Posted on 06 July 2021
We expect to appoint our new external wall system (EWS) survey providers in July 2021, following the conclusion of our consultation with customers. In the meantime, we wanted to share our provisional EWS programme for the next two years. This programme will be finalised, once providers have been appointed formally.
“We’ll continue to take a risk-based approach to EWS surveys, which means we’ll focus first on our tallest buildings presenting the most risk, ie those with ‘significant’ cladding (more than 40% of the outside walls), before moving onto lower risk buildings,” explained Liz Oliver, Hyde’s Safer Homes Director.
“We need to carry out an EWS survey before an EWS1 form can be completed. If the EWS survey suggests the building will be given a satisfactory EWS1 rating, we’ll instruct our engineers to carry one out straight away.
“However, if the survey suggests the building won’t get a satisfactory EWS1 rating, we’ll have to carry out remedial works before instructing an EWS1 form. This is because the cost of completing the EWS1 form is on top of the EWS survey and we don’t want anyone to incur unnecessary costs.”
We’ll also be carrying out visual inspections of all our buildings of six storeys of more without ‘significant’ cladding by March 2022, so we can provide a report that will demonstrate to lenders that an EWS1 form isn’t needed.
Buildings below six storeys aren’t currently included in the programme. We’ll be working with our EWS survey providers to put together a plan for these buildings over the coming months and aim to share this with customers by March 2022. This means we may not start carrying out surveys on these buildings until April 2023, once we have finished surveying our taller buildings.
Liz added that while we’re working as fast as we can, unfortunately, the sheer scale of the challenge, and the time it takes to carry out EWS surveys, meant some customers would be waiting more than a year for an EWS1 form.
“We know this will be frustrating for many customers and we’re sorry that we can’t carry these surveys out any sooner. We continue to lobby Government and lenders, through the National Housing Federation and the G15 (the group of London’s largest housing associations), to come up with a solution to end this national crisis, to help leaseholders up and down the country.
“In the meantime, our priority must be to keep everyone living in our buildings safe, while giving as much support to, and minimising the financial impact on, customers, including applying for Government funding to pay for remedial works and getting developers to pay to fix issues.”
You can find out more about EWS surveys and EWS1 forms, along with the provisional EWS survey programme, on the EWS section of our website.