Agents and brokers are banned from doing business until further notice

Glens Falls, March 22, 2020 –Starting tonight at 8 pm, real estate agents and brokers have been designated non-essential businesses and are barred from performing real estate activities outside of their homes.

The executive order by Gov. Andrew Cuomo says real estate brokerages and many other businesses are not essential . 

Until further notice, real estate agents and brokers cannot hold open houses, show properties to buyers, meet with sellers to present listing proposals, or get together for other face-to-face meetings with clients and customers. The executive order allows most home-centered real estate activities. 

The executive order is unclear about activities related to properties currently under contract. The New York State Association of Realtors (NYSAR) says it is working with the governor’s office to get clarification. In the meantime, NYSAR is advising agents they should “not attend closings unless their presence is essential to the successful completion of the transaction.”

Also unclear is whether agents may accompany their buyers on “walk-through,” the final look at the residence before the property closes. The executive order does not specifically prohibit buyers from previewing their prospective home before closing without real estate agents and brokers present, and promises to keep the Southern Adirondack Board of Realtors and other boards informed as more details become available.

Civil fines and mandatory closures for businesses that don’t comply with the new mandate will be enforced beginning today (March 22) at 8 pm, Cuomo announced. He added that there will be no civil fines on individuals at this time for people who violate the policy, just businesses. 

“These provisions will be enforced,” he said. “These are not helpful hints. This is not if you really want to be a great citizen. These are legal provisions. They will be enforced. There will be a civil fine and mandatory closure for any business that is not in compliance. Again, your actions can affect my health. That’s where we are.”