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Welsh Housing Conditions Survey: Information for participants

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  • Release date: 2 October 2017
The Welsh Housing Conditions Survey (WHCS) collects information about the condition and energy efficiency of all types of housing in Wales. This information will be used to inform government policies.

What is the Welsh Housing Conditions Survey?

The Welsh Housing Conditions Survey is a survey of the condition of all types of housing – houses, bungalows and flats; temporary and permanent; owned and rented – across Wales. During your National Survey for Wales interview you provided vital information on a number of topics – household income, housing costs, how you pay for your energy – this will be combined with information from a physical inspection of your property to give the Welsh Government a clear picture of the condition and energy efficiency of the housing stock in Wales.

What is the information going to be used for?

The information collected will help the Welsh Government to make informed decisions – so resources are better used to help home owners and tenants. This includes decisions on how to improve energy efficiency of homes, build better housing for the future and reduce the impact of poor quality housing on the health of the occupants. The survey was last undertaken in 2008 and the information collected has been used constantly since then to inform government policies.

Why should I take part?

Whatever your circumstances, they are relevant to this study. Obtaining information from as many selected households as possible is the only way the Welsh Government can get a complete and accurate picture of the condition and energy efficiency of housing in Wales. By taking part, you ensure that you become an important part of the bigger picture of life in Wales today and help to shape policies which affect Wales.

What will taking part involve?

A surveyor employed by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) will undertake a visual inspection of your home. The surveyor will look at the inside and outside of your home. It is only a visual inspection; they will not need to move any furnishings or carpets, or undertake any testing. Your home will not be disturbed in any way. The inspection will take around 40-50 minutes; most of this time will be spent outside, with just about 20 minutes spent inside.

Is confidentiality guaranteed?

Yes. The information collected as part of the inspection will be treated as confidential as directed by the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. It will be used to produce statistics that will not identify you or anyone in your household. Information is also provided to other approved organisations for statistical purposes only and the same standards of protection are applied to your information at all times.

Do I need permission from my landlord?

There is no need to seek permission from your landlord or freeholder to participate in the survey. You do not need to inform them of your participation unless you wish to. As the interviewer will have explained, all your responses to the National Survey for Wales and the information collected as part of the inspection of your home will remain confidential.

I’ve agreed to take part, what happens next?

Firstly, thank you.  A surveyor will contact you within the next few weeks to arrange a convenient time to carry out the inspection. If you need to rearrange their visit you can either contact the surveyor directly or BRE on 0808 164 2982.

Who is conducting the survey?

The Building Research Establishment (BRE) are conducting the survey on behalf of the Welsh Government.

How do I know the surveyor is genuine?

All surveyors carry photo ID cards, with a Freephone number enabling you to check that they are who they say they are.

Is it possible for a Welsh speaking surveyor to visit?

Yes. You will have indicated to the National Survey for Wales interviewer whether you wish to have a Welsh speaking surveyor visit. If you wish to change your preference please contact BRE on the number below.

Further Information

If you would like further information about the Welsh Housing Conditions Survey or have any queries contact BRE on 0808 164 2982 or email whcsinfo@bre.co.uk. Calls are free from mobiles as well as landlines. For more information visit the BRE website (external link).
If you would like to contact us directly, please email stats.housingconditions@gov.wales or call 0300 060 3300.
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