Federation response to the Review of Social Housing Regulation

We’ve published our response to the Review of Social Housing Regulation Call for Evidence.

6 November 2018

This is the formal response of the Federation to the Call for Evidence by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) on the regulation of social housing. 

We agree that a review is appropriate and the Federation, and our members, look forward to engaging fully with it.

You can download our response in full, or read our summary of the key points below.

Summary of key points

  • The Call for Evidence commences a process of reviewing the regulation of social housing. The Federation strongly supports the role of good proportionate regulation, welcomes this review, and looks forward to engaging fully with it.
  • In the Federation’s view the role of regulation is to create a framework within which associations can deliver on their social purpose as effectively as possible. This is the test against which any regulatory proposals should be judged.
  • The review should be comprehensive in scope, except where issues have been determined recently, such as the new insolvency provisions for registered providers and the deregulatory provisions of the Housing and Planning Act 2016.
  • The review should consider the underlying legislative basis for regulation as set out in the Housing and Regeneration Act 2008 as modified by the Localism Act 2011.
  • Any changes to the regulatory regime should not add to, and if possible should lessen, the risk of reclassifying housing associations as ‘public’ for the purposes of government accounting.  
  • The regulator should remain a free-standing agency with a clear legislative remit and should be subject to direction by ministers only in specific limited areas.
  • The Federation supports more effective regulation of consumer issues, but believes it is essential the regulator maintains its current focus on governance and financial viability and the strengthening of consumer regulation.