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Update on restrictions in Real Estate from OREA:

As of 12:01 a.m. today, several public health and workplace safety measures imposed earlier this month were lifted in Ontario.

Below is a summary of what the new rules mean for REALTORS® and real estate.

Impact on Real Estate Brokerages

The legal requirement to work from home except where necessary has been lifted by the province and capacity inside a real estate business is limited to the lesser of 50% capacity or the number of people that can maintain physical distancing of 2 metres.

There are additional requirements real estate brokerages must follow on screening, etc. To learn more visit OREA’s COVID Hub.

Real Estate Open Houses

Effective January 31st at 12:01 a.m., open houses are once again permitted. The new rule provides for two options for real estate registrants hosting open houses*:

  1. If REALTORS® choose NOT to require proof of vaccination from visitors entering an open house, then all parties must wear face masks and capacity must be limited to the number of members of the public that can maintain physical distancing of two metres. Physical distancing requirements apply to both the open house and any lines that may form outside of the property.
  2. If REALTORS® choose to require proof of vaccination status from visitors entering an open house, then the government’s restrictions for capacity limits and physical distancing no longer apply. All parties are still required to wear a mask. Ontario has created the Verify Ontario App  for businesses and REALTORS® to scan COVID-19 proof of vaccination at entry.
For more information, and to see a list of safe open house practices, visit OREA’s COVID Hub.
* Members should work with their sellers to determine which option meets the best interests of their clients.

Short-Term Rentals 

Short-term rentals are permitted provided that any indoor fitness centres or recreational facilities (i.e. indoor pools, communal steam rooms, saunas or indoor whirlpools, indoor fitness centres, or other indoor recreational facilities) do not exceed 50% capacity or 500 people (whichever is less).

Looking Ahead

The province expects to enter the next step of its reopening plan on February 21st at which time legal indoor and outdoor gathering limits are set to increase and indoor capacity restrictions are set to be eliminated where proof of vaccination is required.

Please be reminded that Ontario is still in the middle of a global pandemic. The public health situation is improving however, as experience has shown, things can change quickly.

With that in mind, OREA strongly encourages Members to take every effort to keep themselves and their clients safe while participating in an open house and other in-person activities. Visit the OREA COVID Hub for guidance on safe in-person showings. Given the rate of spread of the omicron variant, OREA continues to strongly encourage all Members to restrict in-person business to the greatest extent possible and use virtual tools to communicate with clients and carry-out business.

David Oikle,
OREA President

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