Coronavirus Updates from Realty Masters
Realty Masters Lobby is Closed to Walk Ins
As of March 17, 2020, Realty Masters has transitioned the rental office to appointment only and is no longer accepting walk-ins. We are 100% open for business as normal but ask that you give us a call to see if we can assist you remotely. For the safety and protection of our clients and staff, we are following the guidance passed down from the CDC and President Trump. Please contact us via phone, text, or email so we can assist you.
Coronavirus Updates from Realty Masters
Realty Masters has transitioned the rental office to appointment only and is no longer accepting walk-ins. We are 100% open for business as normal but ask that you give us a call to see if we can assist you remotely. For the safety and protection of our clients and staff, we are following the guidance passed down from the CDC and President Trump.
Coronavirus Relief Funds - Grant for past due rent and utilities
Escambia County Rent & Mortgage Assistance- Application is open September 1st through September 4th. You can apply online at www.myescambia.com/CARES
CARES Family Assistance Grant Program- Opens September 18th. Apply at https://myescambia.com/cares/cares-act-programs
Santa Rosa County- Application opens on September 9th. Find the application here: https://www.santarosa.fl.gov/823/CRF---RentalMortgage-Assistance.
Financial Resources for Tenants
Struggling with Bills? Here are some resources.
- Rent & Utility Assistance Payment Programs- Local non-profit and assistance groups that may be able to assist with rent and utility assistance.
- Call the United Way at 211 Northwest Florida for the most up to date information including rent assistance programs and potential stimulus information
- Florida Unemployment (called Reemployment Assistance) - We have been told that you may qualify for temporary reemployment assistance if your hours have been cut or if you have experienced a job loss. You can also call the hotline at 1-800-204-2418.
- CareerSource EscaRosa- CareerSource Escarosa is compiling a list of Pensacola area jobs daily. Check their website for a large list of local companies hiring.
- List of Local Companies Hiring- Provided by and updated by the Pensacola News Journal
- Budgeting- Here's some of the best information we've found on how to build and stick to a budget from Duke University.
Food Assistance & Resources
- Manna Food Pantry- Largest food pantry in the Pensacola area
- Feeding the Gulf Coast- Local food bank in Milton, Florida
- Summer BreakSpot- Search for Participating Free Meal Locations for kids and teens under the age of 18 to enjoy free meals while school is out.
- Pensacola Take Out & Delivery Options Amid COVID-19 Facebook Group- Who is open, deliverying, and offering takeout in the Pensacola area
- We (Still) Need to Eat- List of local restaurants offering take-out and delivery from InWeekly by area
Information from local Utility Companies
- ECUA announced that they will temporarily suspend discontinuing services for non-payment until further notice.
- Gulf Power announced that they will temporarily suspend disconnecting services for non-payment at least through the end of March. They have also provided a list of resources for those clients impacted by the COVID-19 disaster including bill payment assistance organizations.
Resources for Military
- Navy Marine Relief Corp Society- For active duty military and retired (retired must have at least 20 years of service) Call to apply at (850) 453-2300.
Coronavirus Updates in Pensacola Area
We will utilize this webpage to provide updates as to the Coronavirus Situation, both providing company wide information as well as local information for the Pensacola area.
Local News & Community Partners
Reliable Pensacola area Health COVID-19 Community Information
- Florida Department of Health COVID-19 Updates
- Map of Florida Confirmed Cases- Published by the Health Department
- Ascension Sacred Heart COVID-19 Information - Pre-screening and testing information
- Escambia County Coronavirus Information- Updates from Escambia County
- Center for Disease Control- The most comprehensive guidelines for COVID-19
- NARM Florida- National Alliance on Mental Illness with mental health information and a suicide prevention lifeline.
- Florida Department of Education- Latest guidance and news from FDOE
- Scholastic Learn at Home- Free cirriculum for children while school is out
- Escambia County School District
- Santa Rosa County School District
- Okaloosa County School District
Information for Business Owners
- Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan- Program available to small business owners in Florida experiencing economic damage
Resources for Home Owners
- NAR Resources- Extensive list of resources for homeowners
- U.S. Navy COVID-19 Updates- Updates from the U.S. Navy regarding suspension of travel and orders and other important news
Community Volunteer Opportunities
- COVID-19 Community Needs- List of volunteer opportunities in Northwest Florida
Coronavirus Message to our Clients
Hello from Realty Masters,
We’ve taken a lot of calls in the last few days from clients who are concerned about their physical, emotional, and financial well-being.
