Last update: 15 May 2020.
Please note that this blog has been superseded by a more recent post, which details our plans to re-open our office for business. This can be found here.
In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we have put in place the below action plan to minimise any disruption to our services, and limit the risk of spreading the virus.
This page is will be updated regularly in response to the latest advice from the Government; the latest advice from the Government can be found here.
The government has published a document containing guidance for landlords and tenants. The document, which addresses issues including payment of rent, house moves and maintenance, can be found here.
Please note that until further notice, we will be closed on Saturdays. We will also be closed on the early May Bank Holiday, Friday 8th of May. Urgent issues and emergencies can still be reported on our out of hours telephone number – 01225 690069.
Business Continuity Plan
How can we prevent spreading the virus?
- As of 24 March 2020, all Reside staff will work from home until further notice, and meetings in person will be avoided where possible
- Ensure staff have all read and are familiar with this Action Plan; regular team meetings will be held to discuss any potential hazards or concerns
- Staff to wash their hands in accordance with NHS guidelines throughout the day, and whenever they return to the office from an appointment
- Staff will not share phones
- Office door handles, handrails, phones, keyboards and other surfaces to be wiped down regularly with alcohol wipes
- It is Reside policy not to shake hands with clients and to maintain at least 2 meter distance when possible
- Clear records will be kept of any clients who are vulnerable and / or self-isolating
- Staff will make reasonable checks with prospective and current tenants when scheduling viewings, and offer remote viewings if any party has relevant symptoms
- Ensure extensive cleaning takes place at tenanted properties in between tenancies
- Ask contractors to ensure engineers suffering from relevant symptoms are not sent to managed properties
Reside Staff Self-Isolating
What measures are in place to ensure minimal disruption to our services in the event of full or partial office closure?
- All Reside staff have remote access to emails, CRM software and shared folders
- Staff have work mobile phones, so can be contacted by colleagues and clients
- In the event of a full office closure, telephone calls to the Reside office will divert to the staff’s mobile handsets
- Landlords and tenants will receive regular email bulletins, informing them of the office status and any special measures that have been implemented
- Our Financial Controller and Managing Director can remotely run payments and send statements of account
How will Reside continue to operate services to landlords, if tenants or prospective tenants are self-isolating?
- If prospective tenants or tenants of currently available properties are self-isolating or vulnerable, property viewings cannot take place. Our lettings team has already recorded video property tours, which can be sent out to interested parties
- We will ensure compliance with Consumer Protection Regulations by providing to prospective tenants reasonable information about prior residents in relation to the infection and appropriate cleaning measures to take
- Routine property inspections will be suspended until further notice. If a specific concern is raised about a property, an inspection will be arranged unless the tenants are vulnerable or self-isolating. Once measures are relaxed, we will catch up on any delayed inspections.
- Essential property maintenance and mandatory safety testing will be carried out, unless access is refused by the tenant. Written records will be kept of any instances wherein a tenant has refused access to the property due to self-isolation.
- If a tenant advises Reside that they are facing a loss of income due to the Coronavirus, resulting in lack of funds to pay rent, we will notify the landlord immediately and discuss next steps. If the landlord’s mortgage lender requires proof of sickness, we will ask the tenant to supply a copy of their medical certificate.
- We will keep tenants informed of government support available to them, so that they can continue to make rent payments
- We will notify landlords by email of any temporary changes to our standard services and business terms.
- We have temporarily suspended our Guaranteed Payday service until further notice. Whilst we wish to offer landlords the reassurance that this will be reintroduced as soon as possible, the service was not designed or built to endure such an unprecedented scenario.