COVID-19 Guidance and Information


A message regarding COVID-19 from Fontaine Family Team

We still have sellers who need to sell and buyers who need to buy despite the COVID-19 pandemic. We are still open for business while taking precautions with our protocol for safety, smart marketing, virtual showings, Facebook live open houses, and more. We’re still here to help you if you need us and can respond to your calls 8am -8pm, 7 days a week. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your agent. If you're not currently working with an agent click here to contact us, and we will return your message as quickly as possible.




May 28, 2020

Updated Guidelines for Real Estate as an Essential Business 

Real Estate is an essential business, but in order to remain open we must adhere to the following guidelines. 

General Operations

  • In-person open houses are strongly discouraged.
  • Real estate agents should utilize electronic means to the fullest extent possible for the execution of all forms and legal documents.
  • Closings should be conducted using as many physical distancing practiced as possible.
  • Refer to the General Checklist on the DECD checklist webpage for more information on face covering, physical distancing and cleaning guidance.

Residential Real Estate - Occupied or Vacant

  • Real estate agents and buyers should selectively choose a few houses to "view" after reviewing virtual tours, if available, property disclosures, and any other property documentation.
  • Only principal parties to the transaction, e.g. any person signing the purchase and sale agreement, deed, and/or mortgage, will attend the walk-through with the real estate agent.
  • The real estate agent and principals will wear cloth face coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings during the walk-through.
  • The seller may house to require show coverings for all visitors to the property including agents, principals, inspectors and appraisers.
  • Building inspectors will wear a cloth face covering and gloves when entering the properties. The real estate agent and principals may attend the building inspections wearing cloth face coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings.
  • Appraisers to use all efforts to not enter the homes. If it is necessary to enter the home, the appraiser will wear a cloth face covering and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings. Only the appraiser and the real estate agent are to be present.

Commercial Real Estate – Multi-unit properties of more than 4 units 

  • For occupied units, showings will only be done virtually by the listing agent. The listing agent should wear a cloth face covering, shoe coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings when entering the property. 
  • Appraisers are discouraged from entering occupied properties.
  • For occupied units, inspections and in-person appraisals when necessary should be completed by the building inspector and appraiser only. Building inspectors and appraisers should wear a cloth face covering, shoe coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings when entering occupied properties. 
  • For vacant units, the real estate agent and buyers should selectively choose a few units to "view" after reviewing virtual tours, if available, property disclosures, and any other property documentation. The real estate agent and principals may conduct a walk-through wearing cloth face coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand coverings.
  • For vacant units, the seller may choose to require that agents, principals, inspectors, and appraisers wear shoe coverings. 


Updated Guidelines for Showings/Inspections

Changes/clarifications include the following: 

  • Agents and principal parties to select a "few" houses to view in-person after reviewing virtual tours (if available), disclosures, and other property documentation 
  • Principal parties and real estate agents only are allowed at showings for residential and vacant multi-unit (> 4 units) properties
  • Real estate agents and principal parties are allowed at inspections for residential and vacant multi-unit (>4 units) properties
  • Face coverings and one-use disposable gloves or hand-coverings are required
  • Shoe coverings are at the seller’s discretion for residential and vacant commercial properties
  • Tenant-occupied multi-units (>4 units) continue to have limited access




May 1, 2020

Health & Safety Protocols for Home Showings

The health and safety of our clients and agents is priority #1! Here's the protocols we're taking to ensure safe home showings.

Real Estate Health and Safety Protocols for Home Showings




April 25, 2020

Matterport 3D Virtual Home Viewing

Now offering our clients the newest technology in online home viewing!

3D VIRTUAL HOME VIEWING SAMPLE

When you choose The Fontaine Homeselling System you will stand out from the competition! Fontaine offers all sellers the marketing tool of an immersive 3D experience with new 4K definition that's not possible with still photos or 360 tours. It feels like you're walking through the home in person right from the comfort of your own couch!

  • Easy Navigation in desktop & mobile view
  • Dollhouse View
  • 3D Floor Plans
  • Virtual Staging available on vacant homes


Set your home apart and stand out!

Our team photographer will create a realistic digital virtual tour with our Matterport camera enabling homebuyers to explore and evaluate properties with ease from anywhere, anytime.

Is it time to sell? Pick up the phone and call right now for more information.




