COVID-19 Q&A – For Residents

We appreciate that this is a really worrying time for all of our communities. We are working really hard to provide you with updates in this unprecedented situation.

What steps has Simple Life taken to protect residents?

  • During periods of lock down, no home visits will be taking place unless it is absolutely critical, a legal or compliance issue such as annual Gas Safety Check or due to an emergency
  • Anyone visiting a resident during this period will call before the visit to assess the health and safety risks
  • Any staff visiting a property will be carrying out routine hygiene checks before and after entering, including regular hand washing and regularly using anti-bacterial hand gel. Where available face masks and gloves will also be used. We would kindly ask that if you are due a visit you open all doors for our team, put lights on where appropriate and abide by the social distancing guidelines.
  • The majority of our office staff will be working remotely, minimalizing social contact. Our team will still be available over the phone and email
  • We are continually looking to put alternative processes in place to ensure our customers are safe, whilst also maintaining customer service, this include virtual viewings and property videos where possible

 

Can I still view a property?

If you were hoping to view one of our properties we are still trying to facilitate this in the best way possible. As limitations are lifted we will be able to hold virtual open days on Facebook, conduct viewings over FaceTime or by sending you a video. During lockdown periods, viewings will not be taking place, however we will be able to send you property photos, floorplans and pre-recorded videos where possible.

Can I still apply for a property?

You are still able to register your interest in a property off-plan and pay your holding deposit to reserve the plot you are interested in, this will then give you the peace of mind that your chosen plot is reserved for you. Our lettings team are available to take your call and to discuss all availability with you. Please be aware that move in dates for any new applications may be quite fluid due to delays on-site as a result of lock down period, therefore we are unlikely to start your application and referencing until business is back to usual. Our lettings team will be able to give you more information on individual developments and properties.

I have applied for a property, can I still move in?

As we are now in lockdown we are following government guidance in ensuring that we are focusing on any move in’s that are due imminently.  We have already contacted all of our customers to establish if they would still like to move and if so have successfully managed to bring their move in date forward to Friday 27th March. Due to government guidance we can no longer facilitate move in’s until we are out of lockdown. If you have not yet moved in we will be in regular contact with you to ensure you are being kept up to date as to when your new move in will be.

Ideally we would have liked to have been able to secure all existing move in dates, but guaranteeing that your property is fully complete and 100% safe for you to live in, is of upmost importance to us. In the meantime, please feel free to give our team a call for more specific updates on your property.

How do I collect my keys?

If you are moving in to a property and you need to collect your keys, we are putting measures in place to ensure that social distancing is practiced. This includes minimal staff and maintaining a safe distance at any key collection point, or where possible, you may be able to collect your keys from a designated key nest. A member of the lettings team will be in touch with you just before move in to confirm the instructions you need to follow to collect yours keys.

Can I still report maintenance?

You can still report maintenance, but at this time we will be attending to emergency repair works only. This is to protect our staff and contractors, and you as our customers. Health and safety must come first, so if we need to enter your property to fix an emergency repair, we will ask you a series of health and safety questions before our visit. Anyone visiting your property on behalf of Simple Life will be carrying out appropriate hygiene measures before their visit. We would encourage all residents to think about the urgency of their maintenance request before logging it, and we would recommend that all residents attempt to self-fix the issue if appropriate, using the how to videos featured on our You Tube channel.

 

Emergency works include:

  • Uninhabitable living conditions such as no heating or hot water
  • Uncontainable water leak
  • Gas leaks (however you should always call 0800 111 999 – National Gas Emergency Service first)
  • No water supply to the property
  • No other cooking facilities, no other bathing facilities, no other W/C facilities
  • Break-ins or fire and security risks

 

Emergency repair works will only address the emergency and make it safe, subsequent remedial works may follow.

Can I still contact the Simple Life Team?

Our staff our now working remotely, however the solutions in place have allowed us to maintain the same standard of service via phone or email. If you have anything you would like to discuss, please do call us as usual.

I have lost my job or my income has been reduced due to COVID-19, what do I do?

Whilst everyone will be in different situations we understand a few will be experiencing genuine financial hardship with a dramatic reduction in income as a result of COVID-19 and we ask that if you come into that category you contact us directly. We will be ready to take your call and we will work together to seek a solution for those in need. If however you have already made us aware of your change in circumstances there is no need to contact us again in this regard.

For those that are employed but are experiencing reduced income or threat of lay off you should speak to your employer about the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and being furloughed thus allowing your employer to claim 80% of your wage. This could apply to anyone who has been made redundant as a result of Covid-19 but worked for a company that is still viable. More details can be found in the attached link.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-guidance-for-employees

Guidance on socialising on-site

We would like to encourage our residents to follow all government guidelines in this current climate and practice social distancing. Please only leave your home for daily exercise, essential shopping items and for emergency situations only. This is paramount to everyone’s safety and to limiting the spread of the virus. Please follow the latest advice:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

I am worried about my elderly neighbour or my neighbours who are self-isolating

We would encourage all our residents to look out for one another at this difficult time. If you have any concerns for the welfare of any of your neighbours, then please let us know and we will do our best to check if they are ok and step in where appropriate.

I am due to move out, am I still able to?

If you are due to move out of your property during this period, you are still able to and you are comfortable that it is safe enough for you to do so, please communicate this with the team who can give you instructions on how to leave the keys with us.

I am due to move out but I am now unable to, can I stay?

If you are due to move out and you now wish to stay either more permanently or for a short time, please just give us a call. Please be reassured that you have your Simple Life home for as long as you need it. We are more than happy to talk to you about extending your contract or coming to a solution that works for both of us.