Coronavirus FAQs

Coronavirus: your frequently asked questions

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Will Chorus Homes be offering rent breaks, like some of the mortgage companies for those who are ill or self-isolating?

We are unable to offer rent breaks, but we will work with each customer on a case by case basis to agree an affordable repayment plan. We will provide advice, support and guidance to you if you’re having difficulty paying your rent.

Due to the current situation, to avoid waiting times on the phone, we would like you to email us where possible with your enquiry.  You can email us at info@chorushomesgroup.co.uk.  A member of our team will contact you back as soon as possible to provide you with advice.   

If you need to contact our Income Recovery Team, please call 0345 266 9760 – selecting option 2. 

I am struggling to pay my rent due to coronavirus, will I be evicted?

We would like to reassure our customers that we will not be taking any legal possession or eviction action against customers who are unable to make payments as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

If you are having difficulty paying your rent, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss your situation.

Due to the current situation, to avoid waiting times on the phone, we would like you to email us where possible with your enquiry.  You can email us at info@chorushomesgroup.co.uk.  A member of our team will contact you back as soon as possible to provide you with advice.   

If you need to contact our Income Recovery Team, please call 0345 266 9760 – selecting option 2. 

We are asking more questions than usual as part of our service to help our customers, so it may take us a little longer to answer your call.

How can Chorus Homes help me if I fall into arrears because of the situation with the coronavirus?

We are committed to helping prevent our customers from falling into debt and we will continue to provide advice, support and guidance to customers who may be experiencing difficulty in paying their rent.

 I have problems with paying my other bills and/or debts – what should I do?

There are some useful links on our Guidance for customers with financial concerns page that may help you look for information and support.

Can I get help with Universal Credit/Housing Benefit claims and/or discretionary housing payment/hardship applications?

Yes, we will continue to provide support to customers who need some with Universal Credit/Housing Benefit claims and/or discretionary housing payment/hardship applications.

Due to the current situation, to avoid waiting times on the phone, we would like you to email us where possible with your enquiry.  You can email us at info@chorushomesgroup.co.uk.  A member of our team will contact you back as soon as possible to provide you with advice.   

If you need to contact our Income Recovery Team, please call 0345 266 9760 – selecting option 2. 

I am unable to work because of the coronavirus, but I am not eligible to receive statutory sick pay. What should I do?

If you are not eligible for statutory sick pay, you could be entitled to claim Universal Credit or New Style Employment Support Allowance.

For more information please visit:

To speak to a member of our income team or our rent support officer, please call 0345 266 9760 (selecting option 1) or contact us online.

We are asking more questions than usual as part of our service to help our customers, so it may take us a little longer to answer your call.

What could I do if I have lost my job, had hours reduced or been temporarily laid off?

If you have lost your job you should check with your employer what your severance package will be.

If you have had hours reduced or been temporarily laid off you may qualify for assistance through the Government Job Retention Scheme. You may also be entitled to claim New Style Jobseekers Allowance or Universal Credit. It is recommended to seek guidance before claiming Universal Credit to make sure this does not adversely affect any benefit entitlement you may currently receive.

Are you letting properties?

Following Government Guidelines released on 13 May 2020, we have made the decision to begin letting some of our homes in England again.

We are using government guidance on safe working and adapting our ways of working to make sure we keep you and our colleagues as safe as possible from the spread of coronavirus.

Our lettings team are moving people into new homes only where it is safe to do so. If you have a current offer of accommodation with us we will contact you to update you on your house move and to discuss how things will be a bit different to our normal house move process.

If you are applying for a home and have not yet been made an offer we encourage you to look at our available homes and apply for any that meet your needs.

Will you allow vulnerable people to move to new homes?

Yes, we are letting our properties where it is safe to do so. We continue to prioritise those customers who are vulnerable such as:

  • People fleeing domestic abuse and violence
  • Moving customers from temporary accommodation
  • People discharged from hospital
  • Those living in unsafe accommodation, or without settled accommodation, which poses a risk to their health

Can I still report a repair at this time?

Due to the government announcement on 4th January 2021, we are responding to requests for emergency repairs and gas repairs only.  An emergency repair is any problem that could be a security risk or cause harm to you, another person or to your property.

If your repair is an emergency, please call our Customer Service Centre on 0345 266 9760

Please note we are not able to book in repairs that are not an emergency.

We will reintroduce routine repairs as soon as we can and we will let you know when we are able to restart our normal repair service. Our website will also have the latest service updates.

Once our normal service delivery is resumed, the online feature to report a repair will be made available again.

Thank you for your patience at this time.

Before starting work, we will ask if anyone in your home is shielding, self-isolating or showing any symptoms of COVID-19. If someone in your household is self-isolating or has tested positive for the virus, we will only carry out emergency work in certain circumstances.  Questions are asked to protect you and our colleagues. 

How do I report an emergency repair?

If you do need to report an emergency repair, please call our Customer Service Centre on 0345 266 9760

We will be asking additional questions to make sure we safeguard you and our colleagues before arranging a repair. 

Are you still carrying out gas safety and electrical checks on my property?

 Yes, Places for People will continue to carry out all gas servicing and electrical compliance checks within our properties during this time. We can assure you that the safety of our customer and colleagues are key at this time and we will contact you to ask you some corona virus related questions prior to your appointment.

If you are isolating or shielding, we can delay our visit, although you must let us know as soon as we can visit again.

Can I amend my gas safety or electrical check appointment?

If you wish to amend your gas safety check appointment, please call 01772 666250.

If you are isolating or shielding, we can delay our visit, although you must let us know as soon as we can visit again.

I have received a letter saying I will be getting a new kitchen/bathroom this year will that still happen?

Yes, we are working through a revised work programme for the year and providing there are no further restrictions our programme for upgrades has will continue. We will write to you as soon as we have an agreed date and contractor. Due to rescheduling, the date may be later in the year.

I have received a letter saying essential work needs to happen in my home?

Through the current restrictions, we are able to work in customer’s homes where work is essential to safeguard a household and the property.  We are able to continue with many of our capital works programmes of activity. Your letter will give you details of this work, the arrangements and access needed. The letter will also give information about the action we will take to keep you and our colleagues safe.

I’ve been told it’s emergency repairs only. When will my routine repair be completed?

Due to the government announcement on 4th January we are responding to requests for emergency repairs and gas repairs only.  An emergency repair is any problem that could be a security risk or cause harm to you, another person or to your property.

We are sorry but we are not able to book in repairs that are not an emergency at this time.

We will be rescheduling any appointments for routine repairs which have been made and will be contacting you to do this as soon as we are able to.

We will update when you can report non-emergency repairs again. Thank you for your continued patience and support and we will resume a full repair service as soon as possible.

Where can I go to get more information about the personal data I provide to you on coronavirus?

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has put together some information to help you understand coronavirus and your personal data.

Visit: ico.org.uk/global/data-protection-and-coronavirus-information-hub/

Can customers be assured that operatives are not carrying the virus into their homes while carrying out repairs?

Our priority is the health, wellbeing and safety of our customers and colleagues.

We are following all of the latest Government and NHS advice, and we can assure you that we are doing all that we can to help protect our customers and their homes during this period of uncertainty.

Our colleagues will wear a face-covering whilst in your home and moving through any communal areas such as corridors or lounges. Our team have suitable personal protective equipment (PPE) and will wear what is appropriate for the task. Our contractors will have anti-bacterial wipes for the surfaces they need to touch.

We will ask you to stand at least two metres away from our colleagues where you can. All trades operatives will show you identification when they visit your home. Please check this and once you are satisfied, you can leave our contractor or colleague to carry out their work. Our colleagues can remove their face covering with social distance to help you check their identity or for easier communication such as lip-reading. Upon completion of the job, they will advise you they have finished and are leaving, and they will see themselves out.

We are making sure our colleagues self-isolate if they have any of the advised symptoms or have contact with someone with coronavirus.

If you are reporting a repair with our Customer Service Centre, we will be also be asking you some additional questions to help protect against the spread.

By following these steps, we want to reassure you that there is a low risk of spreading the coronavirus from a home visit.

Are you carrying out grounds maintenance work?

We are doing grounds maintenance work as this activity can be done safely. To make sure we are following government advice and physical distancing guidelines, we have reviewed and changed the way we do things.

The following grounds maintenance tasks will take place:

  • Grass cutting
  • Litter picking
  • Fly-tipping removal
  • Vegetation management - e.g. removing brambles from pathways or ensuring fire exits are clear.

Our team have suitable personal protective equipment (PPE) and will wear what is appropriate for the task. Our colleagues will wear a face-covering whilst moving through any communal areas such as corridors or lounges.

Our contractors have suitable personal protective equipment (PPE) and will wear what is appropriate for the task.

 My home is in a local lockdown area, how are your services affected?

Following Government advice that some areas are in a local restrictions area or a local lockdown area and have increased restrictions in place, we would like to reassure you that we are continuing to provide support to safeguard you and our colleagues. 

Find out more about the impact of local restrictions and lockdown areas on services.

How to ask for help

If you are having difficulty paying your rent, please contact as soon as possible to discuss your situation.

To speak to a member of our income team or our rent support officer, please call 0345 266 9760 (selecting option 1) or contact us online.

UPDATES TO FAQs

https://www.placesforpeople.co.uk/support-pages/coronavirus-faqs/

All FAQs to be reviewed in particular those relating to financial difficulties and updates to be advised.

Are you letting properties?

We are using government guidance on safe working and adapting our ways of working to make sure we keep you and our colleagues as safe as possible from the spread of coronavirus.

Our lettings team are moving people into new homes where it is safe to do so. If you have a current offer of accommodation with us we will contact you to update you on your house move and to discuss how things will be a bit different to our normal house move process.

If you are applying for a home and have not yet been made an offer we encourage you to look at our available homes and apply for any that meet your needs.

My home is in a local COVID alert level area, how are your services affected?

The Government has introduced local COVID alert levels in England with increased restrictions in place in some areas. We would like to reassure you that we are continuing to provide support to safeguard you and our colleagues. 

I have received a letter which says I will be getting a new kitchen/bathroom, will this still happen?

Yes, we are working through a revised work programme for the year and providing there are no further restrictions our programme for upgrades has will continue. We will write to you as soon as we have an agreed date and contractor. Due to rescheduling, the date may be next year.