As we all know; the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be felt in both terms of individuals being tested positive and the very sad news of fatalities both here in the UK and worldwide.
We want to do whatever we can to help you to reduce the risk to both yourself, your clerks and clients. The health and safety of all is especially important at the moment and we have already issued our initial advice and guidance on how to minimise potential transference. This includes information around simple and sensible steps to take whilst visiting properties and when interacting with clients. See blog here
Interim property visits are a particular area of concern to both clerks and tenants as the close proximity of both parties whilst carrying out the report is inevitable.
Current Government and NHS advice is that you only need to stay away from public places (self-isolate) if advised to by the 111 online coronavirus service or a medical professional (correct at time of publishing - 9th March 2020)
So what should you do when conducting an interim report?
We feel that a sensible approach to the situation should be to politely ask, when booking or reconfirming the appointment with the tenant, if they have travelled to or recently returned from somewhere with the higher risk of coronavirus.
These places are:
- Hong Kong
- Myanmar (Burma)
- South Korea
- Tenerife – only the H10 Costa Adeje Palace Hotel
Explain to the tenant that you wish to respect their privacy, but have a duty of care to both them, yourself and your clerks to check (if booking on their behalf).
You may also deem it sensible to ask if anyone in the household is unwell and then make a decision as to whether to rearrange the appointment.
Again; you should respect the privacy of the tenant so it is essential to take a measured approach and be aware that they are in no way obliged to provide you with their medical history.
Remember; the tenant is likely to be just as concerned as you are about the current crisis. you are feeling unwell, consider whether it is advisable to attend the appointment. What are the risks involved in passing on your cold or illness? This is the tenants home and they will want to ensure they are not exposed unnecessarily.
Whilst at the property; we would advise that you use hand sanitiser before you enter to reassure the tenant that you are taking their well-being seriously. You could wear gloves if you prefer, but dispose of them carefully and do not leave them at the property.
Ask that the tenant leads the viewing by opening doors to rooms and areas. Remember that the interim property visit is a non-invasive report so you should already be respecting the tenants’ items and personal belongings.
Touch as little surfaces, handles and places where viruses could transfer as possible.
After the conclusion of the visit again use hand sanitiser before returning to your vehicle, home or office to minimise any transference.
Make measured & sensible decisions
A sensible and measured approach to your activities as an inventory clerk is the professional approach to take during this unprecedented crisis and InventoryBase Academy will continue to monitor and respond to the situation here in the UK and offer our support to all inventory professionals.
Please ensure you follow mainstream media and government advice daily as information and guidance is expected to be updated regularly as matters progress.
Government Advice here
NHS Direct advice here