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A note from Steve Rad, managing director of InventoryBase.

What a roller coaster these past few months have been and I don’t see anything changing, in that sense, for a while at least.

The shock announcement that the estate and lettings industry could reopen has been cautiously welcomed as many were and are just not prepared to start conducting safe viewings, meeting with prospective tenants and landlords. 

But as the industry gets back into gear it has to be noted that this could not have been an easy decision. I mean, we’ve all wanted to get back up and running and have been chomping at the bit to open as all the indicators have shown that demand has been growing as people become increasingly frustrated with not being able to move. 

Lives have been sadly lost to this dreadful virus, however, and if there is one lesson that has to be learned is that life is precious and we all need to take a step back, breathe and perhaps re-evaluate our priorities.

We’ve continued to talk to agents and inventory providers right throughout lockdown and the message that we are hearing is that we need to get the economy and the industry moving again, but equally they are worried about the effects of the pandemic not only physically but from a mental health standpoint. Ensuring that staff and the wider client base are supported has to be the priority.

Common sense is going to be key as we rush forward and as Government guidelines become more known and (hopefully) clearer especially for inventory clerks as they are very much on the frontline when entering properties.

I think the industry itself can do a lot to support the supplier workforce by ensuring safe working practices are implemented and remain under constant review. Just like we drive in a way to help other drivers on the road, we should oversee our business to work in a way that protects the people we work with.  

Mental health is a vital topic that needs to be addressed as we are not built for isolation, we crave human interaction and to go from lockdown to being back out and about won’t be easy for some so we all need to be ready to spot any signs of stress and deal with concerns quickly and with compassion.  

To help with the practical elements; we’ve developed a Covid-19 protocol sheet and in-app checklist to help inventory companies and clerks think about what the government guidelines are saying, what questions they need to be asking of themselves and when booking appointments so they can risk assess and put in place the right responses as the safety of everyone concerned has to be the overriding focus for any and all businesses.

Our InventoryBase Academy has been actively supporting clerks right across the industry with regular podcasts, webinars, information updates and support and advice and that’s set to continue as the need hasn’t stopped overnight. In fact; I think the supportive element will continue to increase as we are not out of the woods yet.

Feel free to copy the information from the following links for your own clients and bookings. We’ve also extended this guidance to buyers, notably agents and landlords, so you’re aware of how to book an inventory provider and what you need to do for them from your end, too, not only via our Workstreams marketplace, but for any service requiring a property visit.

Please share our content across the industry, so that we can all understand the importance for cautious, alert and responsible property visits going forward.

The need to move, to relocate to continue on our property journey is very clear and I am excited to get back to doing what we love, but with a renewed focus on our customers… support is just a phone call away. 

Steve Rad, Managing Director, InventoryBase.

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