This series of ‘back to the future’ articles looks at the Social Housing (Regulation) Act 2023, the changes made, and what social housing providers should be aware of, as well as examining whether it is entirely new law, or a re-invention of something previously seen within the social housing sector.
This is the third article in the series, which looks at the tenant satisfaction measures under the act.
To bolster the new consumer regulatory regime, there will be new consumer standards set, focusing on tenants and the service they get from their landlords. This includes the tenant satisfaction measures.
In November 2020 the government published The charter for social housing residents: social housing white paper, which contained a number of steps that the Regulator of Social Housing (RSH) would take to help improve the quality of homes and service for those living in social housing properties. One of these steps was the tenant satisfaction measures which aim to make landlords’ performance more visible to tenants and will also give the RSH a better insight into which registered providers need to improve on what they are doing.
The new act gives the RSH the power to set standards for registered providers requiring them to supply information about their performance relating to these standards. This effectively gives the RSH the power to introduce the tenant satisfaction measures which were a commitment in the white paper.
The new measures were published by the RSH in September 2022, coming into force in April 2023 when landlords started to collect data for them. They cover five main areas, including repairs, building safety, effective complaint-handling, respectful and helpful tenant engagement and responsible neighbourhood management.
Next summer landlords with 1,000 or more tenants will start to send the RSH their first year of tenant satisfaction measures data and autumn 2024 will be the first time that the results are published.
This aspect of the act is all new, and much welcomed, law which seeks to enhance the quality of homes and service for those living in social housing properties.
Our next ‘back to the future’ article will look at Awaab’s Law. Other articles in this series will consider the following aspects: the regulator’s new powers; consumer regulation; and electrical safety.