Survey information and preparation guide

This page describes what you need to do to prepare for a Cold Homes Energy Efficiency Survey Experts (CHEESE) survey, what will happen on the day, and how we will follow up with your progress afterwards.


  1. Payment
  2. Covid precautions
  3. Preparation
  4. Previous energy use
  5. During the survey
  6. Training surveys
  7. Follow ups after the survey
  8. Subsequently
  9. Privacy


All surveys are paid for in advance by bank transfer. This is priced according to the number of bedrooms, because this determines how long the survey takes. See our pricing for various sizes of homes.

Covid precautions

We require our surveyors to take a lateral-flow test, or equivalent, before starting each survey day.

To ensure the safety of our staff, we regret that we will have to postpone the survey if, on the day of the survey, anyone in your household is self isolating, awaiting a test, is displaying any Covid symptoms, or has been in contact with a positive case in the last 10 days.

If you are comfortable confirming all adult householders' vaccine status, then please do so in your reply, this will reassure our staff.

Our surveyors will be wearing masks and have wipes to clean door handles etc, since the doors and windows need to closed throughout the survey, our surveyors will do their best to keep a distance between you both.

Preparation for the survey

In order for us to conduct an efficient and successful survey, we need you to make some preparations around your home before the survey:

Previous energy use

It is very important for us to record data on energy use so that we can measure whether energy is being saved, and how much. We want to compare your energy use before the survey with it afterwards. To do this, we ask you to find out your total energy use for the year before your survey. One year after your survey, we will contact you again to ask you to calculate the same figures for comparison.

For the pre-survey use figures, please retrieve energy bills (electricity, gas and possibly solid fuel) for the year period before your survey, or as close as you have records for. For each type of energy, we need to know the total kilowatt hours (kWh) of energy you have used. Please look through your bills and calculate the total kilowatt-hours figures to have them ready with the start and end dates of their period. For help with understanding gas and electricity bills from, there are useful guides from:

If you are not sure how to calculate these totals, then we can calculate them after the survey with you.

It is important that we collect energy use figures that are based on meter readings, rather than estimates made by the energy provider, so that our analyses are accurate. If you do not have meter readings available, then we can mark the figure as an estimate.

During the survey

A CHEESE blower door installed during a survey.
A CHEESE thermal imaging kit.
Debriefing with the householder after a survey

Please note:

Training Surveys

Each survey season we will be training new surveyors who need to accompany experienced surveyors on some surveys to practice their skills and interpretation of images. Our Survey Manger may contact you to ask if you are willing to accept a training survey. This will mean one or two more people attending the survey. The advantage to you is that you will also have the most expert surveyors carrying out your survey.

Follow ups after the survey

One month

We will ask you to feedback on the actions you have taken (or plan to take) as a result of the survey, approximately one month after. We would also like to hear any thoughts or comments you have on the survey.

For reference, you can take a look at the one-month feedback form here. The form can be filled in by you, or by a surveyor on your behalf over the telephone or in person.

One year

We will contact you one year after the survey by telephone or email to find out how you are getting on. We would like to know:

As with the one-month feedback form, the one-year feedback form can be completed by you or by a surveyor on your behalf.


We find that following a CHEESE survey, people may continue to take action for years afterwards, reviewing the video again and again as they gradually deal with the problems it reveals. We will always be glad to hear of your progress in retrofitting and energy/money saving.


Collection of some personal data is necessary for the operation of the project, so that we can find out what action has been taken after a survey, and the effects of these actions, and so we can collect data city-wide on building faults and energy savings. We limit this collection to what is absolutely necessary, and are transparent in the ways we process and store personal data. Please read our privacy notice for more information.