• Stimulus Package – Overview for REALTORS® (Also see Stimulus Overviewarticle in CVAR Connect)
• Real Estate Showings – *See below
Riverside County: The county website for residents to get an appointment at an upcoming COVID-19 vaccine clinic will soon change. This is in response to technical issues experienced as thousands of Riverside County residents attempted to make appointments for the vaccine. Check for updates underRUHS Public Health News.
San Bernardino County: An additional 2,881 cases were identified as of Monday, bringing the county’s total to 254,094. That’s equal to about 11% of the county population.
LA County: One in five people who test for COVID-19 are testing positive, and every eight minutes someone dies from this virus. Only health care workers and residents of skilled nursing facilities are receiving vaccinations in LA County. Those over 65 and essential workers are next, “possibly in early February.” Find out when it’s your turn to receive your COVID-19 vaccination by visiting VaccinateLACounty.com.
California: Monday, Jan. 18, California became the first state to record more than 3 million known coronavirus infections, according to Johns Hopkins University. The state had reported 2 million cases as of Dec. 24.
See more county news below under “By County”
Unemployment Backlog –As of last week, there were over 700,000 claims stuck in a logjam. The majority of unapproved claims in California are held up because of a glitch in claimant certification, that requires eligibility information to be provided every two weeks. The department is also contending with a major fraud scandal in which billions of dollars in payments were sent to phony accounts, including an estimated $400 million to prison inmates.
Eviction Extension – The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to extend its ban on evictions to Feb. 28. They will also add more protections for tenants. This comes as California lawmakers consider extending the statewide eviction ban through the end of 2021, withAssembly Bill 16. Supervisors also approved two motions to update the county’s rent relief programs, in the wake of the recent COVID-19 relief package passed by Congress that includes $25 billion in emergency rental assistance.
FHAMoratorium Extension– The FHA is extending the foreclosure and eviction moratorium for single family FHA-insured mortgages through Feb. 28, 2021. Also, the same deadline applies for single family borrowers with FHA-insured mortgages to request an initial COVID-19 forbearance from their mortgage servicer to defer or reduce their mortgage payments for up to six months, which can be extended for an additional six months. In addition, the FHA also extended multiple temporary provisions for lenders and servicers to allow them to continue doing FHA business despite social distancing considerations. (HUD)
Stimulus Package – The measure contains $25 billion for emergency rental assistance, and it extends the CARES Act’s eviction moratorium until Jan. 31. As stated above, LA County’s eviction moratorium has been extended to Feb. 28. For more stimulus details click here.
Essential REALTORS® –REALTORS® can continue to conduct business under the established restrictions (see *Showing Property below). Earlier this month the state stay-at-home order went into effect in the Southern California region as intensive care beds available in local hospitals fell below the designated 15%. State officials said Saturday only a few adult intensive care unit beds were available in the area.
Temporary Order Still in Place: All gatherings except for protests and religious services (must be held outdoors) continue to be banned, and nonessential businesses such as bars, breweries, wineries, museums, zoos, aquariums, card rooms and hair and nail salons should be closed. Also shut down: playgrounds, overnight campgrounds, all in-person dining at restaurants and cap occupancy in stores at 20%. Gov. Newsom said that decision was made to prevent overcrowding in big box stores, which could cause more transmission of the virus.
LA Stay-at-Home Order– All residents within the city of Los Angeles should remain in their homes and follow the city’s “safer-at-home” order, which mirrors guidance from L.A. County, according to the mayor’s office. A public order posted on the mayor’s website details many of the restrictions, including a ban on some travel with a variety of exemptions. Exempt Businesses – Essential office-based businesses must limit indoor capacity to 25% of maximum occupancy. Professional services, such as legal, leasing and real estate transactions, payroll or accounting services, when necessary to assist in the permitting, inspection, construction, transfer and recording of ownership of housing, and when necessary to achieve compliance with legally mandated activities are permitted. (Real estate association staff are not considered essential, so CVAR staff will continue to be available via phone and e-mail, during regular business hours.)
