With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we’re in the middle of a crisis that none of us has ever experienced before. “Social distancing” has become the catchphrase of 2020. Health experts provide dire warnings about further spreading the disease that has (at the time of this writing) already taken more than 600 American lives. We’re encouraged to just stay home. But in doing so, some of those who are unable to work remotely are not working at all. Economists provide their warnings about what could happen if we don’t get back to work ASAP.
Impact on Central Florida
Florida is just beginning to experience the effects of increased positive cases of COVID-19. Understandably, after hearing so much from the national front, everyone in central Florida is concerned about how the pandemic will impact our communities and our families.
It’s easy to feel helpless in the midst of all this but connecting with others helps. The importance of looking out for one another should not be underestimated. While we’re all in unfamiliar territory, we encourage you to find ways to show care and compassion to one another.
Outreach is especially important for those who have been directly impacted or to anyone who may be feeling down. Please, check in with your friends and family via social media, video chat, phone, or text message. Nurturing these (virtual) connections will help us all sustain our emotional, physical, and mental health during any potential quarantines.
The Realty Medics Response to Crisis
As your dedicated property managers, The Realty Medics are here to help our tenants as best we can. This situation continues to evolve quickly, and we will be monitoring it closely. Our team is working hard to be there for you and your family during this challenging time. Above all, health and wellbeing are our top priorities, both for you and our staff.
During this time, we are still working our normal business hours, but our office doors are closed to the public. We highly encourage the use of our free online payment options. Also, please be mindful when submitting a maintenance request. In order to limit person-to-person contact, low-priority maintenance requests may be put on hold. Any high priority items will still be handled appropriately.
Reputable Resources for Information
Well-meaning residents have shared loads of conflicting information on social media and elsewhere. This can leave you feeling disoriented, frightened, angry, and confused. We encourage everyone to adhere to recommended guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and The World Health Organization (WHO). Locally, please consult Florida Health website for the latest information on statewide guidelines or mandates.
Financial Impact on Tenants
While at The Realty Medics we’re taking every measure possible to alleviate hardship, we also encourage you to reach out to resources available for those most impacted by the pandemic.
Below is a short list of respected organizations ready to help those in need. A more extensive list of resources is available on a webpage devoted to tenant support during the COVID-19 crisis: https://www.therealtymedics.com/covid19/.
National organizations providing support:
- 211: http://211.org/
- The Salvation Army: https://salvationarmyflorida.org/orlando/#assistance
- Catholic Charities: https://cflcc.org/
- USA.gov: https://www.usa.gov/unemployment
Anyone who has been (or believes they will be) financially impacted by the pandemic should reach out to these organizations immediately, as they have limited funds available.
In addition, the IRS has pushed back the filing date to July 15th. If you are expecting a refund, consider filing immediately to utilize your refund check during this time. Conversely, if you expect to owe money to the IRS this year, you may want to postpone filing taxes until closer the July 15th deadline.
For those who have been laid off, please visit the State of Florida’s unemployment website. Recently renamed the Reemployment Assistance Program, the program emphasizes job searches and placing individuals back into the workforce. However, this has no effect on anyone either receiving, or seeking to receive, unemployment benefits.
To all our fellow central Floridians, we’ll get through this difficult time. Please be safe and be well.