Coronavirus (COVID-19) information
The safety and wellbeing of residents and staff has been our priority throughout the pandemic and the department continues to monitor the coronavirus situation closely. In line with government restrictions easing, disruption to housing services is now minimal, with services being delivered in a way which keeps our community, contractors and staff safe.
From Monday 4 October 2021, housing reception at Putney Bridge Road and the Western Area office will be open from 9am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday. Both receptions are operating on an appointment basis; the majority of matters will continue to be dealt with over the phone or online with face-to-face appointments arranged where this is not possible. Please do not attend either reception without an appointment unless you are facing a housing emergency such as being made homeless that day.
Please be assured that all Council buildings including reception areas continue to benefit from enhanced sanitisation, with other measures in place including Perspex screens and hand sanitiser which all visitors are encouraged to use upon entering and leaving. Wearing a mask is not a requirement but please continue to do so if you would prefer.
If anyone due to attend an appointment is showing symptoms of coronavirus or has been advised to self-isolate, they should contact the Council to advise that they will not be attending due to being in self-isolation.
Contact details for the housing teams.
Repairs and Maintenance
In line with Government guidance for tenants and landlords, the Department is able to carry out routine non-essential repairs as well as emergency repairs. In the majority of cases information needed to arrange a repair will be gathered online or over the phone; home visits by housing management staff will only occur where this is not possible and will be subject to additional precautions to ensure the safety of residents and staff.
Visits by contractors and council officers
Housing officers are continuing to resolve issues over the telephone or via email wherever possible to avoid the need for unnecessary visits. If issues do require a visit however, officers will undertake these with additional precautions in place including regular handwashing and social distancing measures.
If you are due to have a contractor or council officer visit and anyone in your household is showing symptoms of coronavirus or you are self-isolating due to a confirmed case of coronavirus, you must contact your area team as soon as possible to inform them.
All council staff will be requesting confirmation before entering anyone’s home that all members of the household are currently symptom-free and have not been advised to self-isolate.
Estate and block cleaning
Block and estate cleaning is continuing with cleaners paying particular attention to common parts of blocks such as door handles, push plates, call panels etc. ensuring that these are cleaned thoroughly regularly.
Joint Control Centre
The Council continues to operate its 24-hour emergency control which can be contacted on 020 8871 7490.
Social and private renters
The Government has published guidance for landlords and tenants who may be affected by current events. It explains social and private sector tenants’ rights and responsibilities during this period including important information on paying rent and evictions. It sets out measures relating to notices seeking possession as amended by the Coronavirus Act 2020:
- Court action on possession cases during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak; and
- Property access and health and safety obligations in the context of coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions
These guidance documents are available on GOV.UK.
New regulations came into force on Monday 11 January 2021, to coincide with the national lockdown. These protected most renters from eviction until 31 May 2021, although there were exceptional circumstances which allowed bailiffs to serve eviction notices including illegal occupation, antisocial behaviour and serious rent arrears. The ban on evictions ended on 31 May 2021. In addition, from 1 October 2021 the longer notice periods that had been introduced by the Coronavirus Act 2020 will no be longer in place, with notice periods reverting to their pre-COVID length.
Concerns about paying your bills
With some people facing reduced incomes or job loss as a result of the outbreak, the Council has confirmed it will be relaxing its normal rules on rent arrears and non-payment of Council Tax. Allowances will also be made for leaseholders who are struggling to pay their service charge bills. However, people are strongly encouraged to continue paying these bills if they are able to. Not only will this avoid them building up debt problems in the future, but the Council relies on this income to help fund the vital frontline services that Council residents rely on.
You must contact the rent collection service on 020 8871 8987 if you are concerned that you cannot maintain rent payments as a result of the outbreak.
Building safety guidance
Building safety remains a priority for Government and Local Authorities. In response to the current Coronavirus pandemic the Government has published updated building safety guidance which includes advice for the construction industry and revised guidance on ‘waking watches’ fire patrols.
These guidance documents are available on GOV.UK.
More information including what to do if you feel unwell
For up-to-date information on coronavirus and what you should do if you develop symptoms, visit the NHS website
Other useful sources of information:
- The latest information and advice from the Government.