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How restrictions will affect the real estate industry: State by State

June 29, 2021 9:00 am by Upside

In the wake of restrictions across Australia to contain the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and new limits on real estate activities such as open for inspections and auctions, Upside Realty has implemented strict new procedures to ensure that we can continue to provide industry-leading service to our buyers and vendors during this period.

Read more about:

  1. Selling your home during COVID-19
  2. In the media
  3. Tips to help those who are now working from home

Changes to real estate activity in New South Wales

Current as at 28th June 2021, and subject to change by the NSW Government

In support of the announcement by the NSW State Government to limit the spread of Covid, Upside is proactively working to adhere to the restrictions put in place by the NSW State Government so that together, we all play a part in helping control the spread of COVID-19. The below are in effect from until 11:59pm 9th July 2021.

Greater Sydney

The 'Stay at home orders' for Greater Sydney (including Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour) will mean that residents, or people whose usual place of work is in Greater Sydney must stay at home unless it is for an essential reason. For this reason:

No more public open for inspections For anyone buying or selling a home, open homes on the weekends have always been one of the most important parts of the process. In response to this, real estate agencies are making the most out of technology available to them in the form of virtual inspections and video home tours.

Only one buyer through a property at a time At the present time, one on one private buyer inspections are still allowed under the regulations provided by the federal government. New social distancing rules mean only single persons are allowed through a property at a time, by appointment. COVID-safe practices will be enforced at all times.

Property Appraisals for sale or rent We are still able to attend your property to conduct a property appraisal. Our agents are trained in giving COVID-safe property appraisals, and know to minimise contact points with you and your furniture as much as possible as we discuss your property. COVID-safe practices will be enforced at all times.

Video link auctions For vendors who choose to sell by auction, some real estate agencies are utilising digital auction platforms to continue to offer an alternative to private treaty, helping to live stream digital auctions as well as provide the facilities to bid online for registered buyers.

Rest of NSW (Regional)

The below advice is for people that are not affected by the above announcement and restrictions imposed on the areas of Greater Sydney, Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour.

Under NSW Public Health Orders, real estate agents must have a Covid-19 safety plan for auctions to protect the health of workers and buyers.

Property Inspections

  • Home inspections for buyers and renters are permitted across Regional NSW, but are subject to a density of maximum of one person per 4sqm, which includes children.
  • Masks will be mandatory at all inspections.
  • Covid Safe protocol including hand sanitisers and record keeping will be implemented by the real estate agents.
  • Covid safety signage will be displayed outside Open Homes.

Property Auctions

  • Live auctions can take place across the Regional NSW under the one person per 4sqm rule, which includes children.
  • At this time, we ask that please only interested bidders attend.
  • Masks are mandatory at auctions taking place indoors or where social distancing is not possible.
  • Covid safety signage will be displayed at auctions.

Other restrictions on home inspections and auctions in Australia

Some states remain open (if only partially), while the rules continue to move and vary state to state. Below is a link to the latest COVID restrictions for each state to get the most up to date rules specific to your location.

State by state home inspections and auction rules

State Inspection attendees Auction attendees More info
VIC 1 person/4sqm 1 person/4sqm CORONAVIRUS (VIC)
NSW (GREATER SYD) Private only Online only NSW GOV
NSW (REGIONAL) 1 person/4sqm 1 person/4sqm NSW GOV
QLD 1 person/4spm 1 person/4spm (/2sqm outdoors) QLD GOV
ACT Permitted 1 person/4spm (/2sqm outdoors) REIACT

UPDATE 29/6/2021 11:55AM: Queensland Premier has just announced parts of Queensland will go into a three-day lockdown from 6pm today. Local Government Areas: Townsville, Palm Island, Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan City, Moreton Bay, Redlands, Sunshine Coast, Noosa, Somerset, Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim and Gold Coast. We will update this with real estate restrictions upon further news - stay tuned!

State governments have maintained key health guidelines which Upside will be strictly following which include:

  • Ensure physical distancing of greater than 1.5m is maintained
  • Promote good hygiene on premises and at auctions including hand sanitiser
  • Use digital platforms where possible to discourage physical contact
  • Keep detailed contact records of people attending open homes and auctions
  • Ensure people with any symptoms of illness do not attend a property manage the number of people entering small spaces
  • Consider extended times for open house viewings and inspections
  • Use outdoor venues for auctions wherever possible
  • If auctions are held indoors, use large venues where physical distancing between household groups of one person per four square metres is possible.

Our response to COVID-19

Catherine Halloran
Upside agent Catherine Halloran conducts a virtual inspection in a Canberra apartment. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos
We’re proud to say that at Upside, we’ve focused on creating a digital world of operations for our remote agent workforce since day one. We have alternative measures in place so ensure that no matter the level of restrictions in your area, we can continue to help our vendors get their properties sold, and give our buyers the confidence to continue to purchase during this crisis, with many of the new changes having little impact on our day-to-day operations.

Selling during COVID-19

Virtual walkthrough
We now offer our vendors the option to carry out virtual open home tours for interested buyers

The health and safety of our agents and our clients is of utmost importance to us. This is a constantly evolving event, as such we will keep revising our processes and add in new provisions and procedures. As a company we have always been agile and worked to change around the needs of buyers and sellers.

Here are just some of the ways Upside will continue to operate in order to provide industry-leading service to our buyers and vendors during this crisis:

  • Remote property appraisals: Our agents are able to remotely ascertain the price range of the property by utilising video conferencing, detailed knowledge of the area and metric combining technology
  • Virtual meetings: Buyers and sellers have the option to meet with agents digitally through a video call
  • Our agents already use industry leading technology: Upside agents are equipped with NurtureCloud, an end-to-end custom software program that was developed over the last 3 years alongside Upside agents out in the field. In Feburary, Ray White announced it would be investing in this technology for it's own agents.
  • Remote agents: Since the start Upside never had brick-and-mortar offices (in fact, that’s how we keep our cost so low for our clients who are looking to sell their property), so our nation-wide agents have always worked from their own home office in your local area. The changing climate means whilst other businesses tackle the complexities of switching to working from home, Upside agents have always worked under these conditions, meaning their focus is on catering to the changing needs of buyers and sellers.

You can also find more information selling in the current climate here.

In the media

Upside is leading the industry charge on many fronts in this changing climate, as is evident in much of the media coverage we have received over the past weeks.

You can find our national features here.

Helpful Tips to get you through

At Upside, the remote office model is something we have always operated under. We have no brick and mortar office so our local agents work from home when they’re not meeting with their clients.

We’ve asked our agents (who are experts at working from home!) for their top tips on how to turn your home into your office to help you through - no matter what industry you’re in.

  1. Maintain regular work hours
  2. Create routine to start your day
  3. Manage your diary
  4. Have scheduled breaks
  5. Quality tech
  6. When you need to do life admin, do it and move on
  7. Keep a dedicated space
  8. Set boundaries with your family
  9. Over-communicate with your team
  10. Stay social
  11. Stay healthy - physically and mentally
  12. Do enjoy the perks
  13. End your day with a routine

You can read these tips in more detail here.

Worried about selling at this time? Upside is your safest choice. With remote appraisers, virtual open for inspections & meetings, digital contracts and agents that have always worked from home, there is no agency in a better position to look after you when selling in the current climate. Book your free, no obligation (and digital if you'd prefer) appraisal with us today.


Upside is an Australian-owned, full-service real estate agency with local real estate agents, low fixed fees and zero commission. Our standard is other agents’ ‘extras’, delivering vendors a complete agent managed service including a full appraisal, open home management, copywriting, photography, signage and advertising. It's the way real estate should be.

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