Locked-down areas in metropolitan Melbourne and Ballarat will be able to resume real estate inspections by appointment from 11:59pm Friday, 17 September.
Premier Daniel Andrews has announced Victoria is the second state to see 70 per cent of the eligible population receive its first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Premier Andrews commended the “incredible effort” of the wider Victorian community, before revealing some new freedoms will take effect by the weekend, including restrictions easing on private home inspections.
“Victoria’s Chief Health Officer has recommended some modest easing to restrictions – expanding outdoor social interaction, exercise, the distance you can travel from home and more,” he said in a media statement.
“Real estate inspections will resume by appointment only.
“To ensure they’re COVIDSafe, only people from the same household can attend the inspection appointment and the real estate agent must stay outdoors during the inspection.”
What else has changed?
Other changes include the additional freedom of outdoor social interaction.
“This means one person may meet another person not from their household for a picnic, a walk, or another outdoor activity,” Premier Andrews said.
“Additionally, up to five adults (plus dependents) from two households will be able to gather outdoors if all adults present have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.”
However, Premier Andrews noted Melbourne residents would not be allowed to take off their masks to consume alcohol in public settings, such as during a picnic.
“While these are modest changes, today is a positive day and sign of things to come for Victorians once we get our double dose vaccination rates up.
“It’s also a signal: if you are vaccinated, you can get back to doing the things you love, sooner. If you aren’t vaccinated, then the safety of everyone else has to come first.”
Time for exercise and outdoor social interaction has increased to four hours a day.
“As part of further changes to exercise, two people will now be able to train outdoors with a personal trainer. Skate parks and outdoor communal exercise equipment will reopen,” Premier Andrews said.
In regional Victoria, gyms and outdoor and indoor pools (excluding spas, saunas and steam rooms) will reopen with limits and hydrotherapy and swimming lessons can occur. Tour buses can operate with up to 10 people.
However, people in the construction industry will be required to show proof of receiving at least one vaccination by 11:59pm Thursday, 23 September. Construction workers can access priority booking for vaccinations.
As of the morning of 17 September, Victoria recorded 510 new coronavirus cases and one death. Of those cases, 386 have an unknown source. There are 4697 active cases in the state, according to The Australian.