Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 5th October 2006
Title of Item/Report
UPVC Window Replacement
Record of the Decision
Members considered a report that outlined a request from the Board of Tristar Homes to change the materials used in the window replacement programme for Council homes from timber to PVC-U based on a review of the current programme which had included consultation with customers and value for money considerations.

It was explained that consultation with tenants had demonstrated that window replacement was a high priority with tenants. Tristar Homes, in conjunction with SBC, were undertaking a piece of work to identify ‘other works' that were required in addition to decent standard works to meet tenant expectations and ensure properties remained popular and sustainable. Once this work was identified as part of the asset management plans within the Company, Tristar and SBC would consider the resource implications of such works and a further report would be brought to Cabinet.

It was explained that the Council's policy was to use timber for window replacement except in high rise dwellings. This policy had been in place for a number of years and was based on the premise that wooden windows were more environmentally friendly. However, over time the PVC-U market had changed considerably particularly in respect of environmental issues and a thorough evaluation had therefore been required. In considering this proposed policy change Tristar had considered the following elements.

Economic Sustainability

Social Sustainability

Environmental Sustainability

In summary, while timber came just ahead on environmental grounds, PVC-U windows had a distinct advantage when it came to socio-economic considerations. In practice this meant that twice as many PVC-U windows than timber could be installed for the same cost, optimising available resources and giving customers what they wanted. An example was provided to Members indicating that the average cost of replacing windows at an average property (9 windows per dwelling) was currently 4,200 and would be approximately 2,200 if PVC-U windows were used.

Members noted that there was no comprehensive window replacement programme at present and this would be a business and funding considerations for the future. However, a number of properties were receiving window replacement as part of decent standard works (based on condition) and this policy change would, therefore, result in future areas receiving PVC-U windows instead of wooden. There would be logical places to stop the existing programme and begin the new programme to prevent changing the profile of windows in the same road.

RESOLVED that the information provided by Tristar Homes Board be noted and the use of PVC-U windows instead of timber be approved.
Reasons for the Decision
To ensure investment programmes continue to meet the needs and aspirations of customers and achieve value for money.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
Councillors Leonard and Nelson declared personal, non prejudicial interests in this item as they were both Tristar Board Members.

Details of any Dispensations
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
By no later than midnight on Friday 13th October 2006

Date of Publication: 09 October 2006

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