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The Housing Act – what happens next?

The Housing (Wales) Act 2014 and what happens next

Part 1: Regulation of private rented housing

The Welsh Government currently envisages that requirements on registration and licensing will come into force in the second half of 2015. Work continues with stakeholders on scheme branding, systems etc and on drafting the code of practice. There will be consultation.

Part 2: Homelessness

Implementation currently scheduled for April 2015. Working closely with local authorities and others to prepare for introduction. Secondary legislation in hand and consultations will be forthcoming.

Part 3: Gypsy and travellers

Consultation on the guidance closes on November 21 with an intention to publish the final guidance in February 2015. Some elements – assessments, information provision and consequential amendments – expected to start in February 2015 (to allow local authorities 12 months to undertake assessments). Commencement of sections 103 and 104 (duty to meet needs) expected in March 2016.

Part 4: Standards for social housing

The Welsh Government currently expects all sections bar one (delayed to allow authorities to de-pool charges) to commence two months after Royal Assent. Consultation on standards and guidance for rents for social housing and quality of accommodation likely by the end of this year for implementation in April, 2015, and the rent standard for intermediate housing, service charge standard and guidance in 2015/16.

Part 5: Housing Finance

Some sections, for example the settlement figure, come into effect two months after Royal Assent. Sections on abolishing the Housing Revenue Account subsidy system will be delayed to allow for audit of final claims for 2014/15. The Welsh Government is working closely with the WLGA and local authorities to enable exit from the system.

Part 6: Allowing fully mutual housing associations to grant assured tenancies

Commences two months after Royal Assent. More information to be issued in due course.

Part 7: Council tax for certain types of dwelling
Regulations to be brought forward, with timing in process of being determined. Arrangements for consultation on potential exemptions are in hand and may be issued before Christmas.

Part 8: Amendment of the Leasehold reform, Housing and urban Development Act 1993 Commencement order being prepared. 

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