April 17, 2020

UPDATED Guidelines for Real Estate as an Essential Business 

Real Estate is an essential business, but in order to remain open we must adhere to the following guidelines. 

Commercial Real Estate – Multi-unit properties of more than 4 units 

  1. Showings will only be done virtually by the listing agent. 
  2. Listing agent to wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 
  3. Inspections will be completed by the building inspector only. 
  4. Building inspectors will wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 

Residential Real Estate

  1. Agents and buyers narrow down houses to a few to “View”.
  2. Real estate agent goes to the property and uses technology to “live stream” out to the buyer. Real estate agent to wear foot covering when entering the properties. 
  3. Buyer selects one house and then can do a walk thru with the approval of the seller. Buyer and Real Estate Agent wear cloth face covering, foot coverings and gloves while doing walk thru. 
  4. Purchase and sale to be done electronically. 
  5. Inspections will be completed by the building inspector only. Building inspectors will wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 
  6. Appraisers use all efforts to not enter the home. If necessary, appraiser to wear cloth face covering, foot coverings and gloves.
  7. Closing to be done using as many social distancing practices as possible.




April 9, 2020

Can you sell your home during COVID-19?

YES! Even in uncertain times, not all sellers have the option of waiting to sell their home. If you are planning on listing your home for sale, consider the following information.

  • Real Estate in Maine is considered an Essential Business. Our agency is open and still conducting business in a safe manor offering virtual showings and virtual open houses.
  • Further restrictions on business and travel have been enacted, so it’s important to follow the instructions of your municipality which supersedes state mandates.
  • Virtual tours allow buyers to feel like they can step inside the home anytime of the day. Whenever possible, buyers should drive by property before scheduling a private virtual tour with your agent.
  • Screening individuals for exposure, limiting the number of people attending, social distancing. Safety preparations of the home include leaving the lights on and doors open during showings. 
  • When an offer is made on your home, sellers can now consider the borrower’s offer contingent upon financing. For example, some loans are waiving the appraisal requirement.
  • Building inspections are completed with the necessary investigations and tests independently. Findings can be reviewed together with the buyer via video chat or conducted live wile practicing social distancing.
  • Many title companies, law offices and banks have been able to offer creative ways to keep clients safe while facilitating the closing. Safety measures may include a mail in option, online signature option, drive through window option or a parking lot closing.

Can you sell your home during COVID-19?




April 7, 2020

Guidelines for Real Estate as an Essential Business 

Real Estate is an essential business, but in order to remain open we must adhere to the following guidelines. 

Commercial Real Estate – Multi-unit properties of more than 4 units 

  1. Showings will only be done virtually by the listing agent. 
  2. Listing agent to wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 
  3. Inspections will be completed by the building inspector only. 
  4. Building inspectors will wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 

Residential Real Estate

  1. Agents and buyers narrow down houses to a few to “View”.
  2. Real estate agent goes to the property and uses technology to “live stream” out to the buyer. Real estate agent to wear foot covering when entering the properties. 
  3. Buyer selects one house and then can do a walk thru with the approval of the seller. Buyer and Real Estate Agent wear foot covering and gloves while doing walk thru. 
  4. Purchase and sale to be done electronically. 
  5. Inspections will be completed by the building inspector only. Building inspectors will wear foot covering and gloves when entering the properties. 
  6. Appraisers use all efforts to not enter the home. If necessary, appraiser to wear foot covering and gloves.
  7. Closing to be done using as many social distancing practices as possible.




March 30, 2020

Our Continued Response to COVID-19

At Fontaine Family Team we continue to be mindful and proactive regarding our business practices and COVID-19. We remain committed to our clients, team, and community and are doing the following for the well-being, health and safety of all.

VIRTUAL SHOWINGS

  • We are now offering virtual showings to buyers and individuals who may have concerns about viewing a home in-person
  • This is a great option to stay in-line with suggested social distancing procedures
  • Agents can coordinate virtual showings via a video or FaceTime

WHEN PREPARING TO VIEW A HOME

  • Viewing groups are to be kept to decision makers only
  • If you or anyone in your family has felt unwell in the past 14 days, we ask that you hold off on in-person showings at this time
  • Concerned? Reach out to your agent before the showing to get a sense of what to expect and how you can do your part in keeping everyone healthy and safe.

