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City of Charleston “Stay At Home” Ordinance

Updated: Oct 2, 2023

Guidance CTAR + CHS MLS

PLEASE NOTE: These guidelines will ONLY affect the City of Charleston

Last Update: March 26, 2020 | 7:08 pm

Please note that individual services and businesses may elect to close by their own choosing.

As of 6pm of March 26, real estate has been reclassified as an “essential service” under the City of Charleston’s “Stay at Home” ordinance, which went into effect on Thursday March 26, 2020.

“The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors® (CTAR) applauds Mayor Tecklenburg’s leadership in classifying real estate as an essential service during this crisis. This crucial decision will allow real estate to keep transacting and supporting our local economy. It allows Realtors® to safely assist their clients in obtaining shelter during a time when shelter has never been more important” said 2020 CTAR President Bobette Fisher.

“Realtors® are ethically bound to do what is best for their clients and the public, which is our primary focus as we continue business and push forward during this unprecedented time” said CTAR CEO Wil Riley. “Real estate transactions are an essential part of a healthy economy and we will work with our members to ensure they understand how to proceed during this unfamiliar time. Members will be tasked with strictly following CDC guidelines and required to adhere to all local, state and federal directives as they apply to the continuation of business” said Riley.

“We will adopt new best practices and protocols for continuing to work—increasing our use of technology for things like listing appointments, virtual showings, virtual open houses and other solutions that will allow us to safely conduct business during this time” said Fisher.

The Charleston-based CHS Regional MLS also relaxed guidelines for users earlier today, which allows for temporary rules changes and use of virtual tools to help users to serve their clients safely. In-person/onsite showings are no longer required during this time, and the CHS MLS Board voted to relax restrictions on virtual open houses and how that information is shared.

“Business is operating a bit differently than it did a few weeks ago, but the MLS leadership and staff is committed to supporting our members and keeping everyone safely operational through this unprecedented time” said 2020 CHS MLS President, Peter Derry.

“Real estate transactions are an essential part of a healthy economy and we will work to ensure that property owners preserve their right to buy and sell their property freely” said Riley.

The essential services classification will allow real estate to transact freely as licensees follow all guidelines and orders, refraining from in-person contact, utilizing virtual tools and strict adherence to the public health guidelines offered by the Center for Disease Control (CDC).

See the ordinance for a comprehensive list of Essential Services.

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