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Commons Select Committee launches inquiry into the quality and regulation of social housing

The Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee has launched an inquiry into the quality and regulation of social housing in England and the Government’s proposals in the social housing White Paper for improving the regulatory regime. The inquiry comes in the wake of national media coverage of the poor quality of some social homes.

The questions which the Committee is seeking to answer are:

  • How widespread and serious are the concerns about the quality of social housing?
  • What is the impact on social housing providers’ resources, and therefore their ability to maintain and improve their housing stock, of the need to remediate building safety risks and retrofit their homes to make them more energy efficient?
  • Is the current regime for regulating social housing fit for purpose?
  • How clearly defined are the roles of the Regulator of Social Housing and the Housing Ombudsman?
  • Does the current regime allow tenants to effectively resolve issues?
  • Do the regulator and ombudsman have sufficient powers to take action against providers?
  • Will the reforms proposed in the social housing White Paper improve the regime and what progress has been made on implementing those reforms?
  • What changes, if any, should the Government make to the Decent Homes Standard?
  • Should the Decent Homes Standard be amended to include energy efficiency and other means of mitigating climate change, and if so how?
  • Should all providers of social housing, not just councils, be required to register with the regulator?
  • What challenges does the diversification of social housing providers pose for the regulatory system?

The Committee has issued a Call for Evidence, with a deadline of 21 December 2021 for the submission of evidence.