It would be easy to think we know how housing associations should handle Thursday's national lockdown, but there are some crucial differences and uncertainties we all need to think through - and quickly.

First, it is unclear whether all repairs and maintenance activities can continue, including gas safety inspections, but we now have much more detailed guidance on Covid secure ways of working and vulnerable residents will not be shielding in the same way as the first lockdown.  What will you do if your operatives are working in a (more expensive) Covid safe way but tenants still won't let them in? You will already have many of these appointments booked in but how will you keep your colleagues and your tenants up to date? 

Secondly, we understand people will still be able to move house so you can still run your allocations and letting, but what other impacts will the lockdown have on these activities? There is no news on any eviction ban extension and Court hearings are not being suspended - so starting and ending tenancies will continue. However, we expect the Government to rethink this situation over the next few days and the Christmas moratorium on evictions from 11 December to 11 January will bring added uncertainty.

Thirdly, construction and development is to continue but who will bear the added costs of Covid secure ways of operating building sites?  Do you have any lagging concerns over the resilience of your counterparties? Do you need to update any of your risk maps?

And finally, how will the economic impact of the lockdown play out with your residents? We are yet to see the full impact of the end of the furlough scheme and the further economic damage of lockdown#2. What are you putting in place to make it easy for your tenants to talk to you so you can fulfil your role?

The government has had weeks to plan for this - Sage recommended a circuit breaker on 21 September to avoid "catastrophic consequences" - but today was the first time MHCLG officials sat down with the NHF to discuss, let alone resolve, these issues. It could be late nights again for many of us.