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From June we started to resume our 'new normal' services with new safety measures in place to keep our people and our customers safe at all times.
When the country went into lockdown back in March, some parts of our service needed to be limited due to the guidelines – just like many others.
Since this happened, we have been working to develop a plan to bring our full service back to our customers as quickly, and more importantly, as safely as possible.
And, now the government have announced their plan to ease the lockdown guidelines, we are now ready to prepare to return to full service.
Starting 1 June we will begin to slowly return to a full service. As we gradually build up to a full service, customers who saw appointments cancelled due to lockdown will be contacted towards the end of June and their repairs will be prioritised in July. Working with our suppliers and contractors, our plans will need to be flexible to make sure that we can comply with the current government guidance to maintain safety. It will still take some time to get back up to full speed so please bear with us.
As part of our commitment to providing a safe service for you and our people, we have introduced a new safe system of working and new protocols.
For this to work, we need you to help us do this. We’ve set out some guidelines for customers who have appointments during this time to follow to allow us to keep everyone safe whilst we carry out the job.
As we begin the road to normality, we must make sure we do so in a safe a manner as possible. For this reason, we are rolling out our service in several stages to deliver this in a safe, fair and efficient way.
During lockdown we were working to support customers with emergency and essential repairs only. This was in line with the government guidance to only work if there was a safety issue in your home.
Now these guidelines are being eased, we can start slowly opening up our services, beginning with supporting those customers who saw repairs cancelled when lockdown began.
We expect it is going to take some time as we adapt to the new normal as we also wait for suppliers and materials to become readily available. We kindly ask that you bear with us as we slowly get back to a full service.
As we build up to a full service, our planned improvements work will continue to be postponed for the foreseeable future as we focus on supporting our repairs team.
Below is a timeline of when we aim to have our services back up and running.
All of these dates are subject to any changes that may come about from the current situation as well as the ability to get materials for specific jobs from our suppliers. However, we will do our utmost to get things back to normal as quickly and as safely as possible.
From 1 June, our 24/7 emergency repairs service will continue as normal. However, if we attend your home and, after making the repair safe, we need to return to complete the job, you no longer need to call us to book this work in. Your repair will be automatically picked up to complete once we return to working on routine repairs.
If you're unsure whether your repair is an emergency, click here see our repairs guidance here
Despite the lockdown, it has been our legal duty to continue to complete your annual gas service to make sure you are safe in your home. This service will continue to run as normal.
If your home is powered by any other fuel source, for example, oil, from 1 June we will begin to get in touch with you to arrange your service on a risk assessed basis.
Another change from 1 June will be that we will start to take appointments for urgent repairs that don’t hold an immediate safety issue. Things such as a partial loss of water supply, minor electrical faults and blocked sinks will begin to be seen to within the seven-day window.
If you're unsure whether your repair is deemed as urgent, click here see our repairs guidance here
The final change from 1 June is that our work on empty properties will begin to get back to full service. However, please bear with us as these works will take a little longer than our normal timeframe due to the strict safety protocols we’ve introduced.
By 22 June, you will begin to see us out and about even more as we, and our partner contractors, restart all existing external repairs. These will include things such as repairs to roofs, chimneys and outdoor brickwork.
We are getting in touch with anyone who had an internal routine repair appointment cancelled due to lockdown. This will be rebooked with appointments beginning to take place by mid- July.
This also includes anyone who received an emergency repair fix during lockdown who needs a follow-up appointment.
The reason for this date is for us to be able to get our engineers back trained in our new protocols and ways of working as well as allowing some time for our materials supply chain to be back up to speed.
Once any existing repairs have been booked in, we will then start taking all new routine repair bookings from 21 July.
If you're unsure whether your repair is deemed as routine, click here see our repairs guidance here
At this time, all planned improvement works, including kitchens and bathrooms, are still on hold whilst our repairs take priority. If you were due works to happen, we will be in touch with you by the end of August. If this changes, we will let you know as soon as we know.
At the moment, we won’t be carrying out any internal checks due to the current situation. There will be further letters and arrangements made for the other checks to happen when it is safe to do so.
With the new government guidance, we are now in a position to be able to begin offering support those who want to move home.
Working with our new protocols, we have plans in place to support people to move home keeping social distancing measures in place.
We’ll be in touch if we’ve already offered you a home or you’re waiting confirmation about a move.
Our sales team are also preparing to support people to start to move homes again following government guidance.
If you're looking to buy a home outright or by shared ownership, we are putting plans in place to restart viewings of our new homes.
We are open for business but as our team gets back up to full speed, we may take a little longer to respond to enquries so please bear with us at this time.
All viewings will be by appointment only to follow social distancing guidelines and allow for regular cleaning to take place.
If you are looking to complete a mutual exchange, we are continuing to go ahead with these as normal.
However, 'new normal' protocols will be in place throughout the process.
As with everything else, please bear with the team at this time as responses to enquiries may take a little longer than usual.