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EWS1 advice for leaseholders and shared owners

New government guidance means that in some instances banks and building societies now require EWS1 forms from leaseholders and shared owners who are applying to staircase (buy a greater share of their property), or re-mortgage or sell their property.

What is an EWS1 form and is it relevant to me?

An EWS1 form provides independent certification that your building meets the requirements of the government’s latest standards. This is not a legal requirement, however some lenders are asking for EWS1 forms before they will consider offering a mortgage.

It is relevant to you if you are a shared owner who wants to staircase (buy a greater share of your property), re-mortgage, or sell your property.

Why is this a problem for some people?

EWS1 forms were previously only required for buildings over 18 metres, but lenders have started to request the forms for buildings under 18m.

Unfortunately there is now a large demand for these forms and a limited pool of professionals who have the qualifications required to carry out these assessments.

What is Clarion doing to help?

We recognise that any delay in a mortgage application will be frustrating and we are doing all we can to support people affected. We will look to provide EWS1 forms wherever we can, but because of the national demand and shortage of skilled professionals who can carry out the assessment, this may not happen quickly.

As government guidance has changed over time, the EWS1 assessment process is likely to recommend additional remedial work to more Clarion buildings. If further work is required, Clarion will complete this, prioritising our taller buildings in accordance with risk profile.

Some home owners have a property within blocks that Clarion does not own or have responsibility for the structure of the building. In these instances it is the responsibility of the freeholder or managing agent to obtain these assessments, and where necessary Clarion will liaise with them on your behalf in order to try and obtain the form.

Can I arrange my own EWS1 assessment?

No, the forms need to be completed by the building owner or person responsible for the structure of the building.

Will every lender require an EWS1 form?

No, each lender will have its own requirements.

If I am affected, who can I contact for further information?

If you have been asked by your lender to provide an EWS1 form, you can contact fireinspection@myclarionhousing.com for more information.