August 6, 2021
On Aug. 6, the Montgomery County Council approved a new Board of Health regulation to reinstate indoor masking when Montgomery County is an area of substantial COVID-19 transmission as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The mask mandate went into effect on Aug. 7 because according to CDC data and as reported by Montgomery County's Public Health Officer Dr. Travis Gayles, Montgomery County is currently in the substantial transmission category.
August 3, 2021
Mayor Muriel Bowser implemented a mask mandate that went into effect on Saturday, Aug. 1. Masks are again required indoors in the District, regardless of vaccination status for everyone older than 2 years old. Please note that some D.C. businesses are requiring proof of vaccination status in order to be admitted. Read the Mayor's order on masks.
May 18, 2021
Starting this coming Friday, May 21 in Washington, D.C., individuals who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear masks indoors, with some exceptions including public transportation, schools and childcare, correctional facilities, homeless shelters and healthcare settings. Capacity limits on businesses will also be lifted. Read the Mayor's Executive Order.
Montgomery County lifted the outdoor mask requirement on May 18, but masks continue to be required on public transportation, health care services, schools and childcare facilities. Businesses, restaurants and other venues are now allowed to operate at 75% capacity, with no outdoor capacity limits. See the full details.
May 3, 2021
On Saturday, the District of Columbia issued updated guidelines regarding vaccinations and rules for fully vaccinated individuals, mask-wearing and more. Details.
April 27, 2021
Based on increased COVID-19 vaccinations, Montgomery County has approved guidance for expanded reopenings. Face coverings and social distancing are still required. Details.
April 6, 2021
The District of Columbia:
Mayor Bowser announced last night via Twitter that on Monday, April 19, all D.C. residents 16 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. All essential workers in Phase 1C Tier 3 still become eligible on April 12. This includes individuals working in residential or commercial property management.
Governor Hogan announced all Maryland residents 16 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine at mass vaccination sites starting Tuesday, April 6. On April 12, the shot will be available at all pharmacies, doctors offices and other providers. Read more.
April 2, 2021
Any real estate licensee who currently is operating with an extended license (meaning their renewal/expiration date on their license has ALREADY passed) now has an expiration date of June 15, 2021 and will need to renew their license online starting in mid-April - April 17, 2021 - 60 days prior to the new expiration date of June 15. If you have a current real estate license that is about to expire (and the renewal/expiration date has not yet passed), you may renew online if you are within a 60-day window of your license renewal/expiration date.
March 31, 2021
Updated Maryland REALTORS® guidance: REALTORS®, support personnel, and other professions associated with the real estate industry will be eligible to be vaccinated in the Phase 2C category of COVID-19 vaccinations, opening April 13, 2021. Details.
March 22, 2021
Maryland and the District of Columbia have announced extensions to income tax filing deadlines. Maryland has extended their deadline until July 15, while D.C. has extended their deadline until May 17.
Earlier this month, Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot announced the extension of the state income tax filing deadline until July 15, 2021. No interest of penalties will be assessed if returns are filed and taxes owed are paid by the new deadline. The extension is due to recent and pending legislation that impacts 2020 tax filings and provide economic relief for taxpayers who suffered during the pandemic. Details.
The District of Columbia:
D.C. taxpayers now have until May 17 to file their 2020 income and franchise tax returns, in line with the revised federal timeline announced earlier this week. The D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue announced the automatic extension to file and pay — no application required — in a Friday afternoon blog post.
Taxpayers can still request a filing extension until Oct. 15 or Nov. 15, but they would need to make all required payments by May 17. The change announced Friday does not affect the deadline for estimated taxes, with the first-quarter payment still due by April 15.
March 18, 2021
Two important new updates came out in Maryland:
March 17, 2021
The Council granted Mayor Muriel Bowser authority to extend D.C.’s public health emergency over the coronavirus pandemic to May 20, 2021. The emergency was set to expire at the end of this month. Bowser first declared an emergency March 11, 2020. Eviction and utility shutoff bans were also extended. More information included here.
March 15, 2021
In today’s situational update from DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, she says that as of May 1 when phase 2 of COVID vaccinations begins, all DC residents 16 years and older who were not included in previous phases will become eligible.
March 12, 2021
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan's updated COVID-19 guidance was effective March 12 at 5 p.m. Note that Maryland’s suspension of license and permitting expirations will end on June 30, 2021, not including the 30-day grace period following. For more details, see this document from Maryland REALTORS®.
