By Brian Johnson
2021 President
Santa Barbara Association of Realtors

So many of us have been looking forward to June. School is out, kids have graduated, and vacation plans are being put into action. Summer is here! However, one big reason that we have all been looking forward to June is that the 15th is the date that California is set to officially reopen. In the meantime, we have seen more and more businesses take the necessary steps to safely operate without restrictions in place. One event that has been sorely missed by agents and clients alike has been the open house.

While COVID was raging through our communities our profession decided that the safest course of action was to eliminate open houses and to make showings by appointment only with safeguards in place. Those actions showed the seriousness of our professionals and kept a large portion of our economy moving forward during these tough times. Buyers and sellers could be confident that their agents recognized the severity of the situation and planned accordingly.

Now, our situation has improved enough that open houses are happening again, with certain guidance from state officials. During a normal showing, masks will not be required if everyone is fully vaccinated. However, masks will still be required during open houses because if even a single person comes in who is not fully vaccinated then it would mean everyone would have to wear a mask. There are exceptions due to age or other health conditions, so please check with your agent for the full details. That is the only restriction staying in place. There is no social distancing required and no pre-viewing checks with clients or occupants. There are also no capacity limits for open houses.

Additionally, on June 15 the color-coded systems from around the state will no longer be in effect. It is not known whether cities or local communities may still require restrictions that are more stringent but it is believed that communities will follow the state guidelines so that there is not conflicting information out there that will lead to confusion amongst the population. This is still a dynamic situation, so guidance could change. With all of that in mind, we are looking forward to seeing you at the next open house!

Brian Johnson is a California licensed real estate agent and the Managing Director of Radius Commercial Real Estate. Brian handles all types of commercial real estate transactions but has a special focus on multifamily investments. He can be reached at 805-879-9631 or


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