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Management of Social Housing Stock: Beware New Implied Terms!

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In recent months and years, the government has demonstrated a desire to raise the standards in the social housing sector, most notably in relation to the condition of its existing stock following the Grenfell Tower disaster and tragic death of two-year-old Awaab Ishak.

Having received Royal Assent earlier this year, the Social Housing (Regulation) Act 2023 (“the Act”) looks to address standards relating to the competence and conduct of RPs and those connected with the management of social housing.

One of the key provisions of the Act implies terms into management services agreements essentially requiring that service providers ensure that certain staff involved in the management of social housing stock hold, or are working towards, a specific professional qualification in housing management.

These terms will be implied into all management agreements relating to social housing, irrespective of any express contrary contractual terms agreed between the parties.

The particular nature of these professional qualifications (and which job titles are caught by the requirement) remains subject to government consultation, which is expected to take place before the end of this year. However, the level of qualification is expected to be the equivalent to a Level 4 or 5 Certificate or Diploma in Housing.

This is a significant development in the sector that could see around 25,000 managers being required to gain further qualifications. As such, all stakeholders involved in the management of social housing should be aware of these changes and follow any developments announced by the government in the coming months. Watch this space!

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