Sellers guide to the UK cladding crisis

Home >
Sellers guide to the UK cladding crisis
Cladding crisis triggered by Grenfell tragedy

Backgound to the cladding crisis

1.5m modern homes who cannot prove their walls are safe, are currently unmortgageable, in what is known as the “cladding crisis”, triggered by the tragic fire at the Grenfell tower in 2017.  This represents 6% of the UK homes market and most of the first rung of the property ladder, impacting the entire property market.

Sellers may need an EWS1 form

For those property owners trapped in this situation you may need an “external-wall-system” review (EWS1 form) in order to sell your property.  Fire engineers typically charge “five figure sums” for the EWS1 forms.

Whether you need an EWS1 form or not is determined by the height of the building and coverage of cladding.

4 storeys and under: do not need EWS1 as long as the management company can confirm that certain cladding materials have not been used.

5-6 storeys: may need one subject to certain factors relating to your building

Above 6 storeys: most buildings with any form of cladding will need an external wall system check before they can be sold.

For more information on this please see this update from a2dominion:

Without an EWS1, buyers won’t achieve lending so sellers need a cash buyer and one who is prepared to take the risk on whether the building will pass of fail with the resulting liability that may come with that. Most estate agents won't list properties that fall into this category.

Staying updated

Large residential managing agents such as Rendall & Rittner are providing detailed updates on the crisis and the steps to resolution.

February 2021 Rendall & Rittner update

We will also update this page as more information becomes avaiable. If you would like us to notify you when we update this please provide your email here.

What you can do

Further steps flat owners who are trying and failing to sell should take are to get in touch with and add weight to the bodies pushing the government for change at End Our Cladding Scandal (EOCS) and UK Cladding Action Group (UKCAG) which you can do here:

Join these groups:



Or email at 

At Movewise we are currently unable to sell properties without an EWS1 form and timelines and costs for getting those can be extremely challenging. We will update this article as the crisis develops, ultimately towards resolution.

We are so sorry for those trapped in this situation, it is not right or fair. We wish to help to the extent we can so please submit ideas or thoughts to us at and we will endeavour to put our weight behind the process for resolution.

Yours sincerely,

The Movewise team.

Learn more about