Home buyers will soon be able to bid in person again with outdoor property auctions set to recommence in mid-October, under the ACT's pathway out of lockdown.
Chief Minister Andrew Barr confirmed a number of changes to the current lockdown restrictions, which would be eased in stages starting from Friday.
The first changes to real estate will come into effect on October 15, when outdoor auctions can restart with a limit of 25 people or one person per four square metres, whichever is less.
On October 29, real estate services and auctions can then operate with 25 people across a venue before density limits apply.
These limits are one person per four square metres up to a maximum of 100 people indoors, and one person per two square metres up to a maximum of 150 people outdoors.
Real Estate Institute of the Australian Capital Territory (REIACT) CEO Michelle Tynan said she was pleased to see restrictions easing in the coming weeks.
"Outdoor auctions is a great place to start because we can actually put some good protocols in there around registered bidders only attending, that type of thing, to help ensure that COVID plans are met," she said.
Whether or not open homes will restart as part of the real estate services expected to ease on October 29 is still unclear, however discussions between REIACT and the government are continuing this week.
The roadmap follows recent easing of lockdown restrictions for home buyers and renters, allowing them to book private property inspections across the ACT.
Currently, property auctions can only take place online, which is still returning strong results for sellers.
Ms Tynan expects online auctions will continue to play an important role in the ACT property market, even after lockdown ends.
"I think it'll be a real hybrid, even last year we saw that people still preferred an online auction even though we didn't have the severe restrictions that we had this time," she said.
"In-room auctions became very, very popular as well because they are a controlled environment, you didn't get all the neighbours coming and those types of things.
"So, I think, generally going forward [online auctions] will remain a really definite part of the landscape in terms of how we sell property."
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