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External Wall Insulation

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What is External Wall Insulation?

External Wall Insulation (EWI) involves fitting thermally insulated material to the outside of your home and covering it with a weatherproof finish.

We install it in properties with solid walls, which cannot have cavity wall insulation.

How will it benefit my property?

EWI will minimise heat loss from you home, reduce the cost of energy bills and reduce external noise. It also helps to minimise condensation and resulting mould growth by keeping internal walls warmer.

How long will the installation take?

It can take up to insert timeframe, but sometimes it might take longer if the weather is poor.

Do I have to have the work done?

No, but as your landlord we have to make sure your home is safe and well-maintained. If you are not able to have the work done, please let us know as soon as possible.

Can I just have some of the work done?

No, we will only be doing the full work and will not do any partial installations.

Do I need to be home when the work is taking place?

Even though the work is on the outside of your home, we might still need access to your property to do an energy survey before and after we complete the work. We have to do these surveys to prove that your home is more energy efficient as a result of EWI. This information enables us to secure more funding to make these home improvements for our customers.

The survey won’t take any more than an hour, and will involve us checking the following:

  • Age and make of your boiler
  • The number of radiators in your home
  • If your windows are single or double glazed
  • The condition of your doors
  • Sometimes we may also need to look at your loft space.

This is to help us find out how thermally efficient your home is.

Getting ready for the work to start

Our contractor will visit your home around four weeks before the works are due to begin to do a ‘pre-entry survey’. They will tell you about the work, answer any questions you have and agree with you when the work will start and how long it will take.

Most of the time we will need to use scaffolding to install EWI, so please make sure any items like hanging baskets, plant pots, children’s toys and ornaments are removed before the work begins.

Have a look at the Scaffolding section in this booklet for more detailed information.

During the work

It will generally take about two working days, depending on the size of your home. When the work is finished, we will check it to make sure everything is ok and you’re happy.

There will be some unavoidable noise and dust, but we’ll do our best to minimise disruption to you while we’re working.  


Most of the time, we will need to use scaffolding to install EWI, so please make sure any hanging baskets, plant pots, children’s toys and other similar items are removed from the area where scaffolding will be.

Ideally, we will put up scaffolding a few days before the work begins and take it down a few days after the work is complete, but sometimes it might take longer due to bad weather conditions.

It might be that your property doesn’t need to have scaffolding put up, so speak to your Contractor Liaison Officer for more information.

We will give you at least a week’s notice before we put scaffolding up at your home.

Please keep children away from any scaffolding on your property, and if anyone tries to access the scaffolding outside of working hours, please report it to the police. You should also inform your Contractor Liaison Officer on the following day about the incident.

Satellite Dishes, CCTV and Security Alarms

If you have a Sateliste Dish, CCTV cameras or an alarm attached to your property, our engineers will need to remove them while the work is taking place. We will do our best to minimise disruption to you and will re-fix all items after the work is complete.

In most cases, we can relocate these items temporarily so that you still have full use the equipment, but if you do have any problems, please report them to your Contractor Liaison Officer as soon as possible. We won’t be able to respond if a significant length of time has passed before you report it.

We’ll do our best to ensure you still have full use of the equipment, but in the instances when we need to disconnect security alarms and can’t provide a temporary replacement, you might need to contact your home insurance company to let them know.

How to look after your EWI

Here are some guidelines on how to get the most out of your EWI.


  • Get advice from us before doing any exterior maintenance or fixing anything to the external walls
  • Let us know straight away about any damage or vandalism to the external walls
  • Use protective materials when you’re using ladders on the outside of the property
  • Contact your local Riverside office to get approval before fitting satellite dishes or TV aerials etc.


