Covid-19 – Statement 17 March 2020
In addition to the instructions to our team regarding the prevention of the spread of infection we are acutely aware that the industry in which we operate in is at high risk to disruption and will impact key areas of our service provision both within the UK and globally.
First and foremost is our aim to protect our team, clients, their employees and families and our suppliers health. There are also business implications in their relocation we need to consider as well as how we provide our support. This uncertainty can affect your employee emotionally and our client financially. We wish to provide solutions which balance a sensible, responsible and professional attitude in an attempt to provide continuity of service without unnecessarily jeopardising the health of those we work with and for.
Due to the changing nature of guidelines within different countries and regions, it’s difficult to predict and we are monitoring the situation on a daily basis and making any adjustments as required. We have identified several areas which may affect our clients and their relocating employees.
We hope you will understand the reasoning for our actions but please feel free to call myself personally should you have any concerns or require any clarifications. Whilst I am still currently working from our offices this may change therefore please do use my mobile 07939 511536.
Removals of possessions – where possible our suppliers will be offering video surveys to estimate volume of goods etc. This is already a practice undertaken and increasingly common in the industry. They warn that they expect to see a lack of available shipping containers and the potential that shipping lines will avoid delivering and collecting containers from certain countries. We would remind you that all moves are subject to strict cancellation periods. At short notice this can be as much as 50-100% of cost. Whilst our suppliers will make reasonable checks, it’s important for clients and employees to ensure they satisfy themselves (as much as they are able) that they are able to move freely to avoid these penalties. We fully appreciate this is a fluid situation and no-one can predict future events, but it is important that bookings are only made where there are no planned restrictions in place for departure and destination. Whilst we and our suppliers will assist wherever possible, and whilst we will not tolerate taking advantage of the current situation, cancelled or postponed moves will inevitably incur penalty.
Travel restrictions – preventing free movement of people between regions and countries may impact bookings of accommodation, travel and delivery of removals etc. Where reasonable, we shall plan and avoid any unnecessary cost. However, where employees cannot, for example receive delivery of possessions or have the need to cancel or amend accommodation, cancellation charges may still apply.
Accompanied Services – where we are unable to satisfy or reasonably reduce the risk of cross contamination as well as seeking agreement between all connected parties we may postpone or cancel direct employee facing support such as area orientations, accompanied searches, check ins. etc. We will still provide comprehensive remote support wherever possible.
Home Visits – until further notice we are suspending direct employee/family facing support including home visits. Wherever possible we will offer skype/video meetings.
Company supported accommodation – we have already been contacted by numerous letting agents and management companies who advise they are suspending non urgent maintenance on rented property and serviced accommodation. This may impact your employee(s) and we will manage the situation the best we can.
We are also receiving mixed messages from suppliers in different countries whereby they are insisting upon health checks of potential occupiers in advance of booking. This will severely restrict certain accommodation bookings. In addition whilst we will make reasonable efforts, we cannot guarantee or fully reassure employees that accommodation will be virus free prior to occupation
We will continue to arrange itineraries for your employees and offer any guidance in order to try and remind them of reducing their risk of infection when meeting external third suppliers.
House sales – we have been contacted by our panel solicitors advising that there are situations where the need to self-isolate will impact upon the ability to complete once they have exchanged contracts. This applies to both a defaulting purchaser or seller who will be potentially liable for failure to complete a sale. Where we are supporting such moves, your employees will be professionally advised of their legal position and responsibilities directly by our solicitors.
We thank you for your understanding and patience and should you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact me.
00 (44) 1477 533533
17th March 2020