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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a house cleaner during the COVID-19 pandemic?

The best way to set up a consultation with a house cleaner during the COVID-19 pandemic is by using virtual, online tools. Start by performing an online search for local house cleaners. Message them to set up either a phone call or video call to perform a consultation. During this call, they can give you recommendations and may be able to estimate the cost of their services. Be sure to discuss whether they accept virtual payments and any precautions they can take to perform the job safely.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a junk removal service during the COVID-19 pandemic?

You can set up consultations and appointments with a junk removal service near you during the COVID-19 pandemic by messaging the professional of your choice in an online search. Ask if they are willing to set up a video call to assess the project and answer any questions you have. Discuss a strategy for staying safe during the job, including sticking to guidelines on social distancing as well as paying through digital platforms instead of cash or check.

How can I find out if a junk removal service is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

Junk removal may be considered essential in certain cases during the COVID-19 pandemic. A good place to start is by searching your city or state government’s website for a list of guidelines.

For national guidelines, visit CISA’s Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19 webpage, which identifies 16 types of essential infrastructure sectors that can continue operating during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure.  

Can I use digital payments to pay for junk removal services?

Today, digital payment platforms are gaining popularity across many services, including junk removal companies. Digital payment services such as PayPal, Square Cash, Venmo, Zelle and Google Pay are common options for customers.

Conduct an online search for junk removal services in your area, and ask whether they accept digital payments. Make sure you have a plan in place to take all necessary precautions to comply with any mandated social distancing guidelines.

Can I use digital payments to pay for house cleaning?

Not only do many house cleaners accept digital payments through platforms like Zelle, PayPal, Square Cash, Google Pay, Venmo and more, but this may become more common as the COVID-19 pandemic pushes more service workers to digitize. This means you can pay your house cleaner without making physical contact or handling money. 

If cleaning is absolutely essential during the current crisis, consult with the house cleaner beforehand to ensure a safe monetary transaction that complies with current government guidelines and recommendations for social distancing.

How can I find out if a house cleaner is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

A house cleaner is generally not considered an essential service sector during the coronavirus pandemic. To find out which services are considered essential, visit your city and state government, and read their guidelines. A national list of essential service providers can be found on CISA’s Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19 site. This webpage lists 16 different infrastructure sectors considered to be essential. However, not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure.

Does a junk removal service need to enter my home?

A junk remover may not need to enter your home if all of the materials are located outside. If a junk remover needs access to your home and the project is deemed essential, you’ll need to discuss a strategy for safety. For example, avoid being near each other, sanitize involved surfaces and conduct payments using digital platforms. Discuss potential strategies with junk removal companies in your area.

Do junk removers offer remote or virtual services?

Because junk removal requires manual labor, it is not typically a remote service. However, if you see a profile that states the junk removal company is offering remote services, ask the company what those services include. And schedule a phone or video consultation with local junk removers, and ask what precautions can be taken to comply with social distancing guidelines. 

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