Following the announcement of the second nationwide COVID-19 lockdown - running from Thursday 5th November until Wednesday 2nd December - the Government has announced that tradespeople can continue to work in people's homes. To help you understand the guidance more clearly, Vanarama has put it all together.
Unlike the previous lockdown, the UK Government has said that tradespeople can carry on working in people's homes. Every task, from cleaning services to home improvements can continue to be carried out - providing homeowners & tradespeople adhere to social distancing rules & lockdown restrictions.
What Work Has The UK Government Confirmed Tradespeople Can Do?
The UK Government - specifically Housing Minister Robert Jenrick - has confirmed that during the lockdown the following can still happen:
- Tradespeople can still enter a customer's home to do work, providing they & the homeowners adhere to social distancing rules, e.g. staying 2 metres (6 feet) apart.
- More advice on staying safe while working in a home is contained in the section below called: How Can A Tradesperson Stay Safe While Working In A Home?
The Housing Minister also confirmed the following:
- Homeowners & renters can move home if they choose.
- Removal companies & estate agents have been told they too can continue to work.
Which Tradespeople Can Work During The Second Lockdown?
Any & all tradespeople in England, Scotland & Northern Ireland can work through the second lockdown - providing they follow the regional restrictions detailed below.
In Wales, however, tradespeople are restricted to emergency work only - e.g. emergency repairs to plumbing, heating & water supplies, or ensuring a currently-in-use work area is left in a safe state until after the lockdown restrictions are lifted.
See section below - What Are The Rules For Tradespeople Working In Homes By UK Country? - for more information on specific restrictions by UK Country.
What Are The Rules For Tradespeople Working In Homes By UK Country?
**England: **The current lockdown period runs from Thursday 5th November until Wednesday 3rd December & tradespeople are allowed to work in people's homes. However, work can only take place in a home that isn't showing signs of Coronavirus infection, & if the tradespeople & homeowners stay 2 metres (6 feet) apart. No work should be carried out in a home that is isolating or shielding someone - unless the work is to fix something safety-related, e.g. plumbing, heating or emergency repairs.
**Scotland: **Similar to England, tradespeople can continue to work in homes that aren't showing signs of Coronavirus infection or shielding someone, & tradespeople & homeowners must stay 2 metres apart. No work should be carried out in a home that is isolating - unless the work is to fix something safety-related, e.g. plumbing, heating or emergency repairs.
Wales: A lockdown has been in effect in Wales since the 23rd of October. At present, tradespeople are only allowed to work inside other people's homes if that work is urgent or to repair something that is a direct risk to the safety of the home's occupants. Any work that was started & left unfinished before the 23rd of October must not be completed after this date - unless that work is urgent or is unsafe to leave uncompleted. A tradesperson can, under those circumstances, re-enter a home to make sure the work area is safe & collect their own tools or materials.
**Northern Ireland: **The Northern-Irish Government put further restrictions in place on Friday 16th October 2020 that said households are no longer allowed to mix indoors. However, tradespeople can enter a person's home to carry out repairs, installations & make deliveries if required.
How Can A Tradesperson Stay Safe While Working In A Home?
Some practical ways to stay safe while working in someone's home are listed here:
- Adhere to social distancing regulations. NHS guidance recommends staying 2 metres (6 feet) away from any other people in the house you are working in. A crucial piece of advice is to ask the homeowners to stay away from the work area, if possible.
- Find out if any members of the household are classed as "clinically vulnerable" & avoid all contact (especially face-to-face contact) with them.
- If any members of your household are displaying symptoms of Coronavirus, you must not start work in another home.
- Bring protective products with you - masks, tissues, anti-bacterial wipes & refuse bags to dispose of your own waste off-site.
- Use your own drinking & eating utensils, & take them home with you at the end of each day.
- Keep physical contact with your customers to a minimum. E.g. avoid handshakes.
- Find out where you can wash your hands as soon as you enter a home - that way you can stay hygienic at all times.
- Keep windows & doors open if possible – this allows clean air to circulate throughout the home & work area.
- Crucially, if for any reason social distancing guidelines cannot be followed, you must establish whether the work you are carrying out can continue.
What Should A Tradesperson Do When Work Is Completed In A Home?
When work is completed, a tradesperson should do the following: Clean away all debris, materials & tools to ensure the work area is safe to enter.Disinfect door handles & surfaces they have been in contact with during their time in the home. Contact the homeowner in the following weeks to find out if the occupants or anyone they've been in contact with have developed any Coronavirus symptoms.
Where Can I Find A Full List Of New Covid-19 Restrictions?
The full list of new Covid-19 restrictions can be found on the Government website here.