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10 Things that will change during CMCO for high-rise dwellers


This is what the new normal would look like during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) for those living in apartments and condominiums. 

high rise buildings
© nizamkem | 123rf

Covid-19 pandemic has reshaped and reoriented many aspects of our lives. The ‘new normal’ is something we have to contend with post-pandemic. Just what exactly does this new normal look like during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO)? It probably looks different for people in different walks of life, locations and occupations.

What is Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO)?

Before we get into what the new normal looks like for those who live in a condo during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO), let’s look into what CMCO actually is. CMCO is otherwise known as Perintah Kawalan Pergerakan Bersyarat (PKPB) in malay. Depending on the severity of cases in a particular area, the governing bodies either place an area under Movement Control Order (MCO), which is otherwise known as Perintah Kawalan Pergerakan (PKP), or CMCO.

The MCO Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) are very tight, and heavy fines are implemented on those who do not adhere to the SOP. Some of these include businesses that are allowed to operate, no dine-in allowed for F&B  businesses, and business operating hours. Condominiums were not exempt from the list of government implemented SOPs during the MCO, and there was a list of SOPs that condominiums had to adhere to during the MCO 2.0.

CMCO has slightly more lenient rules than MCO, whereby depending on the severity of the situation in the particular area, dine-in may be allowed, business operation hours may be extended, and the number of passengers per vehicle may be more than two pax.

Acknowledging the fact that a typical high rise is usually home to families numbering in the hundreds to the thousands, many high rises came up with their own set of SOPs to limit the possibility of COVID-19 infection in their community. New factors were considered that wasn’t in place previously. What are these things? We’ve listed some key items below and what you should do.

1. Contactless delivery is the best policy

Even when the CMCO eventually lifts, people may have become used to online shopping to ever go back. While there is no better feeling than having your ‘hokkien mee’ arriving at your doorstep, you should opt for “contactless delivery” where possible to minimise the risk of contact. Just instruct your delivery person to leave the items at your door or create a “pick up point” outside your door (a chair or a basket, just be sure to wipe down the area before and after receiving your package). Alternatively, you can self-collect your deliveries from the lobby or guardhouse instead.

2. Taking evening walks or runs

It used to be a nice community activity – taking evening walks around the compounds, chatting to other residents and getting some nice fresh air. You can do that during CMCO, just make sure that you keep a safe distance from others so everybody remains safe. You can get a run in too if that was what you used to do, but make sure you are disciplined in ensuring you wash your outdoor clothes when you get back. Additionally, get a shower after your run to make sure the risk of infection remains low.

3. Not taking a dip in the pool so soon

mother and baby swimming in a pool
© marctran | 123rf

Most apartment or condominium managements have stopped people from using the swimming pool and common showers, so I am sure a lot of you water babies may be hankering for a dip. Even if that stop-order will be lifted eventually, it’s probably best to be cautious about using the pool as social distancing is almost impossible in a swimming pool.

4. Practice social distancing in the lift

Social distancing inside an elevator.
© Chayapon Bootboonneam | 123rf

It used to be a feat to squeeze into a packed lift without it beeping. But during CMCO, wait for the next arrival. Social distancing would be useless if we are going to pack ourselves into a lift. A little patience may go a long way for you and your family’s health. 

5. Taking your children to the playground

Most apartments or condominiums have playground areas where kids can go and play. It’s probably okay to bring your child to get some sun and movement but as a parent, you need to tell your children to stay a safe distance from other kids. Plus, make sure your kids refrain from touching their faces if they haven’t sanitised their hands first.

6. Do home exercises for a while more

exercise at home
© Shao-Chun Wang | 123rf

Gyms and saunas at your high rise are probably going to be off-limits. While you might love nothing more than to get back to hitting those free weights and cycling machines, you should continue exercising at home to keep fit. Buy an exercise mat for a comfortable home workout. Try at-home burpees – it can pump your heart as well as a treadmill could.

Read more: 9 Easy tips to eat healthy and exercise regularly when you have to work from home

7. “Your place, not mine”

If your parents are living on landed property, then perhaps it’s best you go to their place for family dinners for a bit after the CMCO. Getting them to come to you increases the likelihood of infection for them as high-rises have a higher density of people within a confined space.

8. Thinking twice about the visitors who visit

welcoming guests
© perig76 | 123rf

Unless they are people you completely trust, you may want to be a little more careful about who you invite to your home. People can call you paranoid but there is nothing wrong with being extra vigilant about safeguarding your home from a possible infection.

9. “A happening party is a small party”

dinner party
© primagefactory | 123rf

At the same time, it’s probably best you refrain from holding parties for the time being or keep the numbers small. Even if you are a bit of a risk-taker, you may want to be considerate to your neighbours who may be concerned about too many strangers entering the apartment or condominium compound. Alternatively, hold a video call party instead to stay in touch with friends and loved ones.

10. Considering the density even more seriously

It’s more important than ever to consider the property’s density if you’re planning to buy a high rise property. There’s a possible infection risk when living in a densely populated high-rise. Low-density properties can be above budget, but you might find a gem among older properties with fewer units.

No matter what the new normal may eventually look like, there will be lifestyle adjustments to be made especially for people living in high rise properties.  Take note of the few considerations advised above to accommodate you and your family’s lifestyle changes.

Remember to practise social distancing and continue wearing the face mask whenever you’re out during this period. Stay safe and take care.

Continue reading iProperty’s hottest MCO topics:

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