Mount Ephraim Road is a large building located in south London. The building is compromising of 18 self-contained flats, with communal areas such as a lounge, separate kitchens and toilets. Early in 2021 Westmoreland Supported Housing conducted a full survey of the property which outlined the poor condition of the building and how it has worn over time. Westmoreland Housing Association felt that the best way to move forward with a renovation of the property was to seek investment from the landlord, which they granted.
Starting with the exterior, the roof in particular was in a very poor condition, allowing water to ingress into the building, with tiles missing, felt ripped and mortar falling out of joints in several areas, which was all noticeable from the ground. There were also trees towering over the front of the building which were within the boundaries of Mount Ephraim Road which were having a negative effect on the roof too. The first job that Westmoreland decided to carry out was the removal of the trees and killing off the roots. This really opened up and brightened the front of the property which had a really positive effect on the tenants and gave them a lot more natural light into their flats.
Westmoreland then erected a three-story scaffold around the entire property in order to gain access to the whole roof and carry out the repairs with further inspection – The works consisted of replacing missing tiles, replacing all of the lead flashing, felt roofed areas and repointing all of the missing mortar. Upon closer inspection, it was apparent that there were failing velux windows that were in need of replacement and there were some timber window frames that were in need of repair and redecoration. These works were also carried out alongside the roof repairs.
Moving internally, Westmoreland found that the building was in need of a full renovation. All 18 of the self-contained flats were run down, decoration was tired, bathrooms were over 15 years old, kitchen areas were tired and damaged, and the flooring was marked and ripped beyond repair or cleaning.
The communal areas, such as the lounge, hallways stairs and landing were also very run down regarding the decoration and flooring – With the office needing the same, but a clear out of old filing cabinets and a sink removing which is no longer needed.
This will open up further space for the staff to work in.
The plan was to give all the flats a full renovation whilst keeping all the tenants in situ and carry out the communal areas and office once the flats were completed.
This was so Westmoreland could use the investment monies to the full potential and avoid any decanting.
Fifteen of the eighteen flats at the time were occupied, so the plan was to relocate the residents around the building whilst the works were being carried out. We had no complaints from any of the residents within these times due to their happiness and excitement that their flats were being fully renovated. Westmoreland executed a plan to start on the top floor of the four-story building and work our way down to the basement level.
The plan was to carry out the full refurbishment of three flats in one week, totaling a five-week plan for the flats to be completed and allowed for a further week for the communal areas and staff office which totaled a six week project.
Westmoreland had to take in to consideration the use of the premises in daytime hours when decoration of the hallway stairs and landing were taking place, so accommodated this by arranging decorators to work through the night to avoid any further disruption to the residents.
The project was a huge success with timescales being met and the residents moods noticeably changing for the better as reported by staff members. All eighteen flats had a full renovation with a new kitchen, new bathrooms, new flooring and decorations throughout.
These changes really lightened the building and flats up naturally and had a positive effect on the residents within the building.