Last reviewed 7th August 2020
The health, welfare and safety of our residents and staff is our highest priority during this difficult time. We are watching the situation closely and monitoring the latest government advice in relation to our services. The situation is rapidly changing, and we are doing our utmost to keep residents updated as things unfold. You can find our most up to date information on this page, which we will review regularly.
You can access the latest accurate information on Coronavirus, including the current situation in the UK and details about the virus and its symptoms at:
- How ELM Group is Responding
- Head Office Staff
- Advice for Residents
- Service Charge Payments
- Advice for Contractors
- Helpful Information & Resources
In light of the current situation, we are putting into place new measures on our estates to reduce the risk to both residents and staff. We would like to thank all our residents and their families for their co-operation during this time. We will continue to do our utmost to support our residents and provide the necessary guidance.
The measures we would like to make you aware of are as follows:
- We have deemed the Estate Manager role as essential to the running of your development. Your Estate Manager will continue to be present on site, observing good hand hygiene practices and keeping at least 2 meters away during face-to-face contact. We encourage you to get in contact by email or phone where possible.
- Estate Managers are cleaning the high-touch areas on a regular basis such as keypads, door handles, bannisters etc.
- Lifts will remain in service but limited to one person at a time wherever possible (we understand some residents may need a Carer or family member with them).
- All guest suite facilities will be closed with effect from Monday 23rd March and until further notice. Your Estate Manager will be in touch with any residents who have made bookings.
- Laundry Room – these facilities will remain operational until further notice but restricted to one resident at a time. Your estate manager will provide a rota.
- Hair Salons – these facilities may re-open from 4th July if the hairdresser has provided an updated risk assessment, which takes into account the most recent government and industry guidance. Once we are satisfied sensible risk prevention measures are in place, the salon may re-open with additional signage inside and outside the salon to highlight the safety measures in place.
- We would politely discourage large social events in the communal lounge although the lounge will remain open. If used, we please ask all residents to observe NHS social distancing guidelines: Stay 2 metres (3 steps) apart from each other at all times, follow good hand hygiene and catch it, bin it, kill it advice.
- Pull cord checks are to be carried out remotely by residents via the Estate Manager asking them to pull the pull cord. And monitoring this from the mobile unit.
- Resident meetings arranged by ELM/RLHA Head Office have been cancelled until further notice. We will continue to communicate with residents by letter, estate notices, telephone, email and via your Estate Manager.
- For the time being, major external decorations and repairs will continue as planned – as long as these works do not require entry to the individual apartments. During any such works, the contractors will observe social distancing guidelines and good hygiene practices.
- For the time being, regular contractors such as cleaners, window cleaners, gardeners, lift engineers etc. should continue as normal with contractors observing social distancing guidelines and good hygiene practices.
- Major internal decorations and works to the common parts are to be postponed until further notice.
- Any urgent/emergency repairs will still be arranged, and contractors will observe social distancing guidelines and good hygiene practices.
- All non-urgent internal apartment works to be postponed until further notice
Following recent government advice regarding the spread of Coronavirus Covid-19, ELM Group/RLHA has put in place the necessary arrangements for some of the head office team to begin working remotely. All staff members will continue to be available via their normal telephone numbers and emails.
Opening hours remain 9am-5pm Monday to Friday, but due to the current situation we have had to reduce our active call hours to 10am-3pm. Our Customer Services team will be checking the answerphone regularly outside of these hours.
For non-urgent matters we encourage you to email email@example.com and we will get back to you as quickly as possible.
We are aware that residents will be understandably concerned about the news on the spread of coronavirus or Covid-19.
Any resident requiring information regarding coronavirus is advised to follow guidance issued by the government and its agencies which is updated regularly. This can be found here:
You can also gain up to date information by listening regularly to TV or radio news and via this page which we will update regularly
Please be wary of information spread on social media or through non-government or non-NHS websites, as this may be misleading.
If you need more specific advice, you should call NHS 111 and follow any advice provided. If you have been advised to stay at home, please get in touch with Customer Services by phone on 01252 356000 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to inform us of your situation.
