Social Housing Regulation Bill published

09 June 2022

On 8 June 2022, the Social Housing Regulation Bill was introduced to Parliament. The Bill aims to deliver the proposals set out in the Social Housing White Paper by introducing a number of measures to give tenants greater powers, improve access to swift and fair redress, and enhance the powers of the Regulator of Social Housing (RSH).

The measures announced under the Bill will:

  • Enable the RSH to intervene with landlords who are performing poorly on consumer issues, such as complaints handling and decency of homes, and to act in the interest of tenants to make sure issues are rectified.
  • Enable the RSH to inspect landlords to make sure they are providing tenants with the quality of accommodation and services that they deserve.
  • Guarantee timely action where the RSH has concerns about the decency of a home by only requiring 48 hours notice to a landlord before a survey is carried out.
  • Provide powers for the RSH to arrange emergency repairs of tenants’ homes (following a survey and where there is evidence of systemic failure by the landlord), ensuring that serious issues are resolved rapidly where a landlord is unable or unwilling to act.
  • Remove the cap on the fines that the RSH can issue to a landlord who fails to meet required standards.
  • Create new Tenant Satisfaction Measures which will allow tenants to see how their landlord is performing compared to other landlords and help the RSH decide where to focus its attention.
  • Ensure tenants of housing associations will be able to request information from their landlord in a similar way to how the Freedom of Information Act works for tenants of Local Authority landlords.

We welcome the government’s publication of the Social Housing Regulation Bill and will continue to work with the sector to put into practice the measures it sets out to ensure all residents have a home that is warm and dry, safe, secure and affordable.

We also support the separate proposals for a 250-person resident panel, which will convene three times a year to share their experiences with ministers and inform policy. Housing associations are already leading the sector in demonstrating their commitments to resident engagement through the NHF’s Together with Tenants initiative. Over 200 housing associations, representing over 80% of homes owned by NHF members, have adopted Together with Tenants which sets new standards for tenant and landlord relationships.

Alongside this, the NHF have partnered with the Chartered Institute of Housing to bring together an independent panel of residents, community leaders, frontline staff and others to understand more about the issues of quality, learn where things may be going wrong, and begin to tackle the root causes of the problem.

Over the coming weeks we will be publishing a briefing for NHF members which analyses the Bill and sets out what it means for housing associations.

Who to speak to

Contact our Policy team