WHEN VIEWING A HOME

  • Social distancing procedures will be in use
  • Hand sanitizer must be used upon entering and exiting a home
  • Hand washing after entering, if soap and paper towels are available
  • Remove shoes/use shoe coverings as instructed by agent/seller
  • Use gloves or disinfecting wipes when touching any surface
  • Minimize contact with surfaces, appliances, cabinets, etc.

ADDITIONAL IMPORTANT INFORMATION

  • Our No Open House Policy continues until further notice! Talk to your agent about our new virtual open house option or Facebook Live open house.
  • Our offices are open for business allowing agents and staff to have access to the office as needed.
  • Many paperwork and meeting procedures can be completed virtually. Talk to your agent about these options.


WE ARE HERE FOR YOU! Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.
207-784-3800 Auburn or 207-289-3830 Scarborough




March 26, 2020

Real Estate Deemed "Essential Business"

The Commissioner of Maine's Department of Economic and Community Development has made the determination that real estate services are "essential business" and can continue with the following restrictions in place:

  • In-person open houses are prohibited
  • During all interactions, CDC and the Executive Order guidelines for personal and work site safety should be followed, including: physical distancing, group size, and health and safety precautions
  • Gatherings of more than 10 persons are prohibited
  • The Governor and DECD Commissioner are urging remote work to the maximum extent practicable





March 19, 2020

Dear valued clients and customers,

We are open for business and have taken proactive measures to prevent the spread of the virus. 

We want you to know that we’ve been thinking about you, our employees, and our team, and everyone else in our family during these times regarding Covid-19. Your health is our top priority above everything. We’ve made some changes on how we operate with the goal of continuing to deliver the same world class service we’ve been known to offer, while reducing any public health risks.

Here’s what we are doing to help you.

We have been following guidelines set by the Maine CDC for recommended operations including more frequent cleaning and more attention to disinfecting and cleanliness for everyone’s safety, our clients, customers, staff and agents.

· Buyer agents and Buyers will apply hand sanitizer at entryway of home before showing.

· Safe distance will be maintained between each person.

· Agents ask home sellers to leave hand sanitizer at entrance for extra precaution.


You can count on the Fontaine Family Team to be understanding of your needs and to customize a plan that fits you personally.

Stay healthy,

Brenda Fontaine, Broker/Owner




Is your home currently on the market or are you considering selling?

Following the guidance of our local and national experts, we have suspended the practice of traditional open houses and showings until further notice. However, we remain especially committed to our clients to allow the ability to show your home to prospective buyers. We have implemented other solutions such as virtual (live streaming) open houses and video showings. When we have a buyer that wants to see your home in person, we have adopted the following best practices during these showings to ensure that your home remains as safe as possible:

  • We confirm that all visitors are not feeling sick or displaying signs of illness
  • We request that all visitors to remove shoes or wear booties
  • We request that all visitors wash hands with soap and water upon entering (or use hand sanitizer and/or gloves, if available)
  • We request that only decision-makers attend the showing
  • We request that visitors look, but not touch anything in the home. If a buyer requests cabinets, drawers or doors to be opened, agent will use disinfectant on any door knobs or cabinets that agent was requested to open
  • We request that all parties maintain the recommended social distance of 6 feet whenever possible
  • When we leave the house, we will leave you a note explaining how many visitors have been in the home and what precautions were taken

House showings and the Coronavirus in Maine

We still have sellers who need to sell and buyers who need to buy despite the COVID-19 pandemic. We are still open for business while taking precautions with our protocol for safety, smart marketing, virtual showings, Facebook live open houses, and more. We’re still here to help you if you need us and can respond to your calls 8am -8pm, 7 days a week. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your agent. If you're not currently working with an agent, click here to contact us, and we will return your message as quickly as possible.




The latest news and guidance affecting the real estate industry in Maine

The health, safety and welfare of each member of our team, their families and our clients is always our top priority. As a result, we've been closely monitoring the outbreak of COVID-19 in order to make the necessary decisions regarding our operations. It is an unprecedented situation, so as we navigate the next couple of weeks our response may change. The situation surrounding the COVID-19 coronavirus continues to evolve, so we find it imperative to take extra precautions to ensure the ongoing safety of our team and our clients.

Rest assured that we are working closely with our agents to ensure that we are able to conduct all real estate business with as little interruption in service as possible. We enacted new procedures and best practices for conducting showings, open houses, closings, and other in-person transactions. We're thankful for the technology we have available today, as much of our business can be done virtually with email, electronic signature programs and web conferencing.


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