Ramsgate Rooms is pleased to read that this week the UK Covid-19 Alert System has been downgraded from from 4 to 3. This is good news for all of us as it indicates we are closer to a significant relaxation of the restrictions we have been living under. The government has been keen to get the economy back up and running, given the hit it has taken following the lockdown. All shops are allowed to open again and will be finding ways to adhere to the guidelines.
A tricky balance is ahead of us as we navigate the easing while keeping safe. So what does this mean for co-living? Because of the nature of a house-share, you and those you live with count as one household, so that you haven’t necessarily needed to adhere to strict social distancing at home. However, the general precautions still apply, In fact, it looks like we will all have to make them second nature for some time.
A good way to go about it in terms of hygiene behaviour is to assume that you are carrying the virus. Keep surfaces clean all the time, in particular shared spaces such as the bathroom and kitchen. Some objects should be a cleaned carefully a couple of times a day – your phone, door handles, tv remotes, console controllers and so on. When you’ve been out, take your shoes off at the door and wash your hands thoroughly and use hand sanitiser as soon as you can.
One bone of contention might be around visitors. Currently groups of up to six people from different households can meet outdoors, including in the garden. You are encouraged to have your guests enter via the side entrance and if they do need to go in the house – for example to use the bathroom – leave out a detergent spray and a cloth and ask them to wipe down any surfaces they touch. It’s ok to remind guests to wash their hands if you are worried they haven’t.
Taking responsibility also means taking care outside of the home. Social distancing of two metres still applies and hopefully your place of work has made plans for this. If you commute on public transport you are required to wear a mask throughout your journey. Discretion applies in shops and many people choose to wear masks there too. We are not yet able to go into other peoples’ houses other than for essential visits such as caring or in an emergency.
Most important of all is what to do if you start to develop potential Coronavirus symptoms. Tell your housemates quickly and contact the NHS as soon as possible to order a test. You will need to self-isolate as best you can so let family and friends know too. Depending on what you have agreed, others may need to prepare your meals for you to leave at your door. If you are a Ramsgate Rooms tenant, get in touch with us as well, so that we can offer assistance if necessary. Remember, we are all in this together!