Homes For Students Ltd who operate Essential Student Living are committed to the health and wellbeing of all students and staff and is working hard as the situation surrounding Coronavirus/Covid-19 continues.
Below we’ve answered some frequently asked questions. Whether you’re living with us, planning to move in soon or the time has come for you to move out, please check back as we’ll be updating these pages regularly.
Please see below an important update for our current residents.
A MESSAGE TO OUR RESIDENTS
We’d like to once again thank students and their families for your patience as we finalise our discussions with the owners of our properties. We’ve reached agreement with the majority of our partners and have begun to communicate their decisions to our residents with a response relating to recent tenancy agreement enquiries. Please check your inbox (including junk) regularly.
Essential Student Living is a managing agent who manages properties on behalf of a range of owners and third parties meaning that unlike some private accommodation providers, we are unable to communicate any financial arrangements without their approval. Thank you for your understanding as we have co-ordinated this complex process with our partners.
We are monitoring this evolving situation very closely and are following the advice of Public Health, the NHS and the FCO as well as monitoring updates from the Institutions. We will continue to update our procedures and FAQs below in line with the latest Government guidance here. Our buildings remain open and our team available to help ensure you can continue to live safely with us.
Thank you and stay safe.
WHAT WE ARE DOING
We have introduced comprehensive COVID-secure measures to ensure the safe management of our residents, buildings and Essential Student Living’ teams. These measures include:
- Keeping all our residents updated with Government and Public Health guidance and instructions.
- Increasing the frequency of cleaning essential public areas and touch points including receptions, lifts, door handles and public bathrooms.
- Implementing procedures to ensure any student who is unwell is supported.
- Instructing all staff and residents to practice social distancing and the wearing of face coverings as per Government regulations. Depending on the space available, our approach in each property may vary.
- Adhering to social distancing by conducting all communication via telephone and email except in the case of essential maintenance or emergency situations. Students can still contact their property team on the usual telephone number or by email and our out of hours service remains in place.
- Temporarily suspending student guests/visitors to our properties with the exception of essential maintenance, viewings, emergency situations or one household member to assist with moving in/out.
- Communal areas, such as gyms, lounges and common rooms comply with Government restrictions and are subject to enhanced hygiene procedures.
All aspects of the accommodation facilities are reviewed as Government guidelines change.
If you display a high temperature, a new persistent cough or a loss of taste or smell, you should get a test. You should isolate until the results of that test are known. If the test is positive, it is important you and the people living with you follow the instructions given to you by the NHS. This is likely to include details of how and for how long to isolate. You may be asked to provide contact details for people you have been in contact with as they too may be required to isolate. Please remember that you can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.
Below we’ve answered some frequently asked. Please check back as we’ll be updating these pages regularly.
LIVING WITH US
Are visitors allowed?
We regret that whilst the pandemic continues we cannot permit non-residents to enter the buildings we manage. Residents should not mix between their household bubbles and in some properties communal areas have been closed. We are constantly arranging social-distancing friendly events so keep checking our Instagram for details. We will continue to review this policy as the government releases new guidance and will adapt accordingly.
How can I protect myself from COVID-19?
The most effective method of protecting yourself and others is to social distance, wash your hands regularly and keep surfaces clean. You should frequently wash your hands for a minimum of twenty seconds with soap and water before eating, after being outside and using the toilet. When cleaning your room, you should use usual household products, like detergents and bleach. Clean frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, handrails, remote controls and table tops regularly.
Personal waste (such as used tissues) and disposable cleaning cloths should be stored securely within disposable rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste. This should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual property waste bin. Other household waste can be disposed of as normal. You will notice that around your accommodation building we have signage regarding social distancing and that our teams are disinfecting high traffic touch points, such as door handles, lifts and bannisters more regularly.
If you are contacted by your local public health body or via the NHS COVID-19 App (Test and Trace) to alert you that you have had recent contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you must inform your property manager via the property email address.
What if I become unwell whilst living at the property?
The Government advises that you should self-isolate in your room or studio if you have a high temperature (if you don’t have a thermometer check if you feel hot to touch on your chest or back), experience a loss of taste or smell, or you have a new, continuous cough (which means you are coughing repeatedly). Please read the NHS’s advice on COVID-19 and its advice on self-isolation in student accommodation here. You should only leave your accommodation to get tested. Inform your property team via your property email address and they will contact you with further information regarding self-isolation in your property and support available to you.
If you are concerned about any potential symptoms then please call the NHS Helpline on 111. To request a test, click here.
If you become aware that somebody is self-isolating in your shared accommodation cluster flat or townhouse, you too will need to self-isolate as per the Government advice on household isolation.
I am living alone at the property and feel isolated. How can you help?
All our properties have unlimited internet usage to allow you to keep in touch with family, friends and your property team. All of the internet providers are continuing their 24/7 support structure and please continue to contact them if you are experiencing any issues.
It is important to look after your mental health as well as physical health and stay connected. If you feel you need extra support, please contact your University wellbeing teams, call the charity Mind (Mental Health) on 0845 766 0163 or visit Student Minds for advice and guidance. Your property team will organise regular opportunities for you to participate in COVID-secure activities at a distance so please keep checking locally for details.
Has the pandemic affected my current tenancy agreement?
Tenancy agreements remain unaffected by the pandemic however we are working closely with those who have requested flexibility to start dates depending on availability. Please speak to our sales team at the time of booking or your property team. The Minister of State for Universities also has issued a letter to students with a further update which can be viewed here and the latest government information for university students is available here.
If you have any questions regarding your tenancy, specifically relating to the COVID pandemic, please contact us via [email protected] providing your name, student ID and the property you have your tenancy agreement with. All of these enquiries are being logged and responded to and also being used to update the owners of the property. Please continue to direct all other enquiries to your local property team.
Can I still book?
Yes, with our virtual viewings, enhanced hygiene measures and flexible start dates, we’re ready to welcome you. Click here to book now or call us on +44 (0) 333 344 3878.