*Showing Property Under Stay-at-Home Order – Housing units and real property may be shown, provided that appointments and other residential viewings occur virtually or, if a virtual viewing is not feasible, by appointment with no more than two visitors at a time residing within the same household or living unit and one individual showing the unit. However, such in-person visits are not permitted when a tenant occupant is still residing in the residence, unless the owner first obtains the tenant’s written consent.
Scam Alert – Be aware of a scam that involves a call or e-mail from someone posing as a DRE employee and asks you to wire money. The DRE will NEVER ask you to wire money. Any amount owed will always be payable to the Dept. of Real Estate, never an individual.
Up-to-date contact information: Make sure the DRE has your current info by logging into your eLicensing account. If you are not registered, you should use your Examinee ID number to create a free account now.
DRE License Deadline Extended – The deadline by which real estate license application and renewal fees need to be paid has been extended until June 30, 2021, as part of the Executive Order issued by Gov. Gavin Newsom, addressing a variety of COVID-related issues. Continuing education requirements for licensees are also extended through that date. The Executive Order also allows California residents 70 years of age or older to renew their drivers’ licenses by mail. Read the full text of N-83-20 here.
Los Angeles County: As stated above, health care workers and residents of skilled nursing facilities are receiving vaccinations in LA County. Find out when it’s your turn to receive your COVID-19 vaccination by visitingVaccinateLACounty.com.
If you test positive, you must isolate – details here.
Free COVID-19 testing is available to all Los Angeles County residents. If you have insurance, the provider may bill your insurance carrier for the cost of the test. By law, the insurance company may not charge you any co-pay, deductible, or any out-of-pocket expense for the test. Register for a test at a location near you using the interactive map or directory here.
For updated LA County virus news and protocols click here.
Riverside County: Riverside County did not provide updated coronavirus figures Monday because of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
High Demand: Officials did warn that supplies of the vaccine are low and demand is high, and that residents should not rely only on the county to provide shots. More than 700,000 people are eligible to receive the vaccine in the county, but it only got 114,000 doses of the vaccine.
Food Distribution: The food box distribution program will fund over 50,000 boxes for Riverside residents, distributed through local pantries, Parks and Rec facilities and schools. See the distribution times and learn MORE HERE. Other COVID News. For more Riverside County updates click here.
San Bernardino County: As of Monday, Jan. 18, an additional 2,881 cases were identified, bringing the county’s total to 254,094, about 11% of the county population. For the fourth day in a row, no new deaths from the virus were reported. A total of 1,560 people in the county have died of the virus. About 231,427 are considered recovered from the disease. For more county news, CLICK HERE.
Reopening Guidelines: Counties must remain at each tier for a minimum of 21 days. The state’s new website www.COVID19.ca.gov will track the metrics, show an interactive map and list business sectors open by each county.
• CA ShowingBest Practices Guidelines– The state’s guidance includes a prevention plan that real estate and rental agents must provide to clients, appraisers, inspectors, stagers, purchasing agents and contractors, and obtain their agreement (signature) to follow the plan prior to entering the property. The Industry Guidance document details physical distancing and cleaning/disinfecting practices REALTORS® must follow when showing properties as California enters Stage 2 of reopening.The updated best practices guidelines are now available on car.org and in zipForm®. We urge you to read these guidelines carefully and to implement them at all times when showing properties. Always defer to the rules governing your local area, as cities and counties may have more stringent restrictions on real estate activity.Click here for C.A.R. Best Practices pdf. See thechecklist for real estate here.
• Showing Property – Agents are required to post rules on properties – with pictograms(see above)– that must be agreed to as a condition of entry by all people viewing/entering the property.
• Latest Forms – C.A.R.’s RLA-CAA and PEAD:Listing Agreement Coronavirus Addendum or Amendment (RLA-CAA) is for sellers and listing agents to sign, and Property Viewing Advisory and Declaration (PEAD) is to be given to and signed by the seller, buyer, agents and anyone else who will be entering a property. These forms are now in zipForm®.