Tag Archives: housing association

Why Do Housing Associations Carry Out Condition Surveys?

There are multiple reasons housing associations carry out condition surveys not only for incoming and outgoing tenants but also for new and old stock. Several of these key areas are explained below.

With old stock properties bathrooms, kitchens, windows, boilers not only have standards to adhere to for the home to be liveable but also legally have to be compliant with changes in regulations. For example you will find heating boilers have moved in many homes and this is primarily for safety to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Although most people in the general public don’t follow these strict guidelines and often unaware until their boiler breaks down, housing associations and other organisations in a position of trust and responsible for others will always have to adhere and often ahead of government changes.

Bathrooms and kitchens in ex services quarters are often well maintained but extremely old and outside of an acceptable standard for housing associations. So upon ownership transferal there is a need to rip out bathrooms, toilets and kitchens which normally have already seen a life of 35 years far beyond what is acceptable even if in good condition.

We have a standard that is nationally set and need to comply with it where possible. Even if we cannot carry out the repairs and upgrades at that time a program will be set for the replacements for the near future.

On hand overs between tenants though its often a different reason as tenants can and do change things without informing the housing association first. Many a property I have found walls missing, new kitchens, altered bathrooms etc. etc. All seems a good idea at the time by the tenants until they want to move out or exchange homes. The housing associations are often flexible in these types of situation as long as an acceptable standard has been met. Only issue normally comes around is when things need to be ripped out to be put back to fit for purpose e.g. a kitchen that has been fitted by a tenant that cannot be maintained by the housing association or that the tenants have made something dangerous.

All in all though the condition surveys carried out by housing associations are to the benefit of all parties to not only make sure the building is in a safe and liveable condition but also its maintained to a level that can be sustainable and often improved upon.

Property Condition Surveys For Social Housing.

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.