The Scottish Housing Regulator has started the countdown for each social landlord to submit its first Annual Assurance Statement. The deadline is 31 October.
Annual Assurance Statements are an important part of the new Regulatory Framework, which came into force in April this year. Submitting the Statement to the Regulator is a way for each social landlord’s board or committee to declare it is assured the organisation complies with regulatory requirements and standards, or to disclose any areas where it needs to improve.
Speaking at the Social Housing Conference in Glasgow, Ian Brennan, Director of Regulation, said: “It is now less than two months until social landlords have to submit their first statement. The introduction of this requirement has been the catalyst for a lot of discussion amongst landlords, within landlords and also between landlords and ourselves. This in itself is encouraging. It indicates that the new regulatory framework has highlighted the need for good governance, assurance and internal control within landlords.”
“We are looking for positive assurance rather than an assumption of compliance unless a landlord tells us otherwise. We believe that this will help landlords drive improvements where needed.”
The Regulator has published guidance and Frequently Asked Questions to assist landlords prepare. These are available on its website.
Notes to editors
1. The Scottish Housing Regulator was established on 1 April 2011 under the Housing (Scotland) Act 2010. Its objective is to safeguard and promote the interests of tenants and others who use local authority and RSL housing services. The Regulator operates independently of Scottish Ministers and is accountable directly to the Scottish Parliament. It assumed its full regulatory responsibilities on 1 April 2012. The Regulator consists of the Chair and eight Board members. More information about the Regulator can be found on its website at www.scottishhousingregulator.gov.uk
2. SHR regulates around 160 registered social landlords and the housing activities of 32 local authorities.
3. SHR sets out how it regulates in its Regulatory Framework.