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Victorian Government announces COVID-19 'roadmap'

Market insights 2 weeks ago Read time: 7 minutes

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has outlined the 'roadmap' towards Victoria's 'COVID Normal' in a press conference on Sunday.

From 11.59pm on 13 September 2020, some restrictions will be eased across Victoria, subject to 'trigger points' being met and public health advice.

Metropolitan Melbourne has a specific reopening 'roadmap', relating to how many active COVID-19 cases are in the community, and public health advice. 

On Sunday 2nd August, Daniel Andrews announced that Victoria entered a State of Disaster, moving metropolitan Melbourne to Stage 4 restrictions. The rest of the state entered Stage 3 lockdown as of 11:59pm on Wednesday 5th August, in order to manage the state’s second wave of coronavirus outbreaks.

While the initial plan was to ease the restrictions to metropolitan Melbourne from 13 September, case numbers are still too high to allow for a meaningful reduction of restrictions by the original date.

Daniel Andrews announced in his press conference on Sunday 6 September, that the construction industry is included in the sectors that will be allowed to return to work with fewer restrictions, however real estate businesses in metro Melbourne must continue to function under the strict lockdown rules, until the next stage of the 'roadmap'. 

While this may prove challenging for conducting inspections and auctions, the off-the-plan and development industry is agile and forward-thinking, having developed virtual inspections and offered appointment-only display suite viewings for many years – a move that has proved to be extremely fortuitous under the current circumstances. 

Both the Real Estate Institute of Victoria (REIV) and the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) have committed to maintaining a constant line of communication with stakeholders within the property, development and real estate sector, with UDIA Victoria confirming that they will be working through the details of the changes with departmental staff and key decision-makers. 

The move to ease restrictions for construction demonstrates the government's acknowledgement of the crucial part the sector plays in the Victorian economy, which has been consistently championed by key industry stakeholders including UDIA Victoria. 

“We are continuing to talk with government about the fact that not all building sites are the same," explains UDIA Victoria CEO Danni Hunter. "The practical realities of maintaining social distancing can be achieved very differently in a land development, for example, when only a few workers are present at any given time.” 

For businesses outside of metro Melbourne, more restrictions will be eased as of 13 September, which allow for businesses including retail, dentistry and hairdressing to return to work if COVID-safe practices are implemented – signalling good news for the real estate industry in regional and rural Victoria. 
 

The Victorian Government has released the following 'roadmap' for metropolitan Melbourne:

 

Key points from 13 September

  • Curfew in place 9pm to 5am
  • Stay within 5km of your home except for permitted reasons such as work or education if these can not be done at home
  • Exercise or recreation: 2 people or a household can meet outdoors for two hours maximum
  • Visitors to the home: "Single person bubble" 1 nominated visitor if living alone/single parent (all children under 18)
  • Childcare and school are closed except for children of permitted workers
  • Shopping for essentials, 1 person per household, once a day
  • Restaurants and cafes open for takeaway and delivery only

When will Metro Melbourne move to the Second Step?

Metro Melbourne can move to the second step after 28 September AND when we reach an average daily case rate in metro Melbourne of 30 to 50 cases over a 14 day period with public health advice regarding transmission source.

CURRENT AFTER 28 SEPTEMBER AND:

  • we reach an average daily case rate in metro Melbourne of 30 to 50 cases over a 14 day period with public health advice regarding transmission source.

The time period must pass AND the number of cases must be low enough to move to the Second Step. This is a trigger point for public health review. 

Key points

  • Curfew in place 9pm to 5am
  • Only leave home for 4 reasons: school or work (if these can not be done from home), care or caregiving, to purchase essentials, exercise
  • Public gatherings: up to 5 people from a maximum of 2 households can meet outdoors for social interaction (infants under 12 months of age are not included in the cap)
  • Childcare is open to all children
  • Schools will see Prep to Grade 2, VCE/VCAL (Y10 – 12) and specialist schools return in Term 4.
  • Outdoor exercise with a personal trainer allowed
  • Restaurants and cafes open for takeaway and delivery only

When will Metro Melbourne move to the Third Step?

Subject to public health advice, the third step can start after 26 October when:

  • daily average number of cases in the last 14 days is less than 5 state-wide
  • there are less than 5 cases with an unknown source in the last 14 days (state-wide total)

CURRENT AFTER 26 OCTOBER AND:

  • Daily average number of cases in the last 14 days is less than 5 (state-wide) AND
  • Less than 5 cases with an unknown source in the last 14 days (state-wide total)

The time period must pass AND the number of cases must be low enough to move to the second step. This is a trigger point for public health review.

Key points

  • No restrictions on leaving home
  • Spend time with others outside where possible
  • Public gatherings: up to 10 people
  • Visitors allowed at home from 1 other household (up to 5 people)
  • Schools will see a potential staged return for onsite learning for Grade 3 to Year 10 subject to public health advice
  • Hospitality open for predominately outdoor seated service only
  • All retail open, except personal care (hairdressers open)

When will Metro Melbourne move to the Last Step?

Subject to public health advice, the Last Step can start after 23 November when: there are no new cases for 14 days (state-wide). 

CURRENT AFTER 23 NOVEMBER: 

  • There are no new cases for 14 days.

The time period must pass AND the number of cases must be low enough to move to the second step. This is a trigger point for public health review.

Key points

  • No restrictions on leaving home
  • Public gatherings: up to 50 people outdoors
  • Visitors in the home: up to 20 visitors at a time
  • Schools will see a potential staged return for onsite learning for Grade 3 to Year 10 subject to public health advice.
  • Hospitality open for seated service only
  • All retail open with safety measures
  • Phased return of organised contact sports resume for all ages. Limitations for spectators
  • Galleries, museums and other entertainment venues open with some restrictions

When will Metro Melbourne move to COVID Normal?

Subject to public health advice, when there are no new cases for 28 days and no active cases (state-wide) and no outbreaks of concern in other States and Territories

CURRENT WHEN: 

  • There are no new cases for 28 days and no active cases (state-wide) and no outbreaks of concern in other States and Territories.

This is a trigger point for public health review.

Key points

  • No restrictions on leaving home
  • No restrictions on public gatherings but organisers encouraged to keep records of attendees
  • No restrictions on visitors at home
  • Schools open for onsite learning with safety measures
  • Hospitality and retail all open
  • No limits on weddings or funerals but organisers encouraged to keep records of attendees
  • No restrictions on community sports or spectators
  • Galleries, museums and other entertainment venues open with safety measures and record-keeping

 

What does this mean for off-the-plan?

Virtual inspections and appointment-only inspections are relatively common for off-the-plan, click here to find off-the-plan apartments you can virtually inspect

Off-the-plan offers buyers the unique opportunity to put down a fraction of the final cost of their home initially, often with no additional money required for many months. This is a great way for buyers to secure a home now, and not have any financial obligations until the COVID-19 pandemic has passed. 
 

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