I have carried out many condition surveys for social housing throughout the United Kingdom and wanted to talk about the key reasons this is done as often people don’t realise why they are carried out.
Because there are multiple surveys often being carried out at the same time. Main one being related to health and safety but also followed with energy efficiency and refurbishments.
The one I personally mainly cover is the issues relating to the age of the properties inherited onto a housing associations books. Generally we find that ex military,Royal Air Force or even ex council houses often don’t meet our requirements as a housing association so we need to begin to bring the property standard up to specification.
The decent homes standard is something that was introduced and is often referred to as part of the ideals your looking to be able to provide as a standard.
Often though inherited housing stock is well below par when it comes to ages of bathrooms, heating systems, kitchens and windows. Often age and other factors also mean some buildings being prone to things like condensation and damp. Being able to understand the affects and prevention of how one thing impacts on another is an important factor in improving a homes condition.
For example wall and loft insulation can often have a huge positive impact on a home not only for the resident but in also maintaining the quality of the home reducing the number of repairs as well as extending the life of some components of the home.
So although sometimes people don’t see the immediate benefits in fact they have probably forgotten the surveyor was ever there by the time large budgets are allocated for entire estates. But even looking round the plumbing of a house a resident isn’t aware that we are often looking for things like pipe lagging to protect the pipes from frost as well as help in lost heat. Both having a positive impact on the resident and the housing association stock of done properly.