Property Guidelines for COVID-19
Following the implementation of government restrictions on public inspections and on-site auctions, the property industry quickly made changes. It switched to digital inspections and online auctions. The benefits of digital inspections may be here to stay. While good quality photography provides an indication of how a property looks, a walk-through video or 3D tour will never be the same as being there. Buyers’ agents are in more in demand when buyers are unable to travel to inspect.
Open houses and auctions are not permissible under the Social Distancing guidelines in NSW. Buyers are still allowed to physically inspect a property in NSW. In Victoria, it is not possible if the residence is occupied. Online auctions and private appointments are still permitted and many of them are being successful. It is advised to avoid entering any property occupied by any person over the age of 65 or who otherwise may be at higher risk.
6 Month Rental Moratorium
The NSW Government is introducing an interim 60-day stop on landlords seeking to evict tenants due to rental arrears as a result of COVID-19. There are also restrictions on rental arrears evictions for those financially disadvantaged by COVID-19. More info here.
Resilient Byron Bay
Some people in the Northern Rivers region are hoping we are able to make improvements in a post-COVID-19 world. Dr. Jen Renou is coordinating Resilient Byron which is an initiative out of Southern Cross University. This new Not For Profit wants to create, support and nurture a Byron Shire that is regenerative for people and the natural environment. Go on the website and sign up to be informed about other groups and communities doing their best to keep some of the good things that may come out of this massive shakeup.
The NSW State Planning Department has been trying to introduce reform for some time. There is going to be an effort to push through these streamlining efforts as an effort to boost the economy post-COVID-19. Byron Shire Council is going to be under extreme pressure. No one could disagree that state planning is in a mess and needs a serious overhaul. But some of these changes may not be suitable for the Byron area. , This is an overview of the Urban Taskforce plan.
STHL Legislation Postponed
The Short Term Holiday Let Code of Conduct Legislation has been delayed due to COVID-19. The Regulation was to introduce a mandatory code of conduct with significant penalties for non-compliance. It was expected to become law this month (April). You can read the code here. BPS posted an opinion about this matter a few months ago and you can read it here.
Meditate with Thor
Local international actor Chris Hemsworth has released an app to help kids to learn to meditate. He says he tried it to help his own kids who were not easy to keep still. He tried these techniques and it seemed to work so he put it together in an app called Centr. Check it out here.
COVID Conspiracy Theories
Sometimes you need to take a stand in the sand. Good on Mandy Nolan for taking on the plethora of local/vocal conspiracy theorists. The vast majority of Australians have shown an admirable ability to unite against this challenging situation which I thought was admirable. I thought it was a good idea that the Olympics was replaced by a “Flatten the Curve” challenge. There are always going to be idiots on the far right and the far left. You can read one of Mandy’s pertinent pieces here. If you want a real hoot, have a look at Mullumbimby’s entry into the Shit Towns Of Australia Facebook site.