As one of many employees currently working from home this week, this query was brought into sharp focus when my boiler chose this of all weeks to make some very strange sounds, then shut down completely.
We needed heating and hot water; equally we must heed government instruction on social distancing and not visiting other people or dwellings. So where does this leave homeowners, and in particular Landlords and Tenants, who have this sort of problem with their property?
The following is the latest government guidance:
“Work carried out in people’s homes, for example by tradespeople carrying out repairs and maintenance, can continue, provided that the tradesperson is well and has no symptoms.
“Again, it will be important to ensure that Public Health England guidelines, including maintaining a two-metre distance from any household occupants, are followed to ensure everyone’s safety.
“No work should be carried out in any household which is isolating or where an individual is being shielded, unless it is to remedy a direct risk to the safety of the household, such as emergency plumbing or repairs, and where the tradesperson is willing to do so. In such cases, Public Health England can provide advice to tradespeople and households.
“No work should be carried out by a tradesperson who has coronavirus symptoms, however mild.”
Taking this advice into account, essential repairs and maintenance, such as boiler repairs and leaks, can continue to go ahead on the understanding that all parties follow the guidelines provided by Public Health England.
Tradesmen carrying out non-essential work, like upgrading your property, building extensions etc, should not be carried out.
If you are renting your home your first course of action is speak to your landlord or managing agent, as they may have a trusted engineer or company who you can call directly.
- My gas engineer was very helpful. We discussed, at a distance, how he would undertake the job and we followed some very simple rules, in order to protect us both and avoid spreading the virus;
- · He confirmed his identity by leaving his ID card on my door step for me to look at whilst he stood a safe distance away. No shaking of hands during this visit.
- · We both confirmed to each other that we had not been self-isolating and had not had any symptoms of Covid-19.
- · The engineer wore gloves and a face mask at all times during the visit.
- · We all stayed in a separate room from the engineer throughout the job. Even the dogs!
- · Following completion of the job – I wiped down with anti bacterial wipes the area where the engineer was working, my door handle and bannister.
A simple process, a successful visit and we now have hot water and central heating. Job done.
Keep well, and stay safe!