New EWS1 form for multi-storey buildings and new builds

You may have read information from other lenders, that there is now an industry-wide form available to help with the assessment and valuation of flats in multi-storey buildings, or where specific fire safety concerns exist.

You can see this form here.

This assessment involves a fire safety assessment to be conducted by a qualified professional, which will provide a clear safe or unsafe certificate to enhance the mortgage process. This form – known as the External Fire Review form - has been endorsed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, UK Finance and the Building Societies Association.

Foundation Home Loans is adopting the use of the EWS1 form with effect from Monday 16 March.

Valuation process

A form will be required for properties shown below and the form must be:

  • Obtained from the building owner. The ‘Client organisation’ on the form must be the building owner and won’t be accepted in the name of the applicant/client.
  • Fully completed and accompanied by a letter (on headed paper) from the signing firm which details their area of business, qualifications and confirms they completed the form.

It's the responsibility of the building owner to ensure the signing firm is a member of one of the appropriate professional bodies detailed in the recent guidance from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) advises that fire safety must be considered holistically on any multi-storey or multi-occupied building irrespective of height. See MHCLG guidance.


New Builds/ Conversions started from 1/4/2019 under the new 2018 Building Regulations

  • No additional checks are required as revised building regulations enforce non-combustible materials – but only obligatory for 6 storeys and above.
  • Where version of building regulations compliance cannot be determined and/or the height is less than 6 storeys – then refer to the point relating to All other buildings below.   


All other buildings (regardless of height)

  • A suitably certified Form EWS1 is required for the building where cladding/combustible material is noted by the surveyor – this must be received prior to offer.

  • The specialist will complete the form and select a rating of:

  • A1, A2 A3 - Where external wall materials are unlikely to support combustion
  • OR B1,B2 - Where combustible materials are present in external wall

  • Where the valuer indicates a rating of A3 (remedial costs may be needed) and B2 (not safe) on the Form EWS1 then the case will be declined.

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