  • Don’t train climbing plants up external walls – they will stain the finish
  • Don’t over paint the walls
  • Don’t attach lean-to’s, shelters or conservatories to external walls
  • Don’t subject the wall to severe impact or strain (i.e. from a vehicle)
  • Don’t use any chemical solvents, cleaners, mould killers or anti-graffiti solutions
  • Don’t allow broken or leaking overflows to remain unrepaired – this will lead to discoloration, staining and mould growth on the wall
  • Don’t let damaged areas go unreported – this will invalidate the warranties taken out on the EWI
  • Don’t fix heavy items to the wall without getting advice from us first
  • Don’t

How will I know I am included in the programme?

You will get a letter from us telling you you’re included. You can also contact our Customer Service Centre about future programmes.

Do I have to have the work done?

No, but as your landlord we have to make sure your home is safe and well-maintained. If you can’t have the work done, please contact us as soon as possible. There is no guarantee we will be able to come back to do the work in the future if you change your mind.

What will it look like?

A kitchen designer will come to your home and help you plan your kitchen. They will explain the process to you and discuss the options. At this point, you can also choose your worktops and units.

During this visit, you will be given a drawing of the new design layout for your new kitchen to give you an idea of what it will look like, but please be aware this might vary slightly from the finished kitchen.

Getting ready for the work to start

Our contractor will visit your home around 4 weeks before the start of the work to do a ‘pre-entry survey’. They will tell you about the work, answer any questions you have and agree with you when the work will start and how long it will take.

During the work

We will give you a timetable of the work so you know what will happen on each day. It will generally take around 10 working days, and we will check it when finished to make sure everything is ok and that you’re happy.

Kitchen Design

Your new kitchen will include:

  • Base and wall units and doors (up to 10)
  • Worktops
  • Stainless steel sink and drainer
  • Taps
  • Modern bevelled brick effect tiles for walls above work surfaces and under cupboards
  • Extractor fan (where needed)
  • Cushion flooring
  • Electrical re-wiring (where needed) and new sockets (subject to the kitchen survey)
  • Plumbing services
  • Space and plumbing for a washing machine, fridge and cooker (minimum 620mm openings)
  • Full kitchen area decoration – painting only

It won’t include:

  • Cooker hood – we don’t supply or fit these but if you plan to buy one yourself, we can provide a fuse spur – just let us know at the design visit
  • Under unit lighting – we don’t supply or install under unit lighting as part of this programme.
  • You can’t pay us extra to get an additional item – you can contact the suppliers directly to arrange this

The specifics

The flooring will go slightly underneath the units to allow for any shrinkage in the future. We will then fit kickboards and seal the flooring.

We will fit at least three double sockets above the worktop, one low level double socket and two single sockets (one for a washing machine and the other for a fridge/freezer).

We will do our best to meet your needs but sometimes, health and safety regulations can limit the shape, size and options available for your kitchen. 

Keeping your own appliances and fixtures

Our contractors won’t install tiles or paint that you have bought. If you would like to tile or paint the kitchen yourself, just let us know at the pre-entry survey.

You will have the option to keep existing appliances, but if they don’t comply with current health and safety legislation, we won’t be able to refit them. We can’t replace these items but will make space available to fit new items. It is your responsibility to purchase new appliances.

If you have replaced or modified existing units, providing that they conform to health and safety legislation, you can choose keep them and remove your property from the programme. Alternatively, you can stay in the programme and go ahead with our kitchen upgrade – it’s up to you. If you decide not to go ahead with the work, we might ask you to sign a disclaimer.  

During the design process, we’ll ask you about future purchases of white goods, existing appliances and If you’re thinking about buying a larger than standard appliance, like an Aga cooker, please let us know before the design visit as we can’t modify worktops at a later date.

If you want to purchase a cooker hood, we can provide a fuse spur but can’t supply or fit a hood for you. Just let us know during the design visit.

Aids and Adaptations

Please let us know if you need any aids or adaptations. There may be some minor adaptations that we can put in while we’re doing the work, like fitting mixer taps (which are easier to turn on and off). Get in touch for more information.