March 3, 2021
Important update to DC COVID-19 vaccination process
Starting next week, the District of Columbia is switching over to a new vaccination registration system, where residents will need to pre-register for a vaccine appointment when they become eligible. Once an individual becomes eligible, they will receive a phone call, email and/or text message about their opportunity to make a vaccination appointment. Read Mayor Muriel Bowser's release for a complete understanding as to how this affects DC residents.
February 13, 2021
Updated guidance on COVID-19 vaccine for REALTORS®
Maryland REALTORS® has issued updated guidance on vaccine distribution for REALTORS® across the State of Maryland. REALTORS® were deemed “essential” workers in March 2020, and those who are considered high risk are being given priority in the vaccine rollout. According to Maryland REALTORS®, individuals “who are NOT 65+ years of age; NOT currently receiving hospital treatments; or NOT diagnosed as having a critical condition are expected to be included in the next phase of vaccinations, Phase 2. Phase 2 includes people ages 16-64 who are at increased risk of COVID-19 illness due to comorbidities, as well as essential workers in critical utilities and other sectors.”
Their guidance continues, “it is important to remember that obtaining a vaccine is still based on local vaccine supply. Depending upon your age and any underlying health conditions, you may already be in a higher or more favorable classification, eligible for vaccination.”
As the statement suggests, the situation and prioritization of REALTORS® in the vaccine rollout does vary by county and is subject to change based on availability. GCAAR is in the process of working with government officials in Montgomery County to obtain additional detail on where real estate professionals may fall in the vaccine rollout in this region. As it stands, the county has not updated its previous language on prioritization. Read Montgomery County’s guidance.
For the District of Columbia, the guidance document is outlined here.
As in Maryland, depending on your age and underlying health conditions, you may be in a higher or more favorable classification, eligible for vaccination in the District of Columbia. While the guidance does continue to specify professionals in “commercial and residential property management” for Phase 1C, Tier 3, we urge you to exercise caution as the interpretation may vary and be subject to change.
Remember, as vaccination supply becomes limited, certain real estate professionals in DC may also need to wait until Phase 2 when the vaccinations open to all individuals above the age of 16.
As a reminder, GCAAR, as a trade association, cannot directly obtain the vaccine to distribute. Pharmacies and healthcare providers participating in the Federal Retail Partnership with the CDC have access.
February 1, 2021
Important COVID-19 vaccination updates for REALTORS®
GCAAR and the District of Columbia Association of REALTORS® are working with state and city officials to ensure the real estate industry is protected and can continue during this pandemic. As the vaccination protocols progress, we are in constant contact with our governmental and industry partners to keep you informed about the latest updates.
Real estate professionals, deemed essential by previous pandemic-related health department and executive regulations, are slated for Phase 1C, Tier 3 vaccination. The state and city are currently progressing through Phase 1B.
September 29, 2020
Important update from Maryland REALTORS about license renewals
Maryland REALTORS® HIGHLY RECOMMENDS renewing your license as soon as possible, if you have completed all the necessary CE requirements. Please do not wait until the State of Emergency is lifted, as there will likely be a significant backlog if too many licensees all seek their renewals at the same time.
July 10, 2020
Maryland REALTORS® has recently updated its guidance for open houses.
Please visit the Maryland REALTORS® FAQ for the full guidance.
June 22, 2020
Open houses may now be held in the District of Columbia, with restrictions.
Phase Two of reopening began today in the District of Columbia. In her updated executive order, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser addresses open houses:
XII. PHASE TWO REAL ESTATE, CONSTRUCTION, AND DEVELOPMENT
Open houses may be held…provided that:
• There is no crowding within the building or at the site, such that all persons or groups can maintain social distance;
• There shall not be more than fifty (50) persons at a property indoors at any one time;
• Agents or hosts must make best efforts to capture names, time of arrival, and contact information of attendees, to assist in possible contact tracing.
Regarding the status of real estate offices during Phase Two: Businesses shall continue to have employees telework to the greatest extent consistent with their business operations.
This information is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as formal legal guidance by GCAAR members, including affiliate or secondary members, nor communicated as formal legal guidance to any members of the public.
As the COVID-19 situation continues to develop, GCAAR members, including affiliate and secondary members, and their clients are advised to verify all information with federal, state and local authorities, their brokers and/or their corporate counsel before making any decisions related to the contents of this email or their business practices.
GCAAR is a trade association at the service of its members and there is no attorney-client relationship intended or implied.
In 2020, you had many questions about how to conduct your business in this new, virtual world. We all knew this was NOT business as usual – it was doing business in the best way we could.
GCAAR's leaders answered those burning questions in this video series and provided ideas to help you continue to conduct business while being a good neighbor, despite the challenging circumstances. Take a look.