Last edited 24 Jan 2021

Construction and the housing market restart



[edit] Introduction

On 13 May 2020, it was announced that buyers and renters in England could move home once again as long as they follow new guidance published by Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick. Restrictions were introduced in March 2020 during the coronavirus outbreak, and people have not been permitted to move unless the need was urgent. They will now be able to complete purchases and view properties in person, while estate agents, conveyancers and removals firms can return to work as long as they follow social distancing guidelines. This relaxation does not apply to properties in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

[edit] Construction resumes

A series of measures was also introduced to reactivate residential construction, including:

[edit] Safety prioritised

A new Safe Working Charter was also launched by the Government and the Home Builders Federation. The goal of the Charter is to help construction sites reopen in line with the latest health and safety guidance.

John Newcomb, chief executive office of the Builders Merchants Federation, said,“Safety has the highest priority as the industry returns to work. Since the publication of new branch operating guidelines [in April 2020], we have seen increasing numbers of merchants safely re-opening or expanding operations to support their trade customers.”

Guidance from Public Health England must continue to be followed. For example, anyone advised to self-isolate should continue to do so and not move home.

Government guidance makes clear that tradespeople including fitters can operate in homes, provided they do so in line with health guidance. Show homes can also re-open, following social distancing guidance.

The Safe Working Charter compliments detailed guidance available from the Construction Leadership Council on further reducing the risk of infection onsite.

These measures build on action from the Government to support the economy and protect the capacity of the construction sector, including:


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