Here’s what we have learned:
Our tenants, owners, and vendors are scared they may not be able to pay their bills. We too, are scared that we may not be able to pay our bills. Please keep in mind that we are all in this together.
We’ve heard many stories from owners, tenants, and vendors about how COVID-19 has and is impacting their daily lives. Some of our clients are quarantined and some are worried they may not be able to purchase food and necessities due to items flying off shelves and reduced income. One of our clients is a small business owner who will likely have to shut the doors in the coming weeks. He may have to get a loan so that he can pay employees during this tough time, whether they work or not. While he is trying his best to help others, he is also worried about not being able to pay his mortgage because he counts on the rental income every month and if the tenant can’t pay, he doesn’t get paid. Several of our military clients have delayed orders and some are without their household goods. Many parents are worried about childcare and the recent school closures. Some of our tenants and owners work in the medical field and are overwhelmed, overworked, and potentially exposed to the virus every day.
While there is not documented widespread transmission in our area as of now, many of our owners have already been impacted in the cities they live in. The financial effects of this pandemic are broad and deep and prevalent among so many of our clients. While the government works to fight this pandemic and to offer some type of financial relief, we must work together during this time to ensure all parties are considered.
Here’s what we are doing in response to COVID-19:
-Our office is closed to walk-ins and we are allowing staff to work from home if/when it becomes necessary. We are 100% set up to work remotely as needed and can continue to be here for all of our clients. While certain methods of communication and service may change, we will be here for you all via phone, text, and email. Please do not visit the office unless you have made a scheduled appointment. We will not accept walk ins. Contact us and let us know what your needs are so we can assist you as efficiently as possible.
-We have enacted extra protocols to keep our staff and clients safe including additional protective measures such as cleaning and sanitization in every one of our processes.
-We are still renting houses. We cannot stop this essential service for our community and appreciate your understanding of this. In the midst of this chaos, there are families who have no other option and need a place to live.
-At this time, we are are no longer continuing occupied evaluations; however, we have introduced a self-evaluation option for tenants to complete these evaluations on their own.
-We will still be working with vendors daily and will be working hard to be sure you have basic necessities for your family. Our vendors will be taking extra precautions. Additionally, we will be limiting non-essential repairs at this time to avoid exposure to all parties.
The question on everyone’s mind is how they will be impacted financially by this pandemic.
President Trump has announced a stay on evictions and foreclosures until April 30th, which is great news for all of our clients. This bill does not excuse rents or mortgage payments and is in no way a directive not to pay rents and mortgages. Communication is more important now than ever. If you are unable to make a payment, you must communicate with your property manager so that an arrangement can be made between the landlord and the tenant. We will do our best to work with both parties to help in any way that we can. The majority of our landlords depend on your rent to pay the mortgage on the property. Therefore we must have communication to plan for the future. We need to be considerate of each other during this crisis and realize that all parties are impacted by this situation.
We have been told that Florida Unemployment, called Reemployment Assistance, will compensate for reduced hours, reduced pay, temporary furloughs and layoffs. Should you be significantly impacted already, we urge you to make a claim with unemployment now before demand increases.
There are many resources in the area that will help with financial assistance for rent and utility bills. We've compiled a list of resources available in Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties, should you need them now or in the future. You can find them on our website here: http://pensacolarealtymasters.com/?page=coronavirus We additional COVID-19 resources for tenants, owners, and vendors at this time and will update it as time goes on. Please bookmark it and check back in with us regularly. We have been informed that ECUA and Gulf Power will not be disconnecting services for non-payment during this time. Gulf Power has even provided payment assistance options. While utility companies are holding off on disconnecting services, it may impact establishment of new services. Additionally, credit card and cell phone companies are offering assistance during this time.
Please remember that we must show compassion and understanding to everyone we interact with. We are all feeling the effects of the current situation around the globe and please keep in mind that some may be suffering more than others. We are trying our best to encourage and help everyone and keep the hope that we will all see a better day soon. In the meantime, we need to work together to get through this. Please feel free to reach out to our team and let us know how we can assist you during this time. We are here for you, concerned about your physical and financial well-being, and want to be a resource for you during this time.
The Realty Masters Team