Trade

Coronavirus: FAQs for tradespeople

Last updated: 4th August 2021

Coronavirus: FAQs for tradespeople

Should I be working and going into people’s homes right now?

Your wellbeing and the wellbeing of our homeowners will always be the most important thing to us. We know it’s an uncertain time, but we want to reassure you that we’re following the latest advice and recommendations from the government and the World Health Organisation (WHO) to help keep you safe and well, and keep your business ticking over.

Boris Johnson shared advice from the government on 10th May 2020. This included the first steps towards moving the country out of lockdown. Regarding trade work, he said:

“Anyone who can’t work from home, for instance those in construction or manufacturing, should be actively encouraged to go to work. You should avoid public transport if at all possible.”

ENGLAND

Most legal restrictions have been lifted in England since 19th July 2021, meaning tradespeople can carry out work in your home as long as you, they and everyone in both of your households are well and have no coronavirus symptoms.

The tradesperson should also follow the COVID-Secure guidance for businesses where possible, including leaving doors open to let fresh air in and limiting the number of workers within a confined space.

Additional guidelines are in place in local areas at higher risk of COVID-19. If you live in one of these areas, you should follow the specific guidance given by your local authority. Check if your local area is listed on Gov.uk.

SCOTLAND

On the 19th July 2021, Scotland moved to protection level 0. This means that tradespeople can carry out work in your home as long as you, they and everyone in both of your households are well and have no coronavirus symptoms.

The tradesperson must follow the guidance on working in homes safely. This includes wearing a face covering and maintaining social distancing (1m indoors).

WALES

From Saturday 17th July, Wales is at alert level 1. Tradespeople can carry out work in your home, as long as it can be done safely and they, you and your respective households are well and have no coronavirus symptoms. A tradesperson must also follow all the reasonable measures and the guidance on working in other people’s homes.

The government has recommended that no work is carried out in a household where someone is isolating, unless it is to repair a fault or to carry out an adaptation to allow you to stay in your property. If this is the case, additional precautions should be taken to keep both you and the tradesperson completely separate from each other. Public Health Wales can advise you in these specific cases.

If you’re working, take extra precautions, such as:

  • Don’t meet a homeowner, or your team, or allow work to go ahead, if you have any of the symptoms associated with the virus. These include a high temperature, a loss of sense of taste or smell, or a new, continuous cough – even if they seem mild. If anyone in your household has symptoms, stay at home for the appropriate length of time.
  • Consider ways to reduce contact, such as sending photos or a video to enable you to quote over the phone. Our Protected Payments service can be useful for you and a homeowner to consider using during this time. It’s digital so you won’t need to meet to receive payment for work, and it’ll protect your money if a job needs to be put on hold. Read more info.
  • Take additional hygiene precautions. Wash your hands more regularly, use hand sanitiser when soap and water isn’t available and bring your own drinks if you’re working in someone’s home.

We know that working on a construction site and working in people’s homes are two very different things. You should carry out work as long as you and anyone in your household is well and has no symptoms. In addition, you should be able to stand 2 metres apart from anyone else in the customer’s house. You shouldn’t carry out work in any households that are self-isolating or if an individual is classed as vulnerable and being protected, unless the work is to sort a problem which is a direct risk to the safety of the household, like emergency plumbing or repairs, and where you’re willing to do so. Read the specific government guidelines for working in homes in more detail on Gov.uk.

Coronavirus advice for onsite workers:

The same advice applies regarding who should go to work. But, if you’re classed as ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’, it’s strongly advised that you don’t return to work onsite. If you’re ‘clinically vulnerable’, the government advice is that you should take extra care with social distancing. You should also be offered the safest available onsite roles, where you can stay 2 metres away from others. If this isn’t possible, you and your employer should assess whether the risk is acceptable. See more info in our Coronavirus: Staying safe whilst working on a construction site article.

Do you have any jobs on the platform right now and what if jobs dry up?

We still have plenty of homeowners looking for tradespeople to do work for them. We’ve even seen demand increase for trades like gardeners, tree surgeons and pest control specialists. Our platform is designed to give you access to leads 24/7. We’ll continue to make sure you have a stream of new work opportunities coming through, should you want to do them and it’s legal for you to do so.

We want to support you as much as possible through this challenging time. So, we’ve also pulled together information on the latest government support that you may be eligible for, like grants and loans. You can find this information in our Coronavirus: government support for construction businesses article, and we’ll keep it updated.

Can I get a payment holiday?

We want to help tradespeople with any financial concerns that they might have. Rest assured, we still have homeowners on our platform looking to hire tradespeople. In countries like Scotland where only essential work is being done, we’re still seeing non-essential work being planned in for further ahead. If you’ve noticed a big drop in the number of leads for your particular area and trade or you’re unable to work, please email our team at [email protected] for help.


Note: The government has confirmed that there is no limit to the group size when you are meeting or gathering for work. But, workplaces should be set up to meet the COVID-secure guidelines. Follow the government’s guidance on how to return to work safely.

Note: You must follow the restrictions for your local area. Find out the local restriction tiers for each area in England on Gov.uk. You can also view the UK government guidelines on Gov.uk.

Note: Countries may approach the different phases of lockdown differently. This guidance is in line with the UK government’s advice and is being followed in England. See the specific government websites for any differences.


For more information on staying safe whilst working, head to our Coronavirus: How to keep safe whilst working article.

For information on government support for businesses, check out our Coronavirus: government support for construction businesses article.

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