Social Housing (Regulation) Act

The Government’s Social Housing (Regulation) Act received Royal Assent on 20th July 2023. This means that it is now law and must be followed. 

The Government’s aim was to bring about “transformational change” for social housing residents, placing the needs of tenants at the heart of reforms to improve the quality of life for those living in social housing. 

At its heart, the Act is about improving and promoting a more proactive consumer regime.  

The keys aspects of the Act include: 

  • The Regulator of Social Housing (RSH) will subject social landlords to inspections and will have the power to issue unlimited fines if they fail to meet required standards 
  • RSH will also be able to issue social landlords with ‘performance improvement plan notices’ if they fail to meet required standards, if there is a risk they will fail to meet required standards, or if they fail to provide documents or information the RSH has asked for. 
  • The removal of the ‘serious detriment’ test, which blocks the RSH from intervening over consumer standards unless it suspects tenants are at risk of serious harm. 
  • RSH will be able to carry out emergency works on customers’ homes and the social landlord will have to cover the costs.  They will be able to do so with only 48 hours’ notice for emergency repairs where there is a serious risk to tenants. 
  • Social landlords will be subject to a Freedom of Information-style information-sharing process for customers. 
  • Social landlords will need to collect and publish information on their own compliance and performance. 
  • The housing ombudsman will be granted new powers to publish best practice guidelines to landlords following investigations into tenant complaints. 
  • RSH will set up an advisory panel, made up of representatives of social housing tenants, social landlords and their lenders, councils, the Greater London Authority (GLA), Homes England and the housing secretary. 
  • There will be a professional qualification requirement of social housing managers. 
  • Stronger economic powers to investigate inappropriate money transactions. 


The regulator will soon publish their consultation on new consumer standards and the inspection regime is expected to go live in April 2024. 

If you have any questions about the expected legal developments, please do not hesitate to contact us.  

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