Your questions answered
As the world reacts to the Covid-19 pandemic (also known as the Coronavirus) we have outlined below answers to some of the key questions you may have and to reassure you of the efforts that Collegiate is taking to support its residents, staff and suppliers at this time.
This information, and the actions we are taking, will hopefully help us all do our best to reduce the risk of catching or spreading the virus. As the situation continues to evolve and develop, we would suggest that you check back here regularly or visit the government’s website for the latest public advice.
What is Covid-19 or coronavirus?
Covid-19, also known as coronavirus, is a new virus that can affect your lungs and airways.
People who have contracted the virus typically present with symptoms that most commonly include a dry cough, tiredness and fever. Some patients may also experience a runny nose, sore throat, aches and pains or difficulty breathing.
For the latest information on coronavirus and its symptoms, visit the NHS website.
What action is Collegiate AC taking?
We take the wellbeing and safety of our students very seriously. As such, our focus has been on helping students and employees protect themselves and others, and to support them with practical advice and assistance at this difficult time.
We continue to closely monitor the national and international situation and to implement the guidance provided by Public Health England (PHE) as well as other expert authorities. Since the start of the outbreak, we have already undertaken the following:
A systematic deep clean of all social spaces, in addition to our habitual cleaning program.
Communicating with your property team
All general communication with reception & the management team will need to be made via telephone or email. This is to minimise face to face contact and protect our residents and employees.
We will continue to work closely with our University partners and to implement the guidance provided by Public Health England and the NHS to ensure our response is fully aligned and coordinated.
We fully appreciate your cooperation in these unprecedented times and will continue to provide updates. If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact us through the above channels as your safety and wellbeing is our upmost concern.
We have temporarily suspended our visitor and guest policy. Although we appreciate that this is not ideal, we believe it is a prudent measure at this time.
Family visits however will be authorised as long as they respect the social distancing recommendation of the government.
As a business we have taken the decision for our reception areas to close to normal business until further notice to help protect against the spread of the virus. This includes the suspension of our parcel service. We will not be accepting any parcels from Friday 3rd April.
Residents will be required to arrange directly with the courier for their parcel to be delivered in person from this date. For any parcels we hold already in reception, we will email you to arrange a time and date for us to deliver this to your apartment door. This is to avoid residents coming down to reception enquiring about parcels. Please note Collegiate will take no liability for parcels left unattended by delivery persons.
We will take deliveries on your behalf for the following items:
- Food deliveries
You will need to inform reception by email to give details of the date and time of delivery.
Gathering on site
We have temporarily suspended student gatherings and events within the property. Groups of more than 5 students will not be allowed, and we advise students to strictly respect the social distancing recommendations.
What if I am self-isolating?
If you are self-isolating under medical advice, please make the site accommodation team aware and we can arrange to have any food or medical deliveries to be left outside your apartment door with your consent.
If someone in a property is diagnosed with coronavirus, we will inform our tenants and support those that may be vulnerable due to an existing respiratory illness or weak immune system condition to reduce infection risk.
Please note also:
Should a case be confirmed, we have specific procedures in place so that we can act quickly and decisively based on the advice of the relevant authorities.
As directed by the relevant authorities, if a case is confirmed, we have processes in place to undertake a specific deep clean of any areas that the affected customer may have come into contact with.
Thank you for your understanding and support!
We will continue to work closely with our university partners across the UK to ensure our response to the situation is fully aligned and coordinated and that our students receive the very best help.
Although they are unable to offer medical advice, the Collegiate team will be on hand at all times to answer any questions or concerns that you may have. We would ask for your kind understanding and patience at this time as our teams are working hard to tackle this issue.
What action should I be taking?
We have the following advice from the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) and from Public Health England. We are asking all residents and employees to follow this advice closely:
- Wash your hands regularly using soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, especially after sneezing or blowing your nose
- Always wash your hands when you get home or into university
- Try to avoid contact with anyone that may be ill
- Use hand sanitiser gel if you don’t have access to soap and water
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when you cough or sneeze and wash your hands afterward
- Put any used tissues in the bin immediately after using them
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- Do not share items that come into contact with your mouth
- Avoid public transport or social gatherings
- For the most up-to-date advice, visit the NHS website
What should I do if I think I have coronavirus and have to self-isolate?
