From this Saturday (21 August), it will no longer be permissible for property investors in Greater Sydney to inspect property in regional NSW.
As the Sydney lockdown has now expanded to encompass the whole of NSW, the state government has tightened up the list of reasons for which a Sydneysider can visit the regions.
Should someone from the Greater Sydney area wish to travel to regional NSW, they will require a permit to do so from Saturday.
According to a statement issued by the government, any Sydneysider who wishes to travel to regional NSW must have a permit from Service NSW.
A permit will only be issued to:
- authorised workers from LGAs of concern;
- any person inspecting real estate in the regions who “genuinely need a home to live in (no investment properties)”; and
- those travelling to their second home – but only allowed if they are using the home for work accommodation or if the home requires urgent maintenance and repairs (and, even then, only one person may travel there).
As things currently stand within Greater Sydney, property investors are able to schedule private property inspections, but only a single buyer and a single agent are allowed per appointment.
However concerns were raised around the “loophole” that allows Sydneysiders to leave the city to inspect properties, after a COVID-19 positive man travelled to Byron Bay and is believed to have caused an outbreak there.
“We’ve had to tighten the current public health orders because of the minority who exploited them,” said Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott.
Those who breach the new rules risk a $3,000 on-the-spot fine.
“The increased fines and heightened police presence are about ensuring people who are doing the wrong thing are caught and punished appropriately,” NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian explained.