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Update on Covid-19 tier 4 restrictions

Guidance on the specific activities which may be permitted as part of the level 4 restrictions has now been published by the Scottish Government.

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Last week, the Scottish Government and COSLA issued a joint letter outlining the new local protection levels in Scotland and some of the implications for social landlords. Following this week’s announcement that many local authorities in Scotland will be moving into the highest protection level (level 4) of Scotland's Strategic Framework from Friday 20 November, further guidance on the specific activities which may be permitted as part of the level 4 restrictions has now been published by the Scottish Government.

Some of the relevant points for social landlords regarding tradespeople, home moves and travel are summarised below, however, please refer to the full guidance documents for further details. The Guide to Restarting Services will also be updated shortly in line with the latest guidance. 

Tradespeople, home repairs and working in someone else’s home

Level 0 to 3
As outlined in the Coronavirus (COVID-19): local protection levels guidance, for levels 0 to 3, tradespeople can continue to work in other people’s homes, providing they follow guidance on working safely.

Tradespeople who deliver goods or services to homes and businesses can travel between all levels for work purposes.

Level 4
However, tradespeople should only go into a house in a level 4 area to carry out, or deliver, essential work or services. As outlined in the guidance on businesses and workplaces that must close and can remain open at protection level 4 (published 20 November) under level 4 of Scotland's Strategic Framework, essential services are those which “fundamentally underpin, sustain and safeguard households”.  

Work in people’s homes can therefore continue for essential services under the level 4 restrictions. For social landlords, this may include:

  • to carry out utility (electricity, gas, water, telephone, broadband) safety checks, repairs, maintenance and installations
  • to carry out repairs and maintenance that would otherwise threaten the household’s health and safety
  • to deliver goods or shopping
  • to deliver, install or repair key household furniture and appliances such as washing machines, fridges and cookers
  • to support a home move, for example furniture removal.

The Scottish Government has also provided further FAQs for work in other people’s homes.

Home moves

All home moves are permitted as set out in Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on moving home provided they can be carried out safely. The guidance also states:

“People can move home in all protection levels, and to and from areas with different levels, but may wish to consider if they can postpone a move and related activities in areas subject to level 4 protections. Relevant businesses can also continue to support people to move home in all protection levels, and should follow the Scottish Government’s latest guidance for employers and businesses on COVID-19.”


The guidance on travel and transport provides a list of limited exceptions from the guidance not to travel into, or out of, Level 3 and 4 local authority areas, or to, or from, other parts of the UK.

This includes: Travel for work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, but only where that cannot be done from your home

For further information, SFHA members should contact Senior Policy Manager Stacey Dingwall sdingwall@sfha.co.uk 

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