Today, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) has added language pertaining to real estate as an essential service to the official DCEO guidance on Essential Businesses and Operations FAQs.  

Are real estate open houses and showings permitted? According to DCEO, it depends.

  • Open houses are not permitted.
  • Showings of occupied rental properties are not permitted.
  • Showings of vacant or owner-occupied units are permitted if necessary and scheduled in advance (virtual showings are preferred) but limited to no more than 4 people.
  • Please refer to the DCEO Essential Business & Operations FAQ.

Visit Illinois REALTORS® COVID-19 webpage for up-to-date information and FAQs. 

Governor Pritzker’s earlier Executive Order had deemed real estate as an “essential service,” allowing for itto continue while the Order was in effect. All practitioners who continue to practice real estate while the Order is in effect are required to abide by the social distancing requirements also contained in the Order. 

The Governor’s Order does not speak to specific parts of real estate transactions, including open houses or showings. However, DCEO has interpreted the Order to limit some real estate activity. In particular, open houses are not allowed under any circumstances while the Order is in place. Also, showings for unoccupied or owner-occupied properties are limited to no more than four persons. The guidance from DCEO is consistent with the communication Illinois REALTORS® continues to provide to members regarding showings in that it strongly encourages brokers to use virtual showings as an alternative. 

NOTE:  DCEO’s guidance states that showings of occupied rental property are not permitted for the duration of the Governor’s Executive Order. 

Illinois REALTORS® has been informed that further guidance can be expected from IDFPR, with whowe have been working since the Governor’s first emergency proclamation in March. DCEO’s guidance today further confirms for REALTORS® that the practice of real estate during this time is not “business as usual.”

Please visit  Illinois REALTORS® COVID-19 webpage for the most up-to-date information on the best business practices to implement to stay safe and to protect your customers.