The use of large up-front fees and disproportionate deposits has already resulted in significant cost consequences for one care provider.
What does it mean?
The Secretary of State (“SoS”), under regulations following the HPA16, has the power to make ‘grants’ to housing associations in respect of right-to-buy discounts. This is the mechanism that the Government will use to refund the discounts granted on VRTB sales back to the housing association.
The Act also sets out that the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) will be required to monitor each housing association’s compliance with the ‘home-ownership criteria’. The detail of this criteria has yet to be determined but is very likely to include delivery of the VRTB. Jonathan Walters (of the HCA) has said though that compliance doesn’t need to be the VRTB and could be an alternative: the criteria is awaited with interest.
When will VRTB start?
There is still no clear timescale. The enabling legislation has permitted the SoS to make grants anytime from 26th May 2016 but in reality this will be initially just for the pilot associations. The timescales set out by the National Housing Federation (NHF) suggest that tenants will be able to start submitting applications by the end of this year.
What should housing associations be doing?
Planning and preparing.
The NHF is working with the Department for Communities Local Government (DCLG) to develop VRTB scheme ‘guidance’. Once approved by the Government, the guidance will be rolled out across the sector and housing associations will be required to develop their own VRTB policy working within that guidance. The NHF has indicated that the guidance will be issued ‘this summer’.
Housing associations should use this time to ensure that their asset registers are up to date and accurate and start thinking about the design of its eligibility and portability polices.
Our VRTB Conference on 7 June will give housing associations the opportunity to learn from the VRTB Pilot and also give practical tips on preparation for the VRTB.
For more information
Please contact Emma Holmes
The government announced on 16 May that it will provide a fund of £400m to cover the costs of removal and replacement of cladding to high rise residential blocks which have failed tests.
Whilst some people are under the impression that preparing a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is simply a case of completing a form and ticking a few boxes, it is about far more than this.
A big fear for some people facing divorce and the inevitable carving up of the matrimonial assets. They seek assurances that such assets will be “ring-fenced” and retained for them.
Thinking about the legal status of being a cohabitant probably isn’t at the top of the ‘to do’ list.
When an individual is thinking about making a gift to another individual, consideration needs to be given to the Potentially Exempt Transfer (PET) trap.
We are now only a few weeks away from the biggest change to data protection laws in over 20 years. Are you compliant?
The tragedy, in this case, is that there were options readily available to the midwives that they could have used. This was not a case of having to go above and beyond.
Arising from the recent Family Division announcement, people who think they are legally divorced may in fact still be married.
The SCCS has issued providers in the scheme a series of updated and new documents in order to assist with their National Minimum Wage review.
To receive invitations to our events, as well as information and articles on legal issues and sector developments that are of interest to you, please sign up to Newsroom.