COVID-19/Coronavirus Response and Updates
At Hill, the safety and well-being of our colleagues, supply chain and customers is our main priority.
Over recent weeks we have followed guidance from Government and Public Health England and implemented a number of changes to our business in order to keep our colleagues and stakeholders safe.
However, in light of the Prime Minister’s statement on the evening of the 23rd March, we now believe the time is right to begin an orderly close down of our core operations until this crisis is beyond us. Whilst the Government guidance remains unclear, particularly with the Secretary of State last night tweeting that construction and housing can continue working from site within social distancing guidelines, we are strongly of the opinion we have reached the moral and practical point at which it is no longer possible for us to continue to operate in a business as usual manner.
We will therefore be taking the following actions:
Construction operations on site will cease by close of business on Friday 27th March. We have been planning for this over recent weeks, and so have a clear plan for doing so. It is important that we continue until Friday so that we can ensure an orderly and well managed close down. Health and Safety is a priority on site and we are prioritising operations over the next few days to leave our sites in a safe and orderly manner.
Where we have homes that are very close to being ready for completion, we will endeavour to complete them if practically possible.
Up until the point of close down, sites will continue to operate within social distancing guidelines and with the enhanced hygiene measures we have already put in place over recent weeks.
Those who continue to work on site will manage the situation sensibly and practically, including:
- avoiding public transport
- working to a strict rota basis
- implementing stringent hygiene policies
- minimising close contact with others and practising social distancing
- managing welfare according to Government guidance
- spacing out desks as necessary within our site offices
Sales offices will close from Tuesday 24th March, but we remain open for business.
Customers who are in the process of buying a Hill Home and moving in:
For those customers who are due to complete their home sale over the coming months, we will endeavour to ensure you are able to complete your purchase and move into your new home unless guidance is issued otherwise.
It is important that customers can be allowed to complete as there are significant implications of not doing so (potential homelessness, loss of mortgages, etc). We will endeavour to continue a high quality customer journey through this difficult time but ask our customers to bear with us as we try and adapt to the situation. At present, we plan for all move-ins to be conducted in person with a member of the sales team and construction team. Social distancing rules will be observed during the handover.
Our sales staff will still be available for existing customers to progress their sales and to support and manage the handover and completion process. If contact has not already been made, our sales team will reach out to you individually. The quality of our customer journey may be impacted, and we apologise in advance if this is the case.
Where construction closures impact your sale, we will do our best to advise you of the implications in these rapidly changing times.
Customers who already live in a Hill Home:
Unfortunately we will only be able to conduct emergency repairs from this point onwards. Routine customer service visits, even where already planned, will be scheduled for a future period. It may also take us a little longer to respond than usual, but we hope you can understand this situation.
We remain committed to providing you the best customer service possible and will keep you updated if the situation changes.
Customers who want to buy a Hill Home:
New and existing customers can continue to contact our sales centres by telephone and through our website www.hill.co.uk. We are working on plans to provide the best service as possible in these changing times. Please speak to our sales executives who will best guide you how to browse for your new home and will support you with this process. We encourage you to use the tools on our website, including our latest availability of new homes, their pricing, and the ability to download brochures.
Our offices will close from Wednesday 25th March. Please direct all communications by email or phone to the relevant persons and assume that any post will not be opened until it is possible to re-open our offices.
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, we are closely monitoring, and will continue to follow, the guidance of Government and Public Health England. As and when there are any significant changes, we will be sure to update our staff, clients, partners, customers and supply chain as quickly as possible.
As a business, we are fortunate to have a strong balance sheet and cash reserves which gives us economic resilience to this significant challenge and we look forward to returning to business as usual as soon as safely and practically possible.
Many thanks for your continued support.
The Hill Group