According to the Government’s three tier system of local COVID alert levels now in place, with more and more local lockdowns being announced, it looks as though the work from home situation is set to continue into 2021, at least.  This is why there is a trend among homeowners in England to improve their homes, to create a nicer environment, to both work in and spend more time in.

If you too have accepted the fact that you will be spending more time at home and would like to create a space that caters to this new lifestyle change we all have to adopt, then read on to find out how you can achieve your home improvement, legally and safely.

The three COVID alert levels of Medium, High and very High come with their own regulations, but the government has confirmed that tradespeople can still work inside homes. There are guidelines to follow such as social distancing and maintaining good hygiene within the work area to ensure the health and safety of all parties.

What if you are located in a High or Very High alert area?

Even if you are in a High or Very High alert area you can have tradespeople working within your home, as long as they adhere to the stipulated guidelines. The six-person limit on indoor group gatherings is for when meeting friends and family. As mentioned before tradespeople can continue working in and around homes and buildings, regardless of the COVID alert level.

Obviously, it is the responsibility of both parties to not allow work to continue if anyone in the household develops coronavirus symptoms.

How to hire a tradesperson safely?

Luckily, these days we can conduct initial meetings and discussions online, thereby minimising face-to-face contact as far as possible. You could also check on online platforms, that help connect construction workers with projects, quickly and conveniently You can also use the platform for protected payments. This is beneficial to both parties and tradespeople are willing to send quotes based on photos or video footage of the area that needs improvement or renovation. It is up to you to send as much detail as possible to reduce the risk of miscommunication and to receive an accurate quote.

As mentioned before, it is the responsibility of both parties to be upfront if either shows any coronavirus symptoms so that work can be put on hold immediately and rescheduled accordingly. Maintain constant online contact with the tradespeople so that both parties can be aware of the ongoing work and situation.

How do I stay safe while work is going on at home?

Across the UK many projects are being completed, with all parties following the safety advice that has been put in place to keep the construction industry safe and functioning. By adhering to the safety guidelines, you can keep safe while work is going on in your home. Speak to your construction company before hand about measures you can take to help work flow without undue contact and interruptions. Each day before work begins, you can open doors and windows to increase air circulation within the work area and minimise the need for everyone to touch door handles etc.

Throughout the time they are working in your home, be sure to maintain the two-metre required social distancing rule and at the end of the day, thoroughly disinfect high contact areas such as handrails and other surfaces used for work purposes.        You can also cover surfaces with polythene that can be safely removed once work is completed.

If you have any high-risk people in your home, such as people over 70 years, then inform the tradespeople so that you can work together to have extra safety measures in place. They may request you to have the work area cleared completely during the work period to speed up the process and reduce contact.

Have a designated handwashing area with soap for the tradespeople so that they can wash their hands diligently. Also provided sanitiser for their regular use. Usually, the workers themselves will also bring protective products such as gloves, tissues and sanitiser and plastic garbage bags to dispose of their rubbish. You could help them by providing biodegradable paper cups and plates for further convenience and easy disposal.

Basically, by ensuring a good circulation of air, maintaining social distancing requirements, adhering to safety guidelines such as handwashing and sanitising and disinfecting at the end of the work day and by being vigilant to any signs or symptoms of the virus, you can continue work on your home. This way you are not only gaining a beautiful home that is conducive to both work and relaxation, you will be helping tradespeople to continue working during this global pandemic.

Contact us today if you are looking for a convenient and safe home conversion during the current lockdown.

Author: Amol

Amol is an architectural designer and has worked on hundreds of residential projects in London since 2008.Having done his M.Arch from the Glasgow School of Arts he gained valuable experience in London working in the construction industry managing high-end residential projects, before founding Good Design and Build in 2015.You will meet him for initial consultation and work closely with him during all stages of your project