Stay home, protect the NHS, save lives

Due to the government’s announcement on Monday 4 January that we are in a national lockdown, we have made some changes to our services with effect from Wednesday 6 January - this includes carrying out emergency repairs only. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.

Read the latest statement from our Chief Executive.

Changes to our services

Contacting us - Our office at Broadside, Chatham is closed, so please don’t visit. You can still contact us by phone, email, live chat and social media during our normal opening hours.

Repairs - We're carrying out routine repairs as normal.

We're currently working through a backlog from when we were unable to carry out routine repairs. Unfortunately this may mean you experience a delay getting in touch and for appointments, so please bear with us. Thank you for your patience.

My Account is currently unavailable to book repairs so please call us on 01634 565333 instead. We apologise for the inconvenience.

Gas servicing - For your safety, our gas servicing visits are still going ahead, including for those who’re critically extremely vulnerable.

Our teams are following government guidelines on social distancing and have personal protective equipment. We'll contact you to arrange your appointment but please speak to us if you have any concerns.

Essential testing – We need to carry out electrical, asbestos and smoke alarm testing, including for those who’re critically extremely vulnerable. This work is essential to make sure your home is safe so please let us in.

Our teams will be wearing the correct protective equipment to keep you and themselves safe.

Maintenance of our estates - We’ve resumed our cleaning and grass cutting schedule. Our Caretakers will be wearing face coverings when working in communal areas, we ask that you follow social distancing rules when in these areas at the same time.

Kitchen and bathroom upgrades – We’re not currently doing these upgrades. If you have an upgrade booked, we’ll be in touch to reschedule it.

If you have an emergency or urgent kitchen or bathroom repair, you can book this by calling or emailing us.

Communal areas – We’ve temporarily closed all communal areas in our supported living schemes. This is to protect customers and reduce the risk of potentially spreading the virus.

Buying a home – You can still buy a home from us by making contact in the normal way. If you’re in the process of buying a home from us, this is continuing but there’s likely to be a delay if the development isn’t yet complete – we’ll keep you updated if this is the case. 

Renting a home – You can get in touch the normal way for our affordable and social rent and private rent homes. If you’re viewing one of our homes then social distancing will be in place at all times. If you want to sign up to rent a home we’ll do this digitally. We’ll only do a sign up in person if you struggle to access the internet, or you have a health condition or impairment that would make it difficult for you.

Assisted decorations - We've paused our home decorations assisted service.

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If we need to visit your home

In line with government guidance we’ll still be able to visit you in your home to carry out emergency repairs, servicing and safety checks. We may also arrange to visit you if we can’t help you remotely.

When we, or our contractors need to visit you, we will:

  • Give you advance notice
  • Keep a safe distance of 2 metres apart when we’re in your home
  • Wear face coverings
  • Wear protective clothing appropriate for the task being carried out and will observe strict hygiene procedures
  • Be up to date with the latest guidance on how to work safely
  • Only carry out essential work in any household which is self-isolating. In such a case, prior arrangements will be made to avoid any face to face contact
  • Have risk assessments in place that are in line with government advice

What you need to do:

  • Open the internal doors of any rooms we'll be working in before we get there so we don't need to touch them
  • Open any windows in the room we’re working in to increase ventilation
  • If you can, stay in another room
  • If you can’t stay in another room, have as few people as possible in the room being worked in
If you're shielding due to being clinically extremely vulnerable we’ll follow strict COVID-secure guidance. If you have any concerns about us doing work in your home, please contact us.

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Being neighbourly

Please be a good neighbour.

We now know we’ll all be spending more time at home for some time yet. We ask you to continue being respectful and considerate to your neighbours.

Monitor your noise levels, consider the impact of your actions on others who might be working from home, working shifts or have young children. You must not have bonfires at your home. Remember to check on any vulnerable neighbours (or let us know if you have concerns) but always follow the social distancing guidance.

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If you're facing financial difficulties or can't pay your rent

We've updated our guidance on what to do if you can't pay your rent or charges.

If you're on a low income, cannot work from home and are facing loss of income due to self isolation, the government has launched a £500 payment scheme to help.

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If you're showing symptoms of coronavirus

We're asking customers to tell us when they're showing symptoms of coronavirus.

Symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

You'll just need to let us know your name and address.

We're asking for this information because we have an obligation to ensure the safety of our employees, tenants and contractors. We don’t keep this information for longer than necessary. Read what we'll do with your personal data when you tell us you have coronavirus.

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If you don't have a support network to help you

If you don’t have a support network around you that you can rely on, please let us know by emailing contactus@mhs.org.uk.

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If you're reporting breaches of social distancing guidelines

We've published our guidance on what to do if you're reporting breaches of social distancing.

If you usually pay in person at our office

We've closed our Broadside office by Chatham Maritime, so you will need to pay your rent through My Accountpay by Direct Debit or make a payment by phone.

If you haven't already, register for My Account. You'll just need your tenancy reference number. You can find your tenancy reference number on letters and emails we’ve sent you. If you still can’t find it please drop us a message on Live Chat, Facebook Messenger or Twitter.

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Useful information about coronavirus