add to your COVID-19 Health Kit
4. Gloves of all sizes, from Bunnings from $2.50 to $8.00
5. Antiseptic foam or hand wash, hard to find and can cost from $3.00 up to $40.00 (You can make your own sanitiser or just use soap and water is just as effective).
6. Travel leak proof 3 bottles 100ml, The Reject Shop $6.00
7. Hand wipes, Kleenex, Woolworths, Coles or anywhere you can find them
8. Sterile Gloves, these you will find in most First Aid Kits already.
9. Alcohol wipes/sachets, you can buy these from a Chemist/Pharmacists, $4.95 pack of 100
10. Alcohol-free cleansing wipes.
11. Glen20 spray, Woolworths, Coles or anywhere you can find them, (keep at home)
TBA. Due to supplies being overpriced, I cannot sell any Covid-19 Health/First aid-kits that I have made up myself, all I can suggest is make your own. My suppliers have sold out.
Please do not PANIC BUY, there is plenty to go around, remember the elderly, and please support our health care workers.