If you are displaying symptoms of Coronavirus including a high temperature or a new, continuous cough, Public Health England is advising people to self-isolate for seven days.
At this stage, there is no need to contact 111 or visit a GP surgery, hospital or pharmacy. If you are self-isolating, please follow Public Health England’s recommendations below:
- Stay in your flat unless told otherwise by health authorities
- Do not go into work, university, lectures or public areas, and don’t use public transport or taxis until you’re told it’s safe to do so
- If you have someone bringing supplies or have ordered shopping online, make sure the items are left at reception or outside of your room
- Stay away from friends or flatmates
- If you’ve been provided with a facemask, you should wear it when you may come into contact with other people
- Make sure all of your rubbish is disposed of properly by tying it up in two plastic bin bags
- If your symptoms get worse, you can’t cope with them at home, or they don’t get better in seven days, use the 111 online coronavirus service. If you can’t get help online, call 111 or, in an emergency, call 999.
We would also advise the following:
- Keep in regular contact with friends and family by phone
- Avoid using common areas in your accommodation (apart from your shared kitchen)
- In the event of a fire alarm, please evacuate the building as you would normally, but where possible, keep at least six feet away from other people
- Please be aware that we’ll only carry out maintenance in your flat if it’s a safety risk to you or others
- You should also continue to follow the advice given above under the subheading ‘What action should I be taking’.
What if I’ve recently got back from holiday?
If you are returning from areas of high risk of Coronavirus including China and Northern Italy we would ask that you self-isolate for a period of 7 days, following the procedures explained under the subheading, ‘what should I do if I think I have coronavirus and have to self-isolate?’.
If you are returning from areas of low risk we would only ask you to self-isolate if you develop a high temperature or a new, continuous cough, as explained above under the subheading, ‘what should I do if I think I have coronavirus and have to self-isolate?’
What about my next rental payment?
We don’t want any of our students to suffer additional stress from this crisis so if any of our students has suffered financially from recent events then you can request to defer your next rental instalment by up to three months – in line with what banks and mortgage lenders are doing. Click here for more information.
Can I end my tenancy early?
If you’re living with us and would like to end your tenancy early, our standard cancellation policy applies (England & Wales) / standard cancellations policy applies (Scotland)
England & Wales
In the event that you wish to terminate your Tenancy Agreement, you will need to find another tenant (who must first be approved by us acting reasonably) to take a new tenancy of the Room for a term which is equivalent to the unexpired term of your Tenancy Agreement. An administration fee of £50 will apply for the costs of preparation, delivery, and execution of the replacement tenancy agreement in these circumstances
Unless the Residential Period has commenced, or you have already collected the keys to the accommodation, you may cancel your booking by writing or sending an e-mail to us at email@example.com, at any time during the 14 days after we send you an e-mail confirming your booking is complete. If you do that, we will make no charge and will return the Reservation Fee to you.
In the event that you want to terminate your Student Tenancy Agreement prior to the end of the Residential Period, you will need to find another tenant to replace you and take over your tenancy. Your tenancy period is for the Residential Period stated in Clause 2 of your Student Tenancy Agreement; whomever takes over the tenancy must take over the tenancy for the remaining period – A £50 admin fee will apply to set up a replacement tenant.
Can I cancel my future booking?
If you wish to cancel outside of the 14-day cooling off period, our standard cancellation policy applies (see here above)
Where can I find more information?
For more information about coronavirus, its symptoms, how to avoid catching it and what to do if you do have it, please visit the NHS website or visit the government’s website where you can find more information on how the country is tackling the situation.
If you’re worried about a friend, concerned about the situation or need emotional support, you can speak to the team at your reception, who will be able to put you in touch with a Welfare Lead in your city.