More than 24 hours after the government's announcement about the compulsory wearing of facemasks by shoppers in England, and there is still no clarity about whether this applies to visitors to estate agency branches.
The Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government has not responded to an email request for clarification from Estate Agent Today.
NAEA Propertymark says it, too, remains uncertain but Mark Hayward, chief executive, has told us: “At the moment, there is no official guidance from MHCLG on whether or not face coverings will be enforced in branches; however agents need to bear in mind that with the recent business rates holiday, they have in fact been treated in the same way as retail premises, where we know face coverings are mandatory.”
From July 24 shop workers will be encouraged to prompt customers to comply, although they will not be expected to enforce the rules.
Under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, anyone defying the rule will be open to a maximum fine of £100 – reduced to £50 if it is paid within 14 days.