NHS Test and Trace:
We have recently been made aware of some scam calls from people claiming to be calling from NHS Test and Trace. We ask that you remain vigilant and if you receive a call that you do not believe to be genuine, please ask them for some form of proof of identity or a phone number that you can verify as authentic to call them back on.
If you are unsure, please refer to a family member or contact your estate manager for advice.
Further information on the NHS Test & Trace Teams can be found here:
An overview of the NHS test and trace service, including what happens if you test positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or have had close contact with someone who has tested positive.
Service charge payment obligations during Coronavirus period
Since the government introduced the strict social distancing measures, we have received a few requests asking if ELM Group have put anything in place for leaseholders who may be experiencing financial difficulty.
The short answer, at present, is unfortunately there is nothing in place that means we could offer a holiday from paying service charges. The obligation within the lease to make this payment is clear and the costs of managing the building will not change. Advice does not support allowing a breach of non-payment to be permitted although we will be taking guidance from our lawyers if this situation changes.
As a not for profit organisation, RLHA and ELM, simply do not have surplus funds to call upon.
In circumstances of hardship resulting in non-payment the credit control process will come into effect and the Credit Control Adviser will contact the leaseholder and look at payment plan options.
We understand and appreciate that the current situation will raise concerns about financial security, for free advice and guidance regarding your leasehold property and service charges please visit www.lease-advice.org
We will continue to review this situation and if anything changes, will provide an update accordingly.
Following the ongoing extended coverage surrounding Corona Virus (Covid-19), ELM Group are taking this issue extremely seriously and have generated procedures for our contractors to adopt and implement.
The advice below is in line with Government, NHS and World Health Organisation guidance:
CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATE
We kindly request that any of your employees attending our estates adhere to the following points on every visit:
- All contractors must adhere to Gov.uk advice and take reasonable measures to prevent any staff at risk from Covid-19 from attending ELM Group estates: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public#information-about-the-virus. This includes any staff who are returning from specified (high risk) locations, or those who are required to self-isolate.
- All contractors must report on arrival and departure to the Estate Manager. This is to assist in tracing persons should we experience a case of Covid-19. Where there is no Estate Manager, please report your attendance to the Customer Services Team on 01252 356000 or email CustomerServicesTeam@elmgroup.org.uk
- All contractors must strictly adhere to hand and general hygiene guidance that can be found here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
- All contractors must report immediately by phone the details of any employee who is confirmed positive for Covid-19 and has been working at an ELM Group estate by calling our Customer Services Team on 01252 356000
Should you have any queries in regard to these procedures, please contact me directly using the details below or email to CustomerServicesTeam@elmgroup.org.uk
Please pass this information on to all relevant staff within your organisation that work on ELM Group estates.
We thank you for your co-operation with following these simple processes which we hope will prevent Covid-19 entering our estates.
NHS Guidance on Reducing the Spread of COVID-19
- wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds, wash your hands as soon as you get back home
- use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
- cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze, put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
- do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
Government Guidance on Social Distancing
We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must:
- stay at home as much as possible
- work from home if you can
- limit contact with other people
- keep your distance from people not in your household (2 metres apart where possible)
- wash your hands regularly
Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.
With the recent advice regarding social distancing we've put together a little guide, with tips and resources to help you stay positive and keep in touch during this difficult time
Mutual Aid Groups
Mutual aid groups are popping up all over the UK, which consist of groups of local volunteers helping people to cope while self-isolating. They can assist with food shopping, picking up prescriptions, posting mail for you, even walking the dog round the block. You can find your local groups on Facebook through the below link:
Please exercise caution, while the majority of people have pure intentions and only wish to help, sadly there may be people who might try and take advantage of the current situation. We ask that you remain vigilant when using the volunteer networks, and only allow people access if you are expecting them.
Guildford Sunset Homes is a small charitable trust of 85 social rent apartments for retired people of limited means from the local area. It is registered under the Communities and Societies Benefits Act of 2014. Situated in Merrow which is near Guildford in Surrey this very attractive Estate comprises of 11 apartments in a converted Grade 2 listed Manor HouseRead more