The government will “name and shame” failing social housing providers as part of major reforms to give residents a stronger voice and drive up standards.

The move means social landlords providing sub-standard housing and services would be publicly called out on the government’s website and across social media channels.

Measures announced this week (29 March 2022) also include a Resident Panel that will allow tenants who live in social housing to be heard directly by government.

National Landlord Investment Show – MPU

Around 250 social tenants from across England will be invited to share their experiences and help us ensure our reforms work to drive up standards.

As set out in the Social Housing White Paper, the reforms – due to be delivered through legislation – will transform the experiences of residents, with a major reform of the way in which social landlords are regulated and held to account for the homes and services they deliver.

The government has already set out a wide range of measures designed to drive up standards and fix a broken complaints system including by strengthening regulation of the sector, improving the Housing Ombudsman Service, and empowering residents to know and exercise their rights.

A package of measures announced this week goes even further.

It includes:

  • Publicising on social media where landlords have breached the Regulator’s consumer standards or where the Housing Ombudsman has made its most serious finding – severe maladministration – against them.
  • The launch of a Resident Panel, inviting residents to have their say on how to improve the quality of social housing.

    The Panel will allow residents to scrutinise and influence measures to strengthen the Decent Homes Standard, training and qualification for staff, a new Access to Information Scheme and other planned reforms.

  • Publishing draft clauses to legislation that will reform the regulation of social housing through tougher consumer powers, greater enforcement tools to tackle failing landlords and new responsibilities on social landlords.
  • A new factsheet explaining the role of the Regulator of Social Housing and Housing Ombudsman Service.
  • A single gov.uk page, setting out progress on implementing the measures in the Social Housing White Paper and further measures being introduced to improve quality of social housing.

Minister for Social Housing Eddies Hughes MP said:

“Everyone in this country deserves to live in a safe and decent home.

It is unacceptable that anyone should have mould covering their walls, risk slipping on a wet floor or have water dripping from the ceiling.

We have published draft legislation today to toughen up regulation of social housing landlords.

This includes naming and shaming those landlords who fail to meet acceptable living standards and giving tenants a direct channel to raise their concerns with government.

This package will help to deliver on our commitment in the Levelling Up White Paper to halve the number of non-decent rented homes by 2030.”

The announcement follows the government’s campaign to help people secure improvements to their living conditions.

The government’s ‘Make Things Right’ campaign helps residents raise complaints if they are unhappy with their landlord’s services and struggling to get problems resolved, with clear advice on how to progress issues to the Housing Ombudsman if necessary.

Adverts have run on digital and social media channels, as well as music streaming sites, to raise awareness of the complaints process and barriers to these being progressed.

Any social housing resident can submit an application to join the Panel, which will close on Friday 29 April.

The new panel will be a way for tenants across the country to get involved in our work to drive up social housing quality.

The Resident Panel will be supported by a national survey.

Around 5,000 residents will be asked to share their views about their landlord’s services during March and April 2022.

The survey will be used to monitor the impact our reforms will have on social housing residents.

The Government will publish on social media where landlords have breached the Regulator’s consumer standards or where the Housing Ombudsman Service has made its most serious finding – severe maladministration – against them.

See the latest findings from the Housing Ombudsman Service here.

The Housing Ombudsman is focused on helping to resolve individual complaints made by tenants, shared owners and leaseholders about their landlords.

They can consider complaints and disputes and may help mediate to find a resolution.

The Regulator of Social Housing is focused on ensuring that the landlord meets the standards set for social housing providers.

This includes that the landlord is well-managed and financially viable, provides tenants with quality accommodation, choice and protection, and that its tenants can hold their landlords to account.

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