Home safety Asbestos safety

What you should do if you have asbestos in your home and how we make sure you’re not at risk.

Pile of asbestos

Asbestos is a natural fibre that was used in insulation, flooring and roofing building materials up until the late 1990s. It’s now banned in the UK because asbestos can cause cancer and lung disease if the fibres are disturbed or damaged.

Where is asbestos found?

You’re unlikely to find asbestos in your home if it was built after 2000. However, older homes may have asbestos in: 

  • Artex ceilings 
  • bath panels, toilet cisterns or seats
  • central heating systems, including boilers, gas fires and electric storage heaters
  • cold water tanks
  • drainpipes and guttering 
  • floor and ceiling tiles 
  • plasterboard 
  • insulating boards for fire protection
  • roof boards and panels

You can’t tell whether a material has asbestos just by looking at it. A specialist contractor will need to test the material to see whether it contains asbestos. 

How do I manage asbestos in my home?

It’s not a problem to have asbestos in your home as long as it’s in good condition and you don’t disturb it. You should never try to remove any asbestos yourself. 

When you’re decorating or doing DIY near something you think could contain asbestos, it’s important to not disturb it. Be careful when drilling, cutting, scraping or using sandpaper near surfaces or materials that could contain asbestos. 

If you’re planning any home improvements near materials that could contain asbestos, please contact us for advice before you start. 

How do we deal with asbestos?

We’re checking all our properties for asbestos and we keep records of where we find it. 

If we come to your home and suspect you may have asbestos, we’ll take samples from the materials for tests. If the tests show there is asbestos, we’ll carry out regular inspections to check its condition and make sure it’s not damaged. 

We’ll arrange for a specialist contractor or surveyor to visit your home immediately if you think something containing asbestos has been damaged. 

By law, we have to properly manage any asbestos in your home. We don’t always need to remove asbestos, as sometimes it’s safer to leave it where it is, but we will always make sure you’re not at risk.