Coronavirus Update

This page will be updated regularly with our response to the Coronavirus situation. Last update: 14th May 2020 at 1.55pm


Thursday 14th May 2020


We have now confirmed our procedure for carrying out viewings on your property to minimise the risk of infection from COVID-19. We have fully embraced the Government and NAEA and ARLA Propertymark guidelines. In a couple of cases I have gone slightly further to ensure the absolute maximum level of safety for you and my staff.


When booking in a viewing we will:


  • Ask the viewer if they (or anybody in their household) has had any COVID-19 symptoms in the last 7 days.

  • Inform the viewer that only 2 people can attend the viewing and that they must be from the same household.

  • Request that the viewer wears a face covering.

  • Ask the viewer to stay outside the property and await our arrival.

  • Inform them that they are not allowed to touch any surfaces when inside the property.


Whilst conducting the viewing we will:


  • Ensure our member of staff is wearing a face covering and gloves. All gloves will be disposed of immediately after leaving the property.

  • Offer hand sanitise the viewers.

  • Ask the vendors to wait outside the property.

  • Ask vendors to ensure that all internal doors and significant cupboards (such as a boiler cupboards) are already open.

  • Remind viewers to not touch any surfaces. Ensure that any young children on the viewing hold their parent’s hand at all times and do not touch any surfaces either.

  • Conduct any discussions outside the property if possible.

  • Keep a 2m distance at all times.


I have also taken the decision that I will not open our offices for members of the public to visit at this stage. Our Mutley Plain office is not particularly large and I am not confident that we will be able to maintain the 2m distance at all times. I would therefore ask that, just for now, we limit our contact with you to telephone calls and email. If you would like to specifically meet with us we are happy to arrange an appointment and we can put all necessary precautions in place beforehand.


Please also remember that if you are uncomfortable with buyers coming into your home, at any point, there is absolutely no pressure to accept viewings. We are happy to delay viewers and work with you until the time is right.


As always, please let me know if I can be of any further help or support.


With best wishes


 


Ian


 


Lettings Update 14/5/2020


Jacqui and Jade have returned to the office today so we can ensure that our customers can move into their new homes. To say some of lovely customers are chomping at the bit may be a bit of an understatement! But we are thoroughly enjoying being back and catching up with our clients and customers. 

The lettings department fall into same category as sales and we are also waiting for further guidance from the Government on how we can safely conduct business to ensure the safety of our staff, clients, and customers.

As soon as we have our policies in place, we will be in a position to be able to commence viewings and meet landlords who may wish to use our services.

In the meantime, we welcome and are responding to telephone and email enquiries and we look forward to speaking with you.



Jacqui Courtier MARLA
Lettings Director



Wednesday 13th May 2020


Well…best made plans!!

Further to the guidance on Monday that estate agents are classed as non-essential retail and that we would not be allowed to open before the 1st June, at about 8pm last night the Government did a complete u-turn and included estate agents in the act that allowed certain industries to return to work today.

Needless to say I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night, but we are now back in the office and all sitting at least 2m apart! Predictably our phones are ringing off the hook and emails are flooding in. We have put into place our plans for safe working and we are now working to book in the 150 plus appointments from enquiries that were generated whilst we were in lockdown. This is naturally going to take some time, but we promise we will get to everybody. We also have a few colleagues that have not been able to return to work immediately so we are also working to mitigate the impact this will have on our business.

We understand that the Government will be issuing further guidance within a day or so on how to conduct viewings in a safe manner, we will obviously be following them closely.

Thank you for your patience over the past 2 months, we are delighted to be able to return to work but want to do so in a manner that is safe for everybody. Before arranging any viewings on a property we will contact the seller to confirm that they are happy to have us and potential purchasers in their home. If they are happy with this, we would not allow any more than 2 people (from the same household) to view at one time. More details will become available over the next day or so.

I will forward further information as it becomes available,

With best wishes

 

Ian Mitchell
Director

 

Covid-19 Update – 12th May 2020

Good afternoon everyone.

As you will know, we have been required to temporarily close our offices and it appears that this will remain so until at least June 1st 2020.

We are working remotely from our homes to answer your calls, emails and other enquiries whilst supervising our existing sales for our clients.

