With lockdown rules changing regularly, we first want to emphasise how important it is to stay up to date with the daily briefings from Number 10 and to ensure you adhere to the lockdown guidelines that we’re all currently following. But even if your move is delayed, there are things you can be doing now to prepare for your eventual, post-lockdown move.
At the time of writing, the UK government is advising that property sales, and therefore moving, should be delayed for as long as possible until the time when lockdown rules are lifted.
There is currently an exception in place for critical home moves, covering for example key workers who have completed and urgently need to move during the lockdown period.
Here’s a summary of the current government advice;
- Home buyers and renters should, where possible, delay moving to a new house while measures are in place to fight COVID-19
- If you have already exchanged contracts and the property is currently occupied then all parties should work together to agree a delay or another way to resolve this matter
- If moving is unavoidable for contractual reasons and the parties are unable to reach an agreement to delay, people must follow advice on staying away from others to minimise the spread of the virus
- Anyone with symptoms, self-isolating or shielding should note move house for the time being, if at all possible. All parties should prioritise agreeing amicable arrangements to change move dates for individuals in this group, or where someone in a chain is in this group
You can see the government advice in more detail here.
To support those who have already set a completion date, mortgage lenders are finding ways to allow customers to extend their mortgage offers for up to three months, to facilitate delays whilst lockdown remains in place.
Of course with no firm end date in sight, how long you will need to delay your move for is uncertain, so it’s best to ensure you remain in close contact with all relevant parties and to review government guidelines regularly to monitor for any changes.
What should you do if your move is critical?
If you have to move during these difficult times through necessity and are unable to delay, then you may be concerned about working with a removals company and might instead want to consider moving yourself to minimise the chances of coming into contact with anyone who’s infected, or indeed to minimise the chances of passing anything on in case you or a family member are asymptomatic.
You can find information about the pros and cons of moving yourself here.
If you already have a removal service booked, you might want to seek reassurance that they are aware of government guidelines for removals companies and that they will do all they can to follow guidelines relating to distancing and hand washing on the day of your move.
If your move is critical and can’t be delayed until after lockdown, then ensure you maintain social distancing measures, wash your hands thoroughly and frequently or use hand sanitiser gel when you don’t have access to running water.
What to do whilst your move is delayed
For now then, it’s clear that the advice is to delay moving until lockdown is relaxed and whilst delays are frustrating at best, doing the right thing to help the UK move closer towards a relaxation of current restrictions is the best thing for us all to do.
For those facing delays, now is a great time to start the packing process as slowly sorting and packing now will mean that you have less to do when it gets closer to your eventual moving date. Take a look at our recent blog on what to pack first and last here.
If your move is critical and you need to buy moving boxes you’ll find we have a vast range to choose from, or you might prefer to choose our sturdy reusable moving crates. All of our moving boxes, packaging supplies and crate handling equipment is available to buy online as usual and we’re still offering the same delivery and collection options.
If you’ve got any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.