You might have heard about it. A much sought-after DU college recently announced an admission cut-off of 100%.

Yes. One. Hundred. Percent.

Saying these cut-offs are abnormal would be an understatement. But hey, in 2020, what even is ‘normal’? Your life in college when it eventually resumes certainly won’t be. Or even life in a PG in Delhi if you choose to stay in one.

That’s because, besides lodging, food and amenities, there’s another feature that a paying guest accommodation must now provide - safety from COVID-19. And that is bound to disrupt how you go about life in them.

Now, unfortunately, safety in a pandemic is something small-scale PGs won’t be able to provide. Thankfully, though, there are larger players like Stanza Living that can keep the coronavirus out of their residences. That’s because Stanza Living PGs are not your everyday PGs. Thanks to their scale, they have the necessary resources and network to implement best-in-class safety and hygiene measures across the board.

And when you are looking for a PG in Delhi to stay in, you have to ask if it has the same resources and network.

Let’s break that down.

Is the residence taking proactive measures?

When you are at the entrance of the residence, is there a staff member there equipped to take your temperature before letting you in? Does the management keep a note of the health status of all their residents?

Do they know when any resident has come back from a COVID-19 hotspot? And if they do, do they have a team ready to take the necessary steps to eliminate risks?

This is what we have learned from the way many governments around the world initially reacted to the pandemic. One needs to stop the coronavirus at the very initial stage. Otherwise, it can be too little, too late.

You might have heard the old proverb ‘prevention is better than cure’. Or ‘better safe than sorry’. Or ‘nip it in the bud’.

Of course, you have heard them. These are the most cliched of all cliches. But never have they been truer.

What are the hygiene and sanitisation measures like?

In a pandemic, sanitising your premises often is not often enough. Evenif there are sanitiser dispensers in every corner of the residences, there are not enough sanitiser dispensers. Even if the staff is disinfecting a high-touch area immediately after use, they are not disinfecting it quickly enough.

What we’re saying is - if the residence staff is not being as obsessive about hygiene and sanitisation as Monica from Friends, they are not being obsessive enough. Every nook and cranny has to be kept corona-free. Constantly.

For that to happen, there is zero room for error. It might seem like overdoing it, but if there’s ever been a time to ‘overdo’ anything, this is it.

How COVID-proof are their daily services and operations?

In a good managed accommodation, life will go on. It will only have to pass a series of stringent COVID-proofing measures along the way.

Take food for example. Are all utensils and containers in their kitchen disinfected regularly? Do the handlers of those utensils and containers wear PPE kits? And when the food is distributed in the dining facility, do they have a no-touch dining facility?

Also, when you make a housekeeping request, will the staff come wearing a mask? Will they wear a brand new pair of gloves before they begin cleaning your room?

You should also inspect the common areas. Is social distancing being practiced in the TV room? If the residence has a fitness zone, are the machines and weights disinfected after every use?

Even when you’re entering or exiting the building, have steps been taken so that you don’t have to touch the door handle?

If the answers to all of them are ‘yes’, then good. If not, then the residence is no good.

Do they keep their safety checks under check?

Even after sanitising every inch of the residence, after checking and rechecking the temperatures of all residences, after implementing no-touch processes in all services, the residence management should still be unsure of their safety level.

Nothing is more reassuring during these times than living in a residence which conducts regular safety measures, and then also gets regular third-party audits done of those same measures.

Because we’re up against something that spreads so fast and is so, so hard to spot. If anyone says they have everything under control, they’re kidding you.

Or they’re kidding themselves.

How normal is their normal life?

As we discussed at the beginning, the old normal is a distant dream now. But there some things that can’t be compromised on. You still need regular and healthy meals, you still need a strong wifi connection, you still need your bedsheets changed and your clothes washed.

You still need all the necessities, basically. And a good managed accommodation should, well... manage that.

They should have food ingredients stocked for the following few months. They should not use the pandemic as an excuse and cut the internet to save a buck. And their residences should still be staffed to take care of your day-to-day needs.

Now, we’re not trying to make you paranoid here. Yes, there are many conditions to be met for a residence to be considered safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

But there are places that are meeting those conditions. And their residents can go about life without being in panic mode all the time about their health.

Like Stanza Living. Despite having over a hundred residences all over the country, they have maintained safety standards in each one of them. And their residents have given them glowing reviews about the way they have followed all safety protocols, but still delivered the basic necessities in a lockdown.

But don’t take it from us. Or from anyone else, for that matter. Head over to their web page. Go through all their residences. Shortlist the ones that fit your requirements. Then visit them and make sure they tick each and every one of the boxes when it comes to safety from COVID-19.

Because when colleges are doing so, even you should demand a hundred percent.