We are keen to return to work for valuations, viewings and new instructions, but will only do so when the Government permits and industry advice confirms it is safe to do so. We are already taking steps to ensure that everything will be in place to provide a safe working environment for our staff and clients.

In the meantime, please keep those calls and emails coming in.

With best wishes

 

Ian Mitchell
Director



Wednesday 29th April 2020 at 4.30pm

An Update from the Sales Department


As the period of Government restrictions continues, there is still some confusion about what is happening in the housing market. I have prepared the following FAQs to help.


Are you still open?
The restrictions have required us to temporarily close both of our offices, so it is not possible to visit us. However, we are still working from our homes, so you can contact us on our usual telephone number (01752 514500) or by email (info@plymouthhomes.co.uk).


Can I still view properties?
We are not allowed to arrange viewings on any properties, as this is unnecessary travel. However, we are keeping a list of anybody who wishes to view, so please contact us and we will take your details and contact you to arrange the viewing as soon as the current restrictions are relaxed.


What if I have a query about a property that you are selling?
Please contact us and we will do all we can to answer your query.


Do you have video tours of the properties that you are selling?
We have given all our sellers the opportunity to film their properties and where they have done this the tours have been added to the Rightmove and Zoopla websites. Unfortunately, the restrictions ban us from travelling to empty properties to provide a video tour.


Can I offer on a property that I have not viewed?
Yes you can, and we will put this offer to the seller. However, most sellers will not wish to remove their property from the market until you have physically viewed the property. If we reach an agreement on price, your offer will be accepted, subject to viewing and the property will remain available on the internet. As soon as viewings can start again we will make sure you can view the property, and subject to you wishing to proceed we can then progress your purchase in the usual way.


Can you value my home or put it on the market for sale?
Unfortunately, until the restrictions are lifted we are unable to visit any properties, so this will not be possible. However, please contact us now and we are more than happy to provide any advice that we can over the phone or via email. We are also collating a list of properties to visit as soon as restrictions allow.


What will happen to the market after lockdown?
We are already preparing for the relaxation of the restrictions and are keen to resume ‘normal’ business as soon as it is safe to do so. We are expecting to need to work differently and will continue to put our staff and customers safety first. We are pleasantly surprised by the number of enquiries that we have taken so far, and every indication is that we are going to be very busy when we can start visiting properties again. This pent-up demand in the market could create a post lockdown mini boom and competition for properties available for sale could be high. It is difficult to predict what the long-term effect on the housing market will be at this stage, but so far every indication is that the demand for housing will stay strong.



29th Wednesday 1st April 9.45am








Update for Plymouth Homes Lettings Department

We have been receiving a high volume of interest on our properties that are available for let. We are very sorry that we are not able to arrange viewings at the property this includes virtual viewings. Unless you are a key worker or require emergency accommodation that the current restrictions allow, we are not able to support any house moves until further notice. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your enquiries and we will log your interest so we can arrange for you to view when the restrictions have been lifted.

General enquiries

Lettings Director Jacqui is working from home and is contactable by email jacqui@plymouthhomes.co.uk or if the matter is more urgent please call Jacqui on 07551206149. If Jacqui is unable to answer, please leave a message and she will respond as soon as the message has been heard.

Accounts for Landlords and Renters

Liane is also working from home and is contactable on liane@plymouthhomes.co.uk. Liane’s hours are Monday, Wednesday, Friday 8.30 – 4.30 Tuesday and Thursdays 8.30 -10.00

Maintenance/Emergencies

We are only able to deal with emergency repairs at this moment in time if you have an emergency please contact Jacqui on 07551206149. Otherwise please use Posidacious to log general repairs and we will arrange for this to be attended when the restrictions have been listed.

Thank you to everyone who has read this update. Please continue to keep safe and well as we look forward to catching up with you all soon.


Monday 30th March 5.00pm

It has come to light that as calls are diverted to my mobile the line goes very quiet (no ring tone) and you may think you have been cut off. Please be patient, the call is diverting, it just takes a while. Our phone company are looking into this but didn't seem overly positive that they will be able to change it! Many thanks, Ian


Wednesday 25th March 2020 - 12.45pm

We are now up and running with our calls diverting to my mobile. If you call our sales department (option 1) and I am on the phone you will be diverted to my mobile answerphone. Please leave a message to include your telephone number so I can call you back. Unfortunately when a call comes through it does not show the callers name or telephone number, so I will not be able to return your call unless you leave me a message. Many thanks, Ian.


Tuesday 24th March 2020 - 11.45am

Further to the Government’s announcement last night, I will be temporarily closing our offices with immediate effect. I fully support the Government’s stance and strongly believe everybody has a vital role to play in beating COVID-19.

Although our offices are closed I will be running Plymouth Homes from my home and will remain available for all our clients throughout this necessary closure. Our main telephone number 01752 514500 (option 1) will be diverted to my mobile phone, our lettings enquiries (option 2) will be monitored by our Lettings Director, Jacqui Courtier and any enquiries with regard to properties that are currently sold subject to contract (option 3) will be diverted to Steven Albon, our Sales Progression Manager. I will also monitor and reply to all emails. Please see specific details below for rental enquiries.

We will naturally not be arranging viewings on properties and any enquiries that we receive will logged so we can book them in when the restrictions are eased. I would also strongly recommend that unless sellers’ decide completely against selling their home, we continue to market throughout this period. With everybody at home I expect the traffic to property websites to dramatically increase over the coming weeks. Although we cannot show properties to prospective buyers at this time, we can retain the details and book viewings when appropriate.

During this period of office closure I will not be disturbing clients unless absolutely necessary. However, I am available to you should you wish to discuss any aspect of moving home. Although our office has many incoming lines, I only have one mobile so if you struggle to contact me please leave a message and I will come back to you as soon as possible.

Please stay safe,  

Ian Mitchell
Director


Monday 23rd March 3.20pm

Today I have taken the difficult decision that Plymouth Homes Staff will not attend any appointments after Tuesday 24th March 2020. My reasons are primarily to protect my valued team from preventable exposure to COVID-19. I am also keen to support the Government’s clear instructions that all unnecessary contact should be avoided. For now our offices will remain staffed so we can continue to respond to all queries by both email and telephone.

If you are currently in the process of buying a property from us or selling a property that is under offer, my colleague Steven Albon is looking after your property transaction. In line with Government guidelines he is working from home so his contact details have changed slightly. You can email him at steven@plymouthhomes.co.uk, call him on 01752 514500 and pressing option 3, skype call by searching Plymouth Homes or facetime call at stevenplymouthhomes@yahoo.com. Our office phones are set up to handle many calls simultaneously, but Steven only has one line at home. We therefore request that wherever possible you use email as your primary means of contact.

Whilst our offices remain open we can still offer general buying and selling advice, book viewings on properties where the owners are happy to show you around themselves, negotiate offers and instruct solicitors.

Our lettings team remain available to help all landlords and tenants. They can be contacted in the usual way on 01752 514500 (option 2) or lettings@plymouthhomes.co.uk

Thank you for your understanding,

With best wishes,


 

Ian Mitchell
Company Director


Thursday 19th March at 4.55pm

With regards to the current situation with Covid-19 we would like to keep you up to date with our current situation and working policy.

We are a local independent business and our focus still remains, as much as possible, on 'Business as Usual' and providing as much of an uninterrupted service as possible for all our clients. We will remain diligent and responsive to government recommendations and guidance.

Whilst our office continues to trade as normal we would ask that any visitors to our office assist us in protecting both you as a visitor and all our staff.

If you feel you have been in contact with someone who may be infected with the Coronavirus, we would ask that you contact us by telephone or email and DO NOT visit our office.

We will look to keep, as recommended, a sensible amount of social distancing. We have hand sanitiser available for visiting clients and all our staff are required to wash their hands regularly in addition to every time they enter the office. We are also disinfecting all hard surfaces and door handles in the office on an hourly basis.

Whilst we are able to work from our office, we will continue to welcome you to our premises, and will keep you posted if there is any change to this situation.

We are asking those requesting viewings or valuation appointments to confirm if anyone in their party is displaying symptoms of the coronavirus. In order to protect ourselves, our clients and their families we are afraid that we will be unable to accommodate these clients.

We respect our client’s wishes and if you have any special requests during this current Covid 19 (Coronavirus) situation please do not hesitate to contact us on 01752 514500 or email info@plymouthhomes.co.uk

Thank you for your understanding whilst we all deal with this outbreak. Until this situation is over all the team at Plymouth Homes Estate Agents hopes everybody remains well and stays safe during this period.