Tai Calon took over the homes from Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council in 2010. Since then, we have, through our Asset Management Team, continually invested in our customer’s homes and neighbourhoods to meet and maintain Welsh Housing Quality Standards (WHQS).
Last year, we managed to deliver a number of major work programmes. For example, we fit 1,200 homes with new windows, renewed 38 roofs, and installed external wall insulation to 84 homes.
The external wall insulation projects were at St Cynidr Close in Hilltop and Rhondda Close in Rassau. The properties are steel frame, and the work involved the removal of the existing cladding and replacing it with external wall insulation. The insulation was finished with smooth silicon render on the first floors and brick slip cladding on the ground floors. The properties also had a new roof covering, windows, and doors.
This project has significantly improved the thermal efficiency of the homes whilst enhancing the appearance of the area, protecting the external walls from weathering, reduced heat loss and will help minimise condensation issues.
All the tenants we spoke with said that since the work has been completed, their home feels warmer and is easier to heat. Everyone we talked to also agreed that the area where they live looks better and many were either satisfied or very satisfied with the work carried out.
This work on external wall insulation highlights the change in direction of the Asset Management Team. Previously the focus has been on maintaining the Welsh Homes Quality Standards and replacing worn out components. Now it takes account of the Welsh Government additional target requiring all social rented homes to achieve EPC A by 2030. Achieving this target will reduce the climate change impact that the homes have, see reductions in the energy usage and improve customer satisfaction.
To help us improve other homes, the team recently started a 5-year Stock Condition Survey programme. We aim to survey every home to collect data which will help us plan our future programmes of work by letting us know when elements like kitchens, bathrooms, roofs, and doors need to be replaced. Alongside these, we will also be carrying out energy performance surveys to analyse the home’s current performance and give us a better understanding of how this can be improved.
In the meantime, the team will continue to plan and deliver effective works programmes, replace components as required, take the necessary steps to progress the energy efficiency of our homes, and improve customer satisfaction.