Tradespeople etiquette during COVID-19
The good news about a possible COVID-19 vaccine has certainly lifted the spirits. But we still need to be really careful when people come to our homes – and that’s posing a problem for those who need things fixed or installed. Basically, when a tradesperson comes by, what are the Dos and Don’ts?
Here at Local Heroes we have some advice to avoid the awkwardness. So if a tradesperson comes to your home you know you’re both safe – and no one’s going to be offended!
Take a look at our COVID-19 guidelines
The essence of Local Heroes is all about friendly, local tradespeople coming to people’s homes and helping wherever they’re needed. So when the pandemic struck, we were quick to address this and drew up a set of guidelines to make sure everyone – our customers and Heroes alike – felt safe. You can find them here.
They’re well worth reading and just as valid now as when we first wrote them.
Five big questions around tradespeople etiquette
Research by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) shows that two in five UK adults haven’t been inside other households since the pandemic began . Broadly people are being very cautious – and rightly so.
However, there are all kinds of circumstances when you might need a tradesperson to come to your home to do a job. And if that happens, there may be a lot of questions you’ll be asking yourself around how to act.
To help put your mind at ease, here are the answers to some of those questions.
Should tradespeople be wearing a mask during a job?
According to the Government, there is growing evidence that wearing a face covering or mask in enclosed spaces helps protect individuals and those around them from COVID-19. So, yes, you should expect any tradespeople doing a job in your home to wear a mask. We always advise them to. And if they’re not, it’s totally acceptable for you to ask them to put one on. They should also wear gloves and shoe coverings.
Ask your tradesperson to wear a face mask when they enter your home
While the benefits of face masks far outweigh the negatives, the downside of not being able to hear someone properly (or see them smile) can make things difficult at first.
However, Local Heroes and other tradespeople are used to working in these circumstances by now, so they should be able to make you feel at ease and completely clear about the work they’re about to do.
Should I offer hand sanitizer to a tradesperson in my home?
If you want to offer hand sanitizer to a tradesperson, you are welcome to. That said, any point of contact is always a risk, however small – so don't feel you have to.
Local Heroes tradespeople are always advised to bring their own sanitizer to jobs and wash their hands regularly whenever possible.
Can I still offer a tradesperson a cup of tea?
Offering a cup of tea to someone in our home is a ritual we’re very fond of in this country! However, for the sake of safety, it’s best not to because it’s another point of contact.
It's not rude if you don't offer your tradesperson a cup of tea or coffee
That’s not rude, it’s simply being sensible. And our tradespeople will completely understand. If you feel very awkward about it, point them in the direction of this article!
How should I handle cash payments?
Even before the pandemic we’ve always advised our customers to pay online. It just makes things quicker and easier. Plus, if you pay your Local Hero directly, the work won’t be covered by the 12-month British Gas guarantee.
When you book a job with us, we send you a link then you just pay online with a credit or debit card.
However, whether you book a tradeperson with us or not, during the current circumstances you should try to avoid using cash as much as possible.
Should I perform a deep clean post-job?
All our tradespeople are asked to follow government guidelines around cleaning. That means any objects or surfaces that are touched should be cleaned regularly and any belongings our tradespeople bring to jobs are brought back with them.
If you want to do a deep clean after they’ve gone, of course that’s completely up to you. Chances are it will give you absolute peace of mind – which is nice to have at times like these!
We’re all in this together
Final thing: if you are self-isolating, please let your tradesperson know. Their next job may be for a vulnerable person or they might have elderly relatives at home.
We may not be able to see what we’re saying through these masks – but as long as we keep talking to each other we’ll make it through.