The TSA (Tenant Services Authority) has recently published and implemented the new regulatory framework to cover registered social housing providers, a policy change which includes the abolition of their own organisation in favour of the Regulation Committee of the Homes and Communities Agency.
Consumer regulation has been adapted the most, with the regulator only intervening under the new policy in a service delivery matter where there is evidence of actual or potential serious detriment to tenants. For less serious breaches, responsibility will be with registered providers and their tenant panels, alongside advice from local councillors and MPs.
Further changes are being brought in to the rules on tenure, tenant involvement and empowerment, and mobility.
On economic regulation, the TSA has announced that the regulator’s top priority will still be to “ensure that private providers are financially viable for the long term and that their boards are providing effective direction and oversight to their organisations”.
Anthony Mayer, Chairman of the TSA, commented: “Although the Government has required significant changes to the 2010 standards framework, this new framework retains at its core the principle of co-regulation. Boards and councillors are responsible for the viability and proper governance of their organisations, and the effective service delivery and accountability of their tenants.
“The TSA Board’s top priority has been to ensure that we develop a regulatory framework that will maintain the confidence of all those with interests in the sector – whether landlords, lenders and investors, taxpayers or tenants. The priority is to ensure that social housing businesses are well run and can withstand the challenges of a difficult financial environment and housing market for the long term.”
Julian Ashby, Chair of the HCA’s Regulation Committee, added: “We are grateful to the TSA for giving the Regulation Committee the opportunity to influence the new framework following the closure of consultation. We now look forward to working with the sector on its implementation. We will focus on governance, viability and value for money in response to increasing risks in the operating environment.”
More information, the published documents and a further overview of the changes can be found on this link to the Tenant Services Authority website.