Regulator publishes annual report and accounts for 2020/21
A summary overview of the Scottish Housing Regulator’s performance and achievements over the last year has been highlighted in a new report.
The annual report and accounts for 2020/21 outline the Regulator work to safeguard and promote the interests of tenants, people who are homeless, and others who use the services of social landlords.
According to the report, the Regulator managed risk by:
- focussing on anything that might prevent it from achieving its statutory objective
- immediately adjusting its regulatory response, aligning to the unprecedented circumstances that social landlords were facing as a consequence of the pandemic
- making temporary changes to its Regulatory Framework, allowing landlords more time to complete regulatory returns and providing guidance and advice where relevant
- working with the Social Housing Resilience Group to respond to the pandemic, informing that group and Scottish Government through a monthly dashboard on the impact of the pandemic on landlords.
The Regulator said it empowered tenants, people who are homeless, Gypsy/Travellers and others by:
- promoting messages about the financial pressure on tenants
- meeting with its Regional Network SHR Liaison Group and participating in virtual events with tenant organisations
- carrying out research with its National Panel of Tenants and Service Users
- publishing a suite of performance information on landlords’ performance against the Scottish Social Housing Charter
- modernising its online landlord comparison tool to make information more accessible
- publishing videos about its refreshed plan on how it involved tenants and others in its work
- continuing appointment of its tenant advisors
- receiving and investigating reports from tenants on significant performance failures.
George Walker, the Regulator’s chair, said: “This year, our Annual Report reflects on the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and recognises the unprecedented circumstances social landlords continue to operate in.
“Over the past year, we’ve realigned our regulatory approach to focus on supporting social landlords, the Social Housing Resilience Group and Scottish Government in its response to the pandemic.
“We worked to adjust our approach to respond to the pandemic. We made temporary adjustments to our regulatory framework, restated our Corporate Plan and worked with the Social Housing Resilience Group.
“Throughout the year, we collected and published monthly information on the impact of the pandemic to support the work of the Social Housing Resilience Group and the Scottish Government in its response to the pandemic.
“Alongside this, we continued to focus on regulating to safeguard and promote the interests of tenants and service users focusing on the most critical cases and risks that emerged during the pandemic.
“Looking ahead to 2021/22 and beyond, recovery and resetting from the impact of the pandemic with be a major feature for us all. Brexit continues to present risks and uncertainties.
“Homelessness and the safety of tenants and residents will remain priorities for us, and climate change and carbon zero initiatives are high on the agenda, with COP26 as an important backdrop.
“We will continue to work with social landlords, tenants and service users, the Social Housing Resilience Group and all of our stakeholders as we all continue to work to tackle